Engineers at the Home Innovation Research Labs loaded integrated band joist headers with more than 4,000 pounds per lineal foot to establish that the assembly could carry require roof, wall, and floor loads without compromising the performance of windows in the wall below.
Engineers at the Home Innovation Research Labs loaded integrated band joist headers with more than 4,000 pounds per lineal foot to establish that the assembly could carry require roof, wall, and floor loads without compromising the performance of windows in the wall below.

"Advanced framing" has been around a long time. Introduced as "optimum value engineering," or OVE, by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) in the 1960s, the concept is simple: use less wood in the wall so you can use more insulation. For decades, the idea has hung around without really catching on. But in recent years, as government policy has driven a rapid toughening of the energy code, advanced framing has started to emerge as an important strategy for meeting code without pricing your product out of the market.

The purest and simplest form of the advanced framing concept is to switch from walls framed with 2x4s at 16 inches on center to walls framed with 2x6s at 24 inches on center. The two versions use roughly the same amount of wood and have roughly the same bearing capacity, but the 2x6 wall has about 30% less thermal bridging. The 2x6 wall's...

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