Stack Framing – Why it’s important you on your next homebuild

by Jan 6, 2023

What is stack Framing?

Stack framing or advanced framing is where you line up structural members wood or steel vertically from top to bottom. Starting at the top of the building with the roof assembly (trusses and sheathing and roofing material) is then brought down through the studs in the wall which then that load is taken down to the foundation and finally to the undisturbed natural soil.  Most trusses are put on a 24″ on center  spacing which is where you then line up the material studs below. Often trusses maybe layout out from the front of the house to the back of the house and then the same going the other way from the back of the house to the front of the house. This makes for a gap in the middle which isn’t 24″ on center but still would help to reduce the amount of studs in the wall. You will often run into this scenario when you have a hipped roof.

Stack Framing and how load is transferred to foundation
This is of a truss layout showing how you would need to think about stack framing and lining up trusses with walls below.

On the left-hand side of the image of the trusses drawings you can see a red rectangle this is showing how when you have a hip roof or trusses starting from one side and then the other how it will impact your 24″ on center layout.

Why stack framing is important to your next home build?

Stack Framing saves you money

The way in which it saves you money is with less studs in the wall and yes it is still structurally sound.


Stack framing helps with thermal comfort because you will have less thermal bridging. Thermal bridging is the movement of heat through the wall. Where there is no insulation this is where heat travels from inside to outside.

A well-thought-out plan goes a long way.

We are always trying to build our framing members (studs, floor joists and trusses) 24″ O.C (“on center spacing”) unless we run into Brace Walls (earthquake protection), which need to be 16 O.C. or specified by the engineer or by part 9 of the building code. In doing so more planning is needed to be put in up front to determine desired points of where to start your framing members layout. Truss system and floor plan design need to be taken into account, In doing so make all ducting, plumbing and electrical work easier for sub-trades by keeping runs clear of obstacles and reducing the chance of bulkheads.

The Importance of Pre-Planning

If a contractor is brought in at very early stages of design these things can be looked at and addressed. There is a lot of pre-planning that goes into a house prior to it getting started and with some effort up front and figuring out a plan a lot of unwanted design changes can be avoided. We feel at BRC that it makes a lot more sense to move things around on paper then it does in the real world. The planning process takes effort from all parties involved in the project, to come to an understanding of what the project should look like in the end.

Executing the plan

Now it is time to take the plan to site and start building. The best contractors in the world with the most detailed plan still run into complications. The key to the complications is being able to problem solve which is 90% of construction work. At BRC we feel this is one of our strong suits. When faced with a problem you need to step back and think about all your options before diving back into something and come up with a plan that everyone involved in the process will be happy with.

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