Attic framing...beam question

What exactly is the purpose of the triangular structure and how would you refer to it (what’s its name)? I’m pretty sure it is to compensate for the removal of a load bearing wall in a 50 year old house. But please explain the purpose for the triangular shape. Thanks.

Would you note anything in particular in a report when you see such a thing in an older home?

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Thats a nice version of a strongback or stiffback for the ceiling joists for the roof loads. “Triangular strongback” would be a good name for it. The trangle spreads the load out across all the joists under the horizontal 2x braces. I would look at the ceiling below for sagging still, that is a lot of load there. Did the lumber look newer? That may have been original if they designed the house with a large room. For a 50yr house, that roof bracing looks pretty good but I base my report on the conditon of the door openings, ceiling and floor flatness etc also.

Trusses, when designed properly, can carry a predetermined amount of clear span weight however this is incumbent that the weight is being transferred to a load point capable of transferring that weight to the footings.

I seriously doubt the configuration you are showing is doing anything other than loading up the area with more lumber.
If one wants to reduce deflection then a 2x8 or greater should be used and even than it should cross load bearing walls when possible.

It it is suppose to be acting as a header than it is not correct.



It appears the room/garage area under that part of the house has no support wall. If the system is designed properly the roof load is transfered to the truss and the truss transfers the load to both ends. The far end appears to be the end of the house which is a support wall. You will have to check to see if the near end of the truss rests on a support wall. The odds are good if the builder was smart enough to realize he needed that truss to transfer the roof load he was smart enough to make sure both ends rested on a support wall. But you will have to verify that.

Randy, I don’t see any trusses in the posted picture.

Did I miss something?

The item in question is a truss that appears to be doing duty as a concealed beam.

I’m curious, has a section of load bearing wall been removed to open up a room? What do the ends of the truss bear on? How are the ceiling joists and roof supports attached to it?

If it looks like it was added, I would definitely comment on its presence, note any adverse conditions observed and advise the client to seek out any documentation that the seller may have regarding who engineered the structural change. I would defer on any opinions as to adequacy of the design.

Of course, thanks…makes sense. :oops:

I would not report the presence of a truss since by the most widely used current standards the definition of a truss is an engineered component. I may report that its a homemade truss but would make sure to report that it is not used in the typical way, ie. with roof sheathing attached etc.

I agree that it looks like solution that was installed when a load bearing wall was removed below. My concern is that there is no lateral support for the top of the truss. I can’t see how the joists are connted to the truss or how the truss is connected to what it bears on, so I can’t comment there. A clever solution, though a beam would have been easier to install.

There were not trusses. Stick built attic.

I agree, that looks like the original build for that building. We made use of simple trusses like that for similar supports when I was a young puppy.
Roof load transfered down to the ceiling and the truss diverts the load on to bearing walls below.
Unconventional framing per todays standards, but worked fine years ago when not all buildings had an engineer to stamp the design.