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Roof Timber Problem

Alex H

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There is a possibility that we may want to extend our house into the rear of our barn.

As you can see from http://www.alenda.freeserve.co.uk/34.html there is a large roof supporting timber in the way.

The floor would probably have to be levelled to the concrete in the lower left of the photo and here is where the problem is.

The timber is resting on a large lump of rock (outlined in red here http://www.alenda.freeserve.co.uk/36.html) which then sits directly on the earth.

I must say at this point the earth is extremely compacted. It took me an hour to dig out the channel for the waste pipe using an SDS chisel.

Does anyone have any idea how a builder would overcome this? Reinforced concrete collar perhaps?


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Hi alex

I don't know your plans so this is how i would do it (25+ years in building game)

1st- about 1 foot to both side's of the beam dig down to below  what would be the finished level of the new floor say about 8" to 10"

2nd - make up some strong concrete,  pour again below finished level

3rd - after a good few days then support you main beam- ie acrowprop's

4th - then you can work on the main beam i would dig down again about 8" to 10" below finished floor, build a shutter - wood or bricks  up to or above the beam then fill in with concrete again after a good week or two you can think of digging out dirt and removal of the supports

the main thing is to support the main beam till it is safely back as the main beam

but as i said i dont know your full plans for the building

if you require any more help just pm ok


region 23 


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The main post support 'rock' looks very 'iffy' to me.

I suggest follow Robin's suggestion and fully support the upper floor to take the compression off the post. Support the post and excavate below it (substantially) and cast a concrete footing slab. Then shutter an upstand to cast a support 'extension' up to the base of the post. I would think it a good idea to insert some vertical rebar in the footing slab to tie in the upstand.

The footing slab should have a top level below the expected finish level of the final floor so that the floor surface butts to the upstand vertical faces. The post support plinth would of course end up being exposed above the final floor but could be 'camouflaged' perhaps with wood cladding to match in with the post for aesthetic reasons.

All my personal opinion of course, no guarantees implied or given.

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I dont think that the OP will be costing his time to do the excavation works etc involved in the support structure. He is therefore into material costs only. Scarfing is an option but it needs to be done properly and unless the OP is either a very competent 'wood butcher' or is prepared to throw money at the job then he really needs to think about the alternatives. The concrete substructure idea will ( I believe) work and can be made aesthetically acceptable.

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