Our Philosophy

At Alces Post & Beam, we feel strongly about delivering the highest quality, most energy efficient, and environmentally friendly product to our customers from locally produced and ecologically sustainable materials.

We strive to accomplish this in several ways.

Our goals are to provide you with exceptional customer service, to meet your individual needs, and to exceed your expectations in every way.

  • We listen to our customers and tailor each product to their individual specifications.
  • We have a dedicated, skilled and personable crew who take great pride in their work.
  • Our small crew of 4 to 5 craftsmen is involved throughout the entire project from the joinery of the frame to frame raising and SIP installation.
  • We work closely with your building contractor to ensure your project comes together seamlessly and efficiently — from the ground up.
  • We pay close attention to minute details that will ensure the finished frame melds perfectly with the floor plan of the house.
  • The price we quote is the price you pay. Unless you change the scope of the project there will be no added cost from the quoted price. We take great pride in being able to provide this security to our customers.
  • After making the first frame payment that is required to order timber and begin joinery, our customers are asked to make progress payments only on work that has been completed. The final payment is not due until the project is finished to their satisfaction.
  • We strive to make each project even better than the last.

 

We support local economies and communities

At Alces Post & Beam, we have committed ourselves to using only local building materials and supporting our local economies. The timber we use is supplied exclusively by small locally owned mills in Vermont and New Hampshire who use local logs purchased from local loggers. Most of our frames are cut from native Eastern hemlock and Eastern white pine timber but we have also used Eastern hardwood species such as oak, beech and maple. Because of the abundance of suitable framing materials here in Vermont, and because we are trying to minimize the environmental impact of our product, we made the decision in 2006 not to use any non-native or western timber species, such as Douglas fir, for our frames. The use of such species often requires the harvesting of non-renewable old growth timber and tremendous resources to transport them to the East. Since making this decision, we have had several potential customers request Douglas fir frames, a common wood species featured in many timber frame books and magazines. However, after hearing the reasons why we committed to using locally produced timbers, many of them chose to build their frames with Eastern white pine or hemlock as a better alternative.  The hardwood pegs we use during frame assembly and raising are manufactured by a small family owned business in central NH. Kiln-dried hardwoods used for spline joints and other details in our frames, are acquired from several mills in central Vermont. All of the structural insulated panels (SIPs) we use to enclose our frames are manufactured 25 miles away from our shop or just across the Connecticut River in New Hampshire. If we are working on a project outside our local area, we work hard to source SIPs and building materials in that region to minimize transportation costs.

We promote energy efficient building designs

We believe that smaller is better and encourage our customers to use their building square footage efficiently. With this in mind, our designer focuses on efficiencies in construction both in energy consumption and space utilization. The end result is a decrease in the amount of energy needed to heat, light or cool your home and a decrease in building materials required. This all amounts to a tremendous cost savings for the life of your home. We use structural insulated panels (SIPs) for the insulating envelope around our frames as we believe this is the most energy efficient system available. We design homes to make the most of passive solar heating and when orienting the house on a site-plan, we do so to maximize solar gain. We encourage our customers to use the most energy efficient windows, HRV systems, and heating and cooling systems.

We minimize the negative environmental and ecological impacts of building

We are very aware of the negative impacts development can have on our wildlife and natural ecosystems. Unbridled development can cause the loss of critical wildlife habitat and travel corridors, destruction of sensitive wetlands, and the increase of sediment deposition in our streams and rivers. We are dedicated to minimizing the inevitable impact our frames and houses will have on the natural world we place them in.

We strive to accomplish this in many ways. When creating a site-plan, our designer evaluates site characteristics such as slope, ledge, soil, water, vegetation, and critical wildlife habitats in order to limit the construction impact on the surrounding area. We use local and sustainable building materials. We use environmentally friendly materials such as the all-natural finish we put on all our timbers before they leave our shop. We fine tune our designs using computer modeling software to maximize building material use and to minimize waste. For instance, we design our frames to maximize the use of timber lengths and minimize the square footage of SIPs required to enclose the frame by omitting panels from our order where large window and door openings are located. Any large panel scraps we generate are used for future projects and smaller scraps are used by local residents for their personal use. Production waste, such as timber cut-offs, are used by local residents for heating, and sawdust is used by local farmers for their livestock or gardens. Our shop and office are insulated with the same SIPs we use in all of our projects and incorporate energy-efficient heating, lighting and HRV air handling. We purchase biodiesel for our work trucks and equipment.

We hope that after researching all your timber frame options you will discover what an exceptional timber frame package Alces Post & Beam can provide you.

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