How do you curve a Glulam beam?

Curving Glulam timber is considered by some an art form. It takes planning and care to get it right.

Glulam Timber can be curved to tight radiuses, not by heating or steam, but by reducing the thickness of the laminates. The tighter the radius, the more laminations that need to be used.

Once the glue is applied, the process is to put into the custom press and then clamped and pulled into position.

Setting up the curved press is tricky as ‘spring back’ of timber needs to be taken into account. When the tension is released, the timber will try to revert to being straight. The glue stops this from happening.

Here is a video of Vicbeam curving a beam with a radius of 1250m with laminations of 10mm. That’s 36 laminates to achieve 360mm.

 

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