Unlike a wood-framed site-built house, all Kodiak Steel Homes® models are fully-engineered systems. Each one is reviewed and certified by an engineer licensed in the state the home is delivered. We design them according to a particular building code (for example, IBC 2003) to meet specific dead loads, wind loads, roof loads, seismic forces and other factors. We take into account the properties of every component, bolt, and screw, and we consider how each design element will affect the overall structure. For example, we look at the size and pitch of a roof to determine the rate at which it will shed rain. We calculate the amount of wind uplift created by canopies and porches, and we figure the potential for snow or water buildup where structures of different heights are joined. The math used by our engineers in designing one of our home models can run over 200 pages (these design calculations are available as an option when required by your building inspector).
Our design process of calculating, drafting, detailing, and checking each model moves a fully engineered system from the computer
. . . to the field
Site Built on the Fly
Wood-framed homes are not built from an engineered design. Contractors rarely produce framing plans and almost never consult engineers. Most often, the framers simply work from a floor plan and elevation drawings, following a combination of traditional methods and prescriptive codes to produce a design in the field. In other words, each builder does it his own way. Code inspectors typically focus on certain parts of the frame and seldom analyze the overall design. In most cases, the framers are going to build their next wood-framed home the same way they did their last one. Although some states, like Florida, are applying more stringent codes to wood framed homes, these mostly call for reinforcing traditional assemblies with stronger materials — namely steel.