Technical Support - Q&A

What is Quality Assurance Program

What is Quality Assurance Program?

The Quality Assurance Program is directed at developers and others in Korea who wish to build with Canadian wood products and who meet Canada Wood conditions for assistance.  The emphasis is on quality at all levels.  Given the growing demand for wood construction, applicants are selected on a priority basis.  Such assistance may include:

  • Site visits, inspections, and reports with recommendations by Canada Wood specialists in wood construction
  • Advice and guidance on all technical aspects including design documentation and drawings, project management and logistics, structural framing, fire safety, durability, building envelope, finishing, and the selection of quality products
  • On-site and classroom training in construction, design, and inspection

Why do we usually call the dimensional lumber 2 X 4?

Lumber pieces are given names like 2X4 and 2X6 which have a certain relation to the size of the board when measured in inches. However, 2x4s are not actually 2 inches by 4 inches. The "nominal" cross-section dimensions of a piece of lumber, such as 2X4 or 2X6, are always somewhat larger than the actual dimensions. The reason is that when the board is first rough sawn from the log, it is a true 2x4, but the drying process and planing of the board reduce it to the finished 38X89 size. So the nominal measurement is made before the lumber is surfaced.

Here are the common name of lumber, and their actual sizes.

NominalActualActual - Metric
1" x 2" 3/4" x 1-1/2" 19 x 38 mm
1" x 3" 3/4" x 2-1/2" 19 x 64 mm
1" x 4" 3/4" x 3-1/2" 19 x 89 mm
1" x 5" 3/4" x 4-1/2" 19 x 114 mm
1" x 6" 3/4" x 5-1/2" 19 x 140 mm
1" x 7" 3/4" x 6-1/4" 19 x 159 mm
1" x 8" 3/4" x 7-1/4" 19 x 184 mm
1" x 10" 3/4" x 9-1/4" 19 x 235 mm
1" x 12" 3/4" x 11-1/4" 19 x 286 mm

Lumber Dimensions

NominalActualActual - Metric
2" x 4" 1-1/2" x 3-1/2" 38 x 89 mm
2" x 6" 1-1/2" x 5-1/2" 38 x 140 mm
2" x 8" 1-1/2" x 7-1/4" 38 x 184 mm
2" x 10" 1-1/2" x 9-1/4" 38 x 235 mm
2" x 12" 1-1/2"x11-1/4" 38 x 286 mm
3" x 6" 2-1/2" x 5-1/2" 64 x 140 mm
4" x 4" 3-1/2" x 3-1/2" 89 x 89 mm
4" x 6" 3-1/2" x 5-1/2" 89 x 140 mm

Wood vs. Concrete: How long and how much labor does it take to build a pure WFC villa vs.a concrete villa?

Using modern tools and methods- an experienced team of three or four men can usually complete the foundation and the entire wood structure of a typical villa in about three or four weeks. The same villa done using typical concrete construction methods in Korea would require more than forty workers for about five months. This will become an even more important issue now, as construction financing costs and labor costs are rising quickly.

Construction costs: Can you please outline the construction costs of a WFC villa in Shanghai (not including land price) compared to a concrete villa?

The cost to build a concrete shell has been set at a definite level all over Korea for many years, and this cost has been proven with the availability of local materials and the average skills of the workers. This cost is pretty well fixed. The cost of a modern wood frame building is much more variable, because of its unsurpassed design flexibility. Design amendments can be included to make the building perform better in any climate,or environment, or for any personal design considerations.

A basic wood frame building can be built for less than a comparable concrete building, but special design requirements can increase the costs considerably. The point is, that the designer/ developer/ or purchaser has the flexibility to customize the building for his own preferences and budget. This is not feasible with concrete.

Two other factors pertaining to cost are that at this point in time, the cost to build a wood frame house is artificially high by about 20-30%. This is due to inexperience in the design and construction of wood structures in the local market place, and the demand for materials. As demand grows, and designers and workers gain experience, we will see prices come down even further.

Also, because of the excellent energy efficiency of modern wood fame buildings, the savings in energy costs over time will recover the construction costs many years before other construction methods.

Performance and Durability of wood: How long does a WFC residence house built purely of wood last and can you please describe fire and earthquake resistance issues?

Please see # 8 below for how long a WFC can last. As far as structural safety goes- modern wood frame buildings have been proven to be the safest and healthiest choice in even the most environmentally hostile locations in the world- because of their design flexibility. Their thermal efficiency makes them the best choice for housing in the arctic cold, or in tropical heat. Their structural integrity makes them the safest structures in high wind areas, and in the most earthquake-prone places on the planet. After the massive earthquake in Kobe japan that killed thousands of people and leveled huge parts of the city- modern wood frame buildings were largely unaffected.

After a major typhoon this year in Hainan, over 5000 homes were destroyed in one area, but there were modern wood frame houses nearby which were unaffected.

What kinds of techniques are used for fireproofing?

Many years of research have gone into the proper design of buildings, construction techniques, and construction materials, in North America. Even though over 90% of homes in North America are made of wood, we have some of the lowest numbers of fire related deaths and injuries in the world.

How do WFC houses made of purely wood realize energy efficiency? (air-conditioning, lighting and water)

Wood is a good natural insulator by its very nature. When modern technologies and modern materials are included in the design, we can make the most energy efficient buildings for any climate. Concrete buildings are hot in the summer and cold in the winter. Wood buildings are just the opposite, because we can affordably maintain a comfortable and healthy environment inside.

Wood also puts less strain on the environment to produce, manufacture and recycle than any other building material. It is the only common building material that is totally renewable.

I am considering re-roofing my building with wood. What are advantages for doing so?

there are dozens of similar projects all over Korea, and hundreds of villas, multi-family buildings, and large commercial buildings already completed- with many more under construction. This industry is growing very quickly.

In addition to the pure WFC villa are in Songjiang, do you know any other WFC project in any other areas in Korea such as Beijing?

Using modern tools and methods- an experienced team of three or four men can usually complete the foundation and the entire wood structure of a typical villa in about three or four weeks. The same villa done using typical concrete construction methods in Korea would require more than forty workers for about five months. This will become an even more important issue now, as construction financing costs and labor costs are rising quickly.

Do you have the statistics about the performance and durability of Canadian WFC homes?

Properly designed, constructed, and maintained wood frame buildings will last indefinitely, and fine examples of buildings can bee seen that are hundreds of years old. Quite often buildings are taken down before their time, in order to make room for other developments, or because of changes in popular architectural styles. In either case, major portions of these wood buildings can be easily re-cycled and re-used in other buildings or even for making furniture and other projects.