Glulam, short for glued laminated timber, is an engineered wood product. Large glulam members are produced from smaller pieces of stress graded and seasoned timber, known as laminates
Glulam offers many benefits when it comes to structural applications:
- Large section sizes and long lengths - glulam can be manufactured curved or straight and is often used as structural beams. Finger jointing allows for long lengths.
- Increased strength due to the laminating process - glulam is stronger than solid timber as it has fewer natural defects and a wider distribution. It is also comparable to steel in strength but is much lighter.
- A high degree of dimensional stability - glulam is manufactured from seasoned timber and is therefore less prone to movement caused by changes in moisture content. However, care needs to be taken if they are used externally or in an environment with rapidly changing humidity (such as an indoor swimming pool). Swelling and shrinkage may lead to splitting or , in an extreme event, delamination of the beam.
- Reliability - glulam is manufactured to strict quality requirements from stress- graded timber of known structural capacity