Being asked to quote on a roof for a Buddhist Temple isn’t on everyone’s day-to-day agenda, so when ABC Trusses & Frames were asked to look at this ‘unusual’ job, they knew they would be in for a challenge.

Matt Kozakiewicz, Office Manager of ABC T & F said the challenges weren’t obvious at first.

“The actual roof -and trusses required- wasn’t that complicated, but that wasn’t to say there weren’t a few engineering issues along the way.”

Matt has been with ABC T & F for more than ten years, originally starting out as the company’s Estimator and Detailer, so it’s safe to say that in his time he’s seen a variety of commercial and residential jobs, but the Buddhist Temple project was a first for both ABC T & F and himself.

“We had done a small job with the project builder beforehand and, although we are 20 km north of Melbourne’s CBD, we tend to get jobs from all areas,” he explained.

The task at hand actually involved the building of a large reception, conference and classroom extension to the original Hoa Nghiem Temple; a point of convergence for Buddhists living in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs. Although the project’s scope was originally considered as an extension, the total size reflected a project more in scale with a small commercial structure.

The project’s architect created a design synonymous with traditional Eastern Temples whilst still incorporating modern facilities.

“This meant we had to accommodate voids and load-bearings for air conditioning units housed inside the roof, while working closely with another supplier to create a curved eave for aesthetics,” Matt mentioned.

“The curved eaves were created by fixing a pre-shaped LVL to the top chord on each truss.

“The fixing of each and every end had to be exact to ensure a consistent roofline and they were drilled, then bolted.”

A total of 135 trusses were used during the project, and as Matt explained, the temple was unique to the specifications of a residential project.

“The pitch of the roof (32°) was also quite different to a normal residential roof (22.5°), plus, we had to work with the architect to try and resolve some engineering challenges for the facade.”

While ABC T & F completed the majority of the detailing on the job, a collaboration with MiTek engineers was required to help apply the appropriate loads to the ends and design a bracing system for the bottom chords, where there was no ceiling in place.

ABC T & F has a small but experienced team and has been a licensed MiTek fabricator for five years.

“We do a good mix of residential and commercial work,” said ABC T & F’s General Manager Andrew Nguyen.

“However, we’ve recently noticed a big shift to multi-residential developments and as a result we’re doing a lot of units and apartments.

“People are pulling down the traditional ‘Aussie’ home on a quarter-acre block and putting up four homes where there used to be one,” Andrew added.

This shift in building preferences suits ABC T & F down to the ground, as Andrew points out, “We do all aspects of prefabricated roof trusses, wall frames and PosiStruts,’ he said. “They’re the perfect flooring solution for two-storey or multi-storey developments and we’ve noticed the increase in popularity across our production line, more and more builders are requesting them,” Andrew stated.

With a growing market for PosiStruts and a noticeable upturn trend across the market, the occasional ‘one-off’ challenge like the Buddhist Temple reflects that the team from ABC T&F are ready to take on any challenge.

“It’s the projects from left-field that keep you on your toes…and that’s a good thing! Our production set up is very flexible and we know we can handle just about anything,’ concluded Matt proudly.