Case Studies

Montgomery, Indiana

K&K Industries

Application of LP SolidStart LSL in Trusses and Girders

Project Summary

In manufacturing trusses, K&K Industries seeks to offer customers quality products that are dependable, strong, and easy to use. They also offer solutions to long spans using LP® SolidStart® LSL that are not available with most traditional timber products. By using LP SolidStart LSL, K&K Industries is able to build trusses, girders, and related products more affordably and more efficiently than with traditional lumber.

SUMMARY

K&K Industries was founded in 1972 by Abe A. Knepp with the philosophy of dealing honestly and fairly while providing top quality service and products. The business survived several challenges, including a fire that decimated the plant in 1980 and a tornado that destroyed the facility in 2005.

Despite the challenges, the company now employs approximately 100 people and manufactures custom roof trusses, custom wood floor trusses, and wall panels. Laminated beams and I-Joists have also become a large part of their product line.

OBJECTIVES

K&K Industries, which insists on dealing honorably with customers, provides quality trusses, wall panels, beams, and I-Joists at an affordable price. They assist their customers in finding solutions to the challenges associated with trusses that must deal with long spans, as well as with other related problems that may occur.

By custom manufacturing their trusses, K&K Industries seeks to make the on-site installation as efficient as possible.

IMPLEMENTATION

Phil Knepp, who directs sales and design for K&K Industries, is no stranger to LP Building Products. He said his company has been using different LP engineered wood products for about 18 years.

“We’re basically married to LP,” Knepp said. “We like dealing with LP’s products and their people.”

Knepp said the company started using LP® SolidStart® LSL truss chords in 2009, and he’s been delighted with the advantages LP SolidStart LSL offers over traditional lumber products.

“In a room or attic with a long span, say ten feet long or even eight feet long, traditional lumber can warp or twist as it goes through moisture cycles,” Knepp said, adding this can cause unevenness in the ceiling.

However, he said LP SolidStart LSL lays “true and straight” and does not bow or warp, even at longer lengths. Because of this, Knepp believes it makes an excellent long-length rafter.

He added that the longer lengths that LP Building Products can supply provides K&K Industries a competitive advantage. The longer lengths offered with LP SolidStart LSL cuts down on the need for splicing timber together on-site, which saves time and money.

“With the longer lengths of LSL, we can design trusses that our competitors simply cannot offer,” Knepp said.

He also said that LP SolidStart LSL is very affordable. “In timber, longer boards of 22, 24, or 26 feet are more expensive because it is harder to find straight trees,” Knepp said. However, he pointed out that with LP SolidStart LSL he is charged by the foot, which saves money on longer lengths.

Knepp also pointed to two more advantages of LP SolidStart LSL. First, he said it simply makes a stronger girder than traditional timber, and it reacts better under tension and compression. “We use it in our high compression webs and girders,” Knepp said.

A final benefit is that by using LP SolidStart LSL, K&K Industries is able to match LP SolidStart I-Joists precisely. He said that particularly with multi-story homes, or rooms under attics, the I-Joists can match up exactly with the LSL, creating a smooth and easy transition.

OUTCOME

Knepp emphasized that LP products are easy to use, and he should know. In addition to LP SolidStart LSL, the company uses LP SolidStart LVL, LP SolidStart I-Joists, LP® TechShield® Radiant Barrier Sheathing, and several other products. Clearly, K&K Industries believes in LP.

“I can’t stress enough that there are good people to do business with at LP,” Knepp said. “And we appreciate every one of them.”