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Forum topic by 383man posted 07-03-2019 12:56 AM 456 views 0 times favorited 3 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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4 posts in 1864 days

07-03-2019 12:56 AM

Topic tags/keywords: pergola beam size aesthetics scew sizing

So I’m building a pergola, and i thought you might have some input for me on sizing. Its gonna be big, 12ft by 50ft, 3 sections, center taller than the two outer. 10 foot high center section, 8 foot high outer two sections. The spans are 20ft wide for the center, 14 and 16 for the outers. Due to span sizes, i need to use doubled up 2×10s on the outers for beams, and 2×12s on center beams, then 2×8 for the rafters on all. Heres the question, should i use 6×6 posts, or would that look wimpy? Should I use 8×8? Any thoughts?

3 replies so far

View AlaskaGuy's profile


6833 posts in 3648 days

#1 posted 07-03-2019 06:52 AM

I don’t have you answer. I don’t think you give enough information. Looking at pergolas on the internet it look like there could be 100’s designs.

If it were me I’d consult some one who known, to how to calculate loads and spans. You didn’t even say if you live in snow country. That will make a difference. Your city codes may come into play.

Look at these picture and see what does or doesn’t look wimpy.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View becikeja's profile


1189 posts in 4152 days

#2 posted 07-03-2019 11:00 AM

As far as strength integrity, I am sure there are engineering calculations that can tell you what you need. As far as aesthetics the thicker the better in my opinion. I like the look of the heavy columns.

-- Don't outsmart your common sense

View 383man's profile


4 posts in 1864 days

#3 posted 07-03-2019 11:35 AM

Thanks becikeja, I was thinking the same thing, I like the look of beafier timber too.

Alaska guy, I’m not asking about loads, or spans, I kbow the requirements, what I’m askong about is asthetics, how will it look to the eye with the sizes.

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