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UK National Structural Timber Specification (NSTS)

The UK’s National Structural Timber Specification (NSTS) provides the construction industry with a set of best practice guidelines.

Produced by the Timber Research and Development Association (TRADA),as a step towards a national specification for structural timber. For free viewing, register at https://www.trada.co.uk/nsts.

Guide to matching an APA product, with NSTS material clause number and the relevant EU standard

 APA CE Marked

Structural Products

NSTS

Material

Clause No.

 European Standard

 

Plywood

 

5.2.5

 

EN 13986

 

OSB

 

5.2.4

 

EN 13986

 

LVL

 

5.2.3

 

EN 14374

 

I-Joists

 

5.3.1

 

See individual manufacturers appropriate European Technical Assessment

 

Glued laminated timber

 

5.2.2

 

EN 14080

 

Cross-laminated timber

(CPT)

 

5.2.7

 

See individual manufacturers appropriate European Technical Assessment

 

Structural softwood lumber

 

5.2.1

 

EN 14081-1

 

Structural Insulated Panels

(SIPS)

 

5.4.2

 

See individual manufacturers appropriate European Technical Assessment

The NSTS also contains a Guidance section which includes documents in TRADA’s Wood Information library which can be accessed after registration.

The Project Specification is published separately by TRADA for its membership. The NSTS needs to be read in conjunction with this as it includes additional project specific data not covered in this specification.

The Specification covers such areas as:

  • Information required by the timber contractor
  • Information to be supplied by the timber contractor
  • Materials
  • General workmanship
  • Fabrication
  • Protective treatments and finishes
  • Quality assurance.

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All Questions OSBPlywood

What is a ‘life cycle stage’ and how do these link to the environmental assessment of whole buildings?

How do core category rules link with environmental product declarations?

Whose responsibility is it to check that wood products being imported into the EU do not originate from illegally sourced timber supplies?

Does the EUTR require mills to provide any extra documentation for customs entry into the European Union?

Must all plywood and OSB panels carry a CE marking?

What is the definition of a construction product under the CPR?

What is a Declaration of Performance referred to under the Construction Products Regulation?

What is the difference between Structural 1 and Exposure 1?

Does structural panel siding have shear values?

What are mould and mildew, and do they compromise the integrity of engineered wood?

The CE-mark on an APA plywood panel means it conforms to European Standards – but which ones?

I want to use a Rated Sheathing panel for flooring/ roofing application, what info do I need to know?

Plywood: Span rating
OSB: Span rating

What extra strength benefits do Structural 1 OSB panels provide over standard Rated Sheathing panels?

Do APA panels give off formaldehyde?

Plywood: Formaldehyde
OSB: Formaldehyde

What is the difference between a touch-sanded panel and sanded panel?

I’d like to know how APA veneer grades match those given in the European standards

How do I correctly gauge the face appearance a plywood Siding panel?

I want to specify an APA panel for concrete formwork – what do I need to know?

Are APA panels tongue and grooved on all four edges?

I am not familiar with the term ‘Sized for Spacing’ – what is its significance?

How are Performance Category and thickness related?

I’d like to know more about a panel’s Span Rating and how it links to thickness.

Plywood: Span rating
OSB: Span rating

What is Span Rating on the APA trademark and why is it important?

Plywood: Span rating
OSB: Span rating

What is the difference between Exposure 1 and Exterior plywood panels? What are their appropriate uses?

What are the main OSB panels likely to be available in Europe?

What are the main plywood panels likely to be available in Europe?

What are the main European standards that I would need to be aware of for OSB panels?

The main standards are: EN 13986 and EN 300

What are the main European standards that I would need to be aware of for plywood panels?

The main standards are: EN 13986, EN 636, EN 314, EN 635-3