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This looks rather serious - should we replace or brace it ASAP?

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I myself would prefer to replace it, as the crack/check goes down beyond the knot breakout or simply for aesthetics (compared to the treatment below). If that crack/check goes to the bottom or within 2-feet of it may split entirely, so replacement would be the only option.

However, if the crack/check goes a foot or less below the picture frame, then the installation of 1/2" nuts, washers and through-bolts in pairs every foot from the where it starts and ends will keep everything together, aligned and from growing.

This post is for up (wind lift) and down loads, it would only knee or elbow out if struck laterally. The goal is to just re-establish the trunk, leg or arm to full load capacity and avoid any shear-off or stepping-out when under load.

  • I do NOT like that first picture at all it appears to be broken all the way across both ways we can see - I'd sandwich some 2x material on each side and use longer bolts, at minimum, while arranging for a replacement post. – Ecnerwal Jul 21 at 23:34
  • Hey Larry, wow you've been busy. Nice work! Nah, it ain't that bad, don't forget the rest of the lateral structure above spreading and sharing loads. You can see the big crack doesn't even go up beyond the picture and that's likely the same below...normal stress relief that found an edge. The front is normal checking too, they aren't quite connected, perfectly fine unless severely overloaded...timber frame buildings have these all over. Remember, each one of these are capable of supporting an entire car before they start to bow. Now, if a Hot Tub gets presented, then it must be replaced. – Iggy Jul 22 at 13:17

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