Our column builder tool has allowed us to monitor which column material is the most popular. To our surprise, wood is chosen quite often. Wood is not always the best solution for most projects however. Fiberglass columns have become the most widely used column material in todays building industry and here is why.
Are Fiberglass Porch Columns Hollow?
In fact, all porch columns, no matter if they are round, square tapered or non-tapered fluted or plain are all hollow. Also when you look at the different materials: polymer stone, fiberglass, PVC and even wood they are all hollow. This has to do with the way each of them are made. The fiberglass and polymer stone porch columns all come from a mold that has the shape of the part. The fiberglass mixture is poured into a closed mold, rotated very quickly, and then then the columns dry while they are spinning leaving the column hollow. FRP porch columns are made in halves by spraying with fiberglass strands similar to the manufacturing of a fiberglass boat. The halves are glued together in the factory or on-site creating a whole column once assembled, glued and after Bondo is applied. A wood porch column is made by gluing staves together in a circular form and then turning and cutting them on a lathe. Lastly, PVC porch columns are made from a cut out of a flat sheet of PVC and then assembled in our factory (or on-site) to make the finished square product.
The vertical support that holds up your porch roof should not be taken lightly. Porch columns are pretty important for someone to have on their home. They come in all different shapes and sizes and with that comes all different prices. Because of that, it should come as no surprise that prices are all over the place!
There are so many different things that can affect the price. Here a few...
(1) Are the fiberglass columns you are looking to purchase really made of fiberglass?
If you conduct a search online for fiberglass columns a hand full of companies pop up in the search results on both Yahoo and Google. There are many different brands, materials, pictures, descriptions, sales pitches and offers. With all this information it is sometimes hard to tell what you are actually purchasing and that should be SCARY as it could be a costly mistake if you don’t purchase the right product! Some E-commerce companies offer a picture, a part, and a price and call it a "fiberglass column" which is why you need to research what you are looking to purchase!
If you conduct a search online for the phrase "fiberglass porch columns" a hand full of companies pop up in the search results on both Yahoo and Google. There are many different brands, materials, pictures descriptions, sales pitches and offers. With all this information it is sometimes hard to tell what you are actually purchasing and that should be SCARY as it could be a costly mistake if you don’t purchase the right product! Most E-commerce companies offer a picture, a part and a price and call it a fiberglass column.
This home had been remodeled over the years, and each refresh had added details that were not age- or architecturally appropriate and took the home away from the plain-spoken look of an American foursquare. The new owners wanted to bring back some of the original details (or what could have been original) and add modern touches, so they hired Robert S. MacNeille, design principal and president of Carpenter & MacNeille.
Believe it or not there are so many different variables when it comes to fiberglass columns. Many have created false beliefs about this product that could potentially cause installation and purchase errors without knowing the facts.
Front porches nearly disappeared from new homes in the late 20th century, but our fondness for them remains. The porch allows a gracious and practical transition from public to private — a place where one can soak up the late-summer sun, visit with neighbors, watch a thunderstorm pass, greet arriving guests or just shake off the umbrella and remove dirty shoes. For a porch to function for all these purposes, a few key dimensions and configurations should be taken into consideration.
You would think that selecting the architectural columns you want for your home would be just as easy as it sounds. But that couldn't be further from the truth. When it comes to columns there are so many different choices and options - from material, height, diameter and capital decoration to whether you want the column split or whole.
Buying architectural products like molding, columns, railing systems etc. can potentially put a big dent in a projects budget; but it does not have to! Small little changes can add up to big savings in the long run if you stay consistent with them.
Worthington Millwork was contracted to provide the architectural fiberglass columns and balustrade systems for a renovation of the charming James Wade Bolton House in Alexandria, LA. This project was a historical renovation and of great significance to the town of Alexandria. To preserve the integrity of this turn-of-the-century home, an original baluster was perfectly replicated to create a whole new balustrade system. Similar components were also used in manufacturing the column shafts, capitals, bases and other parts of the balustrade system. The end result is a completed project, made with modern materials, while keeping the historic proportions and architecture of the 1899 construction period of the project.
"The family wanted to open up the space, give it a nice flow, let in more natural light and expand the views of the backyard," says architect Catherine Knight of Knight Architects. She responded with a thorough makeover, creating a family-friendly entry and mudroom, an open-plan layout along the rear of the house that opens up to their spectacular backyard, a reconfigured guest room and first-floor bathroom, and a renovated master bathroom.
Houzz at a Glance
Who lives here: A couple and their young daughter and son
Location: Princeton, New Jersey
Size: 5 bedrooms, 4 bathrooms
Year built: The 1970s; remodeling plans began in 2010
If one porch is good, two must be better — especially when an expansive view is involved. The tradition of building double front porches with columns in the United States goes back to the first settlers. But if you ask us, it's an architecture staple worth holding onto. Here are a few things to consider when tackling the double front porch.
Around 2,500 years ago, the Greeks invented what have become known as the classical orders. These orders ( Doric, Ionic and Corinthian) were adopted by the ancient Romans, who simplified the Doric to make their own order, the Tuscan. The Romans also combined the Ionic and Corinthian to form the Composite, or fifth classical order. Each order had a distinct meaning. A building designed using the Doric order would have been quite different in tone than a building designed in the Corinthian order.
Where to find it: The earliest examples are in Southern California, but thanks to popularization of the style through national periodicals like House Beautiful and Ladies' Home Journal and the subsequent availability of pattern books and kit homes, Craftsman bungalows became the most popular style of small house throughout the country from about 1905 through the 1920s.
Why you'll love it: Like all things that come out of California, there is something distinctively American about this style. Outside there are details galore but inside, there's a simple, wide-open layout that makes the most of typically limited square footage.
1. The Elegant Texas Home
This beautiful Texas home features not just Worthington fiberglass columns but also a polyurethane balustrade system. They attached the balustrade system right up against the columns for a seamless look.
If you are not comfortable with cutting your own columns to height Worthington Millwork can always cut the columns for you.