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Architectural Detail Experts | A Blog by Worthington Millwork

How to Select Your Fiberglass Columns

Posted by Worthington Millwork on 10/30/19, 5:00 AM

8d954c0b-628e-476b-8bda-920edd91d559-upload-40B72782-281E-4ED4-AD31-DB8AF45031E6Fiberglass columns are a great addition to a home or building, adding grandeur and beauty. They are especially good for outdoor porch uses since they are sturdier, easier to paint, and extremely affordable when compared to traditional wood columns. Fiberglass columns are highly durable and require less maintenance than wood ones. In addition, they are rot and insect resistant, and they're waterproof. The fiberglass has a Class A fire rating and is used to make the capital, shaft, and base here in the United States.


The strength and rigidity of our columns come from the fiberglass composite material, which combines dust, marble, fiberglass, and several additional materials. Fiberglass columns can be load bearing when not split. However, if you choose, they can be split to go around and hide structural supports outside or inside. And, Worthington columns are the best in the industry and are entirely made of fiberglass. But how do you know exactly what to order? Here's what to consider.

Style

First decide on the shape of the column's shaft. We offer four choices.

  • Round tapered: This option is the least expensive. It is tube shaped with a slightly narrower diameter at the top of the column than at the bottom.
  • Round non-tapered: A mid-priced option, this column is tube shaped with the same diameter from top to bottom.
  • Square tapered: A top-priced option, this column has a square column that is smallest at the top.
  • Square non-tapered: A top-priced option, this column has rectangular sides the same width all the way to the top.

Material

After choosing your column style, select the material. Fiberglass is the most durable and least expensive material, plus it has a lifetime warranty. It's also our most requested material. If you prefer, other material options include stone, wood, wound, and aluminum, depending on the style.

Capital

The choices for the capital at the top of the column depend on the column style previously selected. While Tuscan capitals are the most common, there are 12 additional options across all four styles. They include:

  1. Tuscan
  2. Empire
  3. Empire with Necking
  4. Greek Ionic
  5. Green Ionic with Necking
  6. Greek Erechtheum
  7. Greek Erechtheum with Neck
  8. Roman Corinthian
  9. Roman Ionic
  10. Decorative Roman Doric
  11. Modern Composite
  12. Scamozzi
  13. Temple of Winds

Shaft

The shaft of the column can be either plain, which is the most common, or fluted, which is more expensive. A fluted shaft is only available on the round columns.

Base

Most of the capital choices go with the Tuscan base, but some capitals do have an additional choice. The Attic base is a slightly more decorative option.

Diameter and Height

The diameter and height are specific to your building project. Our column sizes depend on the style selected, with diameters ranging from six to 36 inches and heights ranging from five to 24 feet, depending on the diameter.

  • Round tapered: Diameter of 6 to 36 inches. Height from 5 to 24 ft., depending on diameter.
  • Round non-tapered: Diameter of 6 to 18 inches. Height from 8 to 20 ft., depending on diameter.
  • Square tapered: Width of 10 to 18 inches. Height from 8 to 16 ft., depending on width.
  • Square non-tapered: Width of 6 to 18 inches. Height from 6 to 12 ft., depending on width. 

Cut plan

The final option is the cut plan. Columns can be left whole, or they can be cut in five different ways to accommodate wrapping structural supports, going against walls, or fitting into or around corners.

Worthington Millworks has a Column Builder Tool on our website. It will walk you through the decision process and send you a quote for the column you've created in 24 to 48 hours. Please contact us if you have any questions.

Topics: Wood Columns, Architectural Columns, Fiberglass columns, faux wood columns,, craftsman columns

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