It is important to me that all joints are fully housed. I am surprised how many timber frames I see without housed connections. It is a corner cut for sake of time and money, however, one that could seriously jeopardize the integrity of the frame.
This tie beam seen here is housed one inch into the post. This allows the weight of the second floor to transfer properly onto the post and down to the foundation.
For maximum strength and aesthetics it is best to increase timber size proportionately. This allows one to fully house the timbers into each other. Two things are achieved by this design. The beam and the post are fully housed to ‘lock’ the timber in place which prevents any unsightly twisting. It also hides any shrinkage which occurs if perfectly dry timbers aren’t used which is usually the case. The joinery might look tight at first, but after one or two years there will be shrinkage gaps. This solves that aesthetic issue.