Tiny House, Tiny Living, The Tiny Life.

rSTUD – Thermal Lumber

So this is a pretty neat product I just found, it is a little hard to put into words, but looking at the photos you can see.  rSTUD is a piece of wood that has a thermal break in the middle.  So you are able to cut then fasten just like normal and you still retain its strength.  While this is a really neat idea, I would imagine that this is pretty costly, but looking at their prices page (this product is available) a 2×4 is $6.75  while a normal 2×4 would be between $2.75 to $3.75.  Now the beauty of Tiny Houses is that they do not require as much materials, so we can splurge on higher end stuff or products that increase efficiency.  To use a product like this in a McMansion would be cost prohibitive, but in a Tiny House you might add $1000 to your total bill, which could eventually pay for itself. The 2×4 is rated at r11 and the 2×6 is rated at r21.  This is 4 times the insulation power of a regular stud.

Note the insulation layer between the wood.

How much more would you pay for efficiency?


  1. How does this compare to conventional framing re strength? Seems to me you loose at least 1/3. You would basically be framing with 2×2 lumber.
    The website for rstud talks about visual grade rules and bond strenth and adhesive durability, but avoids the issue of strength of framing. May not be an issue with your tiny home, but maybe a better solution is thermal barrier over conventional stud walls.

  2. I agree with Don’s strength assessment and I would add two other thoughts. Off-gassing might be strong with this one, but perhaps no worse that ordinary treated lumber. It would almost certainly contain a lot of glue at least. Also, it’s going to come down to one question… do they have it at the lumber yard I shop? If not I’m not going to special order it.

  3. Neat idea but there are other methods that work just as well. Exterior rigid foam comes to mind. As far as a tiny house on wheels, a laminate of plywood and XPS would have sufficient strength. You are either overpaying for standard 2×4 studs or live in Southern California. Around here they’re about $1.80.

  4. I suppose you could DIY this solution with a table saw, lots of time, some ridgid foam board and adhesive

    Neat idea though
    With 16″OC spacing, I don’t think for most applications the strength loss would come into play

  5. Hello

    I am the business development officer for the company that makes rstud. We will be publishing loading and strength charts this week. The 2×4 and 2×6 are as strong or stronger than a comparable Douglas fir #1. Yes pricing us more than a conventional stud, but with the upcoming 2009 code adoption rstud becomes an alternative versus foam board over the entire structure.
    As a cost comparison. It traditionally takes one foot per pineal foot of wall. This calculation allows for King studs, trimmers,cripple studs, and jack studs. Assume you have a 1500 sq ft house. 50×30 This house would have 160 lineal feet of exterior studs. Assume hem fit 2×6 is 4.00 you spend $640.00. Same house with rstud at let’s say 7.00 per stud you would spend $1120.00.
    If you figured the actual cost increase using rstud to your overall budget, you will find the percentage cost increase as compared to all the costs will be minimal. The larger the house the lower the percentage increase of cost goes up using rstud.
    Email me personally or call anytime if I can answer any more questions. We look forward to providing you with the highest performing lumber available.

    Ec manufacturing
    Scott at Ecproducts dot us

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