Fah Kiew Tu
Curmudgeon, First Rank
Oh yeah you can massively overbuild with straight grained knot free forest grown hardwood and if you haven't got the stamp it is not going to pass.
At the same time you can have a knot filled twisted stud with a check going 90% of the way through it and so long as the two halves are still connected and it has the stamp it counts for half the strength of a normal stud.
Definitely sounds like you have the worse of it.
One of my neighbours was a shipwright carpenter. He built a post & beam house. Got into a big argument with the building inspector who said the joints & pins etc weren't to the building code and therefore he wasn't passing it. When invited to try to break one of the joints with a sledgehammer his reply was that the strength wasn't the point, it wasn't to code. The argument that it way exceeded code wasn't received.
Ultimately my neighbour won the argument by going over the inspector's head.
I've done that myself by hiring a professional certified engineer to assess structural integrity etc. Their stamp totally supercedes anything the building inspector has to say on the subject and if they're stubborn the courts will decide in favour of the professional engineer. In fact my big workshop was certified by a professional engineer because I didn't want to get into an argument with the inspector about the framing and it was faster, easier and less stressful to just pay a professional his fee to double-check what I wanted to do. FWIW it's built out of old growth Tasmanian hardwood straight from the mill, semi-air dried then erected. Because once fully seasoned, you are NOT going to drive a nail into it unless you use a nail gun, and not always then either.
Back on topic has Dougie gone anywhere yet?