For questions generally relating to the internal structural members of a home or other structure that form walls, ceilings and roofs, including studs, plates, headers, beams, and joists.

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5answers
12k views

How do I nail furring strips without them cracking?

While remodeling my basement, I had several walls where I just put up furring strips and foam insulation rather than framing in a "real" wall. I used 1x2 furring strips and attached them with a ...
4
votes
2answers
176 views

Marking studs with tape measure

Maybe I'm a little dense, but I'm having a little difficulty visualizing how laying out studs 16" OC works with a tape measure. From almost every source I look at they say "Don't screw this up. Hook ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

How can I choose the best lag screw / lag bolt?

I will be fastening Unistrut vertically along studs to facilitate garage storage, and want some guidance on choosing the "best" lag bolts to use. I want them large enough to handle hundreds of pounds ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Can I attach drywall directly to a wood beam?

I'm finishing my basement and need to build a soffit around the HVAC trunks, pipes, and a wood beam. I'm planning to build a ladder on one side of the ducts and another between the ducts and the beam....
4
votes
3answers
882 views

How do I insulate space in loft to create music studio

I have 3 DIY created rooms in my large live/work studio/artist loft. They are made with 2x4 and 2x6, framing with drywall walls and plywood ceiling. The apt has 14' 7" ceilings so we just have ...
4
votes
2answers
15k views

How do you frame a wall more than 8-10 feet tall?

I am capable of framing a "simple" 8' wide 8' tall 4" thick wall out of 2x4 lumber, then attaching plywood or drywall or OSB or any other sheet material to the frame. Making the wall wider is a ...
4
votes
3answers
200 views

Is it acceptable to attach elevated deck joists to rafter tails?

I'm having an attached patio built by a contractor. I am concerned about the quality of the construction. In particular the attachment of the patio joists to the house rafters. Instead of using a ...
4
votes
2answers
28k views

How do I frame a room inside a garage so that the room's ceiling will not touch the garage ceiling?

I am considering building a small 6 x 9 room inside my garage to use as an office. However, I do not want to remove the garage door opener unit nor the tracks the door slides on because we will want ...
4
votes
1answer
122 views

How should I repair a cracked trough roof beam?

My garage has a 17' 2x8 ridge beam. The roof is a V, lowest in the center, with 2x4 rafters nailed to the sides of this ridge piece. At some point the roof drain clogged, the roof turned into a ...
4
votes
3answers
525 views

What is the proper order in framing the basement walls?

I am thinking of finishing my basement and am wondering what is the proper order of things for framing the walls. Do I put up perimeter walls first with electrical, insulation and vapor barrier, and ...
4
votes
3answers
15k views

How do I build a Gambrel roof?

We would like to put a Gambrel Roof on a 32 x 32 log cabin we're building but I don't know the formula or how to build the Gambrel roof. Please help We're building this cabin ourselves and love the ...
4
votes
1answer
263 views

Is there any way I can reclaim this space and still safely support the front steps?

In my garage I have a nearly useless room that's 6'x10' but has this ... strange shelf of sorts in there. When I went to bust up the drywall to see whats behind it I found out it's been there since ...
4
votes
3answers
812 views

Should I be concerned that the sill plate is not lined up with the foundation?

I am in the process of building a one level home in PA. After the formed concrete walls were poured and the framing began, I noticed that on one side of the house that the sill plate was flush with ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I build a square window frame in an off-square opening?

The original windows in the bedrooms in my old house were huge, far too big for the size of the rooms. At some point a previous owner replaced them with much smaller windows, building a frame to hold ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I install a non-load bearing wall on a carpeted concrete floor and finished drywall ceiling?

I am looking to close off a stairwell with a new drywall wall. The area it will be installed is already finished with carpet stretched over the concrete floor and a popcorn drywall ceiling. What are ...
4
votes
1answer
182 views

Is it OK to nail 1/2" plywood straight to the pocket-door box?

The guy I hired to frame for a new pocket-door, mounted the pocket-door box on the top (to a second-story joist) and on the bottom (toe-nailed to the floor). When I asked him to install some studs on ...
4
votes
1answer
635 views

Installing a new exterior door into a taller existing opening

We are remodeling our 1948 home, and the previous owner was quite tall. We are trying to replace our exterior door, and have come across a wonderful deal on a door. Here is the issue: How can I make ...
4
votes
1answer
8k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages to timber framing vs. platform framing?

Within in the next 10-years, my wife and I would like to replace the old modular home on our property with a new house. I've been having some discussions with a friend of mine who is a huge fan of ...
4
votes
2answers
316 views

What's the right way to insulate and frame around this pipe?

I have been studying the latest engineering on how to insulate and frame basements after tearing out a partially finished basement that had wood and insulation in direct contact with the concrete. ...
4
votes
2answers
120 views

Do I leave this insulation up?

I am researching how to finish one room in my basement, and not sure what to do with what I think is vapor barrier or wall wrap insulation. Its only on two of the four walls which I assume is because ...
4
votes
1answer
6k views

How far can I move ceiling joists up?

The second floor of our house has a fairly low ceiling, perhaps 6'8" or 6'10". The width of the structure is only about 16' with standard construction and the ceiling joists running parallel to to the ...
4
votes
2answers
854 views

What can I do about this gap between the sill/exterior board and the subfloor?

I just discovered that my sill plate and joist setup is different than others I've seen (and I was a Realtor, so I've seen a lot of sills). As you can see from the picture, there's a gap between ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

How can I build deck stairs flush with the end of the deck?

I have a deck design where I want stairs coming down perpendicular to the joist starting at the end of the joist. You can see the picture as a generic not to scale drawing of what I mean. I had ...
3
votes
4answers
692 views

Is it okay that framing in houses is sloppy?

I've been watching people do framing on residential homes for a while; both in person and on videos. The framing is very "sloppy" compared to watching a craftsman build a cabinet, for example. The ...
3
votes
4answers
14k views

How do I frame a 2“ (1.5”) thick wall?

How would you put up/frame a wall where the 2x4 studs are turned flat to make the wall 2" thick? One especially tricky thing is that (it seems that) all nails must be toenailed since a 3.5" long 16d ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Framing a cement room

Under our garage is a cement room (23' x 20', 8' high). We added it to the construction plans as a storage room, with the option of using part of it as living space. Everyone seems to think it would ...
3
votes
4answers
245 views

Ramset nails not flush with basement frame wall

I built my first wall in my basement when I started to frame and I bought the Ramset MasterShot 0.22 gun from Home Depot and read up on everything and when I used it to nail my treated 2x4 to the ...
3
votes
4answers
5k views

Framing a wall over a carpeted floor

I have a carpeted basement. There is both pad and carpet over concrete. There is a section I want to wall off and turn into a bedroom, it will not be load bearing. I would prefer not to have to ...
3
votes
1answer
5k views

Can I use roofing nails to attach OSB/plywood to studs?

My roofing nails are for nailing asphalt shingles to roof underlay boards. I have been using 2.5 inch nails to nail external wall OSBs to the studs. I have been contemplating using the excess roofing ...
3
votes
4answers
172 views

Is it normal to miter the non-pivoting edge of a door?

Recently I've seen someone miter the edge of a bathroom and closet door so it swings shut without hitting the door frame. I've never seen this before -- is it normal? Clarification: The edge that was ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

Is framing with screws legal?

A friend used trim head screws for ALL of the 2x4 framing (including the outer walls) of his 2400 sq. ft. house. The house uses 8x8s to carry the load; none of the 2x4 framing is load bearing. The ...
3
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3answers
222 views

How do I drywall a corner with a lally column?

I'm finishing my basement and I've come across this lally column which is supporting a steel beam. I want to frame an external corner for this interior wall at this "corner" but the distance from ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Are cripple studs necessary for framing a door in a “decorative wall”

With a rather large living room in my 1bd appartment, I'm building a semi-permanent partition to split off a second smaller bedroom. The partition will be a standard framed wall and put in place ...
3
votes
2answers
682 views

Can a 1x4 jack stud be used instead of a 2x4?

I just noticed that my contractor,whom is building a shed, has cut the sole plate and replaced the jack stud with a 1 by 4 to accommodate a door he ordered. He had framed the opening too small and ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I properly frame an opening to angle a through-wall air conditioner?

I'm going to install a through-wall air conditioner using a purpose-built sleeve. The instructions from the manufacturer say to install it such that it angles slightly downwards to the outside (about ...
3
votes
1answer
699 views

What should I consider when removing part of the second floor to make higher ceilings?

I live in an old (120 - 150 yr old) house with very low ceilings. I am considering ways to make the house feel more open and one option is to remove part of the ceiling and floor joists of the second ...
3
votes
1answer
258 views

Tips for measuring a front door opening?

I'm getting ready to replace my front door with a brand new pre-hung door and have some questions regarding collecting measurements. Where exactly should I measure? I've heard people use the phrase "...
3
votes
1answer
5k views

What are these horizontal & diagonal 'studs' in the wall called?

My single-story house was built in the 1940s in the San Francisco Bay Area (Earthquake-country). Here is a picture of the wall with the wallboard removed. This is from my neighbour’s house (Same ...
3
votes
1answer
428 views

How can I frame a bookshelf like this?

Looking through the Houzz iPad app this weekend, I came across this I want this. Got the wife's approval and I'm thinking about starting it this weekend (gutting the old fireplace / bookshelves and ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it common to have no ceiling joists above joist-parallel walls?

I own an old 1 story house that was built in 1926. Looking in the attic, I've noticed that all the interior walls that run parallel to the ceiling joists have no joist above them. These walls are ...
3
votes
3answers
263 views

Re-framing basement walls after flooding. Drain tile with no concrete?

Im getting ready to re-frame basement walls after basement flood (shocking images attached). I'll be doing this for every wall portion that can possibly flood: 1) ridgid XPS foam insulation ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the maximum number of load bearing studs in a row that can be notched?

I'm trying to install a new utility sink and washer hookup in my garage and am trying to plan how I'm going to run the copper supply lines. The most direct path I can think of is to notch probably 5 ...
3
votes
1answer
6k views

How do I nail plywood to flat roof framing?

I am putting some 3/4 plywood on top of 2x6 framing joists on my flat garage roof. The framing is spaced 16oc. I figured that I place 4x8 plywood sheets in such way that their short edge will be ...
3
votes
3answers
9k views

Remodeling a pre-1920's home with planks on the interior walls

I own an older home in central PA; my guess it is pre-1920's and I was going to remodel the living room and insulate the walls and run new wiring. The walls are horse hair plaster; when I removed the ...
3
votes
2answers
71 views

Is there a “Right” direction to build soffit with plywood?

Is there a right or wrong way to face the plywood when building a soffit for ductwork? I was following a tutorial from Family Handyman http://www.familyhandyman.com/basement/how-to-finish-a-basement-...
3
votes
1answer
44 views

All-around header dimensions for external wall

Putting in two small windows as part of our kitchen remodel (21" x 31"). They are going in an exterior gable wall, framed with 2x6's. I can't get a straight answer from anyone about what "size" ...
3
votes
1answer
58 views

Why are there shims under my studs?

My house was built in 1928 (in Altadena, CA). My detached garage looks like the same vintage, but I don't know for sure. On at least 2 of the garage walls, there are shims between the sill/mud plate ...
3
votes
2answers
725 views

Adding sidelights to a front entrance that does not have them

I am trying to determine the cost, effort and complexity of adding sidelights to an entrance way that currently does not have them. Would the entire front door way need to be re-framed, header, ...
3
votes
2answers
6k views

How to frame a door in a passageway?

I'd like to add a door into the entrance of a passageway which leads into the bedrooms. The entrance dimensions are 87 1/4 X 39 3/4 and is drywall. it seems the standard door widths are 36 X 80, so it ...
3
votes
2answers
4k views

Interior wall installation over hardwood finished floor?

I'm looking at moving my interior walls around. We are planning to keep our existing floor and replace open spaces with the same floor. We will be refinishing the floors when the wall moving is done. ...