We live in an antique cape and have 2x6 joists. My builder is making extra headroom for a staircase in our living room which involves reinforcing a couple joists with 2x6 LVL. Which is the best option to attach the LVL to the joists? I have seen many people recommend through bolts but would that weaken the structure if it is only 2x6 joists? If nails are better, is there a general rule of thumb for how many and placement per 16"? I'd like to know the best way to attach and specifically how.

1 Answer 1


Use the Simpson SDW22300 screw installed 6" on center alternating 1.5" from either edge, and starting 3.5" from the end.

This detail is for a built-up column, but it's the same idea.

SDW screw pattern

Doing it this way is overkill. It's probably possible to do something similar with 10d nails, but that's more than I know how to do.

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