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I'm a DIYer planning to put in a deck, and am working on a permit application. I've got what I think is an unusual configuration of siding and sheathing on my house, and I'm wondering what the best method would be for attaching a deck ledger board. The sheathing is spaced away from the wall studs by 1.5 inches (sheathing is attached to 2x4s on their sides). The siding and house wrap will be replaced at the same time as the decks, so I'll be able to cut back the sheathing to access the rim joists and sill.

Two possibilities I've considered are are:

  1. Attach a board to the rim joist that's the same size as my ledger board, sheath over that to make for a flat exterior surface, and then attach the deck ledger to the sheathing, fastening through to the rim joists with long bolts. I'm not sure if this configuration would provide adequate support. It would be possible to attach a board to the sill to provide additional support for the spacer board above if that helps (the sill is a beefy 6x8).

  2. Attach the ledger directly to the rim joist so that the ledger is inset behind the spaced-out sheathing. The challenge with this approach is how to properly flash this configuration.

Thank you!

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Cut holes through the cladding with a hole saw then drill through the furring into the sill beam for the the size of bolt you want to use.

Using the same hole-saw to cut "pucks" from pressure treated lumber, and drill their pilot holes out to the bolt size too.

using the pucks as spacers bolt your ledger through the furring to the sill beam.

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    This seems like it would create a dangerous levering action, as it leaves the deck ledger suspended out away from the rim joist. There is no load bearing to that sheathing, and that is partially what will end up bearing the weight of the deck. This seems prone to failure. – DonBoitnott Aug 10 '20 at 20:55
  • use long bolts that well into or through the sill beam. most of the levering will be taken by the 2x4s – Jasen Aug 11 '20 at 2:00
  • I doubt that, Jasen. I think you're asking OP to put a lot of faith in a bunch of glorified furring strips that have absolutely no structural value whatsoever. Even if they were anchored really well, they still have no bottom support. Ultimately, this is no different than trying to hang a ledger on a brick veneer. Looks strong, but it's not. – DonBoitnott Aug 11 '20 at 11:00
  • why would they need "bottom support" so long as the deck is lighter than the house it shouldn't be a problem. – Jasen Aug 11 '20 at 11:40
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    You're missing the point. Think about it, you've got a ledger board separated from the rim joist by a number of inches. That means the downward force of the weight of the deck creates a levering action on the bolts. That downward force is going to bear on those furrs. Now you're transferring some amount of weight to them, and they will not be designed to handle it. It's unsafe. – DonBoitnott Aug 11 '20 at 12:05

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