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We're getting ready to replace/expand the decks on our house. I'm having plans done and have seen a draft but wanted to educate myself a little while I wait. The draft didn't yet contain sufficient details for the connections I'm asking about here.

Our deck is two stories, where the 2nd story is about half the size of the 1st. There will also be a roof over the upper level. My question is specific to the support posts/columns between the ground and roof (Circled in red and blue in the image). The draft plans showed a 6x6 on concrete base to lower deck, triple 2x10 beam supporting lower deck, 6x6 post to upper deck, triple 2x10 beam supporting upper deck, post to roof, triple 2x8 beam supporting roof. The connections at the roof (in blue on the image) are different in that there's another triple 2x8 connecting there that goes back to the house roof, so perpendicular to the beam visible in the image. How should these post/beam/post connections be made?

Another possibility might be to use continuous columns and beam hangers, something like Simpson HUC. The columns would be nearly 20' long though and so not exactly easy to work with.

Deck View

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    It sounds like you think there are 6x6 posts stacked one on the other. because of the trim boards covering, attached to, the post in the red circle. "continuous columns and beam hangers" Yes, I believe, at least from ones i have seen, that it is ONE post from grade to roof.
    – Alaska Man
    Apr 5 at 19:26
  • Thanks for this. It's certainly possible, however, the plans included a material list. There was no mention of any ~20' 6x6 nor any beam hangers. It might just be an oversite on their part. While I don't love the thought of trying to handle 20' 6x6 columns, if this is how it should be then so be it.
    – NW-DIYer
    Apr 6 at 20:10
  • The post/beam connections should be made as specified in the drawings you receive. If you don't get explicit details on this, ask! This is a large, nice, and exceedingly dangerous deck to be messing about with. If you're paying someone to do the design work, make sure they do all the work, including all fastener specifications.
    – FreeMan
    May 6 at 14:09
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The usual length of 6x6 pressure-treated timber is 12', though you can get up to 24' (or longer) through special order, there is a rare need for that.

Technology around wood connectors has evolved and advanced rapidly, for your personal information use, I suggest visiting the "Simpson Strong-ties" website, to find the available hardware, cost, and uses. https://www.strongtie.com/

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  • Thanks, I've spent a lot of time researching Simpson stuff. They make a post cap that works for a 6x6 with 3-2x8 beam on top of it. I suppose you could invert another of that same connector to set the next post into, but then you have a 5 1/2" post sitting on something 4 1/2" wide. That doesn't seem right to me, but then again, that's why I'm asking.
    – NW-DIYer
    Apr 6 at 20:33
  • I think you can chat with Simpson's technical representative online, or send them an inquiry with sketches. They should be able to point out the correct product (just too many).
    – r13
    Apr 6 at 20:45

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