I am building a picture frame deck. In order to support the picture frame edge planks that are parallel to the joists, it is recommended (by TimberTech anyway) to install two more joists next to the edge joist, with blocking between the 1st and 2nd joists, as shown in the below illustration.

I need to install a railing around the deck, and I'm not sure where to mount the 4x4 rail posts with this design. The 2nd and 3rd joists would be in the way. The only place I can see to put the posts would be between the 3rd and 4th joists, but doing that would put the posts so far in that I'd lose like 9-11 inches of my deck space on each side, as they'd be outside the railing.

How is this typically done? I can't seem to find the answer anywhere.

Deck framing 1

Deck framing side view

1 Answer 1


This is how I have done in the past. This works well so the "Picture Frame" boards finish even with the inside of railing post (4x4 assumed) so you have less notching to do - actually will only need to notch your edging boards. This also gives about 1/2" hanging over the fascia board.

I highly recommend using a deck tape on top of any wood surfaces where they will contact the decking boards.

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  • Not sure my AHJ accepts notched posts anymore. Can I ask why you wouldn’t just sandwich a full post between the rim board and a full joist (with 3-1/2” cross-blocking periodically to catch the deck boards)? Jun 24, 2022 at 13:05
  • And not strictly relevant to the question, but my AHJ is definitely requiring tie backs (like DTT-1Z) on posts like the ones running left to right on the rim of the diagram. YMMV. Jun 24, 2022 at 13:11

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