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post #1 of 54 Old 03-04-2008, 06:55 PM - Thread Starter
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If my ceiling/bottom of floor joists is 7.5' and I frame a wall that is 7.5' high, how can I stand that up without getting stuck on the corners of my 2x4 top plate of base as I lift the wall into place. With my lack of experience, this seems a bit mesmerizing to me how it is geometrically possible.
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post #2 of 54 Old 03-04-2008, 07:03 PM
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one word......................sledgehammer
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post #3 of 54 Old 03-04-2008, 07:30 PM
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This likely isn't the right way to do it... but you could build either the top properly (nail through the perpindicular 2x4), put it in place, and toenail in the bottom.

Steel studs would work well for this problem I'd think.

Or just build your walls slightly lower.

But yeah, there has to be a pro solution to this. Maybe it is the sledgehammer
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post #4 of 54 Old 03-04-2008, 07:50 PM
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A preferred way is the to secure your top plate and sole plate to their permanent locations. Then frame out your wall with a second top plate and sole plate on the ground, 3" shorter than normal since you are adding two additional plates. Now, since this new wall is 3" shorter than it would have been, you can easily tilt and lift it into place with not much effort.

Now, I didn't want to waste the additional lumber on these extra plates (I am cheap), so I just did a top and sole plate and toe nailed my studs in place. Except instead of toe nailing which I hate to do, I used screws.
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post #5 of 54 Old 03-04-2008, 07:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smakovits View Post

If my ceiling/bottom of floor joists is 7.5' and I frame a wall that is 7.5' high, how can I stand that up without getting stuck on the corners of my 2x4 top plate of base as I lift the wall into place. With my lack of experience, this seems a bit mesmerizing to me how it is geometrically possible.

Frame your wall without the top plate lift your wall up then wedge your top plate into place and then nail it all together. Not tried this but it should work. Just make sure you support the wall as you lift into place or you just may have the adult version of pick up sticks!

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post #6 of 54 Old 03-04-2008, 08:09 PM
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Don't mistake me for someone who has a clue, but, having wondered the same thing, I'd suggest first installing an "extra-top-plate" pre-nailed to the ceiling joists. Your wall would actually tilt up 1.5" short of the full height in front of your "etp" and then slide in snug with the help of the sledgehammer just for fun.

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post #7 of 54 Old 03-04-2008, 08:21 PM
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Go with the sledge and get medevil...

I hate toe nailing with a passion. Unless your wall is the exact width of the room which depending on which way you build the corners doesn't always have to be, as you stand the wall up you can tip the top slightly to the side as it goes up with reduces the height every so slightly as to make it a little easier. This only helps slightly as the first few degrees of tilt actually increase the height. I probably wouldn't suggest this using nails as they might start to pull out but I screw everying anyway. Let me restate that. I wouldn't suggest this at all but after you build a perfectly square, straight wall you are willing to try things to avoid dismanteling it and cutting 3/8 off each board.

Reducing the height by 3/8 is probably a better alternative.

I have 9 foot ceilings (108"). When you subtract 1.5 inches for the top and bottom your are left with 105" but the standard framing studs for this are 104 & 5/8. Remember these are not load bearing walls so pop a couple 3 inch nails (I use always use screws) up through your header every couple feet into what ever is above and don't worry about the little gap. Pay far, far, far more attention to the wall being plumb both ways. Oh, don't forget to secure the bottom to the floor as well.

Even after shortening by 3/8" the Gallager fruit spreader comes in handy.

Happy hammering.

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post #8 of 54 Old 03-04-2008, 08:40 PM
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When we frame basement walls, we construct it so it is about 3/8" shorter than the actual ceiling height and the wall will stand up pretty easily. Another alternative is to nail the top plate to the floor joists and bottom plate to the floor and then toe-nail in your studs. This can be a much cleaner looking application, but it is extremely time consuming.

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post #9 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 05:09 AM
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Another vote for the double top plate

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post #10 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 05:11 AM
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another vote for steel studs

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post #11 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 05:25 AM
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Another vote for sledgehammer.
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post #12 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 05:56 AM
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One other trick I found (even with building 3/8" short) that worked in some areas was to spin the wall 90 degrees on the floor, stand it up between the floor joists above. Once standing up, rotate back the 90 degree and viola. Dont count on this working if you build to the exact height dimention as inperfections in the floor or future ceiling may hang things up when you try to spin.

This also won't work if the wall you are building is the exact width of the room or the wall it is longer than the width of the room. I have a 2' x 9' bump out in my foundation (in my 13' by 26' room) for an entertainment center and fire place on the main floor above so I had several smaller walls to build.

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post #13 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 06:12 AM
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Sledgehammer can work, but most basements have a variation in height from the ceiling to the floor. So if you measure at the wrong point, even the sledge won't work (it can also lead to cracked drywall upstairs).

A common recommendation is to build a bit short and then shim the wall. But again, variation in the floor to ceiling height can make this tricky.

I think the best method is to stick build the wall - attach the top and bottom plates and then cut each stud to the correct length. It doesn't take that much longer. Toenailing isn't a big deal if you use a nail gun.
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post #14 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 06:15 AM
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One last thing... (who am i kidding)...

If you are going with the extra header, check and recheck the plumbness and flushness of the wall you are building against. Many HT's are in basements and the walls we build are against are foundation walls (poured concrete or otherwise). I was surprised (I am not sure why) on how off these walls can be. There can be bows, lack of plumbness etc.

If you put you extra header in place very close to the wall you may find that when you stand your wall up and squeak it into place you can't line up the first header with the second exactly... (or even close in some cases depending on the wall) without the wall being out of plumb (toed out toward the room).

We try to squeak every extra inch out of our rooms but don't get carried away. I will leave the spacing behind the wall and lack of contact with it, vapor barriers and the like to the other posts that discuss.

Man, that took longer than I thought it would...

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post #15 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 06:28 AM
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Aye, we frame our wall short too so you can stand it up easier. Then we use the Remmington concret nailer to secure the bottom plate into the floor. It shoots a specific nail though the 2x4 into the concret using the power of a .22cal shell.

Then we would make sure its level left/right and front/back and then nail up through the top plate into the joists. If your wall is to be placed btwn 2 joist spaces, you would then need to put blocking btwn the joists so you can then nail the header into the blocking.
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post #16 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 06:40 AM
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I'm sure that anyone that reads this along with any of their children over the age of 8 are better at toe nailing with a nail gun than the guy my builder sent out after the fact to frame my basement.

The framing crew that built the house did a pretty good job but the basement wall framing was an after thought. I paid a little extra to have them drop the shower stall into the future bathroom, stub the plumbing and frame the exterior walls of the basement. The guy they sent back to frame these walls drove a beat up mini-van with lumber hanging out the back door left open. It was the same guy they used to build their decks... Which is why I only had them attached the plate to the house and I built my own..

Anyway, the combination of crappy lumber and lousy toe nailing left some framing that twisted close to 90 degrees over the 9 foot span. It was crazy. Not only did I tear out and start over for the HT room but had to selectively remove and replace throughout the basement before starting my project. Thought my builder would be giving me a head start rather than a headache.

Man, that took longer than I thought it would...

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post #17 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 06:57 AM
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sledge.
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post #18 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 07:24 AM
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Stick framing with a nailer is my vote...although I have built them short and this works well too. I have not tried the double top plate, but would seem to be a good solution.
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post #19 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 10:36 AM
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I did double bottom plate - first attached pressure treated lumber to the concrete floor all around the wall outlines using one of those .22 caliber nail guns. Then built the frame a tiny bit more than 1.5" short, stood it up and lifted it into place on top of the pressure treated boards, and nailed it in place, using shims between the top and the ceiling joists where needed. I didn't use a framing nailer - just did it the old-fashioned way, so trying to toe-nail didn't work so well for me.

With the double bottom plate, it also made it easier to attach my baseboard.
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post #20 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 12:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vcook View Post

sledge.

That's funny - how about "match"

I still vote for steel studs

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post #21 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 01:57 PM
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Todays prices

2x4x92 5/8 SPF Stud - $1.64
2x4x92 5/8 20 gauge steel stud - $3.67

2x4x10 #2 plate - $2.92
10' of 20 gauge steel track $4.39

Twice the cost, twice the labor, no appreciable advantage for residential light construction. If your sole concern is how straight the steel studs are, you can get engineered wood products like this one

http://www.ilevel.com/walls/w_Timber...LSL_studs.aspx

and you will still save money over steel.

At some point and time the lumber market will swing back up again and steel will be the cost leader, but I see no reason why anyone would want to throw away $500 - $700 on the average basement project just to use steel.

VERY cool picture BTW and definitely not something you could easily accomplish with wood, but that is obviously a commercial project and I don't believe any of us are doing anything quite that elaborate, although I could be wrong. There are some outstanding rooms here at AVS.

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post #22 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 02:07 PM
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Given that the diagonal measurment of a 7'6" (90") 2x4 wall is only 90.068", a 16 pound "persuader" does the trick quite nicely for me

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post #23 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 02:09 PM
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Funston,

That's surprising that the engineered products are less than steel. I haven't priced studs in a while and am also surprised at the difference between wood and steel.

The only counter opinion I'd offer is that steel doesn't take 2x the time of wood. It's awfully fast work if you have the minimum tools.

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post #24 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 02:11 PM
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I found a hybrid of stick framing and pre-built sections to work best in my situation.

I built the basic 2x4 "box" first: top plate, bottom plate, 2 end studs. That way I only need to measure in 2 places for height - the wood has enough "flex" in it to bend up or down over the 8' or 10' span if needed. Then I stand up the box frame, align the bottom plate on my chalk line and secure it with a ramset gun - usually a nail at each end of the frame. The next step is to plumb it. With a nail in the bottom plate, its easy to plumb the end of the wall and screw into the joist. Once the box is secure and plumb, I just cut the studs to length inside that 2x4 box.

I found that in cases where either the floor or joists were not even, I just cut the "intermediate" studs longer or shorter. I found it faster than pure stick framing because it was much easier to keep everything plumb. But I didn't have to worry about things being a bit to short or long or messing around with shimming etc... usually I would make the 2x4 "box" about 3/8" shorter than it needed to be and cut the studs an 1/8" longer to get a tight fit. That makes toe-nailing dead easy.

If I was to do it again, I would probably modify it a bit by laying down the bottom plates along the chalk lines then set the 2x4 "box" on top of that leaving a double plate on the bottom. I think that would be ideal.

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post #25 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 02:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ted White View Post

Funston,

That's surprising that the engineered products are less than steel. I haven't priced studs in a while and am also surprised at the difference between wood and steel.

The only counter opinion I'd offer is that steel doesn't take 2x the time of wood. It's awfully fast work if you have the minimum tools.

As with all commodities the prices and cost differences flucuate almost daily. Lumber and wood products in general are currently selling for all time lows because of extreme over saturation of the market. That will even out eventually, but most of the trade publications like Random Lengths is predicting lumber will be soft for at least the next 9 months. Steel prices on the other hand are steadily rising due to extreme demand from China and other foreign markets.

I will concede the labor may not be twice as long if a person has the right tools. Most of my steel stud experience was on commercial, prevailing wage jobs and the installers were SLOW.

BTW - Costs listed in my original post are today's list prices from the building supply companies I purchase material from here in Des Moines. Check local listings for prices in your area

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post #26 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 02:27 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_brew View Post

I found a hybrid of stick framing and pre-built sections to work best in my situation.

I built the basic 2x4 "box" first: top plate, bottom plate, 2 end studs. That way I only need to measure in 2 places for height - the wood has enough "flex" in it to bend up or down over the 8' or 10' span if needed. Then I stand up the box frame, align the bottom plate on my chalk line and secure it with a ramset gun - usually a nail at each end of the frame. The next step is to plumb it. With a nail in the bottom plate, its easy to plumb end of the wall and screw into the joist. Once the box is secure and plumb, I just cut the studs to length inside that 2x4 box.

I found that in cases where either the floor or joists were not even, I just cut the "intermediate" studs longer or shorter. I found it faster than pure stick framing because it was much easier to keep everything plumb. But I didn't have to worry about things being a bit to short or long or messing around with shimming etc... usually I would make the 2x4 "box" about 3/8" shorter than it needed to be and cut the studs an 1/8" longer to get a tight fit. That makes toe-nailing dead easy.

If I was to do it again, I would probably modify it a bit by laying down the studs along the chalk lines then set the 2x4 "box" on top of that leaving a double stud on the bottom. I think that would be ideal.

I have not heard of doing it that way, but that does sound like a much faster way to get the advantages of both methods. Something for my crew to try next time we are framing a basement.

Thanks for the idea Craig!

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post #27 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 03:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Does lowes carry steel, I have searched their website, but came up empty handed...
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post #28 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 04:31 PM
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I don't recall seeing steel studs at either lowes or HD. I got the pricing listed above from a local building materials supply company.

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post #29 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 05:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Funston View Post

Todays prices

2x4x92 5/8 SPF Stud - $1.64
2x4x92 5/8 20 gauge steel stud - $3.67

2x4x10 #2 plate - $2.92
10' of 20 gauge steel track $4.39

Twice the cost, twice the labor, no appreciable advantage for residential light construction. If your sole concern is how straight the steel studs are, you can get engineered wood products like this one

http://www.ilevel.com/walls/w_Timber...LSL_studs.aspx

and you will still save money over steel.

At some point and time the lumber market will swing back up again and steel will be the cost leader, but I see no reason why anyone would want to throw away $500 - $700 on the average basement project just to use steel.

VERY cool picture BTW and definitely not something you could easily accomplish with wood, but that is obviously a commercial project and I don't believe any of us are doing anything quite that elaborate, although I could be wrong. There are some outstanding rooms here at AVS.

I have seen some pics in this forum that are as extreme as that pic.

As far as cost comparisons go - building with wood will use 30% more footage than with steel, mostly in the plates headers and corners.

The labor with metal studs is 50% that of wood framing.

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post #30 of 54 Old 03-05-2008, 07:27 PM
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I tried both building the wall on the ground and raising it vs. installing top and sole plates and then toe nailing studs in between. I settled on the latter since my basement (like most) is graded to slope from one side to other for drainage. That made it harder to build the wall in place and raise it without messing with shims, etc. My longest studs were 92 1/2 and my shortest were studs were 91 so the variance was fairly large.

Buy or borrow a framing nailer and the toenailing is a cinch. I even read somewhere that toenailing is stronger because of the angles formed by the nails.

-Aaron
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