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Old 01-24-2014, 08:53 AM   #1
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


I'm several months into a big basement renovation project carried out by a large GC firm. I was traveling a lot for my job before the holidays, and was not able to oversee the work as much as I'd have liked.

There have been a few issues with the work quality related to drywall and insulation.

Due to a really botched drywall job that was supposed to incorporate soundproofing, I pulled down the drywall and one of the things I noticed (in addition to thinner insulation than I was charged for) was that the wall stud spacings are quite variable.

Rather than a uniform 16" spacing, the spacing ranges randomly from 15" to 17". It seems kind of sloppy - it might just be renovation fatigue setting in and I'm getting obsessed over tiny details, but is there any kind of "industry standard" tolerance for this spacing?

I hired a consultant for soundproofing and have been sending measurements to plan the build and it becomes a pain when everything is so irregular (he's entering dimensions into autocad). Beyond this, is there any other impact beyond that just seeming sloppy?

Thanks for all the great info thus far,

P

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Old 01-24-2014, 09:02 AM   #2
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


Sounds like they sent their worst crew out to your job.

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Old 01-24-2014, 09:04 AM   #3
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


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Sounds like they sent their worst crew out to your job.
Thanks - I just got a request from the GC for another big cheque today, and told him we need to discuss previous deliverables before further payments are issued.

I'm trying to plan how to respond to this - I have no desire for it to get nasty but also don't want to be taken advantage of.

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Old 01-24-2014, 09:09 AM   #4
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


1/2" off of 16" centers is sort of acceptable---as far as strength goes---you are going to be fine---24" centers is common and acceptable for most drywall----

But it sure is a time wasting pain hanging drywall over a sloppy framing job--when you do get a hanging crew in there---a cash tip before the job starts might be a good idea----Just a thought---
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:12 AM   #5
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


16" O.C. should not be hard to follow, unless there are obstacles to the stud. Even so, these obstacles should be infrequent and only affect very few studs. Sounds like sloppy work and no attention to detail.
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:13 AM   #6
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


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1/2" off of 16" centers is sort of acceptable---as far as strength goes---you are going to be fine---24" centers is common and acceptable for most drywall----

But it sure is a time wasting pain hanging drywall over a sloppy framing job--when you do get a hanging crew in there---a cash tip before the job starts might be a good idea----Just a thought---
Thanks - while it is sloppy, I don't want to look like a dolt making too big of a deal about it with the GC as there are other more legitimate concerns.

I'll be hanging the next drywall myself! Will make sure the mark the studs on the floor and ceiling (the last guys didn't even do that). About 1 in 4 screws was not in a stud.

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Old 01-24-2014, 09:14 AM   #7
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


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Originally Posted by packer_rich View Post
16" O.C. should not be hard to follow, unless there are obstacles to the stud. Even so, these obstacles should be infrequent and only affect very few studs. Sounds like sloppy work and no attention to detail.
Yeah - this was absolutely brand new wall in a newly built basement. There were zero obstacles.
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:19 AM   #8
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


That really is inexcusable for a hired job. If you let a neighbor kid do it and it was his first time it would have came out better.
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:43 AM   #9
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


If you are installing insulation bats tight to the studs I see a problem, but otherwise it's just carelessness- lack of detail. Sheet rock can span that spacing.
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Old 01-24-2014, 09:53 AM   #10
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


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If you are installing insulation bats tight to the studs I see a problem, but otherwise it's just carelessness- lack of detail. Sheet rock can span that spacing.
This is a good point - I'm soundproofing the room, and the stud gaps are filled with Roxul that is pre-cut to fit tightly into 16" stud spacing. Many of the bats do not fit properly because the spaces are larger than spec. This is probably the only actual functional consequence, but it's significant because I'm investing a lot in soundproofing (Safe'n Sound is overpriced enough - would be nice if it fit properly).

P

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Old 01-24-2014, 10:46 AM   #11
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


It will make it a pain to hang drywall when sheets are not ending on studs. You'll either need to add another stud on as a nailer or use a butt board type of solution. Or just plan the sheets out perfectly so they can end on a stud and have enough room for another sheet, but with this clown crew's work it will probably be very difficult.
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Old 01-24-2014, 11:14 AM   #12
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


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It will make it a pain to hang drywall when sheets are not ending on studs. You'll either need to add another stud on as a nailer or use a butt board type of solution. Or just plan the sheets out perfectly so they can end on a stud and have enough room for another sheet, but with this clown crew's work it will probably be very difficult.
Thanks!

I should mention that I will put resilient channel on several of the walls, so it will be easier to deal with the spacing issues (channel screwed onto the studs, which are visible, and drywall screwed into the channel that I will hang at the proper heights).

These guys are not doing any more work in that room -

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Old 01-24-2014, 11:57 AM   #13
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


To bad your good intentions turned out so badly---good to see you are most interested in correcting the problem and not growing old worring about who is to blame---
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Old 01-24-2014, 12:34 PM   #14
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


And screws are never used when framing, only when hanging the drywall.
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Old 01-24-2014, 01:42 PM   #15
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Accepted tolerance for stud spacing?


I'd say for a basement that either screws or nails should do the job. Shear strength shouldn't really come into play. Unless there's another reason.

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