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Old 02-03-2007, 10:44 PM   #1
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


Hello, I am recent new home owner, who has completed a fair share of home improvement projects\renovations. My current project is transforming an existing 1st floor BR to a Dining Room. The area in question is how I am handling the existing closet. I plan on increasing the opening an making the area an alcove for a serving table\hutch.

My plan is laid out in the picture that I attached. The blue boxes represent 2X4s (trimmer studs) that are 85.5/8, because I am using a 2X6X42 Header. (I sandwiched the ply between the 2X6s). I also have the 2X4 that runs horizontally the length of the header.

Anyway, my plan of attack, which I would appreciate feedback on is as follows:
I have but a single support piece in place. (is that enough?)
Next, with the support in place, I plan to remove the existing framed out areas, leaving only the top plate and the King Studs.
Then nail the trimmer studs to the King Studs.
Then nail the horizontal 2X4 to the trimmer studs. (downwars)
The fit in the header and nail that in place from underneath the horizontal 2X4.

Q1: how does that sound?
Q2: If this OK, should I additionally toe-nail the header into the top plate. I assume this could be from inside the closet?

Any other suggestions are more than welcome
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Old 02-04-2007, 07:52 AM   #2
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


Quote:
Originally Posted by WorkOnIt View Post

Anyway, my plan of attack, which I would appreciate feedback on is as follows:
I have but a single support piece in place. (is that enough?)

Actually, it isn't enough support, you should build a small framed wall the size of that opening and install it near the doorway to support any over head joists that are being supported by the existing header that you plan on taking out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WorkOnIt View Post
Next, with the support in place, I plan to remove the existing framed out areas, leaving only the top plate and the King Studs.
Then nail the trimmer studs to the King Studs.
Then nail the horizontal 2X4 to the trimmer studs. (downwars)
The fit in the header and nail that in place from underneath the horizontal 2X4.
1st off, I think what you are referring to as 'trimmer studs' area actually called jack studs. What you want to do is attach that 2x4 to the bottom of the header prior to installing both into the opening.

1.) Lift your header into place and toe nail to the top plate only. Do not nail the sides of it yet.

2.) Measure for you jack studs and then add 1/16" to your exact measurement. You want a tight fit....

3.) Install your jack studs by inserting lower end onto the bottom plate first. Then push-in the top end to the king studs (and under the header) using a hammer. You want these snug, but not so tight that they are bowing too much.
You see, the key is that you want those jack studs to really support the header. That is why you are not installing them before the header. By installing them up and into/under the header snuggly, you are really creating the tight structure that makes it loadbearing.

4.) Once your jacks are in place: because of the small hallway, you will have to toe nail the header to the king studs. Toe nail the tops of your jack studs to the header. Toe nail the bottoms of your jack studs to the bottom plate. Then as you go thru and nail the lengths of your jack studs to your king studs, alternate the angle of you 'pairs' of nails. This is called 'hurricane' nailing, it creates a stronger attachment.
As you go thru nailing these, make sure that your jacks are aligning with your kings by 'worming' them as you nail...

Good Luck


Last edited by AtlanticWBConst.; 02-04-2007 at 07:57 AM.
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Old 02-04-2007, 08:06 AM   #3
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


Thanks AWBConst for your feedback and suggestions, I will certainly be using them...

The support you mentioned is just a 2x4 that runs parellel to the top plate and supported by 3 2x4 that run to the floor, correct?
As far as placement, would you reccomend inside or outside of closet opening? Additionally, how much room can I give myself to work between the support piece and the opening?
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Old 02-04-2007, 08:19 AM   #4
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


Quote:
Originally Posted by WorkOnIt View Post
Thanks AWBConst for your feedback and suggestions, I will certainly be using them...

The support you mentioned is just a 2x4 that runs parellel to the top plate and supported by 3 2x4 that run to the floor, correct?
As far as placement, would you reccomend inside or outside of closet opening? Additionally, how much room can I give myself to work between the support piece and the opening?
Correct about the support.

I would put the support near your work, but in an area out of the your way....even 24" from the opening should be fine....

However, the key is whether there are 'ends' of ceiling/floor joists sitting on this wall. Does this wall run down the center of your house....gable end to gable end? Does it sit directly, lengthwise, above your main carrying beam in your basement?
If you have an attic above this work area, go take a look and check it out first .....if that were the case, you need to build supports for both sides.

If you have a back wall of the closet and the closet is narrow, then that back wall 'may be' enough support....for one side...

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Old 02-04-2007, 08:55 AM   #5
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


Thanks so much AWBConst, this is great info/feedback...

Just for additional confirmation, I will try to answer your questions based on my "limited" knowledge of some technical terms... (but as the name suggests, I am working on it) BTW: thanks for the correction of trimmer studs vs. jack studs.

Quote:
the key is whether there are 'ends' of ceiling/floor joists sitting on this wall.
I am 99% sure that the ceiling and floor joist run from the front of the house to the back of the house continiously. So, I do not believe the "ends" sit in this wall.

Quote:
Does this wall run down the center of your house....gable end to gable end?
No it does not, I stops halfway. However, it does run under the stairs, which are about 12' from the closet I am working in.

Quote:
Does it sit directly, lengthwise, above your main carrying beam in your basement?
If you have an attic above this work area, go take a look and check it out first .....if that were the case, you need to build supports for both sides.

If you have a back wall of the closet and the closet is narrow, then that back wall 'may be' enough support....for one side...
Actually, AWBConst. the wall behins the closet that is visble in the pic, run the length of the house, and is directly above the main support beam in the crawl space. That wall is 24" from the closet opening (i.e. the closet is 24" deep.

With this being said, do you think it is safe to just construct a single support piece 24" from the opening outside (or in this case inside the room)?

Thanks again...
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Old 02-04-2007, 09:43 AM   #6
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


In case anyone is following, or wants to reference in the future, here is the support that was erected. I plan to next start removing the existing entrance to the door.
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Old 02-04-2007, 10:01 AM   #7
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


OK,
I just removed the existing opening, and got a good look at the actual size of the intended alcove...

My wife and I are happy with the size, not I plan on following AWBConst's suggestions!
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Old 02-04-2007, 10:41 AM   #8
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


Next Step after removal of existing opening was to place in the header...

In keeping with AWBConst. plan, I measuered the header about a 1/8" longer and kinda of shimmied up there, once in was level and plumb, I toe-nailed it into the top plate.

Next onto the jack studs...
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Old 02-04-2007, 11:52 AM   #9
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


The Jack Studs are in, and I think she about completed structurally...

AWBConst, again thanks for your assistance on this one, I will be calling on you again in the future...

Next week, my uncle who is a carpenter by trade is coming up and we are going to do some new construction windows. Putting a hole in the house is exciting in Feb!!!!!

I will document the process for all those interested

Attached, some final pics...

Thanks Again AWBConst.
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening-header_room.jpg   Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening-finishedopening.jpg   Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening-header_jackstud.jpg  
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Old 02-04-2007, 11:53 AM   #10
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Advice on Enlarging a Door Opening


Congratulations...looks good.

Good luck on the future projects.

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