Hi. In Colorado, because of our expansive soils, builders "float" basement walls by having two base plates with a gap between the two. They are held apart by large spikes, about 1/2" in diameter.
I'm getting ready to finish my basement and would like to know if the "float" could be accomplished with 2 top plates instead? I would like to do this to put the weight of the walls on the basement floor, rather than the joists overhead.
I'm not an expert, but I think you would be better off having the expansion at the top. I somehow think I remember seeing an episode of "this old house" where they did put it at the top, but I think it had something to do with settling.
hi, i know this thread is "old", but i too live in CO and need to build "floating" walls. I would like to ask for more details as to how to build a "floating" wall vs. a standard frame wall. Do not have any obvious problems with moisture, cracking, et al, so is this necessary? also, basement is under a modular (trailer) steel frame with 9' walls and would like help with ceiling options.
i am not an expert carpenter, but will usually get things figured out. thanks!