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Old 08-24-2011, 10:00 PM   #1
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half wall construction


I'm going to replace the banister shown in the pic with a "half wall". there is a floor joist running parallel to that existing banister so I'll have some good "nailing". my question is whether I should nail each stud to the joist or whether I should have a "plate" at the bottom and nail THAT to the joist. any suggestions for making the end of the wall sturdy so that it doesn't "wobble"?

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Old 08-25-2011, 05:21 AM   #2
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I would build the half wall as a separate piece. Top plate, bottom plate and the studs inbetween. That way you can nail or screw the studs from top and bottom straight in, not having to toe nail. Then set the whole half wall in place and secure to the joist. Since I tend to do over kill I would double up the two outsides with 2 studs giving more meat to attach to the wall (hoping there is a stud on the wall there for you) and more support to the outside (free standing) edge. By doing the separate bottom plate you are giving yourself a better place to attach the drywall and the baseboards or other trim of your choosing.

By the look of your run you might want to think about a receptical on that half wall. By building the wall freestanding you can predrill for the wire for it. If you are like me I do not have a small head drill, and predrilling the holes for the wire into the studs would be easier done prior to building the wall.

I am hoping someone else will follow to answer how to secure the free standing side so it does not wavy in the wind. The drywall should keep it all from moving around, but if there is a more safe method I too would love to know.

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Last edited by m1951mm; 08-25-2011 at 05:55 AM.
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Old 08-25-2011, 06:51 AM   #3
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half wall construction


If that Newel post is still sturdy, how about fastening your 1/2 wall to that?
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Old 08-25-2011, 07:04 AM   #4
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My question to attaching the new wall to the existing newel post would be, how do you make it look good?? with drywall and all?? Does the new wall end with a newel post of just with corner bead and drywall,

This could be way out there, but what if you run a level from your existing handrail to the bottom and find a space where the thickness would allow you to add a furring strip for support for the drywall?? You still would need to address squaring off the top with corner bead for the wall. With the balisters you would have more than enough space to nail drywall and trim????????? I am totally out of sense here, but to me it would work?

In thinking more about this you will need a square top plate to make the drywalling easier. Sorry for so may thoughts, but atleast I am thinking!! If you used the existhing handrail you would have to square it off for the drywall. Who Knows, Maybe that could work with adding a 2x4 on top, but you would still have the issue of the newel post top to deal with.
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Old 08-25-2011, 09:31 AM   #5
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Actually just did a project like this a few weeks ago for my brother in law. We built a half wall using 2 x 6 ' an did a top and bottom plated filled with studs at 16" on center. Used deck mate screws and glue to build. Attached to wall and floor using remaining deck mate screws. Also used 4 lags screws spaced on bottom plate to help hold it to the sub floor. To help strengthen even more you will want to run the drywall past the half wall and sub floor by a 1' or so. That way you won't have a drywall seems where the two walls meet.
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Old 08-25-2011, 10:17 AM   #6
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half wall construction


I don't know how handy you are but this is an easy job if you know what you are doing. As stated by previous posts here are a couple things to think of.
Electrical outlets are 6 and 12 for spacing it looks like you will need at least 2, how many outlets are on that circuit?
You will need to pull back the carpet and most likely relocate the tack strip. Build the wall with extra care on the strength of the end, nothing worse then a loose pony wall.
What are you using for a cap? you will need to be carfull and make sure the material and layout does not go into the window.
What is on the stairway wall? Drywall or plaster? You will have to match the new wall to the stairway wall so be sure to do a good layout or you will not be happy when you drywall the pony wall.
Get a plan together and make sure you have it fugured out to completion.
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Old 08-25-2011, 11:13 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tcleve4911 View Post
If that Newel post is still sturdy, how about fastening your 1/2 wall to that?
Agreed...that end post should go thru floor and attach to joist below. Build the wall in between and cover it all with GWB.
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Old 08-25-2011, 03:44 PM   #8
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half wall construction


Originally Posted by tcleve4911
If that Newel post is still sturdy, how about fastening your 1/2 wall to that?

thanks for all the input. that's an interesting idea about leaving the post on the end and attaching the wall to that. wonder if my "assistant" would go for that?
anyway, it'll work out somehow. I'll post a pic whenever I can.
really,my only concern is once the "banister" is removed, there'll be an 8' "drop-off" to keep people away from. glad I don't have kids or pets!!

ps: there'll be 1 outlet on the new wall, the "romex" will come up from an outlet directly below.

tnx,

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