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Old 05-13-2013, 01:36 PM   #16
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Joist framing around L-stair opening


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Originally Posted by SquishyBall View Post
No, things seem solid. The joists (altho notched) are in really good shape. I'm really just assessing my options as I'm laying out a new interior design and brainstorming where I can tweak to get some extra headroom and less of a tunnel-look to the staircase. It's is a typical basement staircase, i.e. not very inviting. There was a non-bearing partition wall under the double trimmer that was put in when the basement was finished sometime in the 90's and framed on top of floor tiles. (See Proper use of hard foam insulation for just how hokey of a job whichever diy-er did on finishing this basement). The wall above this on the 1st floor is also non-bearing... The bearing wall is on the other side of the stairs over the beam.

So I'm debating trusting that the construction is indeed properly self-supporting, or re-framing in a small wall here to add extra support to that section, or, even changing the joist layout to match Willie's diagram, which to me seems more structural. I'm leaning toward putting in the wall - it's the least amount of change, the least work, but for the least gain (does not accomplish the goal of a totally open design). It wouldn't be an official bearing wall (just on the conc floor) but it's at least what was there previously and I can redo it nicer.

I'm finding plenty of info on the web for standard staircases but when you get to two (basement and first floor) overlapping L-stair cases, naturally the complexity goes beyond the web. I may break down and buy an actual {gasp} book... on the subject.
Your words, "a tunnel-look" indicate that there is, indeed a supporting wall paralleling the longer section of stairs and the "beam". Otherwise, without showing something different, your drawing seems to depict an open stairwell.

And, if the stairs ARE open, that ceiling cannot support itself... built the way it's shown.


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