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Old 11-04-2011, 03:15 AM   #1
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


I've been working on new bead board wainscoting, chair rail, casing and base boards. Along the way, I picked up some crown, but before it got installed I decided that I want to coffer the ceiling. This obviously presents some problems because the layout I want doesn't line up with the joists.

My plan is to add some extra support from above via the unfinished, un-catwalked attic so that I can bolt the 2x4 base of the coffers against the drywall. Oh boy, I can't wait!

Would it be acceptable to fasten 2x4s on-face to the top sides of the joists and then use glue and long bolts through the drywall? Or must I add 24" blocks between the existing joists?

Also, is green fir acceptable in this application?

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Last edited by Thadius856; 11-04-2011 at 03:35 AM. Reason: Typo
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Old 11-04-2011, 06:52 PM   #2
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


Bump.

Surely somebody has to have ideas.

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Old 11-05-2011, 09:11 PM   #3
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


Have a structural engineer over to the house to review the plan.
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Old 11-05-2011, 09:59 PM   #4
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


You can fasten the 2 x 4 to the joists above using lag bolts. There should not be a need to add additional support considering the joists are currently holding up your ceiling. You can add 2 x 4's from above as a cross section to meet your layout A coffer will not add that much weight to the ceiling. Fastening it using 3 " wood screws would be enough also. Hope that helps.
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Old 11-06-2011, 07:39 AM   #5
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


why would a engineer be needed for this... hes not building something structural.. a coffered ceiling is nothing more than building a soffit grid system so to create some nice lines in the space

you could use 2 1/2" steel stud, its nice and light weight,, only thing is when you go to hang the crown you can only shoot to the drywall. unless your willing to buy a 15 gauge nailer and the new senco barbed nails for steel stud
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Old 11-06-2011, 08:04 AM   #6
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


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why would a engineer be needed for this... hes not building something structural.. a coffered ceiling is nothing more than building a soffit grid system so to create some nice lines in the space

you could use 2 1/2" steel stud, its nice and light weight,, only thing is when you go to hang the crown you can only shoot to the drywall. unless your willing to buy a 15 gauge nailer and the new senco barbed nails for steel stud
Sounds like he's removing the current ceiling joist structure and creating a recess in the center.
If he's just adding a soffit around the perimeter, then an engineer isn't needed.
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Old 11-06-2011, 08:27 PM   #7
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


Negative on all accounts. I wasn't very clear.

I have an existing ceiling - drywalled, painted and textured. I'd like to coffer it by installing a series of 2x4 base with 1x4 sides. The difficulty I'm having is in attaching it to the ceiling.

The 2x4 grid I want the design to be doesn't line up wight the existing joists. I don't want to remove anything. Since I have crawlspace access, I figured I could add 22.5" blocks between the 24" OC joists where needed... not for structural weight-bearing support just rather just for a place to attach the coffer base.

But the thought of block out each. individual. joist. multiple time. sounds like a weekend of Hell with nothing to show for it (and that's if I don't screw up the drywall while toe-nailing!). I figured maybe I could just throw some full length 2x4, nail them to the top-side of the joists and use longer bolts.

Ideas?
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Old 11-07-2011, 01:33 PM   #8
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


Here's a picture of the coffer frame design I plan to suspend from the ceiling, once I can figure out the support method. (Note: it's up-side-down in the image).

Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling-289.jpg
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Old 11-07-2011, 03:47 PM   #9
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


whoa thats gonna be a ton of material going up.. i would be more prone to install a nailer to the ceiling and then hang mdf off of it which creates the beams for the ceiling
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Old 11-07-2011, 04:55 PM   #10
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


Yup. A fair amount of material. More if I decide to panel behind it.

I don't have to run the 2x4s full length, but it would sure make things a lot easier.
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Old 11-07-2011, 06:39 PM   #11
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


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whoa thats gonna be a ton of material going up.. i would be more prone to install a nailer to the ceiling and then hang mdf off of it which creates the beams for the ceiling
yea i agree, can't you lighten up your design. maybe some rips of plywood?????
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Old 11-07-2011, 07:57 PM   #12
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


Both MDF and most ply weigh more than the dried pine pictured.

Not seeing the weight savings.
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Old 11-08-2011, 03:55 AM   #13
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


The crown I purchased is 3-1/16" tall when installed to manufacturer specs. I might be able to forego the side pieces entirely and fingernail the bottom 1x back 1/16".

That would remove two 1x4s while shortening the coffer 7/16" and narrowing it 1". The main problem would be finding a reasonable way to nail it all together.
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Old 11-08-2011, 06:46 AM   #14
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


Your idea of the continuous 2x4's is good
Get those up there and be done with it. Don't worry that you don't have anything to show for it. You will.

I wouldn't eliminate the "fascia" sides. The look of the beam will be awkward.







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Old 11-08-2011, 08:37 PM   #15
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Logistics of Coffering an Existing Ceiling


That's beautiful, and exactly what I want it to look like.

Was that one 2x4 and 1x3?

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