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Old 02-14-2007, 12:01 PM   #1
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lowering ceiling to 8 feet level


I have a cathedral ceiling and would like to lower it to the 8 foot level.

From the front of the house to the load bearing wall is about 2 feet beyond the center of the ceiling.

1. Can I safely attach a 2x4 every 16 inches to the rafters and use a 2x4nailed horozontally on the load-bearing wall with 2x4 hangers to achieve my goal?

2.Should I attach vertical 2x4 to the rafter to keep the ceiling from sagging? If so, how far apart? How should they be attached?

3. 3x8 inch painted drywall is planned as the finished ceiling.

We have not started because we are not sure how to bust through the existing ceiling (which is 3x8 inch drywall) and do insertions for the vertical struts. If used should they be butted against the underside of the rafter or attached against the side of the rafter...
and how - with what?

We are planning to tie the 2x4's together with short pieces nailed between them creating the shadowbox effect when looking up from below.

Any advice would be appreciated. For instance - are 2x4's big enough or do I need 2x6's for this job?

Thanks for your advice,
Warm Regards,
mirico

The open expanse is 14 feet running from the weight bearing wall to the front of the house.

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Old 02-14-2007, 03:19 PM   #2
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lowering ceiling to 8 feet level


Quote:
Originally Posted by mirico View Post
I have a cathedral ceiling and would like to lower it to the 8 foot level.

From the front of the house to the load bearing wall is about 2 feet beyond the center of the ceiling.

1. Can I safely attach a 2x4 every 16 inches to the rafters and use a 2x4nailed horozontally on the load-bearing wall with 2x4 hangers to achieve my goal?
We have done many of these, in fact, we are currntly doing one this week in a kitchen remodel....I am assuming that you are talking about dropping it down to an 8' FLAT ceiling?

However, the way to do this is to attach your 2x4's around the perimeter walls at level. Then mark these 'rim joists' (for your new 2x4 ceiling joists) at your 16 OC.
As you stated, use 2x4 joist hangers after installing your new 2x4 joists.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mirico View Post
2.Should I attach vertical 2x4 to the rafter to keep the ceiling from sagging? If so, how far apart? How should they be attached?
Absolutely.... dependant on the span of your ceiling...attach about every 4' to 6' or so, attach at evenly spaced points or more...
If it is around 14' - attach each new ceiling joist supports around the 1/3 and the 2/3 mark of it's span.
To attach: (if leaving the old ceiling up)nail a 2x4 on the flat spanning accross at least 2 rafters or older joists. Measure and attach a 2x4 down vertically. Nail that vertical 2x4 to the flat 2x4 on the rafters and attach it to your new joists....This, you do after you install all your new ceiling joists.

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Originally Posted by mirico View Post
3. 3x8 inch painted drywall is planned as the finished ceiling.
Use 1/2". 3/8" is designed to 'go over' or 'lay-over' other surfaces. 3/8" will sag slightly if attached in your ceiling. Use 1/2" for a better uniform surface.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mirico View Post
We have not started because we are not sure how to bust through the existing ceiling (which is 3x8 inch drywall) and do insertions for the vertical struts. If used should they be butted against the underside of the rafter or attached against the side of the rafter...
and how - with what?
Attach to the side of the rafters simply with nails...

Quote:
Originally Posted by mirico View Post
Any advice would be appreciated. For instance - are 2x4's big enough or do I need 2x6's for this job?
It depends on the size of the room. You can get away with 2x4's as long as you add those vertical supports at even distances.
Realize that you are not building a structural floor or ceiling. The only weightt this new ceiling will be supporting is itself and the sheetrock.


Last edited by AtlanticWBConst.; 02-14-2007 at 03:22 PM.
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Old 02-04-2009, 01:43 PM   #3
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lowering ceiling to 8 feet level


Very old post (almost 2-years to be exact!), but found it while I was searching for a solution to my needs so maybe someone can chime in:

I also want to drop a ceiling 1' for part of a basement finishing project, and am trying to contemplate how to best do it. I need to cover a span of about 16', so I'll have to splice a couple 8' 2x4's together to cover the span. What's the best way to do this? I'll attach vertical supports at every 4'.

Also, how can I attach my top plate when installing my stud walls if the metal joist hanger is there?

Thanks.

Last edited by ThunderCAT; 02-04-2009 at 02:01 PM.
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Old 02-04-2009, 08:53 PM   #4
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lowering ceiling to 8 feet level


We did a job like this not too long ago. We went with 2X2 metal studs for the basement ceiling supported from the exposed ceiling joists every four feet or so staggered on every other stud. We also left the perimeter of the basement about 1 foot in open that we later put in a drop ceiling.

metal studs are a breeze to work with.

Like mentioned above, its not structural.
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Old 10-24-2009, 09:24 AM   #5
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lowering ceiling to 8 feet level


I found this old post while looking for a solution for my ceiling project. I plan to do what the OP says in the quote below. I have an additional question. Do I need to add blocking between the horizontal 2 X 4s and if so how far apart? One part of this project is a hall that is 39" wide. With such a narrow width is blocking necessary?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mirico View Post

1. Can I safely attach a 2x4 every 16 inches to the rafters and use a 2x4nailed horozontally on the load-bearing wall with 2x4 hangers to achieve my goal?

2.Should I attach vertical 2x4 to the rafter to keep the ceiling from sagging? If so, how far apart? How should they be attached?

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