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Beermoney 12-04-2006 09:43 PM

Modifying framing under stairs
Hello All,

I am in the process of buillding a home theater in my basement. I would like to put all of my audio gear in a rack in the "dead space" under the stairs. The space under the staircase is completely finished. When I removed the drywall, I saw that there were several double studs and even a quadruple stud (4 2X4s nailed to gether) in the wall. My idea is to take the studs from 16" on center to 20" to make room for the audio rack by moving 2 studs over a few inches to the left, and then removing one of the quadruple studs. I am also planning to install a header accross the top of the opening to provide more support.

Should I even consider messing around with those studs? I'm pretty sure they are load bearing. Would this be a potential code violation that could haunt me when I try to sell the house? Would this damage the structural integrity of the staircase?:(

Thanks, I appreciate any thouhts anyone may have.

mdlbldrmatt135 12-05-2006 07:26 AM

Chances are pretty good that it's all load bearing......... you gould frame it off with a header like a wondow opening..... making sure to transfer all the load downward.

Beermoney 12-05-2006 07:41 AM

Thanks. That's what I thought. A friend suggested that I use 2 2X4s on edge and one 2X4 on top of those for the header "beam". Does that sound workable?

mdlbldrmatt135 12-06-2006 08:37 AM

Not if you're gonna take out a Quad 2x4........ Look at it this way..... the bigger you make the header... the less potental for falure there will be. I'd say use atleast 2 jack studs (on each side) under a 2x10 or 2x12 Without seeing it... I can't say for sure.

Beermoney 12-06-2006 08:47 AM

Thanks. On the quad side, I am planning to take out 2 but put back 1, so I will have 3 total remaining. I'm probably doing a poor job of explaining this. I will try to upload some pics later this evening.

Thanks again for your thoughts.

Bonus 12-06-2006 03:33 PM

You need to know the loads on this stuff before you start removing things. Might just be the stairs sitting on those studs and they put four in for some other reason, or your house might be held up by them. If you don't know, don't touch them.

Beermoney 12-07-2006 12:30 PM

Good point.


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