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Old 10-07-2009, 08:41 AM   #31
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Questions on a deck I just built.


First let me say your apology is accepted and the following is not meant to upset or offend you. Building to less then code is, as you now know, building below the minimums required. If you where in school this would mean your GPA would be 69% or less. I would not have my family or children on a structure that is built only to the bare minimum or below, I also would not expose my clients to such. Coincidentally I am very "anal" about projects I take on and have seen all through to completion including the roof.

I can also tell you that true professional carpenters and contractors are well versed in fire blocking and its proper applications. True professionals learn and understand the bare minimum requirements and when ever feasible try to exceed these requirements. I am truly sorry that you are forced to deal with less in your professional endeavors and experiences. That said fire blocking, the current compliance status of your house, and the professionalism of others has no relevance to your deck.

If codes have become more stringent they have done so because obviously the older codes experienced enough building failures to cause concerns. This alone should open your eyes to the necessity of compliance to at least the minimum standards. I hope you reconsider your actions with regards to your deck and attitude towards building permits and codes.

You should research any and all projects you are going to take on to make sure you completely understand the processes necessary to complete them. This involves more in some cases then reviewing just the building codes. If you do not understand the building codes a call to the building inspector can usually clarify things for you. Even on the professional level projects, project specs, building applications, techniques, codes, and standards should be reviewed through out the bidding and construction process.

The contractors and professionals who post here do so to assist the posters on this site with the knowledge they have obtained while doing this for a living. They do not post to make fun of, insult, ridicule, or any other malicious acts towards the posters here. There is plenty of that available at "the other site". Please remember that when reading future replies from both the pros and experienced diyers on this forum.
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Old 10-07-2009, 04:08 PM   #32
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First let me say your apology is accepted and the following is not meant to upset or offend you. Building to less then code is, as you now know, building below the minimums required. If you where in school this would mean your GPA would be 69% or less. I would not have my family or children on a structure that is built only to the bare minimum or below, I also would not expose my clients to such. Coincidentally I am very "anal" about projects I take on and have seen all through to completion including the roof.

I can also tell you that true professional carpenters and contractors are well versed in fire blocking and its proper applications. True professionals learn and understand the bare minimum requirements and when ever feasible try to exceed these requirements. I am truly sorry that you are forced to deal with less in your professional endeavors and experiences. That said fire blocking, the current compliance status of your house, and the professionalism of others has no relevance to your deck.

If codes have become more stringent they have done so because obviously the older codes experienced enough building failures to cause concerns. This alone should open your eyes to the necessity of compliance to at least the minimum standards. I hope you reconsider your actions with regards to your deck and attitude towards building permits and codes.

You should research any and all projects you are going to take on to make sure you completely understand the processes necessary to complete them. This involves more in some cases then reviewing just the building codes. If you do not understand the building codes a call to the building inspector can usually clarify things for you. Even on the professional level projects, project specs, building applications, techniques, codes, and standards should be reviewed through out the bidding and construction process.

The contractors and professionals who post here do so to assist the posters on this site with the knowledge they have obtained while doing this for a living. They do not post to make fun of, insult, ridicule, or any other malicious acts towards the posters here. There is plenty of that available at "the other site". Please remember that when reading future replies from both the pros and experienced diyers on this forum.
I don't have issues with building codes and permits. Where I live there is alot of scandalous activity that goes on with all this. This isn't always the case. As I mentioned if I were to have done it all over again, I would have followed a set of building codes. I relied on someone that I was confident he knew what he was doing. I am still confident in that. BUT, just because he knows what he is doing doesn't mean that what is built is going to abide by a local building code. That is the mistake I made. I won't do that again. When I finished my basement, I followed the local building codes. I printed them out and did everything according to that. I had my reasons for not getting a permit. It wasn't money and it wasn't because I was hiding anything.

I don't know where you live, but the fireproofing is rarely done correctly where I live. There are certain municipalities that are cracking down on this. All my customers THINK they are applying this stuff correctly. They think that until they get to one of these municipalties that crack down on the proper installation and they end up having to rip all the firestop out and start over. Firestopping is more that caulking a penetration with fire caulk and walking away. Most people I deal with think of it that way. Slowly but surely though that tide is turning. Hospitals are where its done correctly and that is finally filtering out. Don't forget my example with epoxy anchors. That application is far worse that the firestop. Also there are new IBC codes coming out and contractors that are finding ways to cut corners. You'd be shocked.

In the end, I can't afford to rip this whole thing apart. To do some of the stuff suggested on here calls for that, and I won't do it. I am just trying to sure this up the simpliest way I can, and people have offered that to me. I can assure you the next time I build a deck(I may never have to again), that I will take this thread in stride and go this direction to prevent this from happening again.
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Old 10-07-2009, 09:39 PM   #33
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Questions on a deck I just built.


Hey,Stearns, Please come back and post the"fix".when it's done.
To often we never get to see the end of the story.--MIKE
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Old 10-08-2009, 09:21 AM   #34
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Questions on a deck I just built.


With all the "I don't see it"..... "I think I've got it".......and "Not sure it will work", I thought I'd post a drawing of what I believe Al is talking about.

So everyone can be on the same page.
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Questions on a deck I just built.-deck-girder.jpg   Questions on a deck I just built.-deck-girder-2.jpg  
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Last edited by Willie T; 10-08-2009 at 09:37 AM.
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Old 10-08-2009, 06:15 PM   #35
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Questions on a deck I just built.


WillyT that should help him a lot!
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Old 10-08-2009, 06:32 PM   #36
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Questions on a deck I just built.


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Ok, so back on topic. I took some pictures for you guys that are actually trying to help me. I still don't see how I can do what you want Deckman. The pictures will give you an idea why I can't picture what you are saying.





Willie if you look at these pics you will see that the outside beam - farthest from the house is not under the joists
The joists are connected TO the "beam" (rim joist) & the rim joist is bolted to the 4x4 posts

The middle support beam is under the joists
Note the outside rim joist
Then on the outside of the rim joist is a fascia board
That seems to be the problem here...I think - based on 1st pics he posted of finished deck

Unless you are saying to add BOTH red boards as a beam?
But then they will stick out - below the fascia board
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Old 10-08-2009, 07:30 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by Willie T View Post
With all the "I don't see it"..... "I think I've got it".......and "Not sure it will work", I thought I'd post a drawing of what I believe Al is talking about.

So everyone can be on the same page.
Bingo, Willie.

It won't quite be code compliant, but didn't figure he was into making it such. To pass code you'd have to add solid blocks (2x4's) under beam, nailed into post. No more than 6' span between support post, so he'd still have to add more posts/footings. The spans on the joist are fine. Probably a few nit picky other things, but should be good to go after a little fine tuning this weeking by OP'er.
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Old 10-08-2009, 09:10 PM   #38
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Willie if you look at these pics you will see that the outside beam - farthest from the house is not under the joists
The joists are connected TO the "beam" (rim joist) & the rim joist is bolted to the 4x4 posts

The middle support beam is under the joists
Note the outside rim joist
Then on the outside of the rim joist is a fascia board
That seems to be the problem here...I think - based on 1st pics he posted of finished deck

Unless you are saying to add BOTH red boards as a beam?
But then they will stick out - below the fascia board
You are correct. If you look underneath on my pic, the fascia goes about another 3-4" down below my outside board. If I were to do what he is saying, it would have raw wood showing which defeats the purpose of the fascia. Let me ask this though. If I were to go this direction, what if I cut out slots on the boards I am adding(girders) and then slide them underneath and bolt them so that they fit the full length of the fascia? If add two more 2x8's, cut the slots out to fit, and then bolt them to the post, do you guys think this will cure my issue of sagging in the future? Cutting those slots won't be easy, but I have the right tools to do it. We have had a ton of rain here, so if you all don't think that will work, I will just add more posts to that outside board in then it will cut the distance between posts from 10' to 5'.

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Originally Posted by deckman22 View Post
Bingo, Willie.

It won't quite be code compliant, but didn't figure he was into making it such. To pass code you'd have to add solid blocks (2x4's) under beam, nailed into post. No more than 6' span between support post, so he'd still have to add more posts/footings. The spans on the joist are fine. Probably a few nit picky other things, but should be good to go after a little fine tuning this weeking by OP'er.
Thanks. These last 10 or so posts are what I was coming here for. I can assure you if I ever did this again, I will be code complaint so I don't have to go through this again.
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Old 10-08-2009, 09:59 PM   #39
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Questions on a deck I just built.


If you cut slots in the 2x8's you defeat the purpose, the added support for the rim joist.

I don't see the big deal about a little wood showing, it'll be under the deck. A lot of decks are built with a support beam at the exterior post so it won't look out of place.
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Old 10-08-2009, 10:21 PM   #40
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Questions on a deck I just built.


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Originally Posted by Scuba_Dave View Post
Willie if you look at these pics you will see that the outside beam - farthest from the house is not under the joists
The joists are connected TO the "beam" (rim joist) & the rim joist is bolted to the 4x4 posts

The middle support beam is under the joists
Note the outside rim joist
Then on the outside of the rim joist is a fascia board
That seems to be the problem here...I think - based on 1st pics he posted of finished deck

Unless you are saying to add BOTH red boards as a beam?
But then they will stick out - below the fascia board
Correct. BOTH red boards are the "girder".
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Old 10-08-2009, 10:23 PM   #41
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Questions on a deck I just built.


Deckman is right. No one will think a thing about a girder behind the posts.
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Old 10-08-2009, 10:45 PM   #42
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If you cut slots in the 2x8's you defeat the purpose, the added support for the rim joist.

I don't see the big deal about a little wood showing, it'll be under the deck. A lot of decks are built with a support beam at the exterior post so it won't look out of place.
I am anal as can be about that though. If yo noticed I painted those posts for the same reason. Honestly no one would see it but me, but I am just picky. I will probably just put post in and be done with it. I figured putting those slots in wouldn't work, but I thought I'd ask.
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Old 10-08-2009, 11:03 PM   #43
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You know what, you guys might be right. I am going to do this on Sunday and will take a look and see what I think. Should I do one board or 2?
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Old 10-08-2009, 11:11 PM   #44
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2 And flat black would hide a lot back in there.
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Old 10-09-2009, 12:28 AM   #45
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Questions on a deck I just built.


From your first post: " The spacing is roughly 7 1/2 feet between posts." -------- This is what I based the loads on.

Now you say: "We have had a ton of rain here, so if you all don't think that will work, I will just add more posts to that outside board in then it will cut the distance between posts from 10' to 5'." ------ Based on 10' to post = 2500# total load = a 2x12 3-2x8's would only give you 1680# or 820# short, will not work. Shorten span to 5' = your 2x8 is still over-spanned by 1'.
Be safe, Gary
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