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Old 07-25-2010, 12:17 AM   #1
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


I live in a rancher in Maryland. I want to raise my ceiling and remove half of the main load bearing wall to create a more useful space.

My house is 24 feet wide, had a 2x8 ridge board with 2x6 rafters

I have narrowed it down to two methods, but need advice.

Option 1, buy seven 24' microlam beams, and connect them to every third rafter with three ledger locks per beam. In this fashion I can box the beams for appearance, and sheetrock up to the 4ft collar ties I will install to create a tray ceiling to accept the can lights.

Buy twenty 2x6x16 and install a rafter tie on every rafter, then cut out the entire attic floor and existing rafter ties. This will only net me a 2' increase in ceiling height, but that's okay as I will be rid of the wall.

Question is: Will the 2x6 span 16' okay? the only weight they will support is the drywall hanging from it. Additionally, should I add 4' collar ties as additional support? Is this too much weight for the roof to safely hold?

I am leaning towards the microlam beams because I am nervous about using a 2x6x16, and doing a 2x8 every other rafter seems insufficient.

Please help.

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Old 07-25-2010, 09:14 AM   #2
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


From what I can see a 2x6 will not span 16'
Max is around 12' depending upon grade & species of wood

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Old 07-25-2010, 11:27 AM   #3
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


2x6 might work if you used strong backs running perpendiculer, or increase to 2x8
what are your rafters framed out of ?
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Old 07-25-2010, 07:33 PM   #4
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


The rafters are 2x6 wood, (built in 1956).

I have been wracking my head about this all day. I figured that the strength required is lateral, not vertical, so the most end space I use to connect to the rafters, the better, there 2x8's work. BUT, I am afraid to just cut the living room ceiling out, leaving it open to the roof without a plan to keep the rafters from sliding out.

My fear about 2x8's is that I am now adding weight to the roof. Currently,m those 2x8's rest on the exterior walls and interior wall, not hanging from a rafter. I am leaning towards these options.

1. Microlam beams on every third rafter, full 24ft span - probably overkill

2. Using 12 foot 2x8's, connected to each side of the rafter. I will sandwich a single 12 footer between them, making what appears to be 12 ft run of 2x8 from the front wall, and 1 from the back wall. In the center, I will have 6ft of overlap on each side, linking the 2x8's together, then, I'll box them with maple and cal it a day. Since the makeshift beam rests on the exterior wall, no load on the rafters, but they are being held in. In order for the beam to sag, the 12 foot 2x8 would have to sag. Am I making sense?

Thanks
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Old 07-25-2010, 07:41 PM   #5
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


You anywhere near N AA County
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Old 07-25-2010, 07:50 PM   #6
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


Baltimore County by MD State Fairgrounds
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Old 07-25-2010, 07:56 PM   #7
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


PM me, I will give you my ph # if you want to talk off line Im in Brooklyn AA Co
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Old 07-25-2010, 08:12 PM   #8
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I can't pm yet. I have the request and will pm tomorrow. Thanks,
Marc
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Old 07-26-2010, 02:10 PM   #9
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


" I have been wracking my head about this all day. I figured that the strength required is lateral, not vertical, so the most end space I use to connect to the rafters, the better, there 2x8's work. BUT, I am afraid to just cut the living room ceiling out, leaving it open to the roof without a plan to keep the rafters from sliding out." ---------- You need to positive tie the rafters to the wall, then nail the ceiling joists to the rafters with enough shear power to satisfy the forces.

I suggest you consult a Structural Engineer. There are forces to deal with, one example: http://www.engineersedge.com/civil_e...onnections.htm

Spend the money on some professional, insured help to take the liability away from you or me.

Be safe, Gary
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Old 07-26-2010, 04:11 PM   #10
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Remove Wall and Raise Ceiling - What can I do?


Gary,
Thanks. I have been looking for a structural engineer that will simply answer a question, and not require that they provide drawings, signed, sealed plans, and some even want to supply a project engineer. For the money they want, it could feasibly be cheaper to sell the house and buy elsewhere.

As far as hiring someone to do the labor, well, I say this, nobody cares about your house more than you do. Unfortunately, while I was deployed, my wife found that out the hard way. Hence, I am on the Do It YOURSELF network.

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