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Old 05-20-2010, 04:51 AM   #1
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building a bulk head question???


Okay I am building a bulk head all they way around my basement to make it look like recessed ceiling. The bulk head will be 22" inches wide by 10" tall. My question is could a guy use 3/4" plywood cut into say 6" width and use them as stringers instead of 2x4's, 2x2 or 1x3. I figured I could save a ton of money using plywood. I even thought I could put a 1-2" strip the opposite grain direction giving it more stability from flexing up and down but I would think 3/4" would be pretty strong and use 2x4's against the wall and ceiling, wall and connecting piece at the 90 degree angle but then just tie it all together with the plywood. Would this work? I can use any thickness sheetrock if that would matter. Thanks

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Old 05-20-2010, 07:39 AM   #2
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building a bulk head question???


When you say stringers are you talking about what will act as studs/cripples? Being only 10" high you are going to get a lot of those out of one 2x4, approximately 13 (96" / 7" = 13.7). For the price of 2x4s I would just go with those.

You are going to drywall it so I would want the best backing possible.

Maybe I'm misinterpreting what you are saying but I think the 2x4's are the way to go.

GOod luck.

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Old 05-20-2010, 09:11 AM   #3
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building a bulk head question???


I'm with Ricky on this one. I don't understand how you think using plywood will be that much cheaper unless you already have it, and you are going to do a lot of cutting. Plus, if you do it right the first time and frame it with 2x4s, you'll more than likely not have problems down the line.

2x4s are relatively cheap, and even if you could save a few bucks by using the plywood, I'd do it right with the 2x4s
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Old 05-20-2010, 11:53 AM   #4
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building a bulk head question???


Agreed, plywood isn't the way to do this from a structural standpoint or an economical standpoint. 2x dimension lumber is the way to go. Doing it with plywood won't save you much money anyway. You'd get eight 6" x 8' strips from a sheet of plywood. Compare the price difference between that and eight 8' 2x4's. The plywood is about 30% more expensive and it won't work as well.

Remember, plywood won't work well in a span situation because the grain orientation of the veneers alternates.

3/4" plywood can be handy for attaching the soffit to the wall as opposed to attaching 2x's. Attach a piece of plywood to the wall studs the entire depth of the soffit, then frame the 2x's to it. That also takes care of any fireblocking that needs to occur.
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Old 05-20-2010, 03:20 PM   #5
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building a bulk head question???


Okay it was just an idea because I have about 100' linear feet to do and I though it would be quite a bit cheaper. But I am convinced otherwise. Thanks peeps
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