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Old 01-28-2009, 04:50 PM   #1
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Ceiling joist mod


Ok, please bear with me. I know what I am asking may be a little out of code, but if you will please give me some advice. I am remodeling my Kitchen/dining room by taking out a load bearing wall between them and installing an island. There is a second story over the Kitchen/Dining room load bearing wall. The Wall was built 12 inches off the Wooden girder which is supporting the house so the upstairs load is resting on the floor joists and not being transferred properly to the girder. This has caused the floor to sink 3/4 inch or so.

I was planning on putting in an engineered beam providing a clear span where this wall is but foundation and plumbing issues make that too difficult. So my current solution is to remove the wall and replace parts of it over the girder, installing a header where the clear span will be.

The problem and what I need help with is that the ceiling/floor joists for the 2nd story currently overlap the wall. When I move the wall over the girder (12 inches) the joists from the kitchen area are a few inches too short to reach the new wall and header. I don't want to replace all 12 joists in the ceiling. What i want to do is scab 2x8 of appropriate length onto the existing joist. These will be attached with glue and either nails or bolts. I have attached a drawing that may help visualize what I am describing. The scabbing will extend be several feet on each side of the joist end. The drawing doesn't show this very well.

Please give me some advice on this. And if it wont work, what else can i do to move the wall. I need the extra space in the kitchen to put in the island. Thanks for your help. I know this is not a standard building practice.
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Old 01-28-2009, 05:14 PM   #2
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Ceiling joist mod


Codes aside...

You might be able to get away with this for a ceiling joist but I would absolutely advise against it for a floor joist (assuming there is living space above the kitchen). Structural scabs are sometimes used for rafters and ceiling joists, but typically not for applications in floor framing.

Do you have the entire ceiling opened up, or just the area near the island? My only suggestion would be to sister new full length joists to the existing ones, taking the existing ones out of the equation. There's no good way to do this cheaply or easily unfortunately.

The added length, even if new joists are installed, could create a span issue for the dimension of lumber you're using depending on the length. An overspanned joist equals a bouncy floor, sheetrock issues, etc.

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Old 01-28-2009, 05:16 PM   #3
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Out of curiosity, how far would the splice be from the new wall?

Edit: I re-read and you already answered that
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Old 01-28-2009, 05:17 PM   #4
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Ceiling joist mod


Ayuh,...

Given the failings of what you're Starting with,...
I'd say your plan is a major Improvement,...
Especially if that scabbing is Glued,+ Screwed...
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Old 01-28-2009, 05:19 PM   #5
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Ayuh, a major improvement on what? The current joist bears on top of a wall!
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Old 01-28-2009, 05:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
The Wall was built 12 inches off the Wooden girder which is supporting the house so the upstairs load is resting on the floor joists and not being transferred properly to the girder. This has caused the floor to sink 3/4 inch or so.
Ayuh,...

The Whole Mess is missing the Lowest load carrying member...... By a Foot...

Atleast his improvement takes 1/2 + of the load,+ puts it where it belongs.....
And, as per his drawings, I'd rather have a few inch short scab, than a Total Miss, by a Foot....

Adding diagonals off his header/ posts would probably help take up the off set load....

Last edited by Bondo; 01-28-2009 at 05:28 PM. Reason: added text
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Old 01-28-2009, 06:15 PM   #7
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thekctermite, Bondo;
Appreciate the response. The upper floor is a bedroom so these are floor as well as ceiling joists. The ceiling in the kitchen is sheetrocked but I can open it up if necessary. Will probably do some new lighting and remove popcorn finish anyway. The new joist length would be 12 feet which is the max length for 16 in oc for 2x8 southern pine select structural grade. I'm in Northern Alabama so pine is what we got here and probably no 1 or 2 not structural. Douglas Fir-Larch can span from 12-9 to 13-7 but i don't know if I can get that if I have to replace all joists. Diagonals off the posts and header are problynot going to be esthetically pleasing to my wife. I do appreciate your comments and will continue to work this. Please let me know if anything else occurs to either of you.

My info is coming out of the Glencoe Carpentry and Building Construction book.
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Old 01-28-2009, 07:01 PM   #8
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Ceiling joist mod


I know it's probably not ideal, but any chance you could move the wall 8" or so rather than the full 12"? That might still give you full bearing over the first story wall with the second story floor joists, and would bring you to within a couple (4??) inches of the basement girder.

The engineer in me says that being 4 inches from the girder rather than 12 is a HUGE decrease in deflection. To put it simply, the most deflection would occur with the load in the center of the span. As you get closer to the supports (in this case, the girder), the deflection doesn't go down linearly, but rather with a squared term of the distance from the support.

The example shown here: http://www.clag.org.uk/beam.html entitled "Intermediate Load on Beam with Two Simple Supports", you can see this if you put in some numbers. Granted, this is an oversimplification and there are many more things to check/calculate, but it gives the basic principle. The simplified example there shows that you might even see up to a 90% decrease in deflection. Obviously, if the load bearing wall were directly over the girder, you'd get a theoretical "zero" deflection. Again, this is quite an oversimplification, but hopefully gives the general idea.

I'd rather have the load bearing wall slightly mismatched with the girder than to rely on nails on glue to hold up a quarter of your second story floor.

I know it's not always a popular suggestion, but maybe it'd be worth it to have a structural engineer take a look at it for reassurance. At any rate, good luck with the project!

Hope this helps.
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Old 01-28-2009, 07:24 PM   #9
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Ceiling joist mod


if you have to do this make that splice go as far as you can into the joist that wont reach the beam, or wall.
use 1/2 " through bolts with nut and washers on both sides stagger then and keep them about 1 1/2" to 2 " from the lower and top edge of your joist
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Old 01-30-2009, 02:32 PM   #10
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I have a new solution to the problem. If I build a 2x6 wall and/or header for the gaps instead of 2x4's over the girder, the ceiling/floor joists will overlap it by about 1.5 inches. If I splice 2x8 onto the shorter joist, it should carry the load OK. Comments? See new drawing.
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Old 01-30-2009, 02:53 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by project_guy View Post
I know it's not always a popular suggestion, but maybe it'd be worth it to have a structural engineer take a look at it for reassurance.
I need to know. What is so wrong with calling a structural engineer? We're here to help! We take oaths just like doctors do. We're insured out the wazoo. Why do DIY'ers have such a problem picking up the phone and calling? You'd be surprised how many contractors call me, who are working on people's houses, and they get stuck with something wacky they find behind the drywall. A smart contractor won't wing it. A smart contractor knows about the liability issues involved, and calls in a licensed and insured pro to cover his butt so he doesn't damage any property or get anyone hurt.

We're here to help. That's why we get degrees and licenses.
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Old 01-31-2009, 01:39 AM   #12
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Ceiling joist mod


Get your engineered beam designed to go where the old bearing wall was. The engineer will want to know how many floors, ceilings and roofs are being supported on the beam and how far apart the supporting posts are, 6x6 nicely finished might look good. Install code blocking under the 6x6, usually 3 or 4 thicknesses of floor joist 14+ inches long and continue down to bearing soil with round steel or masonry columns. The beam and its supports now hold up the house independent of the first floor joists and girder and you can do whatever you want to repair the sagging floor and add a wall which is now non bearing. The beam may be anywhere from 10 to 14 inches deep depending on whether it is steel, LVL, Glulam, truss, etc. Drop your ceiling from the new beam to the new wall and use it to hang cupboards, lighting, kitchen equipment, or head room for traffic pattern, you should have 80 inches under it but you might get away with less. You are making this too hard. Scabbing stuff together will not stop things from settling.

Last edited by sawyerEd; 01-31-2009 at 01:41 AM. Reason: spelling
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Old 01-31-2009, 04:56 AM   #13
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Ceiling joist mod


I am also facing the same problem and wanted to find the solution. Thanks to initiate this topic.


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Old 01-31-2009, 11:00 AM   #14
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sawyerEd, Aggie67;

I appreciate your posts and your recommendations and comments. Aggie67, if you are a Texas A&M alumnus, I almost enrolled in A&M back in 1973, but I couldnít convince the Army at that time to send me. But I did visit with the head of the civil engineering dept, and he planned a masters course of instruction in building construction for me. Wish I could have attended. Ended up years later attending Univ of MO-Rolla for Masters in Eng Mgt. Retired in 1993 after 22 year career.

I have been to a structural engineer (twice) when I first planned on installing an engineered beam. See post.
Replacing wall with engineered Beam

We discussed some of the info you describe, SawyerEd. He even designed the beam and they even had the correct size on site. Its hard for me to give an exact representation of the existing situation. And so its hard for you guys to get the complete picture. I will not just scab things together; however, I do not want to make this too difficult as SawyerEd is saying. This last option is the easiest overall and still gives the planned island and openness we want. Aggie67, I may go back to the engineer again.

The foundation work as you know is in a crawl space under the house and plumbing lines pass where the footer location for the post for the structured beam would be. The beam is still a possibility; but I am exploring alternatives to the work effort. Prior to consulting with the engineer, I went thru our Chamber of Commerce and Better Business Bureau to get a list of reputable general contractors and subs and have had several contractors in to look at this job. All were carpenters or framing contractors that didnít give me a warm fuzzy they understood the foundation problem. No general contractors would call me back. So I have decided to do it myself. I am not a novice and have experience in the Corps of Engineers in both construction and some design. I have also built several small buildings and room additions and can do plumbing and electrical as long as it doesnít get to difficult. So I think I can handle this. But I know you guys are smarter than me and I do appreciate your help. I knew I could get some additional engineering/construction advice. Thatís why I posted.. I am not trying to be a smart-alek but just wanted to let you guys know a little more background.

I believe that taking out the 2x4 stud wall between the kitchen/dining room, and replacing it with a 2x6 stud wall moved 12 inches to be over the girder with headers over the three planned pass thrus will work. Two arched pass thrus for doorways and one over the planned island. The ceiling joists will rest on the 2x6 cap with the shorter one having a 1.5 inch overlap. The splice mentioned before will help carry the load thru the joist to the header, down the wall/post to the girder to the foundation.

This is a whole lot less difficult work and will still look esthetically pleasing. I have discussed this version with the kitchen designer also. I will post some pictures.
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Old 01-31-2009, 12:34 PM   #15
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Pictures as promised.
1. First picture is of the ceiling joists showing the overlap and edge. New post/wall/header will attach just to the right of the end of the joist. Using a 2x6 wall with 2x6 top plate will allow the 1.5 inch of the joist to rest on the plate. Not enough, so I would add the splice.

2. Second picture is of the girder and foundation column. Engineered beam support post would have to bear on new block column & footer to right of existing column. Note the crawl space size. the footer could be dug and column put in but it is very tight space. PVC water lines run under existing wall bottom plate. Must be removed for new block column. At top of picture you can see the distance from existing wall to girder.

3. Third picture is to the left of opening and shows foundation block column, girder and relationship of existing wall to girder.

The edge of the ceiling joist is almost directly over the gap between the girder and the plywood subfloor.
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Ceiling joist mod-ceiling-joists.jpg   Ceiling joist mod-girder-concrete-block-column.jpg   Ceiling joist mod-girder-foundation.jpg  

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