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Old 03-11-2012, 04:59 PM   #1
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?


I'm trying to figure out if I can remove these balusters/posts - see attached photo. These balusters are located between the kitchen and the dining room. My unit is the second floor of a townhouse, and the unit below had the same baluters in the same place. They were part of the original design of the home. The unit below removed this balusters years ago. I recently noticed that the balusters are supported by studs that are directly below them. In the attic, only one of the balusters is attached to a solid beam. The beams in the attic are perpendicular to the direction of these balusters, so they might be supportive. Also, the ceiling above seems to be dipping slightly, and I don't know if the balusters are in place to reinforce the ceiling or if adding the balusters "pulled down" the ceiling a bit. Everyone I know seems to think that these are too flimsy to actually be structural.
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?-copy-balusters.jpg  

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Old 03-11-2012, 05:01 PM   #2
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?


They may not be, probably aren't but you never know, I have seen some weird stuff. Have to look in the attic and see how the trusses or rafters are built.

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Old 03-11-2012, 05:06 PM   #3
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?


There to small to be doing anything. Not to say there was not suppost to be something there to hold the ceiling up. Just those are not doing it.
What's above that area? Is there trusses?
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Old 03-11-2012, 05:35 PM   #4
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?


Its hard to see from the photos, but it looks like the ballusters are sitting on a sill which is on top of the countertop. If that is true, it is unlikely they were originally installed as primary load-bearing members.
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Old 03-11-2012, 05:43 PM   #5
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?


If the trusses are the beams that run across the floor of the attic, then only one of the balusters are attached to those trusses. The direction of the trusses are perpendicular to the direction of the balusters. Could that indicate that they would then be supportive?
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Old 03-11-2012, 05:43 PM   #6
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?


those are solely for decorative purposes.. spindles offer not structural strength when it comes to supporting floors above. they are far too small to do anything..
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Old 03-11-2012, 06:25 PM   #7
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?


Thank-you all! This is great! I can finally remove them!
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Old 03-11-2012, 07:09 PM   #8
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Could these balusters be structural/supportive?


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Originally Posted by woodworkbykirk View Post
those are solely for decorative purposes.. spindles offer not structural strength when it comes to supporting floors above. they are far too small to do anything..
Although this is true I have seen them used to support, what should be is not always.

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