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Old 07-01-2011, 10:16 PM   #1
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


Hi all first post here! =)

I am planning to rebuild my half-wall and turn it into a breakfast bar but I am concerned demoing the current half-wall. There is a column at the end of my half-wall and I am not sure whether this is a column is for support or decorative.

My set up looks like the following:


Any tips would be great! Thanks all!

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Old 07-02-2011, 06:49 AM   #2
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


You would need to know whether the ceiling joists ran parallel or perpendicular to the 1/2 wall.
You should be able to determine this pretty easily.
You can try pushing the ceiling up next to the column on all 4 sides( about a foot away) and see where the beam is. Look in the basement and attic and see how those joists run.
You can cut a hole in the ceiling and look.

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Old 07-02-2011, 07:13 AM   #3
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


Personally, I don't think it's going to be load bearing. Those half wall columns are normally just decorative.

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Old 07-02-2011, 08:28 AM   #4
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


Don't assume anything. Go underneath the floor. If it's a bearing column, there will be support under it.

Also, try to free up the cap and lower it. Cut out a few inches of rock around the post and look for a structural beam above.

My guess would be that you'll find a flat block of lumber between the joists that serves as a nailer to attach the column top, but the only way to know for sure is exploratory surgery.
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Old 07-02-2011, 09:06 AM   #5
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


If you're tearing it out anyways, just open the wall under the bottom of the column, if it's a support, it'll continue through.
If it's hollow, it's decorative. If you're not tearing apart the half wall, perhaps a long drill bit will tell you if it's continued or hollow.



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Old 07-02-2011, 09:25 AM   #6
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


From your photo it really doesn't look load bearing.
But it doesn't hurt to make sure.
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Old 07-02-2011, 09:33 AM   #7
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


Quote:
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If it's hollow, it's decorative.
Actually DM there are hollow fiberglass structural columns that look just like that.

I’m not saying that is though, a little more detective work is needed as said.

My guess would be that there’s a 4x4 from plate to block inside just to keep the end of the wall from moving.
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Old 07-02-2011, 09:44 AM   #8
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


Good point. If it's fiberglass, you'd know that too if drilled. You'd SURELY know if there was a steel pole up the middle that way! Same with a 4x4.
I guess we've covered most bases here and he has numerous ways to check.
If he's tearing out the bottom too, he'll know in a hammer stroke or two.

renn: Let us know what you find out?

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Old 07-02-2011, 11:18 AM   #9
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


Wow guys thats a lot of responses - I appreciate all of your follow-up questions.

So what I did was cut open a part of the half wall and this is what I am seeing:


I wrote on the drywall to show you guys where the stud / joist ends for the half wall and I noticed that the joist / stud at the end doesn't reach all the way to the column. As you can see, the center of the column is just at the edge of the joist as I marked for reference.

I also checked out the basement and the floor joists run parallel to my half wall. My column is approx above this location in my basement ceiling:
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Old 07-04-2011, 09:07 AM   #10
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


hey guys any input from the pics I posted?
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Old 07-04-2011, 09:14 AM   #11
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


I thought you were just showing us there was no support under the floor and that the wall was hollow?

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Old 07-04-2011, 09:17 AM   #12
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


Quote:
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I thought you were just showing us there was no support under the floor and that the wall was hollow?

DM
Oh =)

I actually wanted some confirmation from you folks

With all this evidence, can I conclude that this column can be taken down?
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Old 07-04-2011, 09:18 AM   #13
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


I trimmed the drywall a bit further and can see that the "studs" that I marked is made of two 2x6's
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Old 07-04-2011, 09:19 AM   #14
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


I would guess yes. It does not seem to be structural in any way.

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Old 07-04-2011, 09:24 AM   #15
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Indoor column...decorative or support.


Judging by those pics, there's no chance that column is structural.

That's not to say it's not being used for structure though.

If it was designed to carry load, there would be some type of structural beam or other support underneath to pick up the point load.

I'd still drop the column cap and explore some before losing it completely. You can never be too safe.

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