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Old 05-21-2014, 07:28 PM   #1
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Is This a Metal Stud?


I am looking to mount a flat panel TV in a bedroom of my condo. It was built in the late 60s, more likely early 70s. The bedroom in question has a closet that spans one side of the room. In between the two sets of bi-fold closet doors is a floor-to-ceiling drywalled pillar, about 8" wide. On this pillar is where I want to mount the TV.

I always thought this pillar was built up of wood studs underneath the drywall. A stud finder says there are studs (or something) on the very left and right edges of the pillar and hollow in the middle. Further investigation with a magnet indicates whatever it is is metal.

I went around the rest of the home with the magnet and found the metal is on the corner of every wall. The magnet picks up what appears to be evenly spaced screws everywhere else so I suspect in between the corners are wood studs.

One corner in particular had a chunk of drywall missing, exposing the metal underneath. It seems to be fairly thin gauge - I can flex it just by pressing with my thumb. I suspect this is the same metal that's inside the pillar.

My limited knowledge of basic construction, I'm hoping this is a metal stud for the sake of mounting the TV but my fears say it is likely some sort of corner bracing that won't be able to hold up a 35lb TV.

Thoughts?

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Old 05-21-2014, 07:50 PM   #2
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Is This a Metal Stud?


Googling drywall corner bead will give you an idea what the metal is on drywall corners.

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Old 05-21-2014, 09:55 PM   #3
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Is This a Metal Stud?


If the bi-fold doors do not have a wood frame around all three sides then they are hung into what is generally called a "cased-opening". If that's the case then the corners probably have a metal "L" like Fairview has shown.

But, there still has to be something in the wall that the drywall is attached to. This "pillar" is more than likely hollow. Is there a wall behind this pillar dividing the two closets?

I'm assuming the TV is a light-weight flat screen?
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Old 05-21-2014, 10:02 PM   #4
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Is This a Metal Stud?


Take a small drill bit and find out
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Old 05-21-2014, 11:01 PM   #5
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Is This a Metal Stud?


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If the bi-fold doors do not have a wood frame around all three sides then they are hung into what is generally called a "cased-opening". If that's the case then the corners probably have a metal "L" like Fairview has shown.

But, there still has to be something in the wall that the drywall is attached to. This "pillar" is more than likely hollow. Is there a wall behind this pillar dividing the two closets?

I'm assuming the TV is a light-weight flat screen?
Metal drywall corners are much different than framing angles, which can be had up to 14ga
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Old 05-22-2014, 01:01 AM   #6
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Is This a Metal Stud?


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Googling drywall corner bead will give you an idea what the metal is on drywall corners.
I happened to be at Lowes earlier and decided to check out their selection of corner beads. What they had in stock was barely a step above tinfoil. I could literally crease it by hand. Definitely nothing like what's in my walls. As a matter of fact, the metal studs they were selling seemed to be of a lighter gauge than what I have as well. Also, the exposed bit of metal in my wall doesn't have the dimples like the ones I saw at Lowes. Do these come in various thicknesses and degrees of steel?
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Old 05-22-2014, 01:24 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Bud Cline View Post
If the bi-fold doors do not have a wood frame around all three sides then they are hung into what is generally called a "cased-opening". If that's the case then the corners probably have a metal "L" like Fairview has shown.

But, there still has to be something in the wall that the drywall is attached to. This "pillar" is more than likely hollow. Is there a wall behind this pillar dividing the two closets?

I'm assuming the TV is a light-weight flat screen?
There is no frame around the closet doors. The closet takes up an entire wall of the room. There are tracks top and bottom that are screwed directly to the ceiling and floor but otherwise no trim around it at all. The pillar doesn't do anything besides breaking it up in the middle but it doesn't divide the closet space - I could go in one side and walk out the other. Maybe it's structural?

The TV is a good 35-40lbs. Last generation plasma, heavy for its screen size.
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Old 05-22-2014, 03:30 AM   #8
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Is This a Metal Stud?


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I happened to be at Lowes earlier and decided to check out their selection of corner beads. What they had in stock was barely a step above tinfoil. I could literally crease it by hand. Definitely nothing like what's in my walls. As a matter of fact, the metal studs they were selling seemed to be of a lighter gauge than what I have as well. Also, the exposed bit of metal in my wall doesn't have the dimples like the ones I saw at Lowes. Do these come in various thicknesses and degrees of steel?
Your house was built in the 60s - 70s. It's almost amazing how thin products are today isn't it. My first car was a 48 ford with body steel thicker than some bumpers of today.
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:34 AM   #9
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Is This a Metal Stud?


really best to open up a spot on the column to see the bones inside. you will know if it is metal or wood and you can add blocking for your tv at the spot you open up, so open up where the tv will mount...
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Old 05-22-2014, 07:34 AM   #10
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Is This a Metal Stud?


Go inside of the closet and cut out a small square from the column. See what's in there.
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Old 05-22-2014, 08:10 AM   #11
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Is This a Metal Stud?


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Take a small drill bit and find out
This would probably be my approach. To locate the exact center ( or PDC ) of studs to hang pictures etc., I usually incorporate a straight pin and a pair of pliers to push. With steel studs being of different dimension than corner cap beads it shouldn't be too difficult to determine metal or wood studs.
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Old 05-22-2014, 08:29 AM   #12
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Is This a Metal Stud?


How heavy is your magnet?

If you are picking up the screws, you should pick up a metal stud also.

I use a mid size magnet to find the metal stud in our building.
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Old 05-22-2014, 05:03 PM   #13
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How heavy is your magnet?

If you are picking up the screws, you should pick up a metal stud also.

I use a mid size magnet to find the metal stud in our building.
I'm using a small neodymium magnet. It is picking up what I'm certain are screws along the walls and then something that's all metal on the corners. I am trying to determine whether this is a corner bead or, in the case of the bedroom "pillar", a stud. Based on what's exposed underneath a missing patch of drywall and what I've seen at Lowes, I'm not so sure. But like others said, I think I will drill or hole saw inside and investigate.
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Old 05-23-2014, 08:11 AM   #14
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Is This a Metal Stud?


OK to further the mystery what is above it and what is below it? It could be a I beam runing vertical to suport a load.
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Old 05-23-2014, 10:18 AM   #15
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OK to further the mystery what is above it and what is below it? It could be a I beam runing vertical to suport a load.
or a chase for ducting or pipe work....

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