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Old 09-06-2012, 07:55 AM   #31
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Miscellaneous deck questions


I'm a little confused.. what's #4? I have installed a couple 4x4 posts w/ footings that I'll bolt to the side of the stringers. I'm going with 2x12 cut stringers for the stairs, going to have 3. This should alleviate some of the weight on the bottom slab, and reduces the span (as technically it seems only a 7' wide cut stringer is allowed w/o supports according to code).

Also, it seems a little hazy here, but technically my deck isn't free standing, as it's attached to the house via a ledger board (can't really see in the pictures). I put hurricane ties on the outter joist to beam connections to appease the inspector (rather than just nailing), but going with the ledger board means I shouldn't need lateral bracing. The deck feels very solid.

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Old 09-06-2012, 08:10 AM   #32
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#4 is half-inch (4/8) diameter steel bars. a #5 would be 5/8"

sorry, could not tell it was not free standing, I saw the beam near the house.

the outer end of the deck would need lateral bracing because you are more than 2-feet off the ground unless you are installing your deck board diagonally. See page C9 of commentary and figure 22 on page 14.

not trying to give you a hard time.
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Old 09-06-2012, 08:20 AM   #33
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Gary,

Gotcha. Ya, we went w/ posts near the house so it's practically free standing. It's not a requirement in this county, but seems like a good idea regardless. I'll look into the lateral bracing for sure, if it needs it I'll have to install it, shouldn't be too much more work. I'm not going to say my deck is "overbuilt," but it's amazing seeing some of the decks that are still standing in my neighborhood which were built to much lower specs. One thing I will say, for the cheap cost of pulling a permit, my inspector has been very helpful throughout the whole process, and largely changed my opinion on inspections and pulling permits. I still think they might be a little overly anal on some things, but I don't mind it slightly overbuilt.
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Old 09-06-2012, 08:50 AM   #34
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I hear you about "other" decks. I've actually gotten to see a couple after they collapsed when I was working for a fire department. We got called out because of the injuries. Sometimes people, music and alcohol don't do to well together on elevated decks. Dancing not only has impact loads, but lateral loading as well.

Glad to hear you've had a wonderful experience with the building official. by and by they are great people to work with, very helpful and informative, just don't try and pull a "fast one."

Be sure to post some finished photos, would like to see your handiwork.
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Old 09-11-2012, 09:47 AM   #35
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n/m..

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Old 09-11-2012, 01:20 PM   #36
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Another thing I've come across is it looks like I can't use cut stringers w/o a 4x4 post support at least halfway down the span of the stringers, as the maximum horizontal span for cut stringers to code is 7' (and mine will be closer to 10'). I wanted to use cut stringers for aesthetic purposes, and I want a stairway a little wider than the minimum 36", so a stringer supporting the middle would be required anyway. The county details say you have to notch the 4x4 post for the stringer, so that means I cant just use through bolts to attach the 4x4 to the stringer? I wanted to use two 4x4 posts halfway down the stairs to cut the span in half and also use the 4x4 post to extend upto the handrail but I can't use it as a railing support if I notch it in half (as it'd be very weak).. I'm a little unsure what to do in this scenario.. Guess I'll have to give the inspector a call again.. Any thoughts are appreciated!
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Old 09-12-2012, 09:05 AM   #37
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Turns out notching the 4x4 post for the stringer support is unnecessary according to the inspector, so that answers that question. Bolting it to the outside is sufficient.

Only thing I need to figure out now is how to create a "hanger board" of sorts for the stringer to bolt to. If I start the top step of the stringer one step below the surface of the deck, that necessitates a hanger board below the 2x10 joist.
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Old 09-12-2012, 10:11 AM   #38
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do you have space at the bottom to have your top tread level with the deck? then you stringers would be at the floor joist level.
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Old 09-17-2012, 02:41 PM   #39
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Ok, one thing I haven't thought about which seems like I need to is deck stains/sealing. Depending on how dry the wood gets by next month, I might try and stain/seal before winter. I'll pickup a moisture meter to check the wood..

The original plan was to do a clear stain/sealer, but after some quick googling, it appears that clear stains don't last nearly as long as tinted stains, and they don't provide UV protection (which I guess it harder on the wood). So after some reading, it seems like a semi-transparent stain is the way to go. It seems like a semi-transparent SW deckscapes might be one of the front runners for the deck. If anyone has any recommendation I'm all ears in terms of what would be the most durable finish for the deck, although I don't want a solid stain. I read Cabot has more recently changed their formulation and it's not as long lasting. I would've loved a clear stain, but if it won't even last a year, then it's not worth it imo.

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