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Old 03-06-2010, 02:05 PM   #1
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New walls

Hi, I'm in the process of designing a new house and have decided on using 2x8 lumber for the frame rather then the traditional 2x6. Two reasons, one, It's not that much more expensive and two, I can have upto R30 insulation in the walls.
MY question is this, has anyone done this before and if so, what if any were the problems. I know 2x6 is what is normally used but I am challenging the norm and future proofing my investement.



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Old 03-06-2010, 03:16 PM   #2
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go for it!

should be good for our economy.


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Old 03-06-2010, 03:58 PM   #3
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The only annoyances I have seen with really thick walls is with exterior doors. If they are inswinging units, and hung in usual scenario from the outside so that the thresholds will be in correct exterior location, you can add jamb extensions to make up for the wall thickness, but this puts the hinges several inches deep into the wall (even if you order jambs for 2x6 walls); thus the doors cannot swing open more than 90 degrees, and the latches leave drag marks across the jamb extensions.
I would use outswing units wherever possible, like onto patio or side/back porches. This is not ok for front entry unit, so you will have to work with a local mill supply shop to manufacture a unit for you with a decent extra wide threshold. Ask about prices for all of the exterior units;they may bid their labor costs lower for several units as opposed to just one custom unit, and if reasonable you can go with all inswings if desired. Window sills will have to be job fabricated to accomodate the depth, but that is no problem for trim guys.
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Old 03-06-2010, 04:01 PM   #4
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You will get R-2 more going the bigger studs. Rather go 24" advanced framing for a much better R-value for the whole wall assembly:

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Old 03-06-2010, 06:33 PM   #5
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I say,great you will enjoy a more comfortable house and a life time of lower fuel bills.

You will have ti special order your exterior doors--the door shop will build them with wider sills and jambs.

You may have the doors swing in with no problem as the extensions are on the out side.

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Old 03-06-2010, 06:41 PM   #6
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I would add 1 or 2 rows of horizotal blocking to eliminate bowing/movement. I ralize that is a thermal break so maybe altenating 2x4 or6 to allow insulation
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Old 03-06-2010, 08:04 PM   #7
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Did you look at sips panels at all? Sounds like it would be right up your alley.
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Old 03-08-2010, 06:25 PM   #8
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Thanks for the thoughts. I did look at SIP panels but they are cost prohibitive. I will be using blocking between studs, but with a thermal barrier on the outside under the siding, the increased amount of timber isn't a problem.

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Old 03-09-2010, 09:09 AM   #9
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Keep the 2 x 8 plates, but use a double wall of 2 x 4's for studs.
Stagger/offset the interior and exterior studs to avoid thermal bridging, like a parting wall.
Handle the doors/windows as discussed.

A friend did this and their house is toasty warm in the winter and stays cooler in the summer. Insulation works during hot and cold.


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