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Old 12-12-2012, 10:11 PM   #1
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


Been thinking about starting on my basement some time after Christmas. I will start with framing. I've seen it done both ways, what is the preferred method? I'm thinking build in place will be easier to make sure everything fits nice and straight given the floor may not be 100%. How is it normally done, start with top plate then use a string and weight to determine where bottom one goes, then measure/cut/add each stud? Also what is the best way to deal with curved/cupped/twisted 2x4s? I don't have a truck so I need to get it delivered, in that case I can't pick each piece, I just say how many I want and they bring it.


Come to think of it, I have yet to see a complete tutorial on framing. I don't imagine it being very hard but is there any key points I need to take note of? I know I need to space the studs every 16th of an inch on centre. Not sure what to use, nails or screws? I know at one point it was nails but wondering if that's changed now. Or does it not matter? I believe I need to add nail plates too for where there's electrical lines?

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Old 12-12-2012, 10:35 PM   #2
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


What is the preferred method will depend on who you speak to. Each will have their reasons why their way is right.

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Old 12-12-2012, 10:35 PM   #3
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


Most often it's best to and easyer to build it laying down on the floor then stand it up.
Just leave it short and shim it to fit at the top.
Snap a chaulk line on the floor where the bottom plate will be, attach the bottom plate first, then use a level to plumb the wall as it's being attached at the top.
Use nails not screws.
http://www.carpentry-pro-framer.com/wall_framing.html
Make sure to use a pressure treated bottom plate.
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Old 12-12-2012, 10:43 PM   #4
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


the first step to layout the wall plate on the floor is determine how far away from the block wall to place your walls then build em. find the straightest stud in the pack and use that and a 4' level to make a a plumb stik. use the stik to plumb up off of the bottom plate and find the top of the wall, make marks on the joists. how you build the wall and to go further from here you need to know about floor heave in your basement and if that is an issue.
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:23 PM   #5
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


In new construction, I would say build the wall and stand it up.
In remodel or what you are doing, I would not even entertain the idea of doing that.

Just to many possible variations between floor and floor joist from upstairs, settling of the house ....
I would stick frame it, and simply be surprised if the studs came out close in same length.
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Old 12-13-2012, 09:53 AM   #6
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


I suggest looking into putting up rigid foam boards before starting the framing. With taped seams and spray foamed edges. At least look into it before you build the walls up. Maybe you're planning spray foam so it doesn't matter.

As far as framing. If you have room to build on the floor and lift into place, then go for it. Just leave the walls short and block/shim the tops. If you build in place I would measure you're wall every 2 feet and then cut each stud to the length of your shortest measurement. Take into account the bottom and top plates when cutting. This way you're not measuring each stud to its exact length, but you'll have to shim in certain spots. I've done both and measuring each stud is very time consuming in comparison.

Last edited by mikegp; 12-13-2012 at 10:06 AM.
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Old 12-13-2012, 07:40 PM   #7
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


Regardless of which way people think walls should be built, If you want to assemble it first, this is the way I have always “pre fabricated” walls. Lay out your walls stud directly under joists, snap your lines to locate it's position. Start by taking 2 or 3 12”, + or -, blocks of 2x material depending whether you have a shoe, (bottom), and 1 or 2 plates, (top). One block should be PT if the shoe is. Tack them tightly together. When the wall runs under the joists put the blocks on the floor directly under the first joist put the end of a stud on the blocks and hold it beside the joist. Mark the stud at the under side of the joist and mark it #1. Repeat this for each stud #2 #3 etc.to the other end. Number each corresponding joist, or mark on the layout, with the same number. Cut each stud, (they may differ in length), at the line you made. Build the wall with the top facing the foundation. When you stand it up you have to drag the bottom toward the foundation, or line putting the top under the joists. The wall will probably be tight but every stud should match any high or low spots on the floor, or the joists. You can drive the bottom in with a sledge hammer, or better yet, a 2x6 like a battering ram sliding the bottom on the floor, striking the shoe at each stud. They should be tight and you don't need shims. A note; you can measure each one too but I find it harder that way. If the wall runs parallel with the joists you need to block between the last joist and the rim joist to fasten the top of the wall to. If you mark all studs against the first, or last, joist they should all be close to exact.
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Old 12-13-2012, 08:08 PM   #8
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. Build the wall with the top facing the foundation.



. You can drive the bottom in with a sledge hammer, or better yet, a 2x6 like a battering ram sliding the bottom on the floor, striking the shoe at each stud. They should be tight and you don't need shims..
Good suggestion basement walls are easiest to raise this way---top facing the walls----

About the sledge hammer---Yikes!!!! There is no need for a basement partition to be tight to the floor joists---it is only there to hold the insulation and drywall----

Beating a wall under your floor joists with a sledge hammer can and will lift your house right up and off the foundation----

I've seen it and had to make the repairs----to long of a stud is the basis for a 'Jack Wall'--used to raise a sagging floor or lift a house to install a new sill plate.
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Old 12-13-2012, 09:21 PM   #9
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


I really do not see a problem building wall one stick at a time. Does take longer but is remodel.
I lay out the walls on the floor and snap lines.
Cut a bottom plate and then go up top and measure for top plate.
I did this last week, and top plate was almost 1" longer then the bottom plate.
Really cant even lay top and bottom plate together and do layout.
Cut bottom plate, toss a short 2x4 on top of bottom plate on each end and measure up.
Then cut your 2 end studs and get top plate in the air.
Not even going to care if either end stud is level and plumb, just get top and bottom plates plumb.
Then put in first stud plumb and then can pull off it for layout for the rest of the studs... measure each one, write them down, cut them in order and install them in order.

I just cant imagine how many hours I wasted in the past trying to build a wall in a remodel and when go to stand it ... is some little GOTCHA in the way.
Simply better ways to spend my time then trying to figure out if I can build this wall and stand it in old construction.
And I prefer not to shim my walls if not needed.

It is slower to stick build a wall.
Is 3 times slower to build it, try to stand it, knock the top plate off and start recutting studs.
Just do it right the first time.
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Old 12-14-2012, 03:34 AM   #10
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


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Good suggestion basement walls are easiest to raise this way---top facing the walls----

About the sledge hammer---Yikes!!!! There is no need for a basement partition to be tight to the floor joists---it is only there to hold the insulation and drywall----

Beating a wall under your floor joists with a sledge hammer can and will lift your house right up and off the foundation----

I've seen it and had to make the repairs----to long of a stud is the basis for a 'Jack Wall'--used to raise a sagging floor or lift a house to install a new sill plate.
Yeah I was reading it's better to leave half an inch or so as you do not want to encourage any load on the wall as the foundation should be taking all the load. So with this, prefab is probably an ok way to go then? Just need to make the wall as high as the shortest point then shim it in.

I'm also going to be doing spray foam. I'll leave maybe an inch or so of space between the studs and the cinder blocks. The foam will probably go in next year though, probably wont have the money to do it this year. On the other hand, I'd save a lot on heating so may be worth putting on credit. :P The rim joists alone will probably make a big difference.
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:27 AM   #11
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


I guess I should have said tap it in with the sledge. When you put the wall in the diagonal measurement from one top corner to the opposite bottom corner is greater than its height. When the wall is plumb it should only be a snug fit but you cant get past the diagonal with a regular hammer. If the floor is uneven there is a little resistance as the shoe / plate conforms to the variances. In forty years I have never shimmed, or stick built many walls. I was taught shims are for mistakes. That came from the forty or more years of experience of the carpenters who taught me. Sorry about that.
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:32 AM   #12
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I kind of figured you knew what you were doing----here we need to be extra careful, as some members have no experience what so ever and take things literally---
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Old 12-14-2012, 08:45 AM   #13
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


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I know I need to space the studs every 16th of an inch on centre.
.....and no-one caught this????? wow.... just wow.

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Old 12-14-2012, 09:12 AM   #14
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I kind of figured you knew what you were doing----here we need to be extra careful, as some members have no experience what so ever and take things literally---
My post was a little long and I didn't know how much room you get.
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Old 12-14-2012, 09:27 AM   #15
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Stud wall: premake vs build in place?


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.....and no-one caught this????? wow.... just wow.

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I noticed it, but figured it was just a typo and didn't want to point it out. I doubt he was going to just put 100 studs side by side.

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