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jeffb99 03-13-2013 02:08 PM

Unusual Framing for Drop Ceiling?
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I have a very small bathroom (4x10) in my basement which contains a toilet, pedestal sink, and small stall shower. The outer wall is the cinderblock foundation and below ground level. The previous owner had a suspended ceiling with metal framework and office-type ceiling tiles. Over time with a shower, the framework rusted and and tiles were stained. It was not very pretty. I gutted the room and would like to install a drywall ceiling. The major problem is that the joists above supporting the main level have pipes that hang below joist level. (See pic).

I would like to frame the room out with a dropped ceiling for drywall. The easiest thing to do would be to attach a ledger board on the concrete wall and hang 2x6s parallel to the existing joists. The span isn't that large (about 4') but I'm concerned about attaching a ledger board to a hollow concrete block wall to support all that weight on one end. I can think of 2 other options...

--Notch 2x10s or 2x12s and let most of it hang on the foundation wall. Sister new joists to existing joists and hopefully clear the pipes below.

--A third option would be to sandwich the new joists in an upside down "T" using pieces of 2x4 or 2x6 and hang from joist above. Nail or bolt the hangar boards to the joist above.

Again...I'm not supporting major loads here, just a drywall ceiling. But I don't want it cracking or coming down on someone's head!! Solution ideas welcomed!!! :help:Thanks!!!!


fetzer85 03-13-2013 03:06 PM

I don't have experience with hollow concrete blocks so I can't say for sure if mounting a ledger board on them would be a good/bad idea. I would tend to think that it wouldn't be that big of a deal with the small load you're talking about, but it's probably overkill in my opinion. I think your other ideas would work but if it were me this it what I'd do.

I'm guessing those water pipes don't stick below the joist more than an inch or so? If that's the case I'd just lay some 2x4's on the flat perpendicular against the joists. (see pic below) Sink a couple 3 or 4" screws through them into the joists and it should hold plenty. I think that's less work than your other ideas, but if you're like me, you'll end up doing whatever you like the most. :)

Which ever you decide on, good luck.

jeffb99 03-22-2013 07:47 PM

1 Attachment(s)
I didn't think this approach would work but I doubled up on 2x3s and screwed them into each joist...running in the same direction. The 2nd 2x3 was needed to clear the thick black pipe (a gas line). I boxed around the shower drains.

Pix of same corner attached.

Problem solved. Thanks!!!!!!!!!!

fetzer85 03-22-2013 08:24 PM

Looks good. Nice job w/ the plate over the piping.

mj12 03-23-2013 07:53 AM

you got that done fast

Jason34 03-23-2013 08:08 AM

What are you going to do if a pipe starts leaking and needs to be fixed/replaced? Hard to do that with drywall installed.

fetzer85 03-23-2013 10:31 AM


Originally Posted by Jason34 (Post 1143633)
What are you going to do if a pipe starts leaking and needs to be fixed/replaced? Hard to do that with drywall installed. could say that about any house. Pipe leaks, tear apart the wall, fix pipe, fix wall.

Jason34 03-23-2013 10:46 AM

I have not been in a basement yet thats had drywall ceilings. You can get ceiling tiles that dont stain at all.

fetzer85 03-23-2013 02:41 PM

All I'm saying is its not that big of a deal. Lots of multi story houses have pipes above drywall ceilings. I'm the type that would never even finish their basement so I'm not sure why I'm even chiming in. I will agree that most finished basements I've been in have some kind of removable ceiling tiles.

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