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Old 08-13-2007, 08:33 PM   #1
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What the heck do I do with this?


Okay, I've posted 4 different things tonight, and I'm just hoping that I get a hit on one. But here's the last one. I've got these unusual chases, or cavities on exterior wall where the stairway landings meet the outside wall. I want to use the space, but as mentioned in another post, this is a fix'er upper with intent to resell. I don't want to put a lot of time and effort into this. It won't take much to make this a big project because it's an exterior wall. AND to make matters worse, the studs that carry the siding planks aren't in the same line as the studs carrying the interior load bearing wall.

Now, when you look at this pic, the planks you see behind the studs are the exterior wall, but you'll notice it looks like there's a shelf. Correct! This chase doesn't go to the ground. It's only about 18" deep, but there is not structural support for it. The internal set of studs is actually carrying the roof load. So I can't easily cut into those internal studs (next to the stair case) without getting into some major work. I'm just looking for simple suggestions or ideas to use this space. If there's not a "quick and dirty" solution, then I'll just close it up and leave it. It's not worth the effort.

Thanks in advance.

Last edited by gshock; 08-16-2007 at 08:22 AM.
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Old 08-13-2007, 09:32 PM   #2
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What the heck do I do with this?


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Okay, I've posted 4 different things tonight, and I'm just hoping that I get a hit on one.
Be patient gshock. It takes a little time, sometimes a few days, and the right person will come along to address your questions. You've presented quite a smorgasbord of projects to digest.
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Old 08-13-2007, 11:30 PM   #3
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What the heck do I do with this?


On the other hand this is a DIY sight. When I read you are a flipper and do not want to spend much time or effort. Well it kind of turns me off ( personally). I enjoy talking to homeowners and trying to figure out the issues. On the other hand when I am talking to someone who is trying to turn a buck I say HIRE A CONTRACTOR.
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Old 08-14-2007, 08:37 AM   #4
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What the heck do I do with this?


Why not put in a header along with a couple of support studs at each end...framing the space out like a window. Of course it would of been easier without the new wires and boxes. Quick...probably not. Easy? probably not. you could always consult with an engineer for load tables etc...and as warnerww mentioned, you could have a contractor do it as well.
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Old 08-14-2007, 07:12 PM   #5
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On the other hand this is a DIY sight. When I read you are a flipper and do not want to spend much time or effort. Well it kind of turns me off ( personally). I enjoy talking to homeowners and trying to figure out the issues. On the other hand when I am talking to someone who is trying to turn a buck I say HIRE A CONTRACTOR.
wanerww, I don't disagree with you. I really enjoy DIY, and I AM a homeowner. My intent is to flip this house, but it's not a short-term, "Wham-bam" type of thing. The reason I can't take my time with this particular project is because I live in the northeast, and cold weather doesn't wait long up here. So I MUST get insulation in before the end of September. I might get lucky and have a warm winter like we did last year, but I can't bet on that. As it was, I had no insulation in the walls when I bought it. So I was quite cold in the winter. I would hire a contractor if I had the money, but since I'm capable, I see no reason that I can't do it myself. And I can't afford one anyway. Besides, I like to learn. I could hire an engineer, but since I am one, I see no reason to spend the money on that either. I can do my own load calcs, and I've already done a heat loss analysis. I'm not impressed with "flippers" either. I'm doing all my own work, and I'm living here while I work on it.

I'd really appreciate your advice if you'd care to give me any. Thanks.
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Old 08-14-2007, 07:13 PM   #6
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Be patient gshock. It takes a little time, sometimes a few days, and the right person will come along to address your questions. You've presented quite a smorgasbord of projects to digest.
I'm in no rush, except to get my insulation in before it gets below 32F.
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Old 08-14-2007, 11:14 PM   #7
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Gshock I guess my thing is when someone makes a statement that they do not want to put " a lot of time and effort" into a project that is a turn off to me. I am lucky enough that my wife makes enough money that I can stay home with my daughter. I understand that I am lucky.
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Old 08-15-2007, 06:12 AM   #8
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...I am lucky enough that my wife makes enough money that I can stay home with my daughter. I understand that I am lucky.
In deed you are.
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Old 08-15-2007, 08:21 PM   #9
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... when someone makes a statement that they do not want to put " a lot of time and effort" into a project that is a turn off to me.
If I had the time to put into this project, I'd do a lot more. As I said, I'm pressed for time so that I can get the insulation in. There's a limit to what I can spend on materials, and I took this week for vacation so that I could work on the house. I'm doing this remodel during nights and weekends, and I'm running out of time.
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Old 08-15-2007, 08:40 PM   #10
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What the heck do I do with this?


When does it get cold in Southern NY?
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Old 08-16-2007, 08:21 AM   #11
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When does it get cold in Southern NY?
Depends. I've seen it snow in October. I've gotten frost at my house in late August. It's never consistent. Last year, it got cold in October, but it was mild. In January, it got bitter and stayed that way until April. But when there's no insulation in the walls, it doesn't matter if it's 32F or -32F, it's still cold in the house. Plaster walls suck the heat out of a room. I spent all last winter freezing my butt off and I don't want to do that again.

I'm not kidding when I say there was NO insulation in the walls. None whatsoever!
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Old 08-16-2007, 11:48 AM   #12
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What the heck do I do with this?


Gshock: IMHO tho it looks like a shelf in reality it is only a pc of 1 x 12 left in wall for some unknown reason many many many years ago. This is NOT uncommon, many things lurk behind old walls . Since this house was lath and plaster, the reason for double studs appears to be the wall thickness seems to be much thicker than they could get in a single board.
I don't see where you will gain anything with what you are thinking in fact you will lose a lot more from lack of insulation. Insulate, close it up and go down the road.
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Old 08-16-2007, 09:07 PM   #13
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Gshock: IMHO tho it looks like a shelf in reality it is only a pc of 1 x 12 left in wall for some unknown reason many many many years ago. This is NOT uncommon, many things lurk behind old walls . Since this house was lath and plaster, the reason for double studs appears to be the wall thickness seems to be much thicker than they could get in a single board.
I don't see where you will gain anything with what you are thinking in fact you will lose a lot more from lack of insulation. Insulate, close it up and go down the road.
JackM
Jack, thanks. I appreciate the candor. I didn't think that there would be anything simple that I could do, but I thought it would be prudent to ask. I'm going to take your advice, and just close it up and move on. That doesn't mean that I won't put in a lot of effort elsewhere on the house. I'd like to do some really nice post and beam work on the opening between the dining room and the living room. I'll be posting some pics of that soon enough and asking for your advice.
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Old 08-16-2007, 09:51 PM   #14
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your welcome. Some battles are worth the effort
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Old 08-20-2007, 02:29 PM   #15
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You could easily frame in a couple niches between the existing studs or if you want a wider niche add a header just like you were putting in a window.
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