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Old 12-25-2016, 04:34 PM   #1
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Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


DIY'er here finishing a basement. Any issues with laying treated bottom plates in the pattern I want the walls, securing them and then building walls on the ground and lifting them in place? I'll then obviously have double bottom plates to help secure 6" base molding. The reason is I have an angled wall plus want to make sure the walls are where I want them and felt any trial and error would be easier with just a bottom plate instead of a whole wall. Anything I should be leery of when doing this? I haven't decided on whether I'm using tapcon-like fasteners or powder-driven nails, both of which I have the tools for. Thinking screws would be easier for the plates I think I might adjust or move. It's a poured basement floor and walls in a 1987 house so I'm not dealing with wavy floors or walls. Thanks for the input.
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Old 12-25-2016, 05:25 PM   #2
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


Nothing wrong with that. You don't need the double plate if you don't want it. You could toe nail the studs to the bottom plate.
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Old 12-25-2016, 05:26 PM   #3
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


That will work.
Sometimes a bit more material cost can save a lot of time later.
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Old 12-25-2016, 05:54 PM   #4
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


Whole lot faster and cheaper to just build the wall laying on the floor and standing it up, and shimming any low spots at the top of the wall.
I agree, silly to have a doubled up bottom plate.
The baseboard is attached to the studs to get rid of the gaps, not so much the the bottom plate.
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Old 12-25-2016, 08:00 PM   #5
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


Jason, just measure your layout on the existing sub-floor where the studs are, and nail trim at those spots, mark the floor, no need for double plate.

just sayin
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Old 12-26-2016, 05:30 AM   #6
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


2x4 wall needs about 3/4" room at the top when assembled and stood up. I almost find it easier to mark the line on the floor, put down top and bottom plates and fill in the studs. Building this way I cut 1/8 short, using air nailer, toe nail the top first - keep fingers far away from the nails. Plumb a reference stud and mark off there. Cut the bottom plate across any walkways.
Walls like this don't have to be 16" spacing. Even for 1/2" drywall I've used 24" o.c.
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Old 12-26-2016, 09:00 AM   #7
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


Jason,
I agree with you and Pugsy. Nail down a pt plate to the floor first. It cost you another piece of material but it makes standing the wall up so much easier and gives you a nice tight fit. If you just build a wall and stand it up you have to build it about 1/4" short to get it standing up.

Put a bead of construction adhesive on a pressure treated 2x4 and shoot it to the floor about ever 4-6 feet. Lay two more 2x4 on top of the pt plate, stand on them and measure to the ceiling joist in several places. Use the shortest measurement and cut your studs. Then you can stand the wall up easily. Lift one end and sit it on your pt plate then put it in place. No banging it in with the famous big hammer.

Lay your top and bottom plates side by side and mark for your studs.

Build your corner studs. I like to use the "two studs with a third stud turned side ways between them" method. If you are building a stud for a blind corner, the one that is going into the corner of your basement, cut about two foot off the spacer stud and leave the bottom open. Makes getting the electrical cable for your outlets around the corner a LOT easier.
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Old 12-26-2016, 07:34 PM   #8
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


------Welcome to the forums!---------------------

Around here in '87, a vapor barrier plastic under the slab wasn't required. If so, run a bead of caulk on the wall line/slab, then some foil-faced XPS (1/2" or more) then another caulking bead, then the plate (not PT, nasty chemicals- check local AHJ) as this will stop room air exfiltration to your stud bays. And also act a capillary break, thermal stop --so the PT plate isn't wicking water to studs or heat to earth; http://www.greenbuildingadvisor.com/...-building-code ADA the drywall after fireblocking per Code.

Fix all ext. grading, downspouts, etc. and look for a dry basement. Local code may require certain vapor barrier/insulation... http://energycode.pnl.gov/EnergyCodeReqs/index.jsp but if a dry basement and you don't want foamboard down there, then let us know, there are safe alternatives.

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Old 12-26-2016, 09:34 PM   #9
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


on older homes its better to use plastic under the bottom plate as. vapor barrier wasnt required under the basement concrete slab which allows moisture to come up through the concrete. newer homes have not only rigid foam under the slab but also vapour barrier so i omit the plastic under the plate as it can cause sweating..

the other this is iv recently opted to switch from using construction adhesive to silicone to adhere plates to the slab as construction adhesive dries out and loses its hold. ive gone into homes which have had basmenet plates glued down but the walls are moving around as the adhesive losts its bond
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Old 12-26-2016, 10:45 PM   #10
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


I agree with "sweating" under the plastic, hence my suggested use of faced foam board, full contact, no sweating; below fig.7; https://buildingscience.com/document...or%2520barrier

I've even added caulking in the fastener holes of the wood/slab...

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Old 12-27-2016, 01:19 AM   #11
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Re: Lay bottom plates for walls first, then building walls?


Here is my method as a renovation contractor and my reasons.
exterior walls I build on the floor. treated bottom plate, normal studs and top plate. I run sill gasket for a capiliary break to stop wicking. stand the wall. shim tight at top and nail in place with hilti gun to concrete and regular nails on top. The treated plates is so if you get a little water ot will not hurt the walls.

interior walls get treated plate on floor on top of sill gasket then wall built with a regular top and bottom plate. build this wall about 3/4inch short. when you stand it there should be a gap between the 2 bottom plates. this is so if the concrete heaves the wall does not push up the floor joists above. Yes I have seen it happen. you shim tight between the 2 bottom plates. drill hole just big enough for a 4.5inch nail in the bottom plate of the wall, and nail into the treated floor plate. then remove the shims. This gives a slip joint. So if the floor heaves it does not push up the joists. cut your drywall 3/4inch short and keep it off the floor.

Air nails in the baseboard will bend if the concrete heaves and is not
a big deal.
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