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Old 08-01-2016, 09:52 AM   #1
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Plywood spacer on top of beam


Is it a-ok to put a plywood spacer on top of a beam and then put floor joists on top of the plywood? The plywood won't overhang the beam any, just on top of it. I assume the plywood can hold the weight without compressing but thought I would make sure before I did it and have to tear it up for the inspector...I need to raise the beam about 1/2in
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Old 08-01-2016, 10:40 AM   #2
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


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I need to raise the beam about 1/2in
I would raise the beam, then, not put something on top of it. Why is this needed in the first place?
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Old 08-01-2016, 10:55 AM   #3
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


Use outdoor rated ply and dry. load bearing walls and posts are set on the plywood all the time. Use long lengths and check for voids. I wouldn't use ply shims under the beams where the support loads are concentrated. Metal shims for those.
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Old 08-01-2016, 11:25 AM   #4
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


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Originally Posted by stick\shift View Post
I would raise the beam, then, not put something on top of it. Why is this needed in the first place?

Beam is on top of concrete, with a standoff
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Old 08-01-2016, 11:27 AM   #5
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


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Originally Posted by carpdad View Post
Use outdoor rated ply and dry. load bearing walls and posts are set on the plywood all the time. Use long lengths and check for voids. I wouldn't use ply shims under the beams where the support loads are concentrated. Metal shims for those.
Joists intersect the beam, they arnt completely supported. So metal shims probably?
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Old 08-01-2016, 01:59 PM   #6
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


What do you mean joists "intersect" the beam? Are the joists above the beam, flush with the beam, or below the beam?
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Old 08-01-2016, 04:31 PM   #7
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


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Originally Posted by Daniel Holzman View Post
What do you mean joists "intersect" the beam? Are the joists above the beam, flush with the beam, or below the beam?


Above the beam, sitting on top of it
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Old 08-01-2016, 06:03 PM   #8
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


Perfectly acceptable to use plywood for shims in this type of application, if the gap is uniform you can use a long piece of plywood to handle multiple supports. Check with your building inspector first to make sure they agree.
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Old 08-02-2016, 12:47 AM   #9
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


"Shims for floor joist or girders shall be of hardwood or steel plates or other wood which is not easily compressible, tight grained to resist compression, and rot and pest resistant. Shim width shall not be less than girder width, i.e. a 4" -------------from 2012 IRC, don't know if you are under it or not... check locally for sure... of course it may not compress much; http://www.eng-tips.com/viewthread.cfm?qid=371840

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Old 08-02-2016, 09:54 AM   #10
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


I'm no expert and don't know codes but just as an observation when people around here frame a second story on a house, even a third story the walls often sit on a plywood subfloor.
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Old 08-02-2016, 02:29 PM   #11
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


There is a difference between the force exerted by a wall spread over 3 1/2" or 5 1/2" width and a decent length and a joist hitch is supported that is putting the weight of normally half of its length on a 1 1/2" inch area. That said, everyone I've seen uses plywood!
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Old 08-02-2016, 09:09 PM   #12
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


Are you trying to confuse me?
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Old 08-02-2016, 09:41 PM   #13
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Re: Plywood spacer on top of beam


plywood shims are perfectly fine.. unless its multiple layers of plywood especially if there is a point load location then use steel
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