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Old 11-17-2009, 10:51 AM   #1
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Suspended Ceiling Layout


I am planning the layout of a suspended ceiling in my basement. The room is long (about 40') and has a 10' wide section and a 12' wide section. It will use 2x2 tiles.

Is there any reason I shouldn't run two mains 4 feet apart the length of the room centered on the 12' section?

The Armstrong ceiling estimator keeps driving to 3 mains, but I want to avoid that for a couple of reasons.
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Old 11-17-2009, 06:06 PM   #2
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The 4" lengths don't have a slot in the middle to secure the 2" cross piece. You would need to cut the ends off the 2' pieces and float them in the grid. The lips are very small and they would fall out.
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Old 11-17-2009, 06:39 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron6519 View Post
The 4" lengths don't have a slot in the middle to secure the 2" cross piece.
How do they do 2'x2' grid then?
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Old 11-18-2009, 08:18 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Anti-wingnut View Post
How do they do 2'x2' grid then?
The main runners have the openings at 2' intervals. That's why the program the OP was using required more main runners.
Asd far as I remember from doing these a few years ago.
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Old 11-18-2009, 08:46 AM   #5
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The 4' bars have slots at 2'. So there is no reason the OP could not do it as he wished
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Old 11-18-2009, 09:36 AM   #6
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The layout program I used suggested mains at 2', 6' and 10' from one wall. I want to put mains at 4' and 8'.

My question was is there a benefit to 3 mains vs. 2 mains in a 12' wide room. Sounds like there isn't.

Thanks for your help!
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Old 11-18-2009, 09:44 AM   #7
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Your strength is in your mains. In a commercial setting, where lights and HVAC diffusers are sat in the grids, more mains are better. Even in your residential application, I would put in three mains. But your question was; "can I use two mains?". The answer is yes, there is no absolute compelling reason not to. But I think you would get a better product at minimal added cost with three mains
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Old 11-19-2009, 05:42 PM   #8
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All 2'x2' ceilings are initally framed 4'x4' and the 2' cross tees are added to make the 2'x2' grid. YES the 4' tees have slots to make a 2'x2' ceiling. I have NEVER framed (or seen a 2'x2' ceiling framed) with main tees on 2' centers by a professional. The strenght of the ceiling is in the number of hanger wires (and the proper gauge) used to hold it up....
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:19 AM   #9
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You're correct Bj that the strength of a grid is both the hanger wires, and the gauge of the mains. And all grids are framed in as 4'x4', and then filled in. Some of my comments were directed at Ron, who claimed that 4' bars do not have slots at 2'. At this Ron is just plain wrong
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:33 AM   #10
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BJB - You are right; no pro would frame a ceiling w/ all mains (spaced 2'); and this amateur won't do it again.

I did a 10'x20' room with 4 mains (lengthwise) and it fought me the whole way. First the 2' cross pieces were a bi%@* to get locked in place and then all the tiles are tight because the vertical rib of the mains is fatter than the cross piece vertical ribs. Now I know better.

Anti: I'm not trying to save money; in fact I already have 11 mains sitting in my basement (and no receipt so HD probably won't take the extras back). If I only use two mains spaced at 4' and 8' from the 'index wall', I can better center my lighting in the room.

Thanks for the help!

Last edited by cgoll; 11-20-2009 at 12:35 PM.
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Old 11-20-2009, 09:09 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cgoll View Post
If I only use two mains spaced at 4' and 8' from the 'index wall', I can better center my lighting in the room.

Thanks for the help!
On commercial jobs, what more often than not drives grid layout and main direction, is 2'x4' troffer light location. So make your grid conform to your light layout. Be aware that codes can affect what you need to do with the wall angle. From using 2"x2" angle, to rivets, to Burke clips.
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Old 11-20-2009, 09:12 AM   #12
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HD takes almost anything back as long as it isn't special order
But you get lowest price & the sales tax is not refunded
I took a 32" solid wood framed door back that has been upstairs for maybe 3 years
I have no clue why I bought it....I need a 36" door
It was in perfect condition...no marks or anything else



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Old 11-20-2009, 06:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cgoll View Post
I am planning the layout of a suspended ceiling in my basement. The room is long (about 40') and has a 10' wide section and a 12' wide section. It will use 2x2 tiles.

Is there any reason I shouldn't run two mains 4 feet apart the length of the room centered on the 12' section?

The Armstrong ceiling estimator keeps driving to 3 mains, but I want to avoid that for a couple of reasons.
I just played around with the Armstrong ceiling estimator and in step 5( I think) you can use the arrow buttons to change the border tile sizes. Just keep moving it over until it only shows two main grids.
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:38 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anti-wingnut View Post
On commercial jobs, what more often than not drives grid layout and main direction, is 2'x4' troffer light location. So make your grid conform to your light layout. Be aware that codes can affect what you need to do with the wall angle. From using 2"x2" angle, to rivets, to Burke clips.
Correct that commercial ceilings are generally framed according to the "reflected ceiling plan'" on the blueprints which goes by the lighting layout. Not something that is usually critical in a basement though. The grid can be adjusted to make the lights work either way. If 2'x2' lights are used, not a problem. If 2'x4' lights in a 2'x2' ceiling, the grid can be "reversed" to allow the lights to be run in the other direction. If you need to run the light the opposite direction that your 2'x4' framing runs, you just frame a 4'x4' "hole" in the grid, add a 4' tee in the slots in the other 4' tees and add a 2' tee on one side to get the light to run the direction needed. Yes rivets are essential to keep the ceiling from moving and square. Square is critical or the tile, and more importantly the lights, will not lay in properly. And sorry, but I've never seen 2"x2" wall angle. Don't see why it would be necessary unless it's something required in earthquake zones....
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Old 11-20-2009, 08:43 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjbatlanta View Post
And sorry, but I've never seen 2"x2" wall angle. Don't see why it would be necessary unless it's something required in earthquake zones....
Pussy ass east coast versus rough and tumble earthquaking west coaster
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