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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I opened up my drywall to try and fit an AC unit through the wall, but have encountered two obstacles.

The first is the wall studs are too narrow to fit the ac between so I will have to cut one of them.

The second is this diagonal brace running behind the exterior wall, the stud has been cut to make it fit flush.

I have been trying to research and it seems it might be a diagonal brace and that since the sheating is now installed the brace is obsolete?

Can I cut these and how do I do this properly?






Thank you!
 

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Cut the one on the right. Add blocking to the one on the left to move the AC clear of the cross brace. Or, since the sheathing is on, just cut the thing. Ron
 

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Discussion Starter #4
What about the beam on the other side, can that be cut?

I don't have a lot of room to put it elsewhere. I can try the other end of the wall.

My problem is that the room is small, and only two walls face the outside, and the second wall that goes to the outside is the front of the house and I would prefer not to have a ac unit through the front of the house.

All this is temporary until winter-ish when I will do central air.
 

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If it's only temporary, I see no reason to cut holes in the wall.
Just install it in the window.
No need to refinish the outside of the house this way.
That's what I'd do. Put it in the window and fabricate some space fillers out of foam board to keep the insects out and cold in. Then take the AC out when the temps cool.
 

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Out of curiosity - does anyone know why they notched the stud and added that diagonal brace? Does it serve a purpose now, after the sheathing is on, or was it used to brace the framing when they put it up during construction?
 

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Out of curiosity - does anyone know why they notched the stud and added that diagonal brace? Does it serve a purpose now, after the sheathing is on, or was it used to brace the framing when they put it up during construction?
That was known as " inlet bracing " when your house was built and yes it was part of the structure to prevent racking. If we were to look at the sheathing on your house we may find 1x8's installed horizontally or a lesser material called Cellotex.
 

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Out of curiosity - does anyone know why they notched the stud and added that diagonal brace? Does it serve a purpose now, after the sheathing is on, or was it used to brace the framing when they put it up during construction?
Depends on what type of sheathing you have. If plywood or OSB not really needed now.

Only way to do what you want is for more drywall work.
Cut one 2x4 and install a header. Either side. could still leave the brace connected to the header and the next unshown 2 x 4.
 

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That was known as " inlet bracing " when your house was built and yes it was part of the structure to prevent racking. If we were to look at the sheathing on your house we may find 1x8's installed horizontally or a lesser material called Cellotex.

Interesting! Since the home now has sheathing, could a section of the inlet bracing be cut without compromising the wall? The sheathing should prevent racking now. BTW - this is all out of curiosity. I'm not very knowledgable about framing but I find it fascinating :)
 

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Interesting! Since the home now has sheathing, could a section of the inlet bracing be cut without compromising the wall? The sheathing should prevent racking now. BTW - this is all out of curiosity. I'm not very knowledgable about framing but I find it fascinating :)
That structure question can't be answered without more information about the sheathing. But in the instance of the OP that is rather moot as he doesn't have enough space between studs without further demolition and re-construction being necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks everyone for chiming in. Learning a lot here.

I can't put the ac in the window, I have aluminium sliding windows (that need to go at some point) and they are to skinny to fit the smallest AC I could find.

Now for the sheathing, I don't know exactly what it is. But it's very hard. Sheetrock? The backside is wavy.

The house was built in 1952, but it was moved to the current location and not built on site I have been told.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks Marky82, I have been thinking about that too. And right now I'm doing some research on ductless systems, maybe I'll just get that instead of central air.

What are people's thoughts on those? Not a fan of hose units hanging on the wall though. I wish they made them vertical so they could be recessed between studs and only have a wall vent...

http://www.homedepot.com/p/GREE-Multi-21-Zone-24-000-BTU-2-Ton-Ductless-Mini-Split-Air-Conditioner-with-Heat-Inverter-Remote-230-Volt-60Hz-MULTI24HP301/206658345
 

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I would consider both and talk to a HVAC professional to see what best fits your needs/price range. I've heard great things about the ductless units. I wish I had one. My central a/c is only 1 zone and doesn't adequately cool the upstairs. If I stay in the house I'll probably add ductless to the upstairs bedrooms.

They come in ceiling units as well. You aren't limited to the wall version.

http://www.homedepot.com/p/GREE-24-000-BTU-2-Ton-Ductless-Ceiling-Cassette-Mini-Split-Air-Conditioner-with-Heat-Inverter-Remote-230V-60Hz-UMA24HP230V1ACS/206618112

 

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Now that you are this far into it, the new hole size should relate to the biggest chunk of drywall you can carry up to about 3 ft sq. Cut to the righ until you run into the studs there and down about 3 ft. that will give you room to install a header and frame for the AC unit.

The header size depends on what is above this wall. If floor or ceiling joists land on the wall a header is needed or if it is just a gable end of the roof, cut out one stud would not be a problem but I would not touch the angle brace.
 

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If you don't know much about framing and aren't going to get into it, then...don't cut up your house! Ok, it's a DIY site so I'm mostly joking. There's a huge difference in what kind of sheathing you might have. Most likely judging on that diagonal brace and the tar paper, I'd say you have board sheathing and not OSB/plywood on the outside so you can't take that brace out without compromising your structure.
Get the freestanding AC unit for now and sell it after you get whole house AC installed.
The ductless mini split systems don't need to have tubes on the walls or all over the place. Any half decent HVAC installer will run them through the walls and other places so you only see the head unit in the room.
 

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Angle brace is put there for two reasons.

1. common before plywood or like sheets were used and is structural.

2. the foundation was not beefy enough for the load from above and a brace was used to spread the load.

Either way unless you know for sure, never cut one unless you absolutely have to.

This would not be a (have to) time.. If you have floor joists or ceiling joists or another
room above you should have a header.
 
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