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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Okay, I need help in choosing which walls studs to use for my house... but first the necessary info:

Designed somewhat like a 2-story Colonial.
Built using ICF external walls (6-8" cores) with a brick facade.
Built using poured concrete foundation.
Floors are (either) traditionally poured concrete, or plywood
Roof is (either) steel or wood framed with metal shingles.

Basically, I'm trying to build a green house which is tornado/earthquake proof.

Question #1:
Since no (extra) internal insulation is required, will I still need a plastic vapor barrier on the external facing walls of my ICF walls (outside = 4+" EPS foam & inside = ~2.5")?
If I do need a vapor barrier... what is the best way to attach it to metal studs, since staples won't work, and (I think) screws won't either.

Question #2:
Since metal studs cannot support heavy load walls (tiled / heavy cabinets), will using larger gauge steel studs help any?
If it can... roughly what gauge is required?

Question #3:
Can steel studs be used on internal load-bearing walls (I ready somewhere that you can't)?
If you cannot, which residential building codes disallows this (what reason)?
If you can, what gauge steel is required?

Question #4:
Many people say steel studs are great for fires since they don't burn, but metal expands in extreme heat and could compromise structural integrity.
If it were up to you... would you use steel studs based on this fact?

Question #5:
Many people say steel studs are mold resistant or nearly mold proof, but are susceptible to rust, like wood is to rot.
If it were up to you... would you use steel studs in kitchens / laundry rooms / bathrooms where they are prone to extreme moisture?

Question #6:
Any other reason(s) you would choose one stud material over the other?


11,194 Posts
You should express this to the architect or engineer designing the house as you'll never gain the needed engineering information(on the internet) to competantly build it yourself.
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644 Posts
It is possible to use steel studs and floor joists in load bearing applications. Marinoware is one company that you might look into.


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