Collar Ties in the Attic???


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Old 01-02-06, 06:53 PM
J
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Collar Ties in the Attic???

Here is my current attic details.

Roof pitch is about 5/12. Rafters are 2X6 dimensional lumber (not sure what species; it is an old house, but the actual measurements are 2X6, not 1.5X5.5). Rafters are 16" OC. There is a collar tie near the top of the rafters, about a foot down from the ridge board and about 2 foot long from rafter to opposing rafter.

Now, the issue. The prior owner put in what appears to me to be purely cosmetic exposed beams from rafter to rafter in the finished attic. They are about seven feet from rafter to rafter and there is one every other rafter. They are made up of two 1X4 (nominal) boards with a 1X2 spacer board between. They are attached with two nails at each end in the rafters. He used a 2X4 block as a spacer where they are nailed to the rafter. They are simply nailed to the side of the rafter. I don't know what they boards are, but they seem really flimsy with a lot of flex.

The question. I'd like to remove these beams to give a more open feel to the room, but I don't want to take out anything that might have some structural purpose. Do you think I am right and these beams are purely cosmetic, or could they have a structural purpose? Does my current framing require any such kind of structural member?

Thanks. Any responses will be very helpful.
 
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Old 01-02-06, 07:16 PM
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Collar ties in attic????

I forgot to mention. The ceiling joists run parallel with the rafters.
 
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Old 01-03-06, 10:03 AM
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removing non-structural beams

What is the total rise and run of the attic rafters? This will help to determine if the nominal collar ties will support the outward thrusts of the rafters at the top plates.
 
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Old 01-04-06, 05:25 AM
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removing nonstructural beams

I'll check the measurements. Now that I think about it, the pitch is probably steeper than I thought. The house is only about 25 feet wide and the ridge is about 9 feet from the floor of the attic. The rafters are also attached to the joists at the outside cap plates.

I'll get back with the measurements.
 
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Old 01-04-06, 05:54 PM
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Removing beams in attic

Boy was I off. I guess you really have to measure and not just guess.

The pitch is 10/12. Total rise is 10 feet and total run is 12 feet. The rafters are connected to the ceiling joists at the top plate on the outside walls.

I checked the code for my area (KY) and it appears that my rafter spans are okay and I don't need any rafter ties since the joists are parallel to the rafters. They provide the protection against outward thrust.

Any thoughts?

Thanks.
 
  #6  
Old 01-08-06, 09:36 AM
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flimsey cross beams

Sounds like you could safely remove the cross beams.Why not shorten and re-use them to construct a new (higher) ceiling?They'll be less flimsey and provide some structural redundancy.Maybe you could recycle the cut-off lumber to beef up the shortened beams.Hopefully this give you some ideas.Do you have a picture of the space?
 
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Old 01-09-06, 04:47 AM
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I don't have any pictures, but you have given me some good ideas. Thanks for the advice and input.
 
 

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