Suggestions for using metal studs

Old 10-31-02, 11:34 AM
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Suggestions for using metal studs

I am about to begin construction on my basement remodel.

I have decided to use the metal studs for cost reasons.

I was hoping that anyone that has used metal studs before could give me some guidance, pointers, do's and don'ts, or anyting you can think of.

This is my first basement remodel, and my first time using the metal studs.

Any and all help very much appreciated.
Old 10-31-02, 03:56 PM
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what do you want to know?
Old 11-01-02, 04:23 AM
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I used metal studs several years ago and I would have just one suggestion:

Tell the wife she can't drive nails into the studs for shelfs, etc; may save your marriage! LOL

Old 11-01-02, 08:32 AM
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Need to know Everything

I know it is kind of a broad topic, but my knowledge is pretty much zero when it comes to this subject.

All I can really do is tell you what I do know, and hope if I am missing something, you guys/gals can help fill in the missing info.

I am not doing any plumbing and no bedrooms, just offices and a familly room. It is a brand new basement.

I know that you have to use screws to attach the studs to the plates.
What size screw is best?
What type of screw is best?
Does the screw stick out and complicate putting up Drywall?
Do I attach the outside studs to the basement wall, or just a joining wall sud?

My Basement ceiling is just the floor joists from the first floor, I have a height of about 7' 9", so I do not want to do a drop ceiling.
Do I attach the top metal plate to the floor joist?
Do I have to put some type of furring strips up?
What do I do if the room wall falls in between two joists?
Do I use nails or screws to attach the top plate?
Are the screws diffrent from those used to attach the studs?
Do I do the top plate first or the bottm plate?

I plan on using a powder actuated nailer to attach the bottom plates to the concrete.
Does the plate tend to move?
How do I keep it in place?

I am a little worried about sound between the two floors?
Will the drywall take care of this?
Will putting insulation up take care of this?
What type of insulation?

I am told that metal studs against the basement wall can affect the insulation.
How do I compensate for that?

I know in order to hang anything with some weight on the wall, I will need to put wood filler pieces in the metal studs.
How do I attach them together?

I plan on using store bought pre-hung doors.
What is the best way to frame out the door?

For wiring, I plan to use the plastic rings.
Anything I should watch out for here?
Are the plastic rings the best method?

I know, you are probably thinking I should hire a contractor, but the wife is not going to let that happen. So, please ANY help would be appreciated.
Old 11-01-02, 03:13 PM
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Metal Studs


I have used metal studs on two basement projects. They are not only inexpensive the walls go up in a snap. I will address the questions I have had some luck with. Hope it helps.

The screws are 1/2 " pan head screws. They are phillips slotted,
prick point. We have always called them "zip screws". They self tap into the metal. You can use prick point or self tapping dry wall screws for the wallboard. You can cut the studs with a cut off saw or tin snips.

I believe you said in your post that the house was new so I will assume you have blanket insulation to the frost line. In this case I stay off the walls and set my top plate right to the joists. Then use a plumb bob to find the bottom plate location. If you hold the plate and fire the gun perpendicular you should have no drift. If the wall you are building runs down the middle of a joist space attach 2x4's between and flush with the joists and screw top plate to this. If you have a window wall use it as your true wall and square off the others from it.

When using the nailer the most important thing is the right fastener for the material. and the right shot. Start light and build up if you are not sure.

For the prehung doors rough out the doors with wood 2x4's for the jack studs then use the metal for the king studs. This makes shimming and nailing the doors in a snap.

For the electrical runs the plastic rings are great for romex cable. Make sure you cut the studs so the holes run above the receptacle height and below anything you would hang on the walls so as not to pierce the cable.

Well I hope this helps. Again these are techniques that have worked for me, If there are others with more or better methods I hope they reply.

Old 11-04-02, 11:43 AM
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Old 11-07-02, 12:08 PM
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Thank you mikewu99 and wirenut240,

The pdf was very informative, but i have to admit it talked a little over my head. But I am still working my way through it.

I believe you said in your post that the house was new so I will assume you have blanket insulation to the frost line.
I do not know anything about blanket insulation. My basement walls are just concrete. They did put this black coating, looked like paint, on the outside of the basement wall.
What is blanket insulation?
Would it be on the inside or outside of the wall?
Is it that black paint looking stuff they put on the outside?
If I do not have blanket insulation, what should I do?
Should I be nailing the studs to the concrete wall?

If you have a window wall use it as your true wall and square off the others from it.
I do have a wall that has a window.
Do you mean that I should start with this wall first? Then go perpendicular from it on each end, instead of just setting each each wall right next to the basement wall?

When using the nailer the most important thing is the right fastener for the material. and the right shot. Start light and build up if you are not sure.
I am not sure.
What do you mean right fastner?
What do you mean right shot?
Do you mean the color of the cartridge?
Do you mean the caliber of the load?
Do you mean the shank length of the nail?

I found this website:
How do I figure out the "Required penetration"?

I plan on using a single shot powder actuated hammer drive tool, Like this one:
Low cost single shot .22 caliber powder actuated hammer drive tool. Handles all .300 and 8mm diameter headed drive pins from 1/2" to 3" shank lengths and 1/4-20 threaded studs
Is this OK?

plastic rings are great for romex cable
What is romex cable?
Is that the thick white cable for electric?
What about TV cable and Phone cable?
What kind of cable is it not good for?

Extra Questions (some what off topic):
What R factor insulation should I put in the walls? -- St. Louis and using metal studs.
Do i need a vapor barrier?
I have windows that are set in the concrete, what is a good way to finish them?

My clothes dryer metal duct goes across the middle of what will be one of my rooms to reach the outside wall. It takes three seperate pieces to reach and is patched twice with duck tape. When I run the dryer with towels (or anyting that holds water well) the duct drips where the duck tape is at. This happens whether the AC/Heater is on or off.
How do I fix this?
Can I use some type of seleant?
Can I Jury-Rig a sort of evaporation pan than runs the length the duct?
Should I try to find a piece of pipe that is long enough to run from the wall to the dryer? -- at least 20 ft

As always any help or advice welcome and needed.

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