You steel stud framing guys step inside!!!

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Old 12-28-05, 08:25 PM
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You steel stud framing guys step inside!!!

So I've got a few threads running around the basement forum here. I've been getting hammered buy some of you metal freaks lately. Well I went to Lowes tonight to get nails for my nailgun (it was leant to me). The clerk started in on me about metal as well. I held off on buying the nails (for now). He said Lowe's doesn't carry metal but HD did, so I drove over there.

I priced them and the 8' studs where $7.00ish a piece, the track was $8.00 for a 10' section.

One thing I keep hearing is that it's so much cheaper than wood but how???

My big hangup is that I don't know how to deal with corners, joining walls, framing for doors, etc... Well that and the price!! What gives?

I will admit that this does intrigue me a bit mainly because I could work on this at night while the fam is sleeping along with other times that my miter saw and air nailer just wouldn't do.
 
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Old 12-28-05, 09:06 PM
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Steel studs

Hi, Klutch

I picked up my steel studs at Home Depot the 8ft studs are $2.99 a piece and the bottom plate 10ft is $4.56 a piece. Here is a link that helped me out with corners, joining walls and doorways.

http://www.rd.com/content/openConten...ontentId=18110

If you have any questions you could also ask the moderator Doug Aleshire he is a great guy goes out of his way to help you.
 
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Old 12-28-05, 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by jdgradywhite
Hi, Klutch

I picked up my steel studs at Home Depot the 8ft studs are $2.99 a piece and the bottom plate 10ft is $4.56 a piece. Here is a link that helped me out with corners, joining walls and doorways.

http://www.rd.com/content/openConten...ontentId=18110

If you have any questions you could also ask the moderator Doug Aleshire he is a great guy goes out of his way to help you.
Very good read!! I wonder what the pricing problem here is..?? maybe I was looking at the wrong signs?? My big question that I now have is if I erect the basement walls that run along the concrete how in the world do I get screws into the backsides of the studs? I can obviously get the front screws but how would I fasten the back sides?

Anyone write a book about framing with metal? I'm starting to pick up steam and say go for it but pricing still has me baffeled!!

Edited to add that I'm with you on Doug. I'm hoping he drops in, I have his pictures bookmarked but I can't really see that areas that are my big concern (joints, doors, etc..). I also notice in most of his pictures has has wood in the walls (bracing I assume). If I could just watch someone for a couple of walls I would be set!!
 
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Old 12-28-05, 09:51 PM
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steel stud framing guys step inside!!!

Often wood is put in to make it easier to get good attachment for things like cabinets, etc.

Keep in mind that the steel studs give you a thermal short circuit that will reduce the R value of the wall by 20 to 40% depending on the thickness and spacing. Wood studs only reduce the R value by 5 to 10%. There are some tables that give the details for the nit-pickers. For a basement, where insulation is not critical and is usually overdone, it shouldn't be too critical.

Dick
 
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Old 12-28-05, 10:38 PM
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Here are the questions I currently have:

1. When building the perimeter walls in the basement how am I supposed to screw the back sides of the studs to the top and bottom track? It's against the wall.

2. The screws they say to use don't go flush against the steel, wouldn't that create problems for the sheetrock?

3. Are 24" OC preferred since the steel is supposed to be stronger than wood?

4. When dealing with door openings you normally add 2 inches to the height and width on wood frames. Since you have to put "bucks" in the steel frames do you leave 6.25" in the steel width opening and 3.625" in the height so that when the bucks are in place you have your 2" openings? Also when laying the track for the door openings do you just skip the floor track or do you lay it and cut it out later like wood?

5. The Readers Digest article from above says to put 1.5" concrete screws in the bottom track to attach it to the floor. So no ramset needed?



I'm sure I'll have more questions. This is kinda cool, I'm getting fired up now.
 
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Old 12-28-05, 11:37 PM
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1. Using a long shaft screw through the back leg of the stud into the track from the front.
2.Usually its ok, few pointers, while screwing the drywall don't put drywall screws right next to where you have tappets, sometimes it can cause the drywall to break at that point.
3. Although you can frame it at 24oc I frame at 16oc unless some architect specs 24, makes for a sturdier wall especially with 25 gauge metal that hd or lowes carries.
4. Yes, I skip it.
5.I would use a ramset(well actually a hilti) much much quicker and a perfectly appropriate fastener.


Typically where walls intersect, floater or slap studs are used. Typically the drywall is hung on one wall and then the slap stud is secured either by screwing into another corner stud or toe screwed into the drywall(in the case of t intersecting walls). Uses only 2 studs in an inside or outside corner and one at a t intersection.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 07:33 AM
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Originally Posted by bigmtk
1. Using a long shaft screw through the back leg of the stud into the track from the front.
2.Usually its ok, few pointers, while screwing the drywall don't put drywall screws right next to where you have tappets, sometimes it can cause the drywall to break at that point.
3. Although you can frame it at 24oc I frame at 16oc unless some architect specs 24, makes for a sturdier wall especially with 25 gauge metal that hd or lowes carries.
4. Yes, I skip it.
5.I would use a ramset(well actually a hilti) much much quicker and a perfectly appropriate fastener.


Typically where walls intersect, floater or slap studs are used. Typically the drywall is hung on one wall and then the slap stud is secured either by screwing into another corner stud or toe screwed into the drywall(in the case of t intersecting walls). Uses only 2 studs in an inside or outside corner and one at a t intersection.

So are you saying

1. To just reach through the studs and screw it so the head is on the inside?

3. 16 OC it is.

4. Could you elaborate (assuming you know) on what the rough in metal openings would be? That readers digest article posted by jdgradywhite is a pretty good read and the article says to put 2x4 "bucks" in the rough metal opening and I'd assume that you'd still ulitimately want a 82"x32" (assuming this is the door size) rough opening for the jamb material???

Thanks for the help guys.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 08:08 AM
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Klutch,

Here are some answers for you,

1. You do not use a long shaft screws to go through the back leg of the stud into the track from the front! Noone does this! Ever tried buying 4" screws and trying to install them?? Not gonna happen.

In fact, once the bottom and top track are installed, you only need to apply screws through the front only. We are not building a house! The application of drywall is more than sufficient for the studs to stay in place.

2. The heads on these screws do not effect anything. Once you install your drywall with screws, the tension of the screws to pull the drywall in does not leave the drywall out where you would think it would cause "bumps". Even if there is a slight protrusion out, a simple hit with board and hammer resolves that issue.

3. Framing anything 24" O.C. means you cannot use 1/2" drywall!

Steel is sturdier than wood but it is the finish applications that many forget. If framing 24" O.C., you should use 5/8" drywall - 1/2" would flex too much - easy to break a hole in it. In addition, 24" O.C. means that most things you would want to anchor to the wall later, like cabinets and if you failed to install horizontal wood bracing would be creating a load in the wrong places. As an example a 24" wall cabinet that cannot be attached to 2 studs would be a problem. So 1/2" rock is cheaper than 5/8" and why pay more?!

4. You would have to allow for wood bucks when framing if you use them. See these for examples - http://dougaphs.smugmug.com/gallery/729705 - You can enlarge the photos as you see fit.

Rule of thumb - layout all your wall locations, use a chalk line and don't forget to use a Builders Square! Double check your measurements! It is best to stop short your track at door openings. The wood buck should be inserted into the track. See pictures.

5. I too would use a hilti ramset - strip charge (10 shots per strip) because it easier - rental is cheap! Option is to use Paslode Impulse as shown and use the Spit Pulsa 700E Soft Washered Nails that are used for attaching steel plates into concrete.

Using screws here is a bad idea - too time consuming!!

Personally, and it is not shown in the project I provided, I would use W/T plates with the bottom steel track on top. This works great if you are intending on installing wood base molding. You can easily nail your base with a pnuematic and not have to worry about screws and putty to patch all your holes! Basically, this is my way but it all depends on how you finish out your walls.

Thank you jdgradywhite for the compliment!

Hope this helps!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 08:37 AM
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Doug, your input is much appreciated. We are lucky to have someone here that takes and catalogs so many great photos, it is a HUGE help.

On number 1, the first time I read his response I took it as you did, A 4" SCREW??? After reading it again I think he was saying to use a "shaft" to reach a regular screw to be put in the back side. I might be wrong though. You content though that only to front side of the studs need screws? So instead of 4 screws per stud I'd just have 2?


I think I get what you're saying on the wood bucks, so once they are in place I still ultimately need a RO of 2" bigger than the door I'll use?

I have a .22 Ramset now, would this be adequate for attaching the bottom track?

Are you also saying to think of using a PT 2x4 on the floor and then putting the track on that so I can easily attaching base mouldings?
 
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Old 12-29-05, 08:55 AM
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Klutch,

It's pretty hard installing screws at an angle, especially trying to get it into the back. It's not easy and a waste of time.

You only need a screw in the front. The stud is not going to twist out - as I said, we are not building a house where it is essential to do front and back although I have seen them not. This is not a good thing in that application nor is it allowed by Code.

Make your rough openings as you would by standard means BUT ADD 1 1/2" on each side for the wood buck when framing with metal. I think you can easily see the door frames in the pictures I provided.

A ramset will work just fine for your bottom track.

As I mentioned, how you plan on finishing the walls and trim will determine if you want to use W/T bottom plate. I like it, but some don't do it. The person having to install trim may have liked a better method for installing trim, you may desire that approach or not.

Hope this helps!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 09:05 AM
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Thanks again Doug.

How do you deal with corner? This part is still kind of fuzzy to me. Can you just put a 90 degree piece on the edge like you use for the soffits?
 
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Old 12-29-05, 09:07 AM
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1. To just reach through the studs and screw it so the head is on the inside?
Exactly, I should clarify, use the same screws, use a long shaft on your screwgun to reach it.

In fact, once the bottom and top track are installed, you only need to apply screws through the front only. We are not building a house! The application of drywall is more than sufficient for the studs to stay in place.
On walls that are hung on one side only(exterior walls) I like to screw both sides. Drywall is what stiffens the walls up, without drywall on the otherside the studs have a tendency to "roll" in the track. I also add a stiffback midheight betwwen the foundation wall attatched to the back of the studs to minimize that as well. Makes for a much sturdier finished wall.


I think I get what you're saying on the wood bucks, so once they are in place I still ultimately need a RO of 2" bigger than the door I'll use?
I think you have the right idea, just allow for the wood, the finished rough opening will be the same size as a wood framed opening. So say you want a ro of 34 inches frame at 37 with metal add 2x4s and you will have 34.

PT base is not needed. Just glue base trim and shoot with a trim gun(angle the nails) to hold until glue dries. IIRC there are even nails designed to hold better in steel studs, I think they have little barbs on them that hold in metal though IMO they are not needed.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 09:14 AM
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Klutch,

You can do a California Corner - L application and this is sufficient - this saves having to install another stud as with more traditional framing.

As bigmtk mentioned, you can glue trim to wall or use a pnuematic finish gun - I prefer having wood for a backer when doing that.

Hope this helps!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 09:24 AM
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Alright, I think metal is my answer. I've been planning all this for wood but am changing teams. That is assuming the price I saw wasn't correct and I can in fact pick up the studs for about $3 and the track for $4.50ish.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 09:53 AM
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Klutch,

Sounds good!

Cost at HD for 8' metal studs - Todays Prices!!

2 1/2" is $3.15
3 5/8" is $3.98

The track 10 ft length is

2 1/2" X 10' $3.79
3 5/8" X 10' $4.64

Hope this helps!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 09:53 AM
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Funny story with a bit of this. I went to HD last night to pick up my framing nails. I knew that I needed 28 degree clipped head but not much else. As I was looking at them another came up and somehow we started chatting a little and he was trying to help me select the best nail. Said he was a framer by trade. The ones he said he'd use weren't galvanized. I mentioned again this was in my basement and since I was using treated wood didn't I have to use galzanized? He said "nobody has ever said anything to me about that, look at the price of those". IT SAYS IT ON THE BOX!!!!

Anyway I said thanks and he went on, one of the employees came over and started to chat with me as well. I mentioned what I was doing and he immeditately said "go with steel man". We talked a bit about it and every thread I've had here someone starts pimping the steel thing. Might as well I guess, luckily if I run into snags I can hop online and ask you guys. I'm just trying to get my bearings with the questions thus far because I have a habit of replaying things in my head the whole time I'm doing the projects and these little things I've been asking would kill me not knowing for sure.

I'm still not positive on the whole corner thing but am sure I'll get through it.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:14 AM
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If I were a wordsmith like doug I could explain it to you a little better.

You might stop by a commercial job site to check out how they frame thier corners.
Heres a quick diagram, hopefully it helps.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v4...tk/Picture.jpg
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:20 AM
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Klutch,

I added a couple more pictures - this should help.

http://dougaphs.smugmug.com/gallery/729705/2/50052211

Please disregard the clip at top as this would be for an UNSUPPORTED WALL at the ceiling, i.e. if you could not attach wood blocking between your floor joists.

Hope this clears up the issue of the L corner framing concept as well as the W/T plate I describe.

Steel is more expensive than wood

Wood Prices - HD
2x4x8' - $2.54
2x4x10' W/T - $5.29

Hope this helps!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:23 AM
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bigmtk,

What? wordsmith!! Thanks for the compliment, I think.

Good example - I was thinking of drawing it but that did the trick!

Thanks!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:24 AM
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Good pic. Not sure about the clip though, I just cut the legs off the track and overlap them.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:26 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug Aleshire
Klutch,

Sounds good!

Cost at HD for 8' metal studs - Todays Prices!!

2 1/2" is $3.15
3 5/8" is $3.98

The track 10 ft length is

2 1/2" X 10' $3.79
3 5/8" X 10' $4.64

Hope this helps!
I didn't see your post and called them a few minutes ago. In my area they were

3.99 studs
4.27 10' track

I call a contractor supply place and they were

2.65 for the studs
3.08 for the track

I'm going there!! They said it was 25 gauge. Bad?
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:28 AM
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Klutch,

That is standard.

Good Luck!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:30 AM
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25 ga is fine, though I prefer 20 ga.

25 ga is what you would get from the boxes anyway.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:30 AM
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bigmtk,

I agree. That's why I said disregard the clip.

I think Klutch has all the info he needs now!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:33 AM
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missed that part.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:34 AM
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Thanks to all you guys thus far, I'm going to get started this weekend. The best thing is I won't need help doing this and since was have a 15 month old the noise will be minimal.

I'm going to stop tonight and buy the fasteners and tools.

Can you guys tell me exactly what I need as far as screws? They weren't by the studs last night when I looked and I want to be certain I get exactly the right stuff.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:39 AM
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7/16 pan head sheet metal screws(we call them tappets). get pointed not self drilling. self drilling strips out too easily in 25 ga metal.

for drywall either 1 or 1 1/4 inch fine thread drywall screws.

Also pick up a few 6 inch (I think the model number is 6sp) vise grip clamps(ones without the footpads as they get in they way) they will help you greatly while framing.
like these.

http://www.hometownstores.com/images...ard/444054.jpg
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:48 AM
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Originally Posted by bigmtk
7/16 pan head sheet metal screws(we call them tappets). get pointed not self drilling. self drilling strips out too easily in 25 ga metal.

for drywall either 1 or 1 1/4 inch fine thread drywall screws.

Also pick up a few 4 inch vise grip clamps(ones without the footpads as they get in they way) they will help you greatly while framing.
like these.

http://www.hometownstores.com/images...ard/444054.jpg

Do these ultimately have a phillips head or do I need to outfit my cordless drill with a 7/16 socket? What length screws do I need?
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:50 AM
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phillips.

7/16th of an inch pan head sheet metal screws for framing.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:56 AM
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Originally Posted by bigmtk
phillips.

7/16th of an inch pan head sheet metal screws for framing.
HAHA, obviously I was thinking head size....

I'll pick up aviation snips, screws and 3 sets of 4" vise grip clamps. Anything else?
 
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Old 12-29-05, 10:59 AM
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Box of band aids.
If this is the first time you are working with metal studs you may need them.
I've had to get stitches a few times from mishaps.
 
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Old 12-29-05, 11:02 AM
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Klutch,

Kneepads!
Gloves!
 
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Old 12-29-05, 01:47 PM
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Almost forgot, how long of nails do I need for fastening to the floor? One inch?

I bought yellow charges and 2.5" nails with washers last night but I guess I'll take them back since I'm going to steel...
 
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Old 12-29-05, 03:36 PM
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3/4 inch concrete pins are fine. Usually brown shot does the trick but depends on the concrete conditions, green works too but you may have to bump it down a hair if you blow through the track.
 
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Old 12-30-05, 06:45 PM
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I picked up the material today. Enough to get me going anyway. 100' of track and 100 studs.

Couple of quick questions. I thought I remember seeing someone say to overlap the track joints 6 inches on each other. The track doesn't slip into the other pieces from what I can tell. Do I need to cut them?

Also, when attaching the top track to the joists are 1.25" plain ol drywall screws fine for that?
 
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Old 12-30-05, 06:57 PM
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To overlap the track, cut a slit about 2 inches down the center of the track and slide the other into the slit. doesn't have to be 6 inches though.

Drywall screws to attach the top track is the typical way of doing it.
 
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Old 12-30-05, 06:59 PM
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Klutch,

As bigmtk suggests, it doesn't have to be 6 inches long but here is an example of how you can splice - use a section of a steel stud.

http://dougaphs.smugmug.com/gallery/729705/2/50245968

Good Luck!
 
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Old 12-30-05, 07:47 PM
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Thanks guys. Once I get a couple of walls built I'm sure I'll chug right along.

another question if I might

I lay the bottom track first? How in the hell do I get the top piece to be in the exact same location so it's plumb??

Also, any trick of the trade snapping chalk lines if you're by yourself?
 
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Old 01-01-06, 08:37 PM
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Anyone know where I could pick up a tool for cutting these studs? I saw a Bob Villa video about building these and the guys doing it had a cutter almost like a paper cutter.
 
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Old 01-01-06, 08:52 PM
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Klutch,

You can cut studs with a circular saw (metal abrasive blade) or use multi-purpose metal snips. The snips works the best and is quick. I'd suggest wearing gloves when doing this - sharp stuff can mean stiches when you get cut!

In response to your previous posting, measure along the floor where you want your wall, mark the end locations and snap a chalk line. I have used a plumb bob to locate the top plate directly above. Mark those two locations on the ceiling and then snap a chalk line. This has worked the best for me and others.

By the way, chalk lines usually take 2 people - find some extra hands!

Hope this helps!
 
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