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# getting footings square for deck ?

#1
06-07-04, 12:21 PM
mjhrlb
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getting footings square for deck ?

am just courious as to what is the easiest way to square up footings? is it thw 3-4-5 way? or A-C,BtoD ? also is there any "pre-measurments" example a 10 x 10 deck should so many iches from point A-C or D-B to make sure it is square? thank all of you for your help. P.S. also how do you know which measurement A-C is correct or from D-B? .

#2
06-08-04, 12:05 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Arlington, WA
Posts: 9,238
Using 3-4-5 works fine for getting your first line (the left or right edge of the deck) of footings square off of the house. Your first row of footing (the ones parallel to the wall of the house are simply spaced "X" number of feet out from the wall. Once you have all of the footings located, then you measure diagonally (from the one on the left that is closest to the house to the one on the right that is farthest from the house, and vica versa), and when your diagonal measurements are the same, you are square.

Before I dig ANYTHING, I use 12" wood stakes to locate the center of each pier block or footing. I can pull a stake and move it a couple of inches if I need to.

#3
06-08-04, 07:36 AM
mjhrlb
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out of square

thank you very much, i should have said that the deck is free-standing, i don't know if taht makes any difference or not ? alol my 193" deck boards fit perfectly. through out the 16x16 frame,i have taken numerious measurements all the way and all comes out perfect, but when i measure diagallly it's always off. very frustrating.

#4
06-08-04, 08:13 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Arlington, WA
Posts: 9,238
Freestanding or attached makes no difference -- you are just trying to find out if it's square.

There are two ways you can check it. Along one of the 16' sides, measure exactly 16' from one corner and make a mark. From the same corner, measure 12' along the other side and make a mark. When you measure diagonally between your two marks, you will have exactly 20' if the deck is square, (That's the 3-4-5 method.)

Using the method of measuring the opposite diagonals will also tell you if the deck is square or not.

If one meathod tells you it's square and the other method shows it being unsquare, Look VERY CAREFULLY at exactly how and where you are hooking your tape, and make sure that you are reading off of the same side of the tape consistantly.

#5
06-08-04, 11:02 AM
pw1972
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Measure and re-measure your diagonol.. that guys the key to determing whether or not you're square. 16x16 should have a diagonal of 271.53 inches.
Also don't forget to account for the width of the wood if you haven't cut down your joists.

#6
06-09-04, 10:45 AM
mjhrlb
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out of square

PW.. thank you !!!! that is the measurement that i was looking for... there must be a math equation to figure out all squares. thank you again !!!!

#7
07-27-04, 12:24 PM
nathank
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Pythagorean Theorem

a^2 + b^2 = c^2

covert the 16ft to inches... square it then double it (sides are the same)
Take the square root of the number you get.

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