Re-Constructing Farmer's Porch - Need Advice! (pic)

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Old 03-26-10, 07:16 AM
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Re-Constructing Farmer's Porch - Need Advice! (pic)

Hello all, its getting time for me to reconstruct my farmers porch. The knuckleheads that built it didn't make the best decisions in the construction techniques. For footings they piled concrete blocks (not sure how deep) and then set the columns on the very corner of the block. As you can guess over time the footings have shifted and the columns are alarmingly close to slipping off the footing. Not to mention the framing looks like it was designed by a preschooler.

Anywho, I'm debating on exactly how to properly accomplish this. The roof of the farmers porch is in good shape so I only need to replace the footings, columns, and porch framing/decking. Starting from scratch would be easier but I would like to save the roof. Another technical problem is that I have to figure out how support the roof while I rebuild the porch. Here are what I think are my best options (pic included at the bottom of post):

Option 1
Anchor the new 4x4 colonial columns directly onto the new footings. This would be the easiest because I could replace one column/footing at a time. Therefore I would only need to support the roof one section at a time. But....is this construction practice acceptable?

Option 2
Go ahead and build it like it probably should have been built from scratch. Basically I would anchor a post to the footing and set a beam on top of it. The column that supports the roof would then go on top of the beam. This would be much more difficult because (I think) I would have to support the entire roof all at once while I construct the footings, beam, and install the new columns.

What do you think???? Here is a drawing of how I think I would accomplish both options. Please keep in mind that it isn't exactly to scale and I havn't shown the appropriate anchors, hangers, or flashing. Thanks in advance and sorry for the long winded post!
 
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Old 03-26-10, 08:36 AM
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I would build directly off the piers instead of putting a post on first. As far as supporting the roof use long 2x6's placed at an angle with a notch at the top to keep them from slipping. At the ground level attach them to a stake in the ground to keep them from moving backwards.
 
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Old 03-26-10, 08:42 AM
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Option 1 would be structurally more sound then Option 2 Good Luck
 
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Old 03-26-10, 08:48 AM
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mgmine - I was thinking about putting the beams directly on the concrete, the only problem is the ground slopes a little towards one end of the porch. The bottom of the beam would end up beiing about 2.5-3ft from ground level. Is there any reason not to have a 6-7ft tall concrete footing?

I should also mention that I'm not a pro by any stretch of the imagination, so if there is a better way that what I've illustrated please let me know!
 
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Old 03-26-10, 09:01 AM
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Around here building inspectors like to see the beam sitting on the post, like option 2, rather then have them carrage bolted to them. You can attach the posts to the beam with mechanical fasteners, similar to joists hangers.

The only other idea I had was to notch the post on one or both sides and run the beam "through" it. Maybe use a 6x6 instead of a 4x4.

Dumb question: Do you really need a triple beam? How long is your span?
 
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Old 03-26-10, 09:22 AM
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Originally Posted by Tolyn Ironhand View Post
Dumb question: Do you really need a triple beam? How long is your span?
Not a dumb question at all! No, I don't think I need a triple beam. The farmers porch is roughly 6 feet wide off the house. It travels 30ft down the side of the house and wraps around the front which is about 18ft. The existing 4"x4" columns are spaced every 10ft. I am considering putting the new columns/footings every 8ft instead of 10ft.

The only reason I drew the triple beam is because the new column measures 4.25" across. A double beam measures only 3" across right? I figured the beam would have to be as wide as the column. If not....a double beam is fine with me.
 
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Old 03-26-10, 11:13 AM
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To muddy the waters a little bit I have another idea, call it option3. The beam rests directly on the concrete and the column rests directly on the beam. The joists could then be cantilevered over the beam.

The only potential problem I can think of is that:
1. The columns are only 8ft tall unless I want to special order them. I'm not sure if they would reach the beam (or the footing as in option 1). I don't have the measurements with me but I'll get them when I get home.
2. There might be a possibility that the combination of the concrete, beam, and joists might be too tall unless I use 2x6's. This may not be a problem since the span is only 6ft for th porch.

Here is a drawing of what I'm thinking about:
 
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Old 04-05-10, 07:11 AM
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"I was thinking about putting the beams directly on the concrete, the only problem is the ground slopes a little towards one end of the porch. The bottom of the beam would end up beiing about 2.5-3ft from ground level. Is there any reason not to have a 6-7ft tall concrete footing?"


No, no problem with the 6'' except the cost involved and labor to build the forms.
 
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Old 04-05-10, 08:23 AM
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Sorry, a little late on this one.

I like your option 3. Just notch the post around the beam and also run it down to the footing.
 
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Old 04-06-10, 10:37 PM
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Option 4. For a true Farmers Porch, the flooring runs from the house, out and on a slight slope using a T&G board. The porch is built with piers under each post. The new posts rest on the porch floor and hold up the roof usually with a header. The porch structure is beefed up/ blocked under each post in order to hold the weight of the roof. Quite often the header has a joint over the post so be careful if you want to change where the posts are located. A typical colonial post is not treated and should not be in contact with concrete. If supporting the roof, use double 2x6 with a notch on the top that will fit or hold to the roof header. You may need to place a 2x under the header to help support/spread the weight and prevent damage to the header trim. Place a double 2x8 block flat on the ground to set the support on. The support post should be kept as vertical as possible. You could also build an angle or L and attach it to the full length of the facia then place your support posts under the L. You could do this to allow you to repair the header or give you more room to work while digging footers. When finished, the weight should run up the footer, porch structure, porch floor, porch post or column then header, as one solid support.
 
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Old 11-15-12, 06:48 PM
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Red face Farmers Porch

Hi BigOldXJ, I have almost exactly the same issue rebuilding a farmers porch. What was the outcome? Did you use standard concrete footings? I'm looking into redifootings.com. Please let me know. I tore up the decking and found I had to rebuild the framing so time is of the essence! Thanks!
 
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