Attach vinyl J-Channel to 2x4 sub-fascia for soffit

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Old 01-01-15, 01:52 PM
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Question Attach vinyl J-Channel to 2x4 sub-fascia for soffit

Hello and Happy New Year all.

I am installing vinyl soffit and have purchased J-Channel that will hold the soffit in place. I intended to nail (or screw) the J-Channel directly into the 2x4 sub-fascia under the eaves. I have added a 2x4 on the wall side to attach the J-Channel to as well. The problem is that the nail slots for the J-Channel are located 1.5" from the outer edge of the channel. So, if I use the existing slots, my nail (or screw) would "kiss" the edge of the 2x4 (as shown in this sketch).
Name:  Attach-J-Channel-to-2x4.jpg
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I'd prefer to use the J-Channel, since I purchased it several months ago and have passed the grace period for returning them to the distributor. But, if I have to ditch that plan, I'll suck it up and try to sell the J-Channel on Craig's List.

These are the workarounds that I'm considering.
  1. Ignore the existing nail slots and try to squeeze a nail (or screw) in back of the slots.
  2. Attach 1/2" or 3/4" stock to the 2x4 to make it wider.
  3. Ditch the J-Channel and nail directly into the 2x4 then cover with trim.
  4. Glue (rather than nail) the J-Channel to the 2x4

I'm not fond of any of the above workarounds for varying reasons.
If I ignore the existing slots and make new holes, I'll have very little space to work with and could mar the J-Channel trying to attach it. Also, I'd further weaken the already flexible vinyl.
If I attach 1/2 or 3/4" stock, I'm using more lumber than that light vinyl soffit really deserves. Also, I'd have a seam right at the point where the nail (or screw) needs to penetrate it. I could glue the added stock on, but I've already primed the 2x4, so I won't achieve good adhesion.
If I ditch the J-Channel, I'm stuck with trying to sell it. There is also extra work involved to put up trim. Although, I will say, the original soffit that I had to remove had crown molding around the interior edges and I did like that look.
Gluing the J-Channel to the 2x4 seems too "iffy". The glue may not hold (as I stated above, the 2x4's are primed).

Have any of you faced this situation before?
Do you have any suggestions?

Thanks in advance.
 
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Old 01-01-15, 03:47 PM
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Facia

How will you cover the facia?
 
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Old 01-01-15, 08:23 PM
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I modified the sketch to include the fascia.
Name:  Fascia-Sub-and-J-Channel.jpg
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The fascia is 1x6 pine. I do not plan to cover it at this time. Were you thinking coil stock? Down the road, I may replace the pine fascia with PVC.
 
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Old 01-02-15, 08:00 AM
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Got a picture of the actual house?
I've never seen a 2 X 4 used to cover the rafter tails before like your showing. Normally it's a 2 X 6.
If your going to do it the way your showing in the picture then add blocking between the rafters so you can nail up the J and have a place to nail the new soffit material to.
If you tried to nail any closer to the J your going to end up hitting it with the hammer and breaking it.
 
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Old 01-02-15, 11:01 AM
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Hi Joe. Good to hear from you.
I'm at work, on lunch, at the moment. I'll see if I have a picture when I get home tonight.
You're going to love this. In the original part of the house, the rafters (trusses) are all 2x4. In the addition, which is the part of the house I'm working on now, they used 2x6 rafters. The 2x4 sub-fascia was nailed to the 2x6 rafter tail. They loped off the bottom section of the 2x6 at the fascia end so that the cut is roughly on the same plane as the bottom of the 2x4 sub-fascia, like in this sketch:
Name:  Rafter-Tail.jpg
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If I add blocking, the nail will end up being driven between the sub-fascia and the blocking. That may not hold very well.
 
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Old 01-02-15, 12:48 PM
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J-Channel

I would fasten the J-channel temporarily and then install the soffit material. Fasten the soffit material directly to the bottom edge of the subfacia, which will hold the J-channel in place.
 
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Old 01-02-15, 03:48 PM
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Wirepuller38, Thanks for your suggestion. Referring to my first sketch, even if the J-Channel were already in place, I would have a very small area to try to nail the soffit material to the sub-fascia. As Joe reminded us, I'd likely hit the J with my hammer.
If I added blocking though, then I could nail through the soffit material directly into the blocking. I'd have enough clearance for that.
That's a lot of wood to support a light soffit
 
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Old 01-02-15, 06:49 PM
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It looks like the nose of the j-channel is not going to be exposed. Can you simply drill some hole in the nose to allow you to screw the channel directly to the 1x6?

Or, if the 1x6 hasn't been installed as yet, how about some " f " channel?

Bud
 
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Old 01-02-15, 11:16 PM
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Thanks Bud. I wasn't planning on replacing the 1x6 at this time, yet I don't want to depend on it because I'm likely to replace it in the future.
When you were thinking of F channel, were you thinking that I'd nail the flange to the face of the sub-fascia and then install the fascia over that? That does seem like it would work.
 
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Old 01-03-15, 03:43 AM
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"were you thinking that I'd nail the flange to the face of the sub-fascia and then install the fascia over that?"
It would hold the soffit just fine. If you didn't want the small space kicking out the bottom of the 1x6 you could remove a saw cut on the face of the sub-fascia.
A simple "L" out of rolled stock would do the same as the f-channel and be thinner.
If it is all assembled up there probably not worth the effort.

Just throwing out ideas.

Bud
 

Last edited by Bud9051; 01-03-15 at 03:46 AM. Reason: addition
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Old 01-03-15, 08:23 PM
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Bud, I do appreciate your ideas.

Joe, I didn't have any photos of the eaves/soffit, so I'll need to take some. Today (Saturday) I was inside all day painting my son's room, so I didn't get a chance to take any photos. I'll try to get outside on Sunday to take some shots.
 
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Old 01-03-15, 08:32 PM
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I would screw it with s.s. or galvanized truss head screws. Forget about the slots, j-channel doesn't need to move as much as siding does. It may deform a bit but its imperceptible.
 
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Old 01-03-15, 10:05 PM
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Stainless or galvanized XSleeper? I told the guy at the local hardware store what I'd be using them for and he sold me zinc coated. Said they'd be fine. Probably 'cause he didn't have any galvanized

Even if I don't use the slots, I'll have very little room to work with if I want to get into the "meat" of the 2x4 (i.e., stay away for the edge). Maybe I'll place a thin piece of flashing between the screw drive and the lip of the J-Channel so I won't mar it.
 
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Old 01-03-15, 11:46 PM
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Yeah, it was probably all he had. Zinc will last quite a few years, but will eventually rust. If you think you might mar it, predrill a pilot hole with a drill bit, then start your screw, then bend the face of the j-channel away slightly as you tighten the screw. I think you are probably making this into a bigger deal than it is. I'm sure you've got it... no need to overcomplicate it.
 
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Old 01-04-15, 08:34 PM
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photo

As XSleeper suggested, I probably have enough information now to proceed, but I told Joe that I'd provide a picture, so here it is:
Name:  Walkway-Soffit.jpg
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