Can I remove any of these supports?

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Old 08-18-15, 03:01 PM
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Can I remove any of these supports?

I've got a wood shop and there's a small loft which is supported by a double stack of 2x10s and a few doubled 2x4s. One of these supports is always getting in my way because it's where the table saw is. Actually, all of the supports get in my way, but I'm sure it needs at least 2 of them - or maybe not?

I took a bunch of pictures of how the thing is constructed, and I created a drawing to scale which shows the exact location of each support, which happens to be directly underneath each point where two 2x10s meet end to end(which I called a "seam" in my drawing".

On the far left, the loft is supported under a vertical 2x10. at the far right, the loft support just ends at the sheet rock and is not tied in anywhere. If I could at least move the right-most double 2x4 support post all the way right, up against the wall, that would help tremendously. So, let's have a look at these pictures and my drawing and hopefully someone can tell me if this loft is overkill, underkill, or maybe something in between. Perhaps you can advise me on a way to move one or more supports. Before the pictures, I have to say, I know the seemingly obvious solution is to move the table saw, but that's not practical due to space constraints in my shop (25x25).

Here are the pics:


This is the left side. You can see where the loft 2x10s are supported on top of the vertical 2x10.
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Here's the far right side where the loft 2x10s aren't supported by anything except the rightmost double 2x4 which is a few feet to the left.
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Each double 2x4 appears to support the exact area where 2x10 lumber meets end to end.
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Overall
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Here's what the loft looks like - not much up here. Some stuff, but not a lot of space for much.
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Here's my drawing to scale:
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Thanks in advance for any advice!(even if you tell me there's nothing that can be done to improve on this design)
 
  #2  
Old 08-18-15, 03:26 PM
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The seams in your beam is really what kills the deal. They need to be supported. If you want to get rid of the posts replace the beam with some LVL's. to span the whole thing.

The carpenter pro's will be by to give you more info.
 
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Old 08-18-15, 03:39 PM
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Tolyn is correct, either replace that beam with one of the high tech beams like the LVL or sister one of them next to what you have.

Where the beam disappears into a wall there is most likely a double 2x4 behind the drywall, at least I hope so.

In the first picture where there is a 2x10 on the flat notched as a support that will require another solution. Depending upon what is in that wall, you might be able to install a 3' or so length of angle iron bolted into studs in that wall. Some of the pros would need to comment as to whether that could meet codes. But a cross support could clear up the wall below.

Bud
 
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Old 08-18-15, 05:00 PM
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Not that it would make a difference, but I should clarify that the seams where two boards are joined end to end are not both boards together. In other words, the front board has one joint, and the rear board has two joints, but there are no areas where both front and rear boards join together.

That just sounds confusing... There are no areas where both 2x10s are cut. The seams are staggered like how bricks are laid.
 
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Old 08-18-15, 05:12 PM
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I understand that, but a single 2x10 across that span would be way short on required support. Having the second one along side without support below wound still not be enough. My 24 ft garage had a tripple 2x12 and at one point he left two seams at the same location. Near disaster as we were using the space above for storage, not a lot, but when I noticed it sagging I quickly figured out why. It's now a shorter span with five 2x12's. Your space is definitely less demanding, but conventional lumber is rather limited. You could build a multi-layer beam with some plywood glued and nailed inbetween, but compared to sistering a single 2x10 LVL alongside what you have I don't believe the LVL is that expensive. They come full length.

Bud
 
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Old 08-18-15, 05:15 PM
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Excellent. I did look up the LVL and a 1 3/4" by 9 7/8" by 20ft is $75. Very much a bargain if it allows me to remove all three of those supports.
 
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Old 08-18-15, 05:33 PM
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Be sure to consult with somebody in the know that can properly calculate the proper size of the LVL. You might need to double it up. But, like you said, it is not carrying very much.
 
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Old 08-18-15, 06:07 PM
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What you have is an odd combination to simply look up in a span table. But the lumber yards where you would order that beam they do have some capabilities to do the calculations. I would sit down with their design guy and go with his recommendations. Take those pictures and drawing with you.

The end with the 2x10 on the flat as support, what is on the other side of that wall? Is there a reason they did not penetrate the wall and rest the beam onto a couple of 2x4 studs? You will need to decide how both ends are going to be supported to determine the length.

As to length, you will also need to plan on how that beam will get into that space and swing up into place.

Bud
 
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Old 08-18-15, 06:43 PM
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I also don't understand the butchering of the joists that sit over the beam, I guess to get the beam higher? I would have just used the rim to carry the load and gained all of the head room. Can't really do that now with the cut out joists unless you sistered the joists. Likely not worth the work.
 
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Old 08-21-15, 04:43 AM
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There's a small bathroom on the side where the vertical 2x10 goes up to meet the beams. I have no idea why they hacked up those joists either. I just want to get these vertical 2x4s out of the way, and the simplest, fastest way is how I will do it. I guess that means just mating a LVL beam next to the existing beam. I'm guessing I can just support the new beam with a double 2x4 on either end?
 
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Old 08-21-15, 05:28 AM
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Just throwing this out there. While it is supported by this post and beam set up, cut the short joists back 3 1/4" or so, install a double LVL all the way up to the flooring, bolt it to the existing band, support the LVL on either end and install joist hangers, remove the support and sister the short joists for intermediate strength. You will gain headroom and will get rid of the ugly beam, transferring all the weight to the band area. Anyone see a problem with that? Obviously we don't have all the data, just pictures, so it is just an idea that needs local verification.
 
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Old 08-21-15, 06:12 AM
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Ok Chandler, I just got completely lost in that!
 
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Old 08-21-15, 01:22 PM
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Standing back looking at what you have. Posts are unwanted. Beam is unnecessary. Stiffen the band of the entire unit and do away with the posts and beams. You have short joists from the outer band to the next longitudinal joist, capping over your beam. Really worthless to begin with. Cut those short joists back 3 1/4" and insert a double LVL supported on each end and reattach the joist tails to the new LVL, using double joist hangers. Pull the beam out and sister the notched joist perlins.

But I repeat myself. What part of it don't you understand? Blue is where you will embed your LVL from behind the white band. Red is what will be removed.

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