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proper header size when removing studs on load-bearing wall

proper header size when removing studs on load-bearing wall

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  #1  
Old 05-26-15, 07:04 PM
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proper header size when removing studs on load-bearing wall

I want to remove studs on a load bearing wall on my 2nd floor so I can extend a closet into this area. The roof rafters rest directly on the top plate of this wall. This wall sits directly on top of a wall on the 1st floor. I found a table that shows for interior load bearing walls with this span (37"), I need 2 2x6's, and they can be attached using header hangers to the king studs. Am I applying this table correctly? Should I be more conservative and install jack studs?

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  #2  
Old 05-26-15, 07:33 PM
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Span seems fine. (but we don't know all the factors) I would never use header hangers when it's both possible and preferable to use jack studs. Realistically, if there is a door going on the closet, it will be a 32".

So the opening will be 64 1/2" tall after the header is in? Kind of low, don't you think?

And are those floor joists (i.e. ceiling joists?) even big enough to be used as a floor?
 
  #3  
Old 05-26-15, 07:48 PM
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I agree it would be better to use jack studs. Yes, it's very low. Nobody is going to walk here, though. I'm basically adding an additional clothes hanging bar and some storage underneath. This is just one section of the master bedroom closet, and I'm going to do it to two other sections as well. The thought was if I could avoid jack studs, it buys me an additional 3", but it's not worth it if there's any risk. Thanks for the advice!
 
  #4  
Old 05-27-15, 07:55 AM
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This Plan concerns me. I don't like the idea of opening up 3 separate sections of a wall.
It is true a header can accept the loads above. However, you are removing quite a bit of wall area. The wall area provides your shear strength, which may or may not be critical in your original house design.
 
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Old 05-27-15, 10:27 AM
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I think we may be picturing two different things, Handyone. Having a floor plan would help us so that we get the whole picture... but...

When I look at the photo (with the angled braces) I "imagine" that this photo is of a tall knee wall, (no sheathing on the opposite side of the insulation... just drywall, thus no shear value) and that the headroom gets higher on the opposite side of the wall (which is finished space)... and lower on the photo side of the wall, where the picture is being taken from.

My concern was that he may be trying to turn (what was built and designed as) an attic into living space. (as far as the size of the floor joists is concerned.)

If it was me, I'd take out every other stud, install headers and trimmers where the studs are, and make some built in cabinets that are 2' deep into that space.
 

Last edited by XSleeper; 05-27-15 at 10:50 AM.
  #6  
Old 05-27-15, 11:28 AM
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Sleeper, I always value your input, you are the man when it comes to cabinetry and framing.

I agree with the cabinet idea. It has already been stated that the "floor" would not be walked on, the cabinet bottom would serve to reinforce this idea. There would be no reason to stand on the cabinet bottom.

As far as shear value, I tend to error on the safe side.
Build a wall 16" on center with no end supports. Push on either end and it will wrack or collapse. Add drywall to that same wall (5/8"), with a typical shear nailing pattern, wracking it will be much more difficult. I'm just getting technical

I think OP will be OK with the advice of recessed cabinets and jack studs to support header.
 
  #7  
Old 05-27-15, 11:30 AM
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Yes, I had to look up "knee wall", and it describes that wall perfectly. The slope of the roof is visible in the closet, and the back wall of the closet is less than 6 feet tall. The angled braces in the picture and the wall itself are supporting the rafters. Not shown in this picture is what my wife calls "the hobbit door", which allows easy access to this part of the attic.

I've decided not to touch the angled braces, but I would like to maximize the opening between them for my cabinets. I hadn't considered shear stress, though. This wall runs the entire length of the house, parallel with the roof ridge line. It sounds like removing a couple studs along this wall (and adding headers) would be ok. But doing more than that, would you say I need to hire an engineer?
 
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Old 05-27-15, 03:28 PM
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Those rafters must be super long, and must need the knee wall to shorten their span. You probably have next to no snow load, but if you're in a hurricane prone area of Texas, the shear walls that Handyone is mentioning might be beneficial. Course, if the house has lasted this long without them... In reality, it would be a diagonal brace on the wall starting high on the left gable end (if there is one), dropping down at a 45 angle, low on the right, and another on the opposite gable end (if there is one), high on the right , dropping down at a 45 angle, low on the left. This would stiffen the roof against wind load and lateral movement.
 
  #9  
Old 05-27-15, 05:30 PM
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Yes, the rafters are fairly long. At least 20 feet. I'm in the Dallas area, so hurricanes are not a concern. I don't have the diagonal braces that you describe on my gables. But just knowing that shear stress is a concern helps me to balance the storage idea we have with the structural requirements of the house. Maybe we'll scale back our plans slightly. This has been really helpful for me.
 
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