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RE: Residential Floor Framing [DUMB]

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Keith De Lapp, P.E.
4995 Golden Foothill Parkway
Suite 1
El Dorado Hills, CA 95762
Phone (916) 933-5991
Fax (916) 933-5992
-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Polhemus [mailto:bill(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Friday, July 23, 2004 10:12 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: Q: Residential Floor Framing [DUMB]


I have the following questions (most “dumb” but as always I hope some others will benefit by my willingness to appear a fool so they don’t have to):


1)     In the opinion of the group, what is the priority among depth, no. of plies, spacing and grade when you are specifying sawn lumber floor joists?
Priority for depth is deflection. I myself want to make sure there is no bounce. / Single joists work fine unless you need to double up for tall long partitions or point loads. We require double joists if the partition above it is longer than half the joist span. / #2 at 16" is the standard. Go to #1 if the span requires it.

2)     How do you allow for different depths, if they vary? Is it better to notch ends, build up ends or just stick to all the same depth of joist because the relative cost is minor compared to the labor involved in notching, providing seats, etc?
Varying the depths is a big hassle for the contractor.  Unless it coincides with a floor elevation change I wouldn't take the trouble of incorporating varying depths unless more than 50% of the floor could use the smaller size.

3)     What weight to you use for supported partition walls? Can you support them without blocking at the location of the wall?
I use 8.0 psf for interior partitions with gyp ea. side.  There is no need to block under non-bearing partitions in residential construction.  Where we do block is under the kitchen island edge and the front edge of kitchen counters where the floors will be tile and the counter tops will be granite, etc.


Oh, one other thing: Does anyone have any plans—I don’t care if they are CAD, PDF, anything—that they wouldn’t mind letting me have/look at? None of the “go-by” plans I have from the builder are worth a cr*p, because engineers here don’t typically—NOTE I DO SAY “TYPICALLY”—do a very good job of producing structural framing plans for residential. I want to see what some of you guys are doing because I have respect for your diligence.
I might be able to have one of my guys prepare something next week.  Please email me privately. 


If you wouldn’t mind sharing I promise not to “plagiarize,” and I’d also like to send my own drawings to you for “peer review” in return.
I could care less if you did.