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RE: 16d Common ..... Need some background.

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-----Original Message-----
From: Gary Grinstead [mailto:Gary.Grinstead(--nospam--at)]=20
Sent: Tuesday, July 19, 2005 10:22 AM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: 16d Common vs 16d Sinker vs 16d Short

It has come to my attention that virtually all houses in my area are =
16d sinkers instead of the 16d commons typically specified on the plans.
Additionally in some instances 16d shorts are being used.  The nail =
are as follows:

16d common =3D 3-1/2" x 0.162"  diameter
16d sinker =3D 3-1/4" x 0.148" diameter
16d short =3D 3-1/4" x 0.131" diameter

There is no way I'd accept a 16d short which has less than 70% of the
capacity of the 16d common.  My question is about the 16d sinker which =
about 84% capacity.  Is the general feeling that a combination of (1) =
of safety on capacity, (2) conservative live loads, and (3) additional
nailing (calc'd to 3.4 nails --- use 4 nails) will make up for the =
or is this something you'd call the contractor on?

Gary Grinstead, SE
Plancheck Engineer
City of Stockton, CA


Sorry, I must be missing something here - please fill me in on the code section that requires use of 16d common nails for construction other than where nailing for shear transfer of plywood indicated on the horizontal or vertical shearwall schedules (97 UBC or 2001 California Building Code) for California. I'm not being obstinate, but I would never specify a 16d nail for a plywood shear wall. In our area the municipal code does not allow toe-nailing for blocking when used as a shear transfer to the double plate of a wall - our local codes require installation of a metal side plate such as a L50 or the old A35F.

In most cases, I am hesitant to use a 10d nail on dry wood where plywood is nailed to the edge of a joist or truss - this issue was raised years ago when we were doing retrofit of URM buildings that required sheathing nailed over 1x or 2x sheathing as there were too many instances of joists being split by the nails (and the joists were full 2 joists). 

For sistering 2x members, the full depth of the plates (assuming a double 2x top plate is only 3" total unless 3x material or thicker is used, so I am confused where this issue started with regard to shear other than possibly end nailing through a 2x or 3x plate into the end of a 2x stud.

So please, give me some background on this one so I can understand what I am missing here.



Dennis S. Wish, PE
California Professional Engineer
Structural Engineering Consultant (Photo Blog) (Launch to Professional Discussion Blogs)


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