Time to move on to the framing walls. Frame are fairly simple and quick to construct they require a high level of precision and good joinery skills.
A framed building is the alternative to structural masonry both are common in house construction. Masonry is mainly used on ground floors of houses whereas timber framing is used on the first mainly to keep the cost of materials down.
I have designed houses with structural inner shells and a then added an outer layer of bricks this can produce an attractive house which can be modified to suit planning regulations.
Create a Rigid Building Frame from Timber Beams
Framing can be used for most buildings large to medium sized and also small house designs. Frames allow for a load to be transferred through the building and foundations.
Framing can be clad externally with lightweight non-load bearing materials which seal the building from the elements and provide sound and thermal insulation.
There are three types of house framing: steel concrete and timber or combination like prestressed concrete.
The most popular is timber this is due to its lightweight and malleable properties it is also better value than the others.
As an amateur builder I found timber very versatile throughout the construction of stud walls through to the structural roof framing.
Building a Partition Wall
Partition walls create two living spaces out of one and are often used to construct new rooms in incomplete basements or lofts.
These walls can be built using one of two methods; framing the wall into place or constructing the frame on the floor and then tilting it into position which is the easier option, space permitting.
Before finishing the wall by hanging drywall, you will need to get the local building inspector to come and check the structure of the wall and the completed plumbing and wiring amendments.
Building a partition wall requires average carpentry ability and building a 10 foot wall will take an experienced carpenter about 1½ hours whereas it will take a novice approximately 2½ hours.
In most cases, interior partition walls are built using 2×4 framing lumber although in some circumstances for example if the partition wall is required to hold large plumbing waste or drain pipes, then 2×6 lumber should be used.
In the areas where the wall plates will need to be cut to fit the pipes or other fixtures, you will need to use metal straps to join the framing components and tie them together.
Depending on your needs i.e. if you intend to use the room for drumming practice, you may want to soundproof the new wall and this can be done by filling the wall with fibreglass insulation.
Framing a partition wall
As mentioned above, the easiest way to frame a partition wall is on the floor and here is how to do it:
- Locate and snap a line on the floor, by measuring from an existing wall, to layout the bottom plate of the new wall. Do not worry if the corners are perfectly square as the most important thing is that the new and old walls are parallel.
- Establish the length of the wall and cut the 2×4 lumber top and soleplates to this size. Place the two pieces side by side and lay out the top and soleplates, spacing the centres of the suds 16 inches apart. Then lay out any doors and windows and mark the edge of the plates so that they are visible when nailing.
- Using a tape measure or for more accuracy, a plumb bob, measure the distance between the floor and ceiling (or joists) at numerous locations along the intended wall space. Then subtract 3½ inches from the shortest distance reading (to allow for 1½ inch for the top and soleplates and an additional ½ inch for space to manoeuvre the wall into place). This figure will be your stud length.
- To find out how many studs you will need, count the layout marks and cut this amount to length. Look at the edge of each stud and if any are not straight, mark the side which has the high spot (crown)
- Place the soleplate on its side along the floor line, then using your best two studs, place them at the end of each wall with the crown edge upwards. Using 6d nails, nail the studs to the soleplate.
- Next, lay the top edge on its side with the layout marks facing inwards towards the soleplate and nail it to the end studs with 16d nails. Add the remaining studs, with the crown upwards and nail these into place.
- Lift the wall and position the plates using the floor and ceiling lines. If the wall is too loose, add tapered pieces of lumber (shims) under the bottom plate to tighten any gaps and make it fit properly. Using 16d nails, attach the wall to the floor and ceiling joists.
Note: Always use the same tape measure from the start to the finish of a project to ensure consistent, reliable measurements as they are not always created exactly the same and accurate readings are essential for such projects to be a safe success.