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Author Topic: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...  (Read 3713 times)

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Offline texican

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Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« on: December 13, 2011, 11:38:30 am »
I've searched thru old posts, and didn't find anything specific to my question... also have Sobon's "How to Build a Classic Timber Framed House".

I'm in the beginning stages of building a timber framed home.  I built my first home, solo, and understand most of the principles of doing a timber frame.  The exterior of the walls aren't a concern, but I'm wondering what is going to be the best way for setting posts out in the 'open' floor.

I've seen several projects here, where folks had free standing posts (but not inside a house) with a rod going between the cement and the post, with a large space in between.

I've been thinking of having a 1" rod set in the slab, sticking 6" to 12" up, having a hole drilled in bottom of the beam, set the beam on top of the rod, to prevent it from accidentally moving horizontally.  Place some roofing shingle or rubber sheeting between the beam and the concrete, to prevent moisture from drawing up into the beam.

I have WM LT15D18, and have cut most of my beams, out of pine, oak, cypress and cedar.  I know the cypress would beat out the cedar, for strength, but would prefer using the pine or oak, since they have more 'character'.  We do have termites here (they've half eaten my current home's sills, it's a never ending battle, and I try and use as few chemicals as possible, thinking that's what killed my mother prematurely... she hated bugs) and I'm hoping to have enough cypress to do all the exterior timber framing.  I know I have enough cypress lumber to do all the infill.

Is there a better way to attach vertical freestanding beams to slabs?

Offline Jim_Rogers

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2011, 12:13:49 pm »
My comments are meant to educate, that's all.
First of all there is not such thing as a vertical beam. Beam means horizontal timber.
A vertical timber is a post.

There are lots of "hold down" metal brackets available from different manufacturers like Simpson strong tie. They if the don't have anything to the size you need then you can have some made up by your local welding shop.

I have posted several threads about concrete to timber connections and you should/could do a search for those and see if any of them is something you could use.

Good luck with your research.

Jim Rogers
Whatever you do, have fun doing it!
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Offline Thehardway

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2011, 02:04:00 pm »
texican,

Best of wishes to you on your project.  I used a piece of threaded rod embedded in concrete for the central post in my house.  The 8"X8" post was oak.  The rod ensured that the post was centered and that it will not move at the base.  I found that Simpson makes a reinforced composite plastic base that has a hole in the middle and fit over the rod.  It was about 1/2 inch in height and approx. 6"x6" which gives me just enough room to lay my floor tile under the edges of the post.  I am typically an anti-plastic type guy but I thought this would be good as it would not wick moisture, would not sweat, rot,rust, attract termites, and it would absorb some shock.   I found it at the orange big box store.

I did a similar thing when setting the trusses in pockets on my concrete walls.  For the foot end of the truss I fabricated a 1/16" steel plate cap .  This was screwed to the rafters from the sides and a 1" hole bored up through the steel plate into the rafter.  The 1" threaded rod was embedded in the concrete in the pocket.  A nut and flat washer were placed on the threaded rod.  The truss was set and the nut was used to level the truss and adjust the height.  One this was done, the space between the pocket and the plate was filled with industrial, non-shrinking grout.   I see no reason whiy you couldnt use this method as well as long as there is no concern about uplift.  If uplift is a concern and it should be considered, then you will need a galvanized strap embedded in the concrete or you will need to bolt it down some other way.  Since my post was central interior there were no uplift issues.  My inspector was very concerned about any untreated wood being in direct contact with concrete so everything has either a steel barrier, plastic barrier, or a piece of PT plywood between it and the concrete.

good luck and post some pictures of your project.
Read Jim's posts on construction and check out the Simpson Strongtie website.  Both good places to start.
Norwood LM2000 24HP w/28' bed, Hudson Oscar 18" 32' bed, Woodmaster 718 planer,  Kubota L185D, Stihl 029, Husqvarna 550XP

Offline texican

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2011, 03:53:38 pm »
Thanks Jim
I should have said posts...
I'd come in, trying to 'cool down'.... my 17 yr old Stihl got 'killed' by a freak accident Saturday, and the repairs were a $100 less than a new one, so I got a new 290.  Picked it up yesterday afternoon, got it home late, ran it once this morning, set it down, and five minutes later it wouldn't start for anything.... spent 10 minutes fooling with it, and nada.  Came in, and before I made a call back to the local dealer, figured I'd post that question...  Went back out, spent five minutes pulling and it finally started.  My old Stihl, more than three pulls, something was wrong (fuel, air, or fire).

Guess I'd best add more parameters to the search engine...

Online beenthere

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2011, 04:56:33 pm »
texican
My limited experience with a new saw (MS361 in '04) was disappointment that it didn't start as well as the old 041. However, after a few tanks of fuel it has become much, much better and very reliable like the old 041. So hang in there, and hope it gets better for you too.

And getting more info and ideas on setting the post on concrete will prove to be a good move. :)
Jim was just trying to be helpful for all readers, not just to get your post corrected. :D (pun intended)
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Offline Thehardway

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2011, 08:13:34 am »
Don't know if this applies to your case but with my stihl (039) there have only been 4 causes of a no start.

1. After running out of gas and refueling it is always hard to start if I fill it all the way.  Sometimes I have to crack the fuel tank back open and re-close.  I would guess this is something to do with the fuel venting system.
2. Old gas causes it to start hard or no start.  Dump the gas out of the saw, mix fresh, refill, and it will usually fire right up.
3. Mud daubers plugged up the exhaust outlet.  Had spark, fuel and air but would not fire and run.  This one really had me stumped for awhile.
4. The fuel line somehow became disconnected.

When I bought my saw, the dealer tuned it for me before I took it home.  He said they always need tuned properly when they come out of the box and then re-tuned after a short break-in period.  He had me bring it back after a couple weeks of cutting and he re-adjusted it.

My 039 has never started easy when cold. Usually it take about 10-15 pulls with choke on, before it fires, then 2 in the half choke poistion to get it running.  After it is warm it will start on the first pull except for the above mentioned re-fuel issue.  Well, we better get back to your framing issues before this gets moved over to the chainsaw section of the forum ;D  Hope you get everything worked out, it sucks when you can't make sawdust.

Norwood LM2000 24HP w/28' bed, Hudson Oscar 18" 32' bed, Woodmaster 718 planer,  Kubota L185D, Stihl 029, Husqvarna 550XP

Offline texican

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2011, 08:24:29 pm »
After the initial stubborness, it's now where I want a saw to be... two, maybe three pulls on choke, and then it starts.  I have enough troubles, without worrying whether the saw is going to run or not.

Offline bic

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #7 on: December 16, 2011, 07:35:07 am »
I've had a few stihls and have had issues with the fuel lines cracking, don't know if this issue had been fixed or not.
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where there's a mill there's a way

Offline Carpenter

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #8 on: December 16, 2011, 10:55:36 pm »
One good way to do it is to weld some rebar or a bolt or some other scrap metal to a steel plate that is just a little bigger than the post and embed that in the cement.  So that the scrap metal is holding the plate in the cement.  Cut a slot in the post and insert a metal T in the post and weld the two together after the post is set.  Then peg the post to the T with metal rods.  The advantage of this system over a bolt set in concrete is it's easier to raise.  You can still assemble full bents and stand them up instead of having to lift one over the bolt.  Also you can still move the post around some untill you weld it.  We used this system on a Timber Framers Guild project and it worked quite well. 

Offline meddins

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Re: Vertical beams, resting on cement slab...
« Reply #9 on: December 17, 2011, 09:25:59 am »
One way to go about this is to put in four 1/2" lag screws in the bottom of the post. The head of the lag screw will hold your post about 1/4" above the slab. You can move your post around a little until you've got it where you want. Then you can come back later and install L-brackets and make a secure slab to post connection.

For termites you can soak your post with a hose or leave it out in the rain then spray it with timbor or another borate solution. It will wick in to the timber. Borate is relatively low toxicity.