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building code variations by region

This topic contains 24 replies, has 12 voices, and was last updated by  cranbrook2 4 years, 12 months ago.

Viewing 20 posts - 1 through 20 (of 25 total)
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  • #20355

    jkirk
    Moderator
    halifax, nova scotia

    hey guys.
    we all know how our codes may vary from region to region be it do to seismic regions, tornado and hurricane regions. or cold weather climate and warm weather climate

    im a member of a few other trade message boards and a member on another board is questioning teh engineering for deck building via using 6×6 posts for bearing posts.. he thinks its utter insanity and makes absolutely no sense. claing that upping the thickness of a post doesnt do anything but increase the compression rating.. i know that certain u.s states have substandard codes and inspection regulation.. is maryland one of them. the guy im referring two calls himself a master but quite a bit of the advise he gives either makes no sense or would be classified as hack work.

    does anyone have any insite on this

    heres a tip, dont fart in a space suit

    #20539

    I don’t really Jeff. I do know that where I live…it is frightening what they build for decks around here. I have seen whole decks held up by two knee braces to the wall. It’s insanity here.

    I would say 6×6 would make me sleep at night better, for sure.

    #20554

    mark
    Pro
    Jackson, TN

    We’re never required to use 6×6 except in barn constructions or some other long spanned vertical length where lateral forces could snap a 4×4. The only other time we use them is situations where a 4×4 may twist or bow, or the customer specifically wants them. For most deck construction, 4×4’s are commonplace here.

    #20559

    parenos
    Moderator
    Honesdale, PA

    I will only use 6 by 6’s. building to code does not make it right. I am no engineer, however I feel that when loading a deck compression strength is not as important as sheer strength.

    #20560

    cranbrook2
    Pro
    Belgrave, Ontario , Canada

    When I build a second storey deck I use 6×6 which is also code and a first floor deck I use 4×4 .If the first floor had walls and a roof to support then I would use 6×6 .

    #27974

    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Pro
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    The larger the post the greater the resistance to bending. Compresive strenght of a post is only one consideration . The second is the unsuported length.

    A 6 x 6 will allow a greater unsuported length (unbraced) than a 4 x4 and thus greater strength.

    That said, we always use 6 x 6 posts for decks and porches because they allow us to cut a notch it support a double beam and still leave a 2″ to 2 1/2″ leg on one side to fasten to. Amuch stronger connection than 2 – 2 x sitting on a post, even with a framing connector. More resistance to rotation also.

    #27988

    redwood
    Pro

    We generally use 6×6 posts for anything over 6′ high.

    What I’ve had a hard time comprehending is the use of double beams sandwiched together, instead of a solid beam. Out here, all beams are solid, no notching of the posts, just set them on the posts with approriate hardware.

    Mark E.

    Pioneer, CA

    Working Pro 1972 - 2015
    Member since Jan 22, 2013
    www.creative-redwood-designs.com

    #27992

    parenos
    Moderator
    Honesdale, PA

    Most times I will notch a 6 by 6 like kurt. The Sandwiched beams around the posts blows my mind how that can pass code in some regions. They will pass that where I am, but I would never do it. All the load is being held up by the fasteners. Chances are nothing will ever happen and they will hold, but why take that chance.
    The thing that bothers me is that now I have to install solid risers on all treads. Most of the newer codes just cost everyone involved money.

    #28016

    jdw1865
    Pro
    Dewey, OK

    I see a few 6×6 here but a surprising number of 4×6 also. Remember is thickening boards only increased compressive strength, we would be using 1x material for rafters and joists.

    #28017

    cranbrook2
    Pro
    Belgrave, Ontario , Canada

    4×6 seems like a odd number to be using for post .I have never seen it done before .

    #28021

    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Pro
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    We see 4 x 6 once in a while. Mostly in verylow decks. Itypically dont use them. 6 x 6 is sometimes overkill but it provides more to fasten to.
    Around here we have the most access to treated 2 x material so that is what we use. Larger beams are not readily available and much more expensive.

    #50606

    FLAUER
    Pro
    MENOMONEE FALLS, WI

    Jeff, this topic always reminds me that some codes are out there to protect us and customers from hacks. I have run into overly anal inspectors, but in the end, the job is done right and everyone is safe. Including the contractor if something is to happen. That said, I have never pulled a permit on any of my personal projects:-)

    #50609

    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Pro
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    One of the instructors for a continuing education class I had put it this way. ” the code is a minimum standard to build to. If you just meet the requirements ofthe code, congratulations, you get a “c” on the project.”

    I thought this was a good statement. Nothing says you can not exceed the requirements of the code. While we have all been frustrated by overly zealous code officials, we need to remember that their zealously is their concern for the safety of the end user.

    That said, a good knowledge of the code can help you when a code official is trying to push an overly strict interpretation that is contrary to what is required. They are human and do make mistakes.

    #50673

    jdw1865
    Pro
    Dewey, OK

    Your are correct Kurt. Inspectors and contractors are people. Some are good at their job and some are not. And even the good ones make mistakes some times.

    #50679

    jim_hunt17
    Pro
    Milwaukee, WI

    I deal with a lot of inspectors at work. The quote above about meeting standards gives you a “c” is pretty spot on. Most of the inspectors I see tend to be a lot easier on you if you go a little above and beyond code. I have on in the Milwaukee area that is fresh out of college and out to prove himself. I cringe when he calls to set up a time because I know i’ll have about a three page list of nit picky stuff to fix.

    Jim H.
    Milwaukee, WI

    #50709

    redwood
    Pro

    I remember when working on a restaurant remodel many years ago, a young new inspector came in and announced “I am your god” or something like that. He then failed almost every inspection of every trade. He was a jerk.

    On another project, we were building a 2 story office building. The inspector never went to the 2nd floor.

    Mark E.

    Pioneer, CA

    Working Pro 1972 - 2015
    Member since Jan 22, 2013
    www.creative-redwood-designs.com

    #50769

    kurt@welkerhomes.com
    Pro
    Owatonna, MN - Minnesota

    Mark, I have seen that side also, there are inspectors out there that do have a god complex, they do that for the same reason a dog licks his ba___,
    “Because they can”

    It is unfortunate that they take that attitude as it gives all inspectors a bad name. You always hear the bad stories but not the good.

    I have dealt with some very good inspectors (helpfull) over they years but the ead experiences really stand out.

    #50805

    redwood
    Pro

    You are very right there Kurt. There have been some very good and helpful inspectors, but it’s the crummy ones that stand out in my memory banks.

    Unfortunately, it’s the same with clients, the bad ones you never forget.

    Mark E.

    Pioneer, CA

    Working Pro 1972 - 2015
    Member since Jan 22, 2013
    www.creative-redwood-designs.com

    #50818

    joesainz
    Keymaster
    Chicago, IL

    While I think inspectors are important – they shouldn’t be puffing their chest out and saying “I’m your God” or anything like that.

    #50904

    MKE_Voltage
    Moderator
    Saint Francis, WI

    I work closely with all of my city’s inspectors: Building, Plumbing, Electrical, Fire Alarm, Fire Code, Weights and Measures, Elevator on an annual or bi-annual basis. I would say the only ones I get along with are W&M and Elevator, the rest just think they are king.

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