NE Oregon 20 x 30+ 1.5 story

Started by CabinNick, June 01, 2015, 11:16:39 PM

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We excavated for our foundation today; contractor should form and pour later this week.  Exciting to finally be breaking ground for the cabin!!  I was not sure if we were going to get this done before winter hit. 

I also mostly finished the exterior of the outhouse/shed.  The outhouse will just be for the next year or two until we get water hooked up and for in the winter when we don't want to turn the water on for short trips.  I took a 24" water pipe, cut perforations in the bottom 5 feet, and buried it vertically about 12'.  I cut the pipe off about an inch below the toilet seat.  Building the outhouse was my trial run for the cabin build - to make sure we liked the color/style of roofing and siding and learn how to do the window, door, metal roof, etc.  Made a handful of mistakes but glad they were made on the outhouse instead of the cabin!


Poured our footings yesterday.  Stem wall will be formed and poured early next week.  I contracted the foundation work.  One note incase anyone ever compares this pictures to our floor plans....the two forms for the isolated piers are in the wrong location in these pictures.....oops!

Question:  Our loads will be almost entirely supported by the outside walls.  As you can see in the picture, there are three places where we will have load bearing posts supported by concrete piers inside the crawl space.  I was planning on doing dimensions similar to the footings - 16x16" and 8" deep.  Should I be making these deeper than 8"?


The IRC doesn't differentiate interior and exterior footings for a crawlspace foundation, so you should be good with the same dimensions as your exterior pour.

What's the load bearing value of your soil?
My cabin build thread: Alaskan remote 16x28 1.5 story


As CT was alluding to, the minimum size of the footing is load/ soil bearing capacity. The distance from the post or pier to the edge of the footing should not be greater than the footing thickness.


Soil bearing capacity is 3,000 psf.  I decided to just wait and pour the pier next summer when I start the build.  I think I will play it safe and just make them a little larger than my exterior footings. 

Pulled the forms on the stem wall today.  Foundation turned out great.  I was really nervous that we were not going to get this done before weather hit but now we have 65 degree highs in the forecast for the next 10 days.  We are going to let the concrete cure for at least 7 days and then backfill. 


Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn't mean it is good design.


Looking good  :)
Depending on soils and freeze it might be worth stacking straw inside over the footings.


Don - so the idea would be to pile straw on top of the footings to insulate the soil under them so it would not freeze and uplift?  Our soils are well drained and most of the foundation is sitting on fractured rock (mid-sized excavator could not get through it).  I wasn't planning on doing anything but maybe straw would be cheap insurance. 


I put my foundation about this time last year with actual work to start in spring.  I was worried about freezing (soils are not that well draining at my location).  I had the walls and the floor on, so I ended up buying the fiberglass batts I will be using in the walls ahead of time, and laid them on the (cement) floor.  I don't know if it helped or not but I didn't get any freeze cracks.  We had a couple of weeks with temps in the single digits, so I was glad I didn't take any chances.  I put an indoor/outdoor thermometer in the basement, with the "outdoor" sensor under the batts.  It typically was 5 to 8 degrees warmer under the batts than above.


The property is covered in snow now.....time to switch from working on the ground to doing computer/paperwork to get ready for next summer's build. 

After talking with the Building Department, I decided to platform frame instead of balloon frame.  I will have 2x6 spaced 16" OC for my walls.  The second floor will be supported on 6x12 Douglas Fir exposed beams spaced 48" OC.  I have seen folks on this site do exposed beams a couple of different ways.  Can someone help me understand what I need to do in the space between the 48" spaced beams to transfer the load from the 2nd story walls to the first.  There will be a 2x12" rim joist, but what else do I need?  Do I add another 2x12 parallel between the beams or do I just add 12" tall vertical 2x6" under each of the studs?

Made a quick figure to show what I am talking about. 


When I've done that the rim was also heavy timber, notched for the joists, the rim generally about an inch or two thicker than the frame wall to provide a step over the wall finish. It takes care of finishing out that area between joists. I'm not sure that I see any structural problems with what you have drawn but I think it will be a headache at finish and trim time. The floor typically goes on top of the joists before the second floor walls are framed but I have done what you drew to keep it out of the weather, think about the floor to gable end detail if you go that route though.


Hey Don, can he run cripple studs between the beams in line with the studs?


Sure. I've also just framed pockets for beams to drop into, then the top plate/sole plate for the floor above would run across the beam tops, no rim. This is a different situation but shows the idea sort of. There were a couple of spaced 2x6's to form posts under there then a stud ran up each side of the beams and were secured to the beams. I just have a single jack in at the time of that pic underneath the truss that's in place, then there was a spacer and the second jack to fill out the stud depth.


Thanks for the info.  I am leaning toward just using small cripple studs to transfer the load but have all winter to mull it over some more.


Need some help on an issue.  My 2nd floor will be built out of 2x6 T&G decking sitting on top of 6x12x20' beams spaced 48" OC.  All of the beams will be full span except for one to allow space for the stairs. The picture below only shows the beams I have a question about; there will be one 6x12 joist spanning about 8'.  This joist will have a load bearing post under it in the center and far right side in the picture.  My question is what is the best method to attach the ends of the joist to the full span beams and the end of the short beam to the joist?  Should I use a combination of 90 degree angle brackets as well as a couple bolts through the beam into the end of the joist or will one of those methods be sufficent? These will be exposed beams so I am planning on purchasing one of the commercially available brackets or having them fabricated locally.  Thanks for the help - 60 days away from starting our build!


If the inspector will allow it and if you are ok with exposed steel... I've welded 3x3x1/4" angle with the "ears" inturned and a bottom pocket of angle. This is then predrilled for structural screws, mounted to the carrying beam and the joist is dropped into the "bucket". If you need more capacity than the screws can give a piece of angle can be welded to the top that hangs it onto the carrying beam. If you want a more hidden connection then a knife plate can run in a kerf in the center of the joist vertically, the knife plate is welded to a backing plate that screws to the carrying beam and there is a plate on the bottom to support the joist. Simpson makes this kind of thing as well. A concealed hanger is a CJT6 ~3425lb capacity. The exposed steel hanger might be one of their WM or WMU types, I'd give them a call if you go that route and let them help advise.

We may have already talked about it, have you checked headroom at the stair landing and top of stairs? Also check that window on the landing against the hazardous glazing section in chapter 3 of the IRC, that may need to be tempered.


Thanks Don.  I found the Simpson connectors after I asked the question on the forum.  I have a meeting scheduled with our inspector later this week; will also ask them what they would like to see. 

Yes, I have spent a LOT of time mapping out the exact stair heights to meet code.  I ended up having to raise the height of my walls several inches to get the code clearance +6" at the landing.  During plan review our inspector said the window will have to be tempered.   


Finally got our septic system installed last week, ran the water line through the foundation, had a frost free hydrant put in and got most of the site leveling completed.

After a couple years of planning, I am taking almost a month off of work starting late next week to finally start building.  Appreciate everyone's help in getting me to this point!  Excited to finally start building.  I am going to put the floor in, frame the walls, install the beams for the 2nd floor and then turn it over to a contractor to install the trusses and complete the roof sheeting/metal.  I had planned on doing it all myself but with a 12/12 pitch roof and 200 pound trusses, I am happy with my decision.  Hopefully in a few weeks I will have a picture to post of me dancing a jig on our new floor!


Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn't mean it is good design.


Looking good. Don't forget it is easier to smooth the crawlspace floor and chuck out rocks before the floor goes on.


Our cabin build is going great.  Last week my dad and I were able to complete the floor joist, subfloor, get the exterior walls up and get the first 8' of sheathing up.  I will post some pictures soon of our progress.  It has been a busy 8 days!

Through this planning process I was so focused on the structural elements that I never paid much attention to the process of framing the interior, non-bearing walls.  Stupid question - should I frame the first floor, interior, non-bearing walls now before I put the beams/2nd floor on or could I just wait and do all the interior walls after I get the cabin all dried in? 


You can wait with the non-load bearing partitions.
Just because something has been done and has not failed, doesn't mean it is good design.


Looking foward to seeing your progress photos!


I finally have a couple hours of down time to post some pictures of our build.  I will start at the beginning and catch up as I can. 

Last fall we had the foundation put in.  Earlier this spring the septic went in and some more leveling work was done. 

On June 15 my dad (retired, mid-60's) and I started building the structure.  My dad has quite a bit of building experience but I have only built decks, fences, sheds, etc. Our site is very remote and completely off grid, so we are spending the night on site whenever we can.  For the floor we used 14" tall I-joist with 20' and 26' span.  The 26' span is supported by a beam in the crawl space at the 20' mark.  Neither of us have worked with engineered wood at all but the floor system went up quick and easy.  Our only problem was the contractor made a mistake on the layout of the sill plates and we could not follow our original plan of 16" OC for the i-joist due to hitting anchor bolts.  We also made the mistake of not counting the lumber that was delivered to make sure we received what we ordered.....we found out the next day we were 3 I-joist short of a floor. 

This is the foundation when we started.

We poured a few footings in the crawl space and started laying out I-joists

Put the rim boards on and then put in squash blocks to support the load bearing walls and the second floor beams. 

And before was time for the dance photo!

It took the two of us two full days of sun up to sun down work to get the joists, rim board and subfloor on.  Then another day of dinking around with crawl space access, securing all hangers, and tinkering around with a few other small things. 

The next day we spent on layout and then started framing up the walls.

After about a year of mulling it over, I decided to put horizontal nailers every 2' in between the studs to nail our board and batten siding into.  We added the nailers while the walls were on the ground.  It was difficult and took over half a day.  Two friends came that evening and helped us lift the walls in less than 45 minutes.  I was worried if 3 or 4 of us would be able to lift the 2x6, 8 foot walls but it was not hard at all. 


The next day several more friends came and helped us frame and lift the other walls. 

By the end of the day we were able get the first level of sheathing on (7/16" OSB) and cut out the doors and the windows. 

When I have some more time I will post some pictures of our 6"x12"x20' beams going up and the 2x6 T&G decking going down. 


It's so helpful and inspiring to see this process. Thanks for sharing!!