Friday, January 11, 2013

Taking Out Walls

My next project was to get rid of the pointless wall between the living room and dining room.  It seemed like a very unnecessary wall that closed off the dining room a lot more than it needed to be.  Here is the wall already stripped down to the studs...

You can see that the only real purpose this wall served was housing a few HVAC vents and an outlet, other than that it just seemed weird.  It didn't really seperate the rooms as the opening between the wall and the outside wall to the left was still a large opening, but the offset just killed all flow.  We pictured it completely open with knee walls creating a center opening and a few columns to clearly divide the two rooms but also keep it one space. 

To start out I climbed up into the attic and checked out the rafters to see if it was load bearing or not.  I didn't think it was (as a structural engineer you would think I could say that with a little more conviction), but just to be sure I put up a temporary wall and got to work removing what was left of the wall. 

With everything gone but my "temporary wall" which consisted of 6 2x4's and no nails, probly not the safest but at some point I need to trust my engineering degree and believe myself when I say it isn't load bearing, I was ready to build the new wall.

I used a few 2x6's across the top with some 2x4 spacers to make a beam 5.5" wide to match the 2x6 columns I was putting in.  With the new beam across the top and new columns it was starting to come together. 

Finally I finished it off with the knee walls...

Overall we were very happy with how this turned out, we got two distinct spaces but added a much more open feel to the area.  Plus, we now have the knee wall as a place for decorations and picture frames and of course columns to wrap in garland for Christmas. 


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