Framing a Partition Wall On The Floor
Make one room feel like two. First, lay out the bottom plate of the new wall, and then cut 2x4 top and soleplates to length. Measure the distance between the floor and the ceiling, or the joists, and use the layout marks to see how many studs you'll need. Lay the soleplate on edge along the floor line, and the top plate on edge with the layout marks facing the soleplate. Once all studs have been attached to the soleplates, raise the wall and position the plates on the floor and ceiling lines.
- LAY OUT BOTTOM PLATE OF NEW WALL
- CUT TOP AND SOLEPLATES TO WALL LENGTH
- MEASURE BETWEEN FLOOR AND CEILING/JOISTS
- DETERMINE NUMBER OF REQUIRED STUDS
- LAY SOLEPLATE ON EDGE ALONG FLOOR LINE
LAY OUT BOTTOM PLATE OF NEW WALL
Locate the line by measuring from an existing wall. It may not create perfectly square corners, but it's more important that the new wall and old wall be parallel, especially if you'll be installing tile or a suspended ceiling later.
CUT TOP AND SOLEPLATES TO WALL LENGTH
Determine the length of the wall; cut 2x4 top and soleplates to length. Place the 2x4s side by side and lay out the top plates and soleplates, spacing centres of the studs 16 inches apart (16 inches on centre). Mark the edge of the plates too, so that the marks will be easy to see while nailing.
MEASURE BETWEEN FLOOR AND CEILING/JOISTS
Measure the distance between the floor and the ceiling, or the joists, at several locations along where the wall will be constructed. Take the shortest distance and subtract 3-1/8 inches (1-1/2 inches each for the top and soleplates and 1/8 inch for space to maneuver the wall into place). This will be the stud length. (For extra accuracy use a plumb bob.)
DETERMINE NUMBER OF REQUIRED STUDS
Count the layout marks to see how many studs you'll need, and cut them to length. Sight down the edge of each stud to see whether it's straight. If not, mark the edge to show which side has the crown (high spot).
LAY SOLEPLATE ON EDGE ALONG FLOOR LINE
Lay the soleplate on its edge along the floor line. Select the best two studs, and place them at each end of the wall with the crown up. Nail the soleplate and studs together with 16d nails.
LAY THE TOP PLATE
Lay the top plate on edge with the layout marks facing the soleplate, and nail it to the end studs using 16d nails. Insert the remaining studs, crown up, and nail in place with 16d nails.
RAISE WALL AND POSITION PLATES
Once all studs have been attached to the top and soleplates, raise the wall and position the plates on the floor and ceiling lines.
SHIM AND NAIL THE WALL
If the wall fits too loosely, shim under the bottom plate to tighten the wall in the space. Nail the wall to the floor and ceiling joists with 16d nails.
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Skill Level: Beginner
Time: 2 hours
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- 16d Finishing Nails