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  1. #1
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    Default Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    I am building a low level deck of the back of my house. The distance from the top joists to grade is 27". I am using 2x10s for the joists and a triple 2 x 10 for the beam that will be supporting the joists from underneath. This leaves me with only 8" (27" - 9.5*2) from the bottom of the triple beam to grade. Once we take into account the concrete pier coming above grade approx 4" and post standoff (1") this would leave only 3" for my 6x6 post between the concrete pier and the triple beam. So my thinking is that it would be best to raise the pier footing to extend above grade a few inches higher and do away with the post altogether. So therefore, the triple beam would be sitting directly on the concrete pier (save some type of connector/standoff). Which leads me to my question; is anyone aware of a 4.5" beam to concrete connector? Thanks!!

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    1 - Do away with the triple 2x "beam" and go with a single cut member of the dimension you require. While a single beam may be slightly less strong, in the environment you are installing it, it will be far less prone to rot and issues than a sistered member.

    2 - Simpson used to have a pedestal style post base, you may have to go to them directly, as today's big box suppliers wouldn't know what is useful to the consumer if it bit them on the ass. Another option would be to go to an actual lumber yard, contractor's supply, or similar professionals oriented supplier that you have available locally to you.
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  3. #3
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    Default Re: Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    Without seeing your plan, most likely all you need is a 4x10 beam.

    Go to strongtie.com and search "post to beam connector", they probably have a few to choose from, then look for it in hardware stores.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    Quote Originally Posted by dj1 View Post
    Without seeing your plan, most likely all you need is a 4x10 beam.

    Go to strongtie.com and search "post to beam connector", they probably have a few to choose from, then look for it in hardware stores.
    Sorry for not including my specs. The deck will be approx 17'6" along the home and 16' out towards the back of the yard. The joist span will be 13'6" with a 2'6" cantilever. Based on the DCA, I calculated I will need 3 concrete piers. The two end piers will be 1' in from either end of and the center pier will be 7'9" in from the end piers. Again according to the DCA, I will need to use a triple 2x10 and 6x6 posts. The Simpson "post" connectors come in sizes that fit the nominal post sizes (For 6x6 post = 5.5" and for 4x4 = 3.5"). I did not see anything for 4.5" which makes sense as they are post connectors; not beam connectors. When you say I would most likely need a 4x10 beam do you mean a double 2x10? Even if so, the connectors that I saw in the Simpson catalog support nominal 4x4 which are 3.5". Specifically, I'm looking at Simpson's ABA/ABU/ABW Adjustable and Standoff Post Bases line of connectors. Perhaps you saw a different connector that I missed. Thanks for your feedback.

    Chris

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    Quote Originally Posted by A. Spruce View Post
    1 - Do away with the triple 2x "beam" and go with a single cut member of the dimension you require. While a single beam may be slightly less strong, in the environment you are installing it, it will be far less prone to rot and issues than a sistered member.

    2 - Simpson used to have a pedestal style post base, you may have to go to them directly, as today's big box suppliers wouldn't know what is useful to the consumer if it bit them on the ass. Another option would be to go to an actual lumber yard, contractor's supply, or similar professionals oriented supplier that you have available locally to you.
    A. Spruce,

    Are you suggesting I upsize to say a single 5.5"x17'6" member and use a Post connector for 6x6 posts (e.g. Simpson's ABA/ABU/ABW Adjustable and Standoff Post Bases line of connectors)? I'm thinking this might be overkill and quite expensive. I was also thinking of sandwiching plywood between the beams to get me from 4.5" to 5.5" so I could use a standard 6x6 post standoff connector. Thanks.

    Chris

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    1. For the width of 17'6" you need 3 piers. You can get by with 4x10 because you have 3 piers and less that 8' between them. 3-2x10 are overkill. You can substitute the 4x10 beams with 2 - 2x10 boards and then sandwich a 1/2x10x8 cut plywood between them. Nail properly and it will fit the 3-1/2" connectors. BUT, I prefer 4x10 beams.

    2. As for the depth, again you will need 3 piers, 8' from wall. Here too, use 4x10 beams.

    3. You make sure everything is leveled with precision.

    Your joists will now rest on 2 beams and the ridge board on the wall. Install all proper connections and your cantilever will be safe to walk on. I've build a few of those, just like this - they're all still standing !

    Then you can attach stairs, build railings, set a table and chairs and enjoy a margarita.

    What types of woods did you choose?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    Quote Originally Posted by christech View Post
    A. Spruce,

    Are you suggesting I upsize to say a single 5.5"x17'6" member and use a Post connector for 6x6 posts (e.g. Simpson's ABA/ABU/ABW Adjustable and Standoff Post Bases line of connectors)? I'm thinking this might be overkill and quite expensive. I was also thinking of sandwiching plywood between the beams to get me from 4.5" to 5.5" so I could use a standard 6x6 post standoff connector. Thanks.
    I am suggesting, as is DJ, that you spec the right size beam and the right material for the job. A sistered beam is not the correct use of material in this instance, especially if you are going to add plywood into the mix.

    Think about it, where is this deck going to be, outside, right? What is outside besides all kinds of rain and moisture? What is plywood but layers of wood that are glued together. What happens to plywood when it gets wet, it delaminates. What happens when you trap moisture between two pieces of wood? It rots. So, what you are proposing to do, is build a beam that will hold moisture and rot. I can guarantee that there will be rot within just a few years.

    As for the size of the beam, I'd suggest recalculating your load specs and ratings.A 4x10 will span 8' all day long, no matter how much deck you put on top of it. If you're still worried about it, add another pier instead of laminating a larger beam and getting into all the problems outlined above.

    One of the keys to designing anything is to not design leaks or failure into whatever it is you are building. IMHO, a laminated beam under a deck, especially one with plywood in it is just asking for trouble. If you think building this deck is hard now, think about how much fun replacing your main support beam is going to be.
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  8. #8
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    Jun 2009
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    19

    Default Re: Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    Gents,

    Thanks for taking your time to provide your input. Much appreciated.

    I agree with both of you regarding avoiding plywood to size up to fit the 4x4 or 6x6 stand-offs. And I also agree that going with a single beam is the best route. I live in New Jersey and it looks like all the big box stores carry is PS Southern Pine in the typical 2-by sizes. I haven't seen any 4x10s or 4x12s, etc. This week I'll check with some local lumber yards and see if they carry these sizes. Thanks, again.

    Chris

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Low Level Deck - Triple Deck Beam to Concrete Pier Connector

    Skip the box stores and head over to 84 LUMBER. They will have everything you need. All the sizes you need, and you get to select the lumber.

    The framing should be PT. Top deck - your choice. Stay away from composite top deck.

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