My fiance and I visited a home today that is roughly 80 years old.
While inspecting the basement, I noticed something odd about the floor framing:
The concrete foundation wall is topped by a sill plate, as I expected. The header plate (2x8 or 2x10 on edge, I wasn't paying enough attention) was very close to the inside edge of the sill plate, about half an inch away. The floor joists rested on this exposed half inch of sill.
I thought for a moment that perhaps I was mistaking some blocking for the header plate, but one of the floor joists wasn't quite square, and I got my finger between the end of the joist and the header plate. This particular joist was resting on no more than 1/4" of the sill plate.
The floor joists ran the width of the house, and were supported in the middle by a tripled joist supported by a wooden column.
Is such header placement unusual? Is it safe, assuming the header plate is nailed to each joist? I had an awful vision of the first floor collapsing into the basement.
Any insight is appreciated.
Bill in St. Louis