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Step by step guide
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How to build a stud wall written by Luke

Tools Needed

Hammer, Chop Saw (if preferable),Jigsaw (if preferable), Hand Saw, Drill Driver, Hammer Drill (if fixing to brick/blockwork), Set Square, Spirit Level, Tape Measure, Pencil.

Materials Needed

Timber (4x2), Screws (at least 70mm), Wall Plugs (if fixing to brick/blockwork).

Step 1 : The Base Plate

So you have your materials, now to use them! First mark out with your tape measure, level and pencil where the location of your stud wall is to be erected. Now start with your base plate, if your stud wall is having an opening we suggest you leave your base plate intact, this will maintain the strength and accuracy of your wall until fully erected at which point you can saw and remove the section of base plate where opening is to be. When fixing your base plate to your floor you must take in to consideration that there might pipes or wires below the floor!! A useful tip for this if fixing to a wooden floor is to determine the thickness of your floor, say 22mm, then add this to your timber thickness. So 47 + 22 = 69mm, therefore the size of your screw should be no bigger than 69mm! Please still take into account that some pipes and wires maybe notched into the top part of your joists. If you are fixing to a concrete floor you can drill and plug into this, however the same applies, there might be pipes or wires beneath, so it’s better to be safe than sorry and fix your timber down using a solvent glue, like a grab adhesive, also known as no nails. Apply this to both the floor and timber, then position correctly, tap down and slightly wiggle the timber into place, this will ensure good contact between both bonding areas. Now follow the recommended drying times normally indicated by the manufacturer for the grab adhesive and allow to dry until secure and solid. You might want to place some heavy objects on your floor plate, this will help to further secure it to the floor.

Step 2 : Wall Plates

Now you have your base plate in place, it’s now time to fix your two wall plates to your wall, using screws and wall plugs, ensuring both are level and have sufficient fixings. Also place some fixings where the wall and base plate meet by fixing your screws diagonal, you may want to pre drill first as this can sometimes be a little bit tricky.

Step 3 : Ceiling Plate

Now for your ceiling plate, this is straight forward as you already have your position to where it should go providing your wall plates are level. When cutting your ceiling plate, over cut slightly by 2 - 3mm, this will allow the plate to be softly wedged and in turn free your hands allowing you to get a good fixing. When fixing to the ceiling you should locate your joists and screw into these providing they run the opposite way to your plate, same as the base plate you must take in to consideration there might pipes or wires above or running though these joists. If your existing joists run adjacent to your plate we suggest you place some noggins in between these joists at around 600 c/c. Now you can fix your ceiling plate to these. If your ceiling is concrete then simply follow Step 1 as you would for fixing your base plate to a concrete floor. Wedge the ceiling plate with some timber until dry.

Step 4 : Studs

Now you have all your plates in place, time for the studs (and opening if you have one). The location of these will be determined by several factors, the length of your wall, if you are having an opening, if your stud wall has a corner etc. After taking these factors into consideration you should place your studs at 600 c/c, the main reason for this being is your plasterboards are in metric lengths, plasterboards are 2400mm x 1200mm (8’ x 4’) or 1200mm x 600mm (6‘ x 3‘), therefore if you place your studs and they are level at 600c/c then when fixing your plasterboards each one will sit comfortably in the centre of the stud at each end. So determine where you will place your first plasterboard, attach your tape measure to the furthest end of the timber and mark off with pencil in sequence (also marking off where your opening is to be) every 600 c/c, so 600, 1200, 1800 etc. So we now have the locations of where your studs are to be placed (and opening). Now measure the height of your stud, each stud will probably be slightly different in height so we suggest you measure and place each one separately, as with the ceiling plate it would be a good idea to over cut each stud slightly by 2 - 3mm, now cut accordingly. Mark the centre of your studs and line these up with the marks on your plate, softly wedge in place and fix to the floor and ceiling plate by fixing diagonally through the studs, two screws each side of the stud, top and bottom will suffice.

Step 5: Noggins

Now to place your noggins. Measure from the floor up on each wall plate, you may want to raise the board off the floor slightly (25mm), so depending on the plasterboard you are using it will either be 625mm or 1225mm high, this 25mm addition will compensate if the floor is un-level or un-even. Once you have your mark on each wall plate then run a chalk line between your two measurements. You now have an accurate line throughout your studs for the centre of your noggins. It’s important to measure the noggins out accurately, especially if you are have an opening, because too small or too large will affect the opening you have made by making it un-level or bowed. With this taken into account all that’s left to do is fix your noggins. Depending on the height of your wall this will determine how many rows of noggins are needed.
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You don’t need a professional to build a stud wall, with the right tools and our handy guide; you can build a stud wall yourself. more...
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