Any design guides for decks worth recommending?
#6
Brick    
DW wants to replace our temporary deck that I built long ago to buy time while we figured out what to do with the back of the house.  There's a concrete slab on cement block perimeter walls with 3-1/2 ft deep footings, which I think we'll need to demolish.  Maybe use the block walls to support part of the deck, since they're legal depth with footings.  It was built to be the base for a sun room, which we aren't going to build and the original owners never added.  

Next to it is the small, crappy temporary deck I made so we didn't have to step out of the kitchen onto brick, then back up to the slab.  Next to that is her vegetable garden in raised beds which I will either relocate, or incorporate into a full-width deck using pots and/or planters for a smaller hobby garden.

I'm perfectly capable of doing any and all drawings, which have to be filed for a permit as the town will stop a sale for an unpermitted deck (even just wood laying on the ground, as my FIL found out), and I don't mind going back and forth with the building department since they're actually quite easy to work with.  But I don't do architecture and don't know what the rules are for decks.  This is a ground level deck, in case that wasn't clear.  

I don't want to pay someone for something I can do myself as long as the 'rules' are relatively simple and clear.  I'll hire out the construction, so I need enough detail that a contractor won't be able to come back for extras.  

Can anyone recommend a design guide for a simple single-level rectangular deck on a few Sonotubes and block walls, attached to the house along the long wall? 

   

That gray slab in the middle is the PT framed, synthetic wood decked 'deck'.  It's sitting on cement blocks, which of course, means it moves with frost.   Laugh
Tom

“This place smells like that odd combo of flop sweat, hopelessness, aaaand feet.”







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#7
  Re: Any design guides for decks worth recommending? by TDKPE (DW wants to replace ...)
I learned most everything I needed to know when I designed my deck a few years ago at Decks.com.  Also, ask your building department if they have any printed guidelines for decks.  

John
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#8
  Re: Any design guides for decks worth recommending? by TDKPE (DW wants to replace ...)
The guide I start with is https://www.awc.org/pdf/codes-standards/...e-1405.pdf

As far as design goes if you have basic measurements and an idea most lumberyards have the software and a deck design specialist who can help you with a drawing and materials list.
Any free advice given is worth double price paid.
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#9
  Re: RE: Any design guides for decks worth recommending? by Woodenfish (The guide I start wi...)
(08-19-2019, 03:29 PM)Woodenfish Wrote: The guide I start with is https://www.awc.org/pdf/codes-standards/...e-1405.pdf

As far as design goes if you have basic measurements and an idea most lumberyards have the software and a deck design specialist who can help you with a drawing and materials list.

Wow, good stuff.  I'll print that off and give it a study.

(paraphrased from Captain Ron)
Tom

“This place smells like that odd combo of flop sweat, hopelessness, aaaand feet.”







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#10
  Re: Any design guides for decks worth recommending? by TDKPE (DW wants to replace ...)
(08-19-2019, 04:01 PM)TDKPE Wrote: Wow, good stuff.  I'll print that off and give it a study.

(paraphrased from Captain Ron)

Tom, just keep in mind that the prescriptive guide will (usually) meet or exceed code requirements, which basically means; "if you build it like this, it will pass". It doesn't mean you have to build your deck that way for it to pass. You don't need to use 6x6 posts (I use 4x4's, and sometimes they're on top of a buried 4' long, 4" plastic pipe sitting on a 10" round plastic footing.) You also don't have to open up your basement ceiling to satisfy the lateral support requirement. There are many other ways to keep the deck attached to the house when twenty people decide to do the Hully-gully out there. Another thing that semi-knowledgeable carpenters say is that you can't notch guard rail posts or even put them on the outside of the frame. I always put them on the outside, and put a single one (vs. two as shown in the pretty pictures) right on the corners. Another trick you might like is instead of using the deck frame as your top riser, add one riser and half of a tread to your stringers. The stair rail will end up the same height as the other guard rails, and it's a lot cleaner looking too.

On a design point, I will say that most of the decks I've done recently have extra wide stairways to open the deck to the yard. Three of them were the whole width of the decks; 20', 24' and 8'. The 8' has 15" wide treads; it's nice overflow seating on an otherwise smallish deck.
Sign at N.E. Vocational School Cabinetmaking Shop 1976, "Free knowledge given daily... Bring your own container"
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