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Advise for ceiling joists on long open span shop

Richard705's picture

I'm building a 30X40 shop with 2 15' lean's off opposites sides for 5th wheel and tractor parking. I really want to leave the 30' span fully open. I'm also looking to have the upper area avaliable for storage or a nice man cave/poker room.

With traditional dimensional lumber out of the equalsion unless I was to use 2 steel beams to break up the 40', ( which may be the cheaper way to go ), what recommendation would be better, LVL or I-Joists?

You could probably get LVLs (post #215762, reply #1 of 3)

You could probably get LVLs to work but floor trusses would probably be cheaper and a whole lot easier to install. We just put up some 26 X 18" LVLs and even with a lift they are terrible heavy and awkard to handle. 

Florida Licensed Building Contractor, 50 years experience in commercial remodeling, new homes, home remodeling and repairs and all types building maintenance.

Traditional dimensional lumber? (post #215762, reply #2 of 3)

This is not a simple "traditional dimensional lumber" question! You need an engineer. Minimally, you need an understanding of how live and dead loads work..sheer forces and all that. If you have the essential math skills and a knowledge of design issues, you can do the calculations yourself. Truss Joist Corporation has on-line help and other sources available to assist you. Don't forget that a buidling permit requires you to show ALL the details regarding design loads, etc. "An ounce of prevention...." I wish you well.

Mel Fros

That depends (post #215762, reply #3 of 3)

"permit requires...."   WWWEEELLLLLLLLL that depends wher you build.  I needed a napkin drawn design.  Well ok, the application had a blank 4 inch by 6 inch space in which to make a drawing.  Not saying that a stamped plan is not nice, just not always required.

If you know a bit about loads, point loads, and a bit of linggo, you can find all the load tables, bearring point requiremnets, etc. on-line.  I designed my own house using the internet.  Family and friends told me I could not do it, I needed a designer/engineer.  Ok, I bit, paid $1200 for a designer and $800 for an engineer.  I found at least five errors on the designs I paid for, missing piers in the craawlspace, undersized beams, etc.  I brought these to the designer's attention and he said to me "good call".  So much for two grand.