Deck Repair w/Trex (and link to jpg)

SWMBO left heavy flower pots on each end of our 48" unsupported step made out of Trex this summer, and the Trex boards warped (very bad--more than 2").
The design looks poor, so that's where I'll point the blame. ; )
Here is a drawing of the current design along with my proposed solution:
http://web.newsguy.com/MySite/deckstep.jpg
Questions: 1. I would prefer to use screws (rather than nails) to add new structural support, so I don't cause damage. 2.5", pre-drilled?
2. In the diagram of my proposed solution, I would have screws being (not) held by end grain. I know that this is a problem.. What is a smart, easy and inexpensive way to get around this here? It looks like I need a brace/bracket of some sort. I would like my repair to last! : )
3. One of the new 5.5" wide Trex boards will have to be "ripped" to 4.25". Is the stuff difficult to cut? Can I use a cheap 40 or 60 tooth blade (do I need to use a router)? The Trex website suggests a 40-tooth "carbide tipped" blade and/or router, I believe. I can practice on the stuff I remove, but as soon as I remove any, I'm going to create a "safety hazard". I haven't even bought the new Trex yet, I'm just planning.
Here is a copy of the SU file, if anyone would care to use it. http://web.newsguy.com/MySite/DeckSteps.skp
(Thanks) Bill
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wrote:

I'd do that.

What do you mean by "cheap"? A steel blade with no carbide? No, I'd not use that. Like any other product, the better the blade, the better the cut but this is a deck, not heirloom furniture so most any carbide blade will work.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

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On 9/8/2013 5:31 PM, Bill wrote:

UNDER $2.. https://www.google.com/#q=JOIST+HANGER

--
Jeff

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woodchucker wrote:

also pleased to finally understand "joist hangers". I've seen them in the store but I didn't "get it" until just now, when I saw a diagram of one "in use".
The whole "box" appears to be coming loose at one corner too and I am pretty sure that the store will have a part next to the joist hangers that will be perfect for that as well!
Does it follow that most "galvanized parts" like this are suitable for non-oceanic (salt) EXTERIOR use?
Thank you much! Bill
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Pre-Drill EVERYTHING (decking, braces, etc.) to avoid "splitting", right???
Thanks!
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"Bill" wrote in message

Based on your drawing it appears that there would be room to screw a ledger board on each of the long sides of the framing and then rest the new "joists" on the ledger boards and secure them by screwing into the end grain. The ledger board will support much of the load... they could be ripped from 5/4" PT decking.
John
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John Grossbohlin wrote:

those words) in the position you described, but then I thought of laying the "joists" flat--and there is too much wrong with that approach. Your idea on the other hand would work. I am going to try the "joist hangers" woodchucker suggested because I've never used them before. I'm also going to up it to 3 "joists" instead of just 2 (12 inches between centers). The rest of the deck has joists at 13" centers, and we are not that light on our toes around here...
I better get it done before I decide it needs a coat of paint or stain (which it might...)!
Thank you! Bill
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I presume you're talking about attaching the short pieces of the new wood to the new longer ones.
a. Dump them and attach the new long ones through the old long ones. Screws/nails into the end grain doesn't matter a bit as their only purpose here would be to prevent lateral movement.
b. Dump them and use small blocks in their place...screw blocks to existing, screw new to blocks.
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dadiOH
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On 9/9/2013 5:43 AM, dadiOH wrote:

Like a pine/fir/other treated 2by2 (for the "small blocks"), right? Here, and in the corners (especially the one that is pulling loose). Sounds good!
Thank you, Bill
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Right. Rip a PT 2x4
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Trex is engineered for 16" spacing and that is why you had a failure at the 47" space. The design you show would work. I would use 2x6 or same size joist hangers. I avoid sandwiching of boards where possible. Especially with planters and wet surface. Trex cut like wax/plastic/sawdust -- in other words it cuts like butter. I use a 1/4 round on edges. You may see some bubble air pockets in any rip. pressure treated material underpinning is best. Screws work....torque drive 3" stainless best. They do have special brackets now for trex also. john
"Bill" wrote in message
SWMBO left heavy flower pots on each end of our 48" unsupported step made out of Trex this summer, and the Trex boards warped (very bad--more than 2").
The design looks poor, so that's where I'll point the blame. ; )
Here is a drawing of the current design along with my proposed solution:
http://web.newsguy.com/MySite/deckstep.jpg
Questions: 1. I would prefer to use screws (rather than nails) to add new structural support, so I don't cause damage. 2.5", pre-drilled?
2. In the diagram of my proposed solution, I would have screws being (not) held by end grain. I know that this is a problem.. What is a smart, easy and inexpensive way to get around this here? It looks like I need a brace/bracket of some sort. I would like my repair to last! : )
3. One of the new 5.5" wide Trex boards will have to be "ripped" to 4.25". Is the stuff difficult to cut? Can I use a cheap 40 or 60 tooth blade (do I need to use a router)? The Trex website suggests a 40-tooth "carbide tipped" blade and/or router, I believe. I can practice on the stuff I remove, but as soon as I remove any, I'm going to create a "safety hazard". I haven't even bought the new Trex yet, I'm just planning.
Here is a copy of the SU file, if anyone would care to use it. http://web.newsguy.com/MySite/DeckSteps.skp
(Thanks) Bill
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On 9/9/2013 9:41 AM, jloomis wrote:

Thank you very much for sharing your knowledge, and your thoroughness! Bill

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jloomis wrote: > Trex is engineered for 16" spacing and that is why you had a failure at the 47" space. > The design you show would work. > I would use 2x6 or same size joist hangers. > I avoid sandwiching of boards where possible. > Especially with planters and wet surface. > Trex cut like wax/plastic/sawdust -- in other words it cuts like butter. > I use a 1/4 round on edges. > You may see some bubble air pockets in any rip. > pressure treated material underpinning is best. > Screws work....torque drive 3" stainless best. > They do have special brackets now for trex also. > john > > "Bill" wrote in message > > SWMBO left heavy flower pots on each end of our 48" unsupported step > made out of Trex this summer, and the Trex boards warped (very bad--more > than 2"). > > The design looks poor, so that's where I'll point the blame. ; ) > > Here is a drawing of the current design along with my proposed solution: >
http://web.newsguy.com/MySite/deckstep.jpg
> > (Thanks) > Bill
Some progress on this has been made. I secured:
- 1" x 5" galvanized Corner braces (2 @ $4.79 each) to help reinforce the front of the "box" from the inside. - Joist hangers for 2by4's (6 @ . 78 cents each) to support three 21-inch "beams" accross the box, to help support the Trex. The beams will thus be 12" between centers. - $9 worth of 1 1/4" Stainless Steel screws for the hardware above. - 16 feet of Trex (@ $3.19 per linear-foot = $51 + tax ---ouch!)
I still have a week+ to wait for the Trex material to arrive. Note to self: Borrow 40 deck-screws from the neighbors deck, three or four at a time. ; )
In the meantime, here is my question:
These 2x4 joist hangers, as most everyone now knows, are designed so that besides the 4 nails or screws (and built-in "staples") securing the hanger, two 10D nails are to be driven, diagonally, through the hanger and through the beam being supported, into whatever is carrying the load. These will evidently provide some structural support--in fact, perhaps as much or more than that provided by the hanger (maybe)? In my case, 48" 2by8s will be carrying "the load", in fact a somewhat weathered 2by8s--and it's difficult to consider pounding twelve 10d (3") nails into them without causing destruction of the existing "box" (so I am hesitant to do that).
Is there a gentler alternative that makes sense? Obviously, just not putting nails through the beam is one possibility (though it wouldn't be as strong, and it might not be as nice if the beams move). Is there a suitable screw or another suitable nail, etc? Related thoughts?
(Thanks) Bill
BTW, Swingman, I now better understand why you document how long it takes to get certain details done (like securing materials). Because, in reality, things seem to take longer than one might anticipate--and one will do well to remember that!
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On 9/18/2013 7:11 PM, Bill wrote:

I don't build as many decks as John, but I have built many houses with large front porches and balconies using composite decking, and I always spec that joists in these structures leading to any entry way, and at least 2' on either side of said entry way, are on 12" centers, not 16".
Not required by either code, or for warranty purposes with composite decking, but IMNSHO makes for a better product over time in those high traffic areas.
Nothing indicts the builder's attention to detail worse than walking up to someone's front door and feeling spring under your feet.

If you're worried about them standing the test of time due to age, go ahead and "sister" them. (IOW, nail new joists up against the old, and also into the butting rim joists).
BTW, Swingman, I now better understand why you document how long

The devil, along with lasting success, is always in the details.
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On 9/19/2013 8:27 AM, Swingman wrote:

Sorry, I thought "Jeff", and my keyboard typed "John" ... go figure! ;)
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On 9/19/2013 9:30 AM, Swingman wrote:

And you were right, John Loomis is the guy doing many decks..
--
Jeff

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On 9/19/2013 9:27 AM, Swingman wrote:

Whoever built or repaired the step last time spanned the Trex all 47.5" without support. I presume it was a quick repair the seller did before they sold the house. Thanks to the suggestions I've received from the folks here, I feel confident going forward. I'll post a before and after pic just for fun. Being warped, it looks rather pitiful now.
BTW, I get to setup my Compound Miter Saw (on my impromptu stand and jig) for this repair--a tool I've never used before. I appreciate tips you have already provided about using that tool. If I am able to clamp the stuff in the miter saw (using my F-clamps), I will.
Bill
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