More Of A Construction Question But...

It does involve wood so I thought I'd start with the 'wreck.
As the only uncle in the family that knows which end of the hammer to hold, I get, um "volunteered" to "help" the rest of the family from time. In this case, I am being asked to frame a garage that was updated with second floor living quarters above. Ordinarily, I'd just build the framing, erect it, nail it to the floor with a .22 nailer, and screw it into the joists above. Unfortunately, the ceiling is already drywalled and there is no way to determine exactly where the joists are, what is ductwork, what is conduit, what is venting. The quality of construction in this house is so uneven, I rather doubt I can count on it having been built to any real standard. The walls of the garage are cinder block. Is it feasible to put cleats on the cinder and secure the studding to those cleats? I sort of don't think .22 nailing into cinder block is a great idea so does this mean I have to use anchors to go into the block.
One other stupid question. When I've seen foundations done with cinder block, they got filled with concrete. Given this is a garage wall, can I reasonably assume the same here or could I be dealing with hollow centers? I kind of doubt it because they built this giant master bedroom above the garage and I wonder if hollow cinder could support the load.
Sigh...
And Thanks IN Advance,
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Most of the block is probably hollow. The cells at corners and where there are penetrations - windows, doors - generally have vertical steel and the cells are filled. The top course is (around here, at least) a "U" shaped lintel; it too has steel, horizontally, which is tied into all vertical steel and the "U" is then filled with grout (concrete/mortar on the watery side so it will flow).
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dadiOH
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On 11/2/2013 9:50 AM, Tim Daneliuk wrote:

If you can attach to both ceiling joists above, and the floor, it is often unnecessary to attach to the concrete block wall also.
If you feel you must, my preference is to use Tapcon screws and/or concrete anchors into the cinder block walls, and the concrete floor.
I would also take the time to find as many ceiling joists as possible and nail the top plate into them, as well as screw the sill plates down with Tapcon/concrete anchors as mentioned above
Since the area where the nails will go in the ceiling will be covered by the top plate, there should be no objection to using a nail, knife or other method for finding joists to nail to.
This is important enough to make the effort.
Scroll the photos and take a close look at what appears to be a similar interior framing job I just did in a bathroom demo/rebuild where two adjoining walls were concrete blocks:
https://plus.google.com/photos/111355467778981859077/albums/5894534478548277809?banner=pwa
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Scary.
I'm building a metal building. A library & new office, work room and a game room. The first two are in the same room.
28x70 - the center room is 14' and the other two rooms are equal.
We are hanging lots of bar lights in the room. Our ceiling is made from a Lam beam that is 18x6x28' two of those, one in each large room. From that beam to the wood wall are 2x6's (#1's). Built like a tank, but won't falter in the load. But consider the beam weighs about the same as the 2x6's and only hold up bar lights and not a single fan.
If the walls can handle the weight, can the decking that forms the floor hold the load while over your head ?
I worked with my contractor to spec the beam and he went with our work to an expert. He got it approved.
We put the long beam down the long center so we might shorten the 2x6's and lower the over all cost. Still expensive!
I'd take down the drywall ceiling and walls. I'd look and make a decision. Life might be at the balance point.
Martin
On 11/2/2013 9:50 AM, Tim Daneliuk wrote:

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On 11/2/2013 11:11 PM, Martin Eastburn wrote:

Hopefully that "expert" was a licensed PE (Professional Engineer), and you got his a 'wet seal' approval of the work performed, in writing .. normally in the form of an "As Built" letter.
In any _structural modification_ that may involve load bearing components to an existing house, or modify those components, the routine should always be to hire a PE to make a plan based on an inspection of the structure prior to any work; then inspect that work after the fact to insure that it conforms to the plan before issuing an "As Built" letter stating that the work does indeed conform to his plan.
With third party inspections now routinely a major part of a home sale, you, or your heirs, may well need it for future sale in order to prove that the work was done in conformance with local codes.
> We put the long beam down the long center so we might shorten

If the OP is not making any structural modification, like removing, or modifying, a load bearing wall, it may well be that, and depending upon which way the ceiling joists run, a new interior wall may actually strengthen the existing floor above.
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On 11/02/2013 09:50 AM, Tim Daneliuk wrote:

Thanks everyone for taking the time. I think perhaps the best strategy here will be to find something up in the joists to screw into.
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