In the California Building Code book the nailing schedule specifies that the
nail size for stud to sole plate should be (4) 8d nails if toenailed, or (2)
16d nails for end nailing. I'm assuming that is for 2x sole plate. But what
if the sole plate is 3x? And while I'm on the nail subject, typically what
should be the minimum penetration a nail should have? I'm guessing for a
16d nail about 1 1/2".....
That is correct. In the case of 3x plates the rule is to use (2) 30d
nails, which are 4" long for commons and 3-3/4" long for sinkers.
16d commons are 3-1/2" long and 16d sinkers are 3-1/4" long. "Commons"
are larger in diameter than the corresponding "sinker", e.g., a 16d
common is 0.162" and a 16d "sinker" is 0.148".
The code is generally based on "common" nail dimensions, but load values
can be adjusted for the use of "sinkers". For instance, a 10d common
and a 16d sinker are interchangeable.
Bob Morrison, PE, SE
R L Morrison Engineering Co
Toe nailed connections are rated for both withdrawal and shear. End nailed
connections are not rated for withdrawal. Refer to ANSI/AF&PA NDS-2001
(National Design Specification for Wood Construction). It's most likely
part of your building code.
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