The project is to finish off a portion of the basement to provide a clean
workarea for our tailoring biz. The exterior walls are finished, so now
it's down to the partition walls. The floor is poured concrete, uneven,
cracked, but I can work around that.
I've read that a good way to install a partition wall is to secure a 2x4 to
the floor, frame out the wall minus the height of the base 2x4, then lift
the framed wall up onto the base...something about being able to lever the
wall upright and still let it be short enough to clear the floor joists
above. That's fine, I got that.
My question is about securing the base 2x4 to the floor - or, if not that,
the bottom of my wall. I've seen nailers that use a .22 charge to drive a
nail into concrete, which sounds like fun. Since I don't have one of those
or any real long-term reason to buy one, are there any other ideas?
Case hardened nails will drive into the concrete, but I'd go with the powder
actuated fasteners. There is a low-end driver for these things that's not
nearly the cost of the guns (? Someting like $25 IIRC). It's basically a
straight shaft where you load one fastener into one end & wham the other
with a big hammer. Way cool; way easy; excellent results. And as you know,
if you own a tool, you'll find reasons to use it.
You can get a masonry bit and use it in a drill, or get a rotohammer that
will go through the wood and concrete like butter. You can rent rotohammers,
or you might decide to buy a combo drill and roto hammer. Since your not
looking to do structural installations. You could get by with a 3/8 inch
rotodrill, and use 1/2 inch anchors. If you have a lot of holes to drill,
one every 24 inches or so. You might consider a corded drill. If not look
into the cordless, 18 volt Dewalt. I have one. Bought it in a set for $400.
Drill, light, trim skill saw and a sawzall. Works great for my projects.
Good luck, make sure that you drill into the floor at least the same depth
as the 2x4s. But you do not want to pierce the concrete completely,
potential leaks... Level the floor first, or you will have a mess on your
Yeah, they are fun, but they are a trifle dangerous ;-)
If you want cheap and you don't have that much to do, concrete nails
are the way to go. Wear eye and hearing protection and use a hand
sledgehammer, or even a full size sledgehammer. Reasonably quick
and dirt cheap, especially since the concrete floor isn't really
"concrete", it's a mortar mix, and much easier to pound nails into than
real poured concrete. But the bangs are _loud_ (just as loud as the .22
power drivers, if not more so).
Other approaches (eg: tapcons, drill&lag, Remington power drivers[*], hiltis
etc) are really more for larger/more difficult jobs (poured concrete, fast
installation, _lots_ of nails, higher strength requirements etc).
If you do go with a power driver, be _bloody_ careful and pay attention
at all times. When used properly, they do the job quickly and well.
But a moment's inattention or sloppy technique can put a ricochet thru
_you_ or someone on another floor or thru a wall. Make sure you match
the loads properly to the work you're doing.
[*] the afore-mentioned .22 power driver.
Chris Lewis, Una confibula non set est
It's not just anyone who gets a Starship Cruiser class named after them.
I had to build a partition wall in my basement over 10 years ago. I acid
etched the concrete, rinsed well then used a hig performance urethane
construction adhesive. I have not had a single problem. I have a Remington
stud gun which I probably didn't choose because this concrete had a tendency
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