I'm designing a deck, but have one problem:
If I cantilever my joists over the beam, then I can get away with
standard-sized joists. However, I'd like to add some lattice (or some
such thing) below the deck, so that I would have some out-of-sight
storage for the kids' lawn toys, etc. I'd also like to maximize the
enclosed area, so that means that I'd like to have the lattice roughly
along the same plane as the rim joist, not back at the beam. That
would also make the lawnmowing that much easier (not going under the
overhang with the mower). By the way the deck is ~4' off the ground at
the front edge.
If I didn't have the cantilever in the design, I'd have a pretty good
idea how to frame the latticework (I'd use the posts and the rim
joist, since they'd be in the same plane.) However, I don't know how
I'd do that with a cantilever design. Any ideas? Do I need to bite the
bullet, buy wider joists, and not cantilever?
(Finally, is this the best group for a deck question like this?)
Is the rim joist exposed and available? If not, put on one which is exposed. If so,
then just use that if it is such that the latticework can be attached to it. Perhaps
I do not understand your description of your deck support at the outside edges below
the deck boards.
The rim joist will be exposed and available, but there will be no
pre-existing vertical members to attach the lattice to (since the
posts would be set back from the rim joist by several feet, in the
Hmm, maybe just stake the bottoms of these members into the ground?
Since they'd be supported at the top, I don't suppose I'd have to
worry about them shifting...
However, if I'm on the right track, what about rot? I would think that
PT lumber would rot quickly when buried in the ground. Am I wrong to
If rot isn't a problem, then I would also probably half-bury a 2x6 in
the ground as the bottom horizontal frame member (this would also
retain the potential gravel, below). Thoughts?
Another unrelated question: Since the kids plan to use the enclosed
area as a "fort," would it be a good idea to lay down gravel, to keep
them from getting muddy under there?
i dont think you even need to stick anything in the ground. just 'hang' the
lattice from the deck.
as long as its not just sitting in water it will last a long time. pt
lumber is made for this sort of thing.
what im thinking is when you gravel under the porch, trench it out a bit
along the edge and half-bury the pt 2x6 in gravel, with some under it as
well so any water that gets there will drain away from the wood as well.
that should hold a long time and i think it solves most of the problems.
thats one approach anyway...
Would it break the bank to put in vertical posts under the outer part of the deck just
inside, and attached to, the rim joist? They need not be load bearing since their
primary function would be to support the lattice work attached to horizontals attached
to the posts. They could be load bearing if you want them to be. There may be
or other reasons why do not want to do this.
As a suggestion. Frame with 2x4s 2 ' centers using doubles at corners and
openings. Top plate set into and flush with the tops and ends of the joists
or simpler, installed as blocking. Main concern is the bottoms. You need to
insure against dry rot and insects while still maintaining a base anchor.
Pour some small raised flush concrete piers and block with treated lumber 4
' centers while securing the center studs to the bottom plate only ?? The
bottom plate could be 4 to 6 inches above ground level and set into or
installed as blocking. 4x8' lattice panels are available in 3 grades. The
edges, corners and seams can be hidden with redwood or other lattice strips.
I had the same exact issue with my deck, but with T&G cedar vs. lattice. I
laid pt 4x4 (60psi vs 40psi, you won't find these at the borg), along the
ground at the perimeter after leveling the ground so they wouldn't be cocked
at an angle and could accept the T&G boards. You can use a plumbob to mark
the ground below the rim joist. I secured the 4x4's to the ground by
driving half lengths of rebar through them. Once the T&G was screwed to the
rim joist at the top and 4x4 at the bottom, I routed out the back/bottom of
2x8 cedar boards, and screwed them to the rim joists covering the top end
grain of the T&G. The top of the cedar boards is flush with the floor of
the deck, giving it a nice finished look at covering up any remaining pt
lumber in the deck frame.
Knock on wood, but after three Wisconsin winters, the 4x4's haven't shifted
despite the fact they are really just floating on the surface. There is a
truckload of gravel under the deck for drainage, and the the 4x4's and
gravel are laying on commercial grade landscape fabric instead of directly
on the ground.
I'm cantilevered about two feet, and the only spot I needed verticle
perimeter framing was for the access door, where I pocket holed (using
big-ass lag bolts) the verticle members to the 4x4's on the ground, and lap
joint/bolted them to the rim joist at the top.
Just saw the photos on abpw. I think you need a way for air to
circulate under the deck. If I see the photos correctly, the deck floor
is not water tight. Rain and snow melt will collect underneath and
there will be insufficient ventilation to dry it quickly leading to rot,
mildew, BAD, and other unfortunate happenstances. Buy some foundation
ventilation screens (many types and sizes are available), cut proper
size holes every six to eight feet and screw in place. Just MHO.
I assume you are referring to my pictures. I can't say I've noticed a
problem (remember the OP is using lattice, so its a non-issue), the
space between the deck boards on top, after shrinkage, is roughly
3/16", which I would think provides sufficient ventilation.
Everything I store under the deck can handle getting wet routinely.
If I would have put a fiberglass "roof" underneath the joists as I'm
sure you've seen to keep the rain off, I agree there might be
What you need is some vertical boards going down from the rim joist to the
ground that you can nail the lattice into. Since they're not load bearing,
they don't need to be dug down deep, so just get some 10' pressure treated
2x4s, cut them in half, bury one end in the ground and nail the other end
to the back of the rim joist.
That's what I'd do. In fact, that's what I did!
I made frames out of PT 2x4s, in the same manner one would make a panelled
door for a cabinet, except instead of a panel set in a dado it was lattice.
The frames were screwed to block set under the deck and at the bottom they
were fitted with some steel plates to join them or to go around corners.
This was necessary as my deck has a lot of 45 degree corners to work with.
Attached with screws means they can be removed when needed.
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