Stamped steel replacing 2x4

Sinned

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Anyone in the construction business, whatever happened to stamped steel replacing 2x4s for residential construction? I thought this was touted as the next great thing, especially with lumber being such poor grade....
 

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Was just wandering as I'm watching old episodes of this old house and thinking about the recent hurricane in Florida....
 

lonegunman762x51

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Stamped steel fucking sucks.

Not sure what you save using it, it has to be mined, processed, smelted, rolled galvanized and stamped into shape, all of which takes energy away from electric cars. A stamped steel 2x4x96" stud costs about $8.75 each, a wooden 2x4x96" stud is about $3.50.

So you can save the trees and fuck the planet using steel studs at 250% of the price of wood. And the wood stores carbon even when used in the walls of a house. Saving the planet by destroying the planet, a hippies dream.
 
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tomcatmv

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I used to work with a superintendent who started framing/house construction biz using steel framing here in Texas. One of the big selling points was termite resistance which I get, but downfalls were you really needed a specially trained crew and over time the studs would cause "ghosting" on the interior sheetrock due to humidity/thermal issues unless some barrier was placed between the studs and sheetrock.
Done right a steel framed house would be stronger and more fire resistant. I don't know of any builders doing it though, but I've been out of the industry for a while.
 

missed

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They both have there advantages. We built our last house with wood framing. A steel framed house is not going to be as energy efficient as wood. Thermal conductivity of the metal makes a difference, which Tom pointed out you can get some stud ghosting. Structurally a wood framed house can handle interior fires better than steel. The steel will turn to plastic state at a certain temperature where wood can hang in until it's burned through. Advantage on steel is the less combustible materials. The interior furnishings and stuff are the problem in an interior fire. We lived in our shop for a year while we were building the house. Which is fairly over built metal building with wide flange beam frame, purlin every 4' spray foamed.... Then the interior walls were furred out and framed with wood. That building makes tons more noise than the house also. You can tell on a cloudy day when the sun comes out and starts warming that metal up faster. I would go wood frame on the house again if I did it today.

At least in north Texas are termites even a thing anymore? I thought I remember a termite guy saying the fire ants have destroyed the termites. I make a lap around the outside of the house twice a year with Demon WP to kill the bugs anyway.
 

E. Bryant

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    Structurally a wood framed house can handle interior fires better than steel. The steel will turn to plastic state at a certain temperature where wood can hang in until it's burned through.

    Yeah but jet fuel can't melt steel 🤡

    Even if steel studs didn't have any drawbacks (and they do), they wouldn't get widely used because the goal of most residential and light commercial construction is to make it cheap, not good.
     
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    Howland

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    Fifteen or twenty years ago I visited Germany. There were several new homes being built along my walks through town. All of them were being framed with metal 2x4s (or more likely whatever the metric equivalent is). I thought at the time that it was probably more expensive until I considered that they don’t border Canada with it's almost limitless supply of lumber.
     
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    candyx

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    Steel stud home is a human toaster if it gets hit by lightning.
     
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    Stevo86

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    They both have there advantages. We built our last house with wood framing. A steel framed house is not going to be as energy efficient as wood. Thermal conductivity of the metal makes a difference, which Tom pointed out you can get some stud ghosting. Structurally a wood framed house can handle interior fires better than steel. The steel will turn to plastic state at a certain temperature where wood can hang in until it's burned through. Advantage on steel is the less combustible materials. The interior furnishings and stuff are the problem in an interior fire. We lived in our shop for a year while we were building the house. Which is fairly over built metal building with wide flange beam frame, purlin every 4' spray foamed.... Then the interior walls were furred out and framed with wood. That building makes tons more noise than the house also. You can tell on a cloudy day when the sun comes out and starts warming that metal up faster. I would go wood frame on the house again if I did it today.

    At least in north Texas are termites even a thing anymore? I thought I remember a termite guy saying the fire ants have destroyed the termites. I make a lap around the outside of the house twice a year with Demon WP to kill the bugs anyway.
    No the termites r still here, fire ants seemed to have went back to hell where they came from. We don’t see as many as there use to be.
     
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    chevy_man

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    I can see very few of you have any understanding of steel studs or have worked with them.


    They're great in long lengths where wood starts getting stupid expensive or you need to switch to engineered wood products.

    They don't rust any more than wood rots. If your walls are wet you've got bigger issues.

    They have pre-punched holes for plumbing and electrical. We just snap in plastic bushings and run pipe or mc through them assuming the framers were smart enough to line up the holes. If not, I have stud punches that make it quicker than drilling wood.

    Lightning will travel through wood. Steel that's bonded properly is less likely to explode and burn when hit with lightning.




    We use a ton of steel studs in commercial. Don't see it often in residential unless wood prices are high.
    Prices fluctuate. Buildings seem to be designed with what's cheapest that day. Steel can get very cheap when you need 20' studs.
     

    ArTeeKay

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    I framed the walls of my house using steel studs. I did the project alone, so weight was a consideration. Cutting is noisy, but not a problem otherwise. And running plumbing and electrical was a breeze. I built during the height of price bullshit in the building materials market, and ended up saving something like 75% over wood studs. Though I still got bent over a fucking barrel for sheet goods.

    The other big consideration for me was volume of insulation in the exterior walls, as I sprayed closed cell foam. Because you're filling the studs with insulation as well, the total r value of the wall goes up. And because you can stand-off your sheathing with foam board, thermal and sound transfer can be almost totally mitigated.
     
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    Steel+Killer

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    They have pre-punched holes for plumbing and electrical. We just snap in plastic bushings and run pipe or mc through them assuming the framers were smart enough to line up the holes. If not, I have stud punches that make it quicker than drilling wood.
    Ha ha yeah ok I do plumbing for a living I have worked with steel and wood studs for over 20plus years, and I will take wood studs over metal any day of the week.
     

    chevy_man

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    Ha ha yeah ok I do plumbing for a living I have worked with steel and wood studs for over 20plus years, and I will take wood studs over metal any day of the week.

    Get a small portable plasma cutter and put it on a cart.
    I still punch most holes, but when I have one I need in a tight spot the plasma pays for itself.

    I don't get any splinters on steel, don't get as many cuts on wood. It isn't a big deal either way.
     
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    TxWelder35

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    Yep. I cringe when watching someone built a $1M+ house around here and it's getting slapped together with the same materials as a generic subdivision development, only bigger.
    Neighbor next to me just built a new house with the styrofoam blocks then interior of them filled with concrete. Pretty cool build process. Rest of the house is complete shit. Terrible build quality, labor that doesn’t give a fuck.

    You can build a damn nice house of wood framing and a shit quality house with the best materials. It ALL comes down to the small details and quality of the labor installing.

    Almost every single commercial jobsite I’m on does steel studs.
     
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    Sean the Nailer

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    Neighbor next to me just built a new house with the styrofoam blocks then interior of them filled with concrete. Pretty cool build process. Rest of the house is complete shit. Terrible build quality, labor that doesn’t give a fuck.

    You can build a damn nice house of wood framing and a shit quality house with the best materials. It ALL comes down to the small details and quality of the labor installing.

    Almost every single commercial jobsite I’m on does steel studs.
    The first basement I'd made/assembled using the Blue Maxx 'lego-blocks' was back in '97. Then we rolled a 'modular home' (double-wide) on top of it. Gas wasnt' hooked up until the Spring of ''98 and a small square electrical 'construction heater' was all that heated that home through the winter. The 'r' value of those basement walls was INCREDIBLE. (this took place in Northern B.C.) So yeah, I too am a fan of the 'lego-basements' and such.

    I'd even entertain the premise of building the whole house shell out of that stuff. Span the center with "I" beams, and then lay-out the floors with wood.

    But I digress....
     

    jff_stvns

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    On residential homes wood construction is the only way to go, steel studs are garbage.
     

    n2ishun

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    The first basement I'd made/assembled using the Blue Maxx 'lego-blocks' was back in '97. Then we rolled a 'modular home' (double-wide) on top of it. Gas wasnt' hooked up until the Spring of ''98 and a small square electrical 'construction heater' was all that heated that home through the winter. The 'r' value of those basement walls was INCREDIBLE. (this took place in Northern B.C.) So yeah, I too am a fan of the 'lego-basements' and such.

    I'd even entertain the premise of building the whole house shell out of that stuff. Span the center with "I" beams, and then lay-out the floors with wood.

    But I digress....
    I was one of a crew that built one of those things, the whole house.
    Outer side was 1" treated ply with 5.25" foam on inside of it glue a 2x6 every 4 foot, yada yada.
    Was said R factor was 150'ish.
    Owner of it says heating AND cooling costs comes to less than $50 a year.
    I kinda doubt that because there is a minimal cost just to keep utilities connected, but whatev's.
     
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    TacticalDillhole

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    It'll be ICFs for me, if I ever build a new one
    I’m going to do SIP’s for the exterior walls on my next house.

    In the workshop I’ll use ICF’s to build a walk in safe. That’s the plan anyway. We’ll see if it ever comes to fruition.
     

    notacos4u

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    I haven’t worked the trades in years but I loved working with metal studs. Could run electrical like a breeze and like said before, just as long as the studs were lined up correctly, was awesome. Other plus is you don’t need to worry about crowning studs, let alone making sure the studs were straight, and the walls were always going to be run straight just as long you could follow a chalk line. I could rough in a lot more rooms vs someone working with wood in the same amount of time. Never had to worry if boxes were far enough away from the edge. I feel metal studs offer a huge advantage just in labor time alone.
     

    SouthFLShootin

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    Where I am, all we use is steel studs.

    Slab on grade, or stem wall foundations, CBS block exteriors, pre-engineered trusses, wood for interior structural framing or steel beams/colums, steel studs for non-load bearing walls.

    Steel studs are very straight and cost less when your walls are taller, they also don't move like wood can with humidity and temp swings. The stud package for a whole house is much easier transported when it's metal too. Packs of studs can be cut in bundles with a circular saw 10 or more at time. Arches and other details are quick and easy. Custom fitting can be done with a pair of snips kept in the belt and no trips to the saw are needed. The guys that have been doing it awhile can just hold the stud up next to a detail cut and cut it with snips and not even have to measure it or get off the ladder. The other trades that are used to working with them have the punches, bushings and cutters to make plumbing and wiring a breeze.

    Termites seem to be getting worse where I am at and the humidity, salt air, wind driven rain and heat/sun don't help wood any. I usually stay away from wood, unless I have to use it or other options are cost prohibitive. Wood requires lots of maintence around here.
     

    Sniperwannabee

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    Where I am, all we use is steel studs.

    Slab on grade, or stem wall foundations, CBS block exteriors, pre-engineered trusses, wood for interior structural framing or steel beams/colums, steel studs for non-load bearing walls.

    Steel studs are very straight and cost less when your walls are taller, they also don't move like wood can with humidity and temp swings. The stud package for a whole house is much easier transported when it's metal too. Packs of studs can be cut in bundles with a circular saw 10 or more at time. Arches and other details are quick and easy. Custom fitting can be done with a pair of snips kept in the belt and no trips to the saw are needed. The guys that have been doing it awhile can just hold the stud up next to a detail cut and cut it with snips and not even have to measure it or get off the ladder. The other trades that are used to working with them have the punches, bushings and cutters to make plumbing and wiring a breeze.

    Termites seem to be getting worse where I am at and the humidity, salt air, wind driven rain and heat/sun don't help wood any. I usually stay away from wood, unless I have to use it or other options are cost prohibitive. Wood requires lots of maintence around here.
    im still waiting on you to come out west and hook me up with those sliding glass doors
     

    Cardboard55

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    No the termites r still here, fire ants seemed to have went back to hell where they came from. We don’t see as many as there use to be.

    Shame the no-nukes hippies from the 70's made us fear radiation. Imagine if we were allowed to use x-ray and neutron sources to battle insects...

     
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    JimmyJr

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    True. I never thought of earthquakes. I imagine steel would be best if those three.
    Although I would prefer a rubber house for earthquake protection.