A Small Woodworking Shop Expansion #6: Laying Out the Wall Frames

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Blog entry by RonInOhio posted 12-06-2012 02:09 AM 1833 reads 1 time favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 5: Floor Insulation Installed ,Almost Ready to Start Framing Part 6 of A Small Woodworking Shop Expansion series Part 7: Getting The Walls and Sheathing Up. »

Had to take a step back from my shed expansion project to go over how I’m going to layout the wall framing. I plan on having the front wall practically open, to tie-into the little shed.

That part of it is pretty much dictated by how much of the back walls I will trim off the little shed, and not much debate over whats got to be done there.

Since I am not working from a set of “formal” plans I needed to go over in my mind the side door placement and how I can best frame for this now and not have to do a lot of tearing out and re-framing when the time comes for me to actually put the door in. Might not get to that till the spring.

I made a really unforgivable mistake today

One thing about working without plans is you have to be sure of your measurements ,before you go out and purchase wood and then have it cut-down to manageable sizes. As they say measure twice,three times. And cut once.

I had (7) 2×4x12s PT lumber cut in-half thinking the stud length I needed was measured correctly and these halves would be the correct length. I was going from memory. Whoops !

Got home and found each stud was about 3 inches too short. I can still use those later for shop builds and possibly when I frame in the little shed and insulate it . Since the side of the exterior walls in there will be under 6 feet. But in reality , I wasted several hours of time in this screw-up. Grrr ! And had to make another trip and pick up another (14) 2×4x8s. I’m fuming but probably got what I deserved. Lesson learned hopefully.

So I’m taking the time tonight to have more concrete plans so i can get the walls framed in over the next day or so.

Need to step it up. Cold and snow is not far off. Need to get that roof built and covered.

3 comments so far

View GrandpaLen's profile


1650 posts in 2266 days

#1 posted 12-06-2012 02:45 PM


Woodworking is more about how well you can recover from the err, than the err itself.

Electricity, not so much. :-)

Work Safely and have Fun. – Grandpa Len

-- Mother Nature should be proud of what you've done with her tree. - Len ...just north of a stone's throw from the oHIo, river that is, in So. Indiana.

View Scott Wigginton's profile

Scott Wigginton

51 posts in 3739 days

#2 posted 12-06-2012 06:42 PM

Sorry you had to go get more materials. There are two lessons to learn here. One is obvoius (measure twice cut once), the other is more subtle.

One key to carpentry that you’ll find is just as useful in woodworking is thinking around a problem. Sometimes you’re stuck and the only resolution is to start over again. In your case lets look at some options:

Option 1: extend stud length. This is often done by creating a finger joint. Sounds like a lot of work to me.

Option 2: lower the ceiling height and “tuck” the new roof in under the old roof. This makes sense in large projects where you don’t want to rip the roof off an existing house, but in this case sounds like a poor tradeoff

Option 3: “raise” the studs off the floor. Add another top and bottom plate gaining 3” of height. if you were less than that, trim the studs however far you were off (setup a jig on your CMS)

I’m sorry you had to waste time and money but hopefully you can glean some nuggets from this, and at least those 2×4s are not a complete waste, can use those to make a rear door, frame around windows, built extra storage/misc to fill all that new space!

-- Scott

View RonInOhio's profile


721 posts in 2858 days

#3 posted 12-07-2012 03:17 AM

Scott , I did consider just doubling the bottom plates and adding another plate to the top to recover those ~ 3 inches. But I’m installing a side door in one wall and I’m already working with pretty low ceilings.
I would have lost a few precious inches.

I will often find a way to recover from carpentry mistakes. Wood is pretty forgiving. But in this instance I didn’t want to take that route. Better to just go out and get more studs.

The mistake wasn’t the end of the world , but just kind of a foolish mistake . Also I was more upset at the time I wasted then anything. I have already used up about 3 or 4 of the studs I cut too short in the top plates.

Anyhow, I got two sidewalls framed up today. Tomorrow if all goes as planned I should have the framing pretty much done and can start on the rafters and ridge.

Thanks for the suggestions and input.

A couple pics from work done today.

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