Metal Studs

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Metal Studs

Postby ferbal » Sun Mar 11, 2018 6:29 pm

Has anyone used metal studs for framing? I was wandering around Home Depot came across metal studs. They are clearly labeled non structural but the weight savings might be considerably and I am thinking rust vs rot would need exploration but cost and function makes metal studs seem viable. Anybody use these for framing?


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Re: Metal Studs

Postby Shadow Catcher » Sun Mar 11, 2018 7:57 pm

The framing on ours is 1"X1.5"X .06 aluminum tube.
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Re: Metal Studs

Postby tony.latham » Sun Mar 11, 2018 8:11 pm

ferbal wrote:Has anyone used metal studs for framing? I was wandering around Home Depot came across metal studs. They are clearly labeled non structural but the weight savings might be considerably and I am thinking rust vs rot would need exploration but cost and function makes metal studs seem viable. Anybody use these for framing?


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Assuming you are contemplating sandwiched walls for a teardrop, the internal skeleton shouldn't way more than twenty pounds. A sandwiched wall that has wood sheathing glued to both sides makes for an incredibly strong system.

And twenty pounds (x 2) isn't a lot of weight for a camper that is going to weigh north of a thousand pounds.

But there are lots of ways to build a 'drop.

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Re: Metal Studs

Postby linuxmanxxx » Sun Mar 11, 2018 9:37 pm

If you turned them sideways and alternated the flat face in and out I think they'd be great to use and 3/4 foam doubled would match the width. Hard anchor points pretty much resistant so kudos for an out of the box idea for building.

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Re: Metal Studs

Postby ferbal » Mon Mar 12, 2018 7:19 am

linuxmanxxx wrote:If you turned them sideways and alternated the flat face in and out I think they'd be great to use and 3/4 foam doubled would match the width. Hard anchor points pretty much resistant so kudos for an out of the box idea for building.

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I was thinking on flat would be the way to go and then pop rivet metal siding directly to them put in a layer of foam and then my interior paneling. My other concern as I toy with the idea of metal outer skin is that if I go with aluminum would I have to worry about galvanic corrosion?


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Re: Metal Studs

Postby aggie79 » Tue Mar 20, 2018 9:03 am

I have contemplated the use of metal studs but can't seem to find a "work around" for how to smoothly attach a metal skin to the overlaps and fasteners used to assemble a metal stud frame. I guess you could build some sort of jig to hold the frame members in place and butt joint the intersections rather than overlap, and don't have any fasteners in the framing. Then you could overlay the skin and rivet it to the frame members.

I'm with Tony. Seems like a lot of work compared to plywood framing with very little weight savings. Also, I guess it can be done, but a curved profile would be difficult to do.
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Re: Metal Studs

Postby tony.latham » Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:16 am

...is that if I go with aluminum would I have to worry about galvanic corrosion?


Absolutely. None of the steel could touch the aluminum. And I think the fasteners would be an issue too since they would be bonding both materials.

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Re: Metal Studs

Postby tony.latham » Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:40 am

Creating skeletons for sandwiched walls from plywood is easy. I screw two sheets together and gang-cut with a jigsaw. After I've got them laid out (note the pattern on the wall––that's the key) they're ready for the skins and insulation in less than an hour.

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Re: Metal Studs

Postby John61CT » Tue Mar 20, 2018 10:54 am

Aluminum and steel work together just fine, done all the time in modern vehicles & trailers, very very common.

Many ways to put a barrier to prevent the galvanic reaction, often just a good strong paint will do.

Dielectric insulation is what you look for, polypropylene tape, plastic washers, gaskets, and sleeves for fasteners.

Boats make use of sacrificial anodes.
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Re: Metal Studs

Postby aggie79 » Wed Mar 21, 2018 8:08 am

When considering construction methods/approaches, I would ask these questions:

1. Are the construction materials I am thinking about using readily available?
2. Are the construction materials I am thinking about using reasonably affordable?
3. Do I have the skills to fabricate the materials I am thinking about using?
4. Do I have the tools tools to fabricate the materials I am thinking about using?
5. If I am thinking about using atypical construction materials and methods, what are the costs and benefits compared to typical construction materials and methods?
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