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wall studs-SYP vs spruce

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  • wall studs-SYP vs spruce

    I live in South Carolina. The only pre-cut (93") studs you can buy are spruce. Robert (husband) has always used spruce in his constuction. Now we are building our new home. I bought 540ea 2x4x8' Yellow pine studs (at a great price) thinking these would be stronger, and we could cut them ourselves. Robert thinks they may bow in the walls. What do we do? Use the pine or buy the precut spruce?

  • #2
    Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

    I've been forced to use SYP studs on a couple of houses, and if you are looking for wood that warps, twists, cups, bows, and splits every time you try to nail it, SYP is the stud for you. Spruce or Fir, or the all-encompassing SPF, is the stud to go with. SYP is technically stronger, but if the house is built to code, that extra strength will go unused.

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    • #3
      Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

      thanks so much for the quick response. so this means i've blown $800.00 and haven't even gotton off the ground good. I should stick to my woodworking and leave the building to the experts.
      Thanks again.

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      • #4
        Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

        Don't be in such a hurry. There are lots of professionals here, and you are bound to get different opinions.

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        • #5
          Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

          I would stick to SPF and return the SYP 2x4s. SYP is not suitable for wall construction. You could keep a few for permanent truss bracing if you want.

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          • #6
            Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

            I never thought that SYP was unacceptable. In fact, I used to think it was better, then I realized that from a strength point of view it was overkill.

            It is true that the SYP has a coarser grain and that mostimes the grain doesn't run straight. In that case, they tend to warp.

            I have had carpenters walk off the job because it was too hard to handnail into a SYP stud. But a good carpenter can build a perfectly straight wall with anything, and I wouldn't throw them out if I already had them.

            Heck the SPF aren't straight either. If you are going to have a straight wall you are going to have to use shims and a portable planer as many good framers do these days with either material. In fact there is even a company that manufactures 1 1/2" wide cardboard strips of different lenghths to shim out the cupped side of a stud. You then plane out the bowed side. Or they can be cut and scabbed. Twists can also be removed without too much trouble.

            And, SYP is a lot stronger, not that you need it in the case where you are axially loading the member as you do with a stud or other column.

            glenn

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            • #7
              Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

              Living in the land of priveleged lumber in northern California we of course get to use Douglas Fir. But I did do one job out of kiln dried Spruce (because I had to frame it by myself and the lighter weight helped me get the walls up), and though they weren't as straight as D. Fir it was pretty close and I was satisfied. As a left coaster I don't know what SPF is. One kit home supplier uses that designation for Spruce-Pine-Fir meaning they will send you whatever they deem convenient or cheaper for them. What is it for you guys (and Gals)?

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              • #8
                Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

                Methinks Jim M. is right!!! And just because I live in So Calif doesn't mean anything, right/Si? Yes, DF studs here. Years back redwood studs used for a while, and then there were some finger jointed d.fir ones that were straight. The way a bowed stud is straightened down here is to notch it 1-1/2" deep x 3-1/2" high and put in a 2x4 that spans to the stud on either side thus pulling/pushing that stud in line with the others. This is accepted by the Bldg Insp's here and is stronger than shaving off 1/4"+/- and then adding card board d/w shim on the short side. Of course I have seen the carpentry pickup man take a hand or Skil saw and just cut the offending stud in half/two thirds at mid point to satisfy a drywall hanger's gripes for a stud that has bowed after the normal wall check/straight edge process that is part of the "pickup" phase of production framing. Of course same is/was done after the rough frame inspection...

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                • #9

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                  • #10
                    Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

                    Here we have SPF. Spruce Pine Fir. My supplier sells Eastern and Western all from Canada. The eastern studs are cheaper but come soaking wet even though they are stamped KD. When they dry, they go every which way. They even shrink in length sometimes up to 1/4". I use Premimum Western and only have to worry about crowns. Sometimes we cull half of a hack. Sometimes only 10 or 15 per hack. They are stable after you get them in the wall assembly for the most part.

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                    • #11
                      Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

                      SPF---SuPosed to be Fir

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                      • #12
                        Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

                        My experience is similar to kcoyner. Most of our wood comes from Canada and is graded SPF. Beams such as ceiling and floor joists, and girders are almost always SYP. So when you go to the lumber yard you see Spf studs and SYP from 2x8 and up. It is difficult to find 2x8's and 2x10's in SPF. The deflection is too much. They are very springy.
                        DF and SYP are very similar. SPF has about 30% of the strength of SYP in larger sizes loaded in bending.

                        glenn

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                        • #13
                          Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

                          Went to a lumber yard in S.C. once. In charleston, Man, that's all they had was yellow pine, for framing, up to 2x10's then some fir 2x12's, . Went down there a little after Hugo hit, shoulda seen the stacks of plywood filling up the Lumber yard parking lot's, unbelievable.

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                          • #14
                            Re: wall studs-SYP vs spruce

                            Thank you all so much for the input. Here in the countryside of S.C. we don't know how to grow anything but Southern Yellow Pine, (and a pecan tree here and yonder.) ignacki, if you were in Charleston you probably heard that cypress is trash wood. When the land is clear cut they chip the cypress and hardwood, and send the SYP to the abundance of lumber mills around here. That's how I happened on the 2X4's. I hit a "One Day Only Sale to The Public" deal. (Just like a woman--buy it if it's on sale, whether you need it or not.) We are going with the spruce studs. Finger-jointed studs are hard to find around here and when you do they're about $1.25 more per stud.
                            Again, thanks bunches. This problem was easy compared to the other one I have. So now I'll change forums and adress gosh-awful HOUSEWRAP SOLUTIONS!!!!!

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