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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Metro West Boston, MA
    Posts
    165

    Default Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    Hey, I know this isn't strictly finish related (although I WILL be required to fasten blocking to a steel girder preparatory to installing the trim), but I'm sure one of you guys can help me out on this one:
    How would YOU fasten a 2x4 to a 3/8" thick steel I beam? I've got to fasten about 600 LF to the beam webs before attaching drywall then a big crown on top. I've heard that you can ramset into steel but never tried it and wonder how practical that will be given the quantity of shots required? Anyone have any experience with this? I'm open to suggestions... cost is not really an issue.
    Thanks,

    Mark

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Portland, ME
    Posts
    6,302

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    Is the steel already up? Can you get the shop to drill holes if not?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Bergen County, NJ
    Posts
    4,410

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    It will work fine. I do it all the time. I assume you already have a gun right?
    You need at least a .25 if not a .27 to do it. Use the red loads.

    With 600ft to worry about, I would seriously invest in a Hilti .27 semi-auto. The nails come in strip form and go into a magazine. It will basically fire as fast as you can pull the trigger. Just make sure you shoot squarely into the steel or else....ba-ting! ricochet!

    FYI, you can also shoot right into a lally column too. Ultra cool....

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    5,888

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    Ramset to steel. No problem.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Metro West Boston, MA
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    So no problem with the nails staying put in 3/8" solid steel? Attachment is solid and permanent? They don't come back at you or split the stock up? I have a strip load .25 but already figured to spring for a new autoload-gun if it will really work. Don't see as I have any other options, right?
    No, steel is up (looks like it's been there at least 100 years) already so no way to drill. Tec screws wouldn't work any better would they?
    Thanks.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    connecticut
    Posts
    35

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    another on ramset-you will have no problem

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Boise, Idaho
    Posts
    550

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    Ramset.
    ...

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    5,888

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mark White
    So no problem with the nails staying put in 3/8" solid steel? Attachment is solid and permanent? They don't come back at you or split the stock up? I have a strip load .25 but already figured to spring for a new autoload-gun if it will really work. Don't see as I have any other options, right?
    No, steel is up (looks like it's been there at least 100 years) already so no way to drill. Tec screws wouldn't work any better would they?
    Thanks.
    3/8" is a long way to go with Tek screws, you'd have to predrill. The attachment is solid and permenant, but you have to take care to make sure it is solid and permanent, with the 100 year old steel I'd try a variety of shot. They can indeed come back at you so take precautions. Unless you're doing miles of it a strip load semi automatic will work fine. They can split the stock up so stay away from the edge.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Fresno, CA.
    Posts
    94

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    Ram set. I tried the self drilling screws and they did work but slow. You are limited the the rpm of the drill driving the screws. If you are to slow or to fast they do not work. I tried the drill and impact driver with them The impact driver worked the best. I was driving 3/16 or 1/4 inch screws. Again, Ram set.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Caldwell, NJ
    Posts
    3,153

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    Mark,

    What is the width and height of the steel and are the floor joists exposed on both sides of the steel?

    There's different ways to frame this without shooting a ton of nails into the steel

    Can you make up a U shaped frame and slide it over the steel and nail it into nailers that are nailed into the joists?
    Joe Carola

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Metro West Boston, MA
    Posts
    165

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    Joe-
    Actually, that's how it's framed out now. The architect has designed this new assembly in an attempt to fireproof the beam. First pass he had metal channel attached to the steel, two layers drywall and then the trim. Latest version has 2x4 attached to inside edges of the flanges, then the drywall, keeps things tighter to the beam and at least I get some nailing for the trim to come.

    Sounds like Ramset is the way to go, I'll be making some calls tomorrow to price the setup and the pins so I can price the job. Thanks for the input everyone!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Ashland,Ma.
    Posts
    590

    Default Re: Fastening into a steel I beam - Ramset?

    they do make a nice screw that will drill through the board and steel and work good but alot slower than the ramset for 600 of them they use them for wooden floored trailers.good for small jobs or if you don't need to spend $500 + on a hilti.

    tom d

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