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It's Not the Wood, It's the Hardware (Among Other Things)

ALPHARETTA: If we haven't mentioned it before we'd like to take this moment to do so now: Thank you to everyone that refers us thru Nextdoor. We sincerely appreciate it. 

if you've never noticed this entrance we understand why, it's on a main road but the sign is small. However, it's a very established Alpharetta neighborhood, among the many new ones that populate our city. 

Which leads us to our project...the inside of this deck really had a lot of character. We loved how the homeowner had it decked out...haha 

We believe whomever built this was not a a daily deck builder (primarily because of the undersized lumber that was used to build it, among a few other observations), however, our hats are off to him/her/them for some good creativity (more on this down the scroll)

To the left is what we proposed to the homeowner, The posts supporting the upper deck were upgraded to 6x6's instead of 4x4's (among other improvements...haha)

Sponsorship Pause:

Coffee First. Everything Else. Second.

              Peet's Coffee

It was cold when we started but August when we first met the homeowner. The deck was struggling as was the french doors to the left. That's my son, Sgt. Boles, U.S. Marine, with a 4 year Honorable Discharge.

Yes, we also replace french doors...take note of the roofing materials on the bottom right. We're making the deck water proof for the deck below.

There wasn't anything wrong with the previous roof design per se, however, the deck joist were only 2x6's (inferior for a deck build) and what we particularly do not like is that the design catches/traps debris which can keep water pooled. Repairing this is almost impossible. 

The decking was nailed instead of screwed. 

(above) The substrate (plywood) is under the deck joists which means you'd have to take everything apart to fix it (hence our project). (right - not this deck). We pitch the deck framing about a .25", we install pressure treated plywood on top of the deck joists, roll heavy duty roofing rolls, and install pressure treated strips that allow .25" of height for the water to run off. 

(continued) You can see the roof rolls on the main decking as Adonis (yes, we have are very own) works on replacing the french doors. 

IF the roof leaks, you unscrew the decking, replace the roof rolls and reinstall the decking.

Here's the beefier framing....6x6 support posts, 2x10 deck joists for the top deck, 2x8's for the bottom deck (code allows both due to the short span (only 8') and particularly since the bottom deck was extremely low.

HARDWARE: You can enlarge the pics by clicking on them. When you do you'll see the galvanized joist hangers that support the deck joists. (Note to Self: Check out the middle short 2x10 "blocks")

Each joist hanger has TEN Simpson Strong-Tie STRUCTURAL SCREWS. Six of them are 1.5" that connect to the deck fame. Four of them are 2.5" long that cross into the deck joist that ALSO connect to the deck frame. It's the details that matter. 

It's the details (these wood connectors) that keep your deck together for years and years. Most of the decks we inspect need replacing not because of the lumber failing but because of old-style nailing that over time fail.

To the right are the details our renderings illustrate when we discuss the project with our homeowners. 

To the left is the real thing.  Galvanized "concealed" joist hangers specifically for corners. 

This cute old deck sat on concrete blacks. A big no-no.

(left) Footers must be dug at least 12" deep or until "virgin" soil is reached. We pour 3000 psi concrete & place a 6x6 galvanized base that keeps the 6x6 support posts .5" high to prevent water from addition to the concrete being above-grade.

We used the same 6x6 galvanized bases to support the 6x6's supporting the upper deck. 

You can see the hardware int he rendering we provided to the homeowner.

Click on this pic to see the hardware installed. 

This pic doesn't due the character of the old deck any justice but take my word for it, it was really cool (except for the lazy fans, they hung around a little too long).

Wait! What's this? BAM! It's a new dog-gone deck. 

Note to Self: There are two sets of screens (top and bottom). Why? They're smaller and easier for the homeowner to replace should they tear. AND since the screens are screwed in they can be easily removed.

Wait! What's this?!! It's called beautifulness. We don't like staggered/cut planks. Each side has 12' boards . Remember those short 2x10 "blocks" from earlier? They're the boards that support these perpendicular planks. 

Nice small deck with even nicer 45 degree corners and boarders. 

The old decking was no-bueno. It was rough. 

We wanted to build a reasonably priced water-proof dual deck but at the same time durable. 

For started, if you can find a reason (color) to use paint it'll serve you best as paint always outlast stains. We're going with white Sherwin Williams SuperPaint (don't go cheap on the paint).

We installed aluminum squared balusters (we're kinda over the round-ones) in-lieu of wood balusters for long-term duration and no maintenance. The decking will be Sherwin Williams SuperDeck SOLID stain b/c it outlasts the semi-stuff. 

The rail posts sleeves are of composite from TimeberTeck's Radiance Rail collection. 25 year warranty. No need to ever paint them. Notice the black hardware? Dual purpose...they're elegant but most importantly they secure correctly to the wood posts inside the composite post sleeves.

The Old from the Far Side

The New from The View

Too dark... 

With us you can see what you'r new deck will look like before you spend money. 

Our crew lead, Armando, getting ready to install the gutters. 

The door is of PVC or vinyl...will never rot, light weight and durable. We decided to push the painting to the spring. We're going to remove all the screens, PRIME all the wood so the paint can really stick to the lumber. 

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