Hello, we are going to be building two lofts. We have questions about framing. We are considering either going with steel tubing or 2x6's turned on their sides. Anyone have info about either method in terms of stability, weight and cost?
2x6 on their sides is fine for a storage loft for light stuff, but I wouldn't store books or put a bed up there. And I would be VERY picky about the lumber I chose.
Metal is way stronger for a given height, It will cost more but maybe not at current lumber prices.
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Hi! Thanks for your reply! Weight load would about 850-1000 lbs max. They will be attached to steel runners embedded in a wood-framed tiny house. The flooring will be 1/2" ply. I'm hoping to keep the width of the loft as thin as possible in order to maximize head space in the loft. Weight is a consideration since it's a tiny house but it's a 2 axel trailer rated to 18K lbs so it's not a huge issue. Thanks!
Steel if very strong, but is not very rigid by weight. Lumber is very rigid in cross section, but has a lower overall sheer value. This means in layperson speak: Steel will take more overall weight before failure but will experience more deformation. Not good in a floor joist. Lumber will not take as great a load before failure as steel, but will not flex as much, which is important in a floor support. Research and compare modulus of elasticity.
Lumber, pound for pound, will outperform steel tube (to get the same rigidity, the walls have to be very thick adding weight and cost.)