Attaching Stud Walls to Concrete Floors

How to Attach Interior Wood Stud Walls to Pole Building Concrete Floors

As a child I grew up living in the last house in the neighborhood – the road went from asphalt paved to dirt at the end of our lot.

My father was a framing contractor, and true to the adage – a builder’s house is the last one to get finished. Our home was about 1000 square feet, over an unfinished concrete full basement. The basement made for a great place for my brother and me to play, as we really couldn’t damage anything!

After several years (possibly due to our mother’s influence) Dad decided it was time to finish the basement. Stud walls were framed and Dad used spiral shanked “concrete” nails to attach the walls to the concrete slab. Dad was pretty smart, he knew the concrete nails were made from hardened steel, so he used a hammer with a head made of softer steel than his typical framing hammer to drive the nails in.

Why? Because when a hardened-steel hammer strikes a hardened-steel concrete nails, chips can break off from the hammer – becoming dangerous projectiles.

The entire process was a task, at best, as the concrete floor had cured for several years. It is far easier to drive concrete nails by hand into green concrete, which has not fully cured.

Over the past several years, we’ve noticed a trend in our clients. They are doing more and more stud walls as partitions inside their pole buildings. By placing stud walls inside, they can create rooms for a plethora of different uses.

Luckily there now exists an easier way to attach the pressure preservative treated bottom plate of these walls to the concrete floors than trying to hand drive nails.

ramset nailRamset makes a variety of semi-automatic powder-actuated tools which make this task far easier. Ramset uses a 0.22 or 0.27 caliber load with adjustable power levels to actual shoot a non-washered steel pin up to three inches long through the pressure preservative plate into the existing concrete slab. Most are designed to fire up to 10 shots in a strip. The Ramset tools come with a padded handle to absorb recoil. Having used one myself, I can attest to them being a great tool, as well as to the padding being an essential component.

For the average one time user, it is not overly practical to invest the 200 or so dollars to own one. However many rental centers (including the ones inside most The Home Depots®) have them available for rental on an hourly or daily basis.

Whether driving by hand, or using a Ramset, it is always prudent to wear adequate eye protection. Play it safe, use the right tool for the job, and a satisfactory outcome will be the result!

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