Building a straight wall

Construct a straight flat wooden framed wall

Building a straight wall is critical

 Maybe you have never even considered this.

All the different species of lumber is grown and milled so quickly in this Century that the tendency to bow, twist and warp is high. Fact is, depending on the quality of the lumber from “kind of warped” to the “super straight” framing material you pay accordingly.

In addition another thing that is the biggest reason lumber will warp, bow and twist…the weather. Wood laying in direct sunlight will begin to loose moisture and the ability to build a straight wall decreases as the material warps and bows and twists. Rain can be just as bad in that it makes the wood a bit more difficult to handle. But if left in the sun, it too will soon take a different shape. For this reason and this reason alone, sun and rain and all that weather brings, protect it by covering with a substantial water proof plastic.

This effects you as a construction diy builder. Bowed studs create a wall that is not likely to allow proper plumbing (vertical placement accuracy), can make ripples and create cracks in other materials that mate up to this crooked wall.

How to deal with this issue[warped and bowed studs/walls] can help you to develop a more accurately tuned sound environment. The essential “tool” to make a straight wall is your eyes. Surprised? You shouldn’t be.

Taking the time to watch your materials, how they look and what can you do to make them fit together better is a primary difference between a hacked up build and a Professional looking framing job. Watch the video, get the tip, and build a better, straighter and more accurate wall!

Always first is to layout your floor area that the framed walls will rest on. After determining the proper locations for the walls, you should be able to measure the area that the wall will be. Measure the location, mark the slab at the opposite ends for where the wall will rest. Then get your help to hold one end of the chalk box string and with your hand on the other you both head to the marks just made on the concrete slab. Draw the string slowly tight so as to ensure the straightest wall lines you can get.

 Tools needed to build a straight wall that is plumb and level:

  • Chalk box
  • 4 foot level
  • string

Chalkline:To make a straight line to secure the bottom plate of the wall to.

4 foot level:Using the 4 foot level you plumb up either end of the wall assembly and then secure the wall temporarily so as to keep the studs vertical.

String:On longer walls the string will be used to straighten the top of the stud frame. Typical procedure is to use 2 X 4 blocks at the ends and another block to guage the distance with.

 straight wall string line

If you have really crooked studs you can run a circular saw perpendicular thru the stud at the highest part of the bow creating a small gap. Then you can push the stud against the direction of the bow to relieve the bow. You can hold it in place with a 24 inch 2X4 block nailed to the stud, centered on the saw kerf.