House Framing Laying Out Walls, Doors, and Windows
In conventional framing, the bottom and top plates are cut and laid in place on the
foundation, after the foundation is popped out. At this time, the wall studs, windows and
doors can be laid out and marked on the plates. The studs are normally laid out on 16
inch or 24 inch on center. This means that from the center of one stud to the center of
the next is either 16 inches or 24 inches. These dimensions are normally used because
exterior sheathing, siding, and drywall come in 4x8 ft sheets and work with 16 inch or 24
inch stud layouts.
It's a good idea to layout the doors and windows before the studs. The rough openings
for the doors and windows are supplied by the manufacturer. For instance, a 2668
interior door might have a rough opening width of 32 inches and a rough opening height
of 82 1/2 inches. A 3050 window depending on the manufacturer might have a rough
opening width of 36 inches and a rough opening height of 60 inches. Rough openings
for doors and windows are made up of studs, pack studs or liners, headers, window sill,
and cripples. The width of the opening will determine how many pack studs or liners are
required. A rule of thumb might be an opening greater than 3ft and less than 6ft
requires two pack studs on each side.
The size of the header will depend on structural design and length. Cripples are short
studs below the window sill and above the header. Once the windows and doors are laid
out, the wall studs can be marked on the bottom and top plates. The studs that fall
within the rough openings of the doors and windows will be cripples. The rough
openings are measured from inside to inside of the pack studs.
Wall sections are made up of rough openings for doors and windows, studs, tees, and
corners. The illustrations below show the end view of a corner and a tee.
Tees are made up of three studs and blocks and are used where perpendicular walls
Corners are made up of three studs and blocks and are used where two perpendicular
intersecting walls form an outside corner.
Category Construction Glossary