Headers Above Cripples

 
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Old 05-24-2008, 12:19 PM   #1
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Headers Above Cripples


someone i was working with installs his headers against the top plate and cripples below them claiming it's stronger because the cripples don't carry any load. i had never seen this and would like to hear everyone's opinion.
thanks
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Old 05-24-2008, 12:50 PM   #2
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Never looked at it that way but he's probably right. I always did it the opposite way myself.

Although I'd still like the idea of having more solid nailing along the top of the window the way a solid header would give for trimming purposes, window treatments ect.

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Last edited by jmic; 05-24-2008 at 12:52 PM.
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Old 05-24-2008, 01:03 PM   #3
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


cripples transfer the load down just like trimmers
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Old 05-24-2008, 01:07 PM   #4
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


pros and cons both ways. it's his opinion. not stronger in the vertical sense at all. horizontal, minimally better with the header up.
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Old 05-24-2008, 01:14 PM   #5
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


If the door or window ever gets replaced, and for some reason the replacement is larger vertically having the cripples below would be a benefit. Not that its is a reason to do it, just a what it...
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Old 05-24-2008, 01:20 PM   #6
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


yea header up against the top plate, most cases ht is correct without cripples, add plates on flat under header.
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Old 05-24-2008, 01:29 PM   #7
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Typical Lintel or Trebeated system of construction. Used for building arches and alterative framing.
If properly engineered, header can be placed above the top plates as well for a contiuous ceiling plain.
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Last edited by skyhook; 05-24-2008 at 02:03 PM.
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Old 05-24-2008, 06:26 PM   #8
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


This is typical up here in the PNW

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Old 05-24-2008, 06:38 PM   #9
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


I notice that many wood framed retail establishments get the header installed full length, up against the top plate, no matter if they're getting a single man door or a bunch of windows. I guess the theory is that this gives maximum flexibility in designing the storefront windows and doors well into the future.
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Old 05-24-2008, 06:57 PM   #10
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Yeah, we put the headers underneath the top plate if window dimensions aren't finalized when we're framing.
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Old 05-25-2008, 09:06 AM   #11
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Quote:
Originally Posted by dmw4322 View Post
someone i was working with installs his headers against the top plate and cripples below them claiming it's stronger because the cripples don't carry any load. i had never seen this and would like to hear everyone's opinion.
thanks
Claiming it's stronger and the cripples don't carry and load makes no sense at all. Ask him to take the cripples out with second floor joists, ceiling and rafters above and see if the cripples don't carry what's above.

The only time I put headers to the plate is when the window heights aren't figured out yet. Ask your friend if he would frame a 16' opening for a door in a 10' ceiling with a microlam header at the top plates instead of directly above the door.

I'm not an Architect or Engineer but I like my headers directly above the doors and windows. Especially above doors. Besides, you use an extra 2x4 04 2x6 when packing down under the header because you should be using a double 2x on a flat anyway.
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Old 05-25-2008, 11:25 AM   #12
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


We call that slamming. Thats how I do it. The way I look at it is, the header is there to carry the load and everything below it is just to hold the door,window or what ever.
I do this with my garage doors too. Never had any type of problem. I learned this from my dad who did it this way for over forty years. I don't think either way is wrong or right. As far as strength I think they are both the same. only benefit I see is if your R.O. was wrong, it makes everything allot easier to adjust.
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Old 05-25-2008, 12:09 PM   #13
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Sectional garage doors are the exception. They need a solid 4x header to attach the spring loaded hardware directly above the door.
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Old 05-25-2008, 12:21 PM   #14
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Quote:
Originally Posted by cmansmith View Post
I do this with my garage doors too. Never had any type of problem.
Careful not to go blindly saying "no problems will occur" I did this myself every time, and still do. One job I had a hilly site. Garage was down a fair amount below where it was "supposed" to be (6 feet or so) So I put the header all the way up, like I always do, and boxed it down. Trouble was, I never thought much about the garage door hardware being mounted to this box part and every time the person opened his garage door, just shook the house like mad. Garage door openings I leave my header down and frame on top all the time. Only instance I do that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cmansmith View Post
only benefit I see is if your R.O. was wrong, it makes everything allot easier to adjust.
I made one mistake like this, didn't catch it until my boss approached me and told me my guys read the details wrong. Almost 100 doors later, I swore never again. Repairing boxed down is much easier than moving a header.
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Old 05-25-2008, 12:40 PM   #15
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Quote:
Originally Posted by dmw4322 View Post
someone i was working with installs his headers against the top plate and cripples below them claiming it's stronger because the cripples don't carry any load. i had never seen this and would like to hear everyone's opinion.
thanks
Dont you mean "jacks"? Cripples are always under the header,and always carry a load, whether the header is up under the plate or right above the window. If not, way its wrong.

Maybe in the states you call the jacks cripples as well, I dunno.

Last edited by pfloyd; 05-25-2008 at 12:46 PM.
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Old 05-25-2008, 02:28 PM   #16
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Quote:
Originally Posted by framerman View Post
Careful not to go blindly saying "no problems will occur" I did this myself every time, and still do. One job I had a hilly site. Garage was down a fair amount below where it was "supposed" to be (6 feet or so) So I put the header all the way up, like I always do, and boxed it down. Trouble was, I never thought much about the garage door hardware being mounted to this box part and every time the person opened his garage door, just shook the house like mad. Garage door openings I leave my header down and frame on top all the time. Only instance I do that.



I made one mistake like this, didn't catch it until my boss approached me and told me my guys read the details wrong. Almost 100 doors later, I swore never again. Repairing boxed down is much easier than moving a header.

Ok, in over fifty years between my father and I there have never been any problems. Of course there are always exceptions to the rule. 99% of the time I slam my headers to the top. I think for the most part the issue here is having everyone on your crew on the same page. I personally don't care how it gets done as long as everyone works together. I am generally a nice guy but if someone starts throwing a hissy fit over cripple location asses are going to fly. Well unless it makes sense like the comment stated above.
Think about it, if you slam the header put in your trimmers you can leave that hole in the side of the house forever. You could just leave the door in the front yard and everything will be just fine. Or you could frame it up the opposite way and do the same. Structurally it makes no difference weather there is a door there or not. However it does make a difference if you leave out the header. do that and ur F@#*'ed
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Old 05-26-2008, 01:06 AM   #17
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Read your details, on some garage portal openings it gives you a max header height as a ratio to the width of the sheer wall on either side of the door. As for windows I always slam them up contractors are inevitably asking for changes and if your header is up it makes it a lot quicker to make the opening bigger
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Old 05-26-2008, 09:24 AM   #18
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Carola View Post
Claiming it's stronger and the cripples don't carry and load makes no sense at all. Ask him to take the cripples out with second floor joists, ceiling and rafters above and see if the cripples don't carry what's above.

The only time I put headers to the plate is when the window heights aren't figured out yet. Ask your friend if he would frame a 16' opening for a door in a 10' ceiling with a microlam header at the top plates instead of directly above the door.

I'm not an Architect or Engineer but I like my headers directly above the doors and windows. Especially above doors. Besides, you use an extra 2x4 04 2x6 when packing down under the header because you should be using a double 2x on a flat anyway.
Joe,

We always hold the garage headers up to the top and frame the cripples under them. But we have to frame the portal walls for seismic design. The details that I usually see don't show any cripple framing at all, but the header held to the top, so that is what we do.

For window headers, we always hold them to the top, but that is usually because that is where the window starts. We use 4x10 headers with a 2x6 on the bottom, so the top of the window is always 14" down from the ceiling for any height wall we frame, with some exceptions.
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Old 05-26-2008, 10:40 AM   #19
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


Quote:
Originally Posted by cmansmith View Post
Ok, in over fifty years between my father and I there have never been any problems. Of course there are always exceptions to the rule. 99% of the time I slam my headers to the top. I think for the most part the issue here is having everyone on your crew on the same page. I personally don't care how it gets done as long as everyone works together. I am generally a nice guy but if someone starts throwing a hissy fit over cripple location asses are going to fly. Well unless it makes sense like the comment stated above.
Think about it, if you slam the header put in your trimmers you can leave that hole in the side of the house forever. You could just leave the door in the front yard and everything will be just fine. Or you could frame it up the opposite way and do the same. Structurally it makes no difference weather there is a door there or not. However it does make a difference if you leave out the header. do that and ur F@#*'ed
I agree with you dude, I hope there wasn't a misunderstanding. I was only trying to get people to pay attention to a detail like I described. I only did it once since I learned from the mistake. I had plenty thereafter with a similar situation.

Header definitely to the top. Box down. Easier for remodels.

We worked for one architect that had the headers spanning all the way across the whole wall....all walls....all header. Ridiculous, but we had to do it.
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Old 05-26-2008, 12:07 PM   #20
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Re: Headers Above Cripples


header at the top, box down. It requires more wood, but I think it's worth it.
makes it easier for remodels, and it's near required for any kind of fancy opening such as an arch.

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