This advice will help when buying hardware for your upcoming project.
Many customers purchase joist hangers, gate hardware, fasteners and other hardware items elsewhere because they had not thought about those items at the same time as buying their lumber. They might believe the “boxes” are less expensive. We urge you to think again!
The big box stores are not always the less expensive source to buy hardware from.
Mating the hardware with the lumber may be problematic. A good example is rough sawn lumber since it’s closer to full measure, that 6” bolt that would have been OK with a smooth sawn post measuring 5-1/2” is not! The rough sawn post itself is close to 6” – plus you’ll need more length to handle the post base, washer and nut.
Hardware is generally keyed in specific wood types/sizes.
Specifically, rough sawn lumber is closer to “full measure” and therefore “regular post bases and joist hangers won’t handle the additional thickness. For example, smooth sawn 6×6’s are close to 5-1/2″ by 5-1/2″ – rough sawn will be closer to 5-3/4” square. Many hardware “kits” available online are geared to smooth sawn lumber only. It’s all in the details!
Treated lumber and plywoods require the use of upgraded joist hangers and fasteners.
The chemicals uses in this treatment process will corrode normal metals faster. Simpson, the leading hanger manufacturer, makes a whole series of hangers named Z-max for exterior construction. The Z-MAX coating assures a better galvanizing process to offset the corrosive effects of treatment. Use ONLY Z-MAX hangers on any treated lumber.
Be sure to fill ALL the nail holes on all hangers to pass inspections and utilize the full strength of your hangers. The best fasteners to use on these products are stainless steel, which of course are the most expensive. A very reasonable and acceptable alternative is any nail, screw or bolt that has been hot dipped galvanized or other coatings that retard corrosion. Finally, information available to us is that any bolt with a ½” or greater diameter has enough bulk to it to not require special coatings.
Newer treatment processes may allow for “normal” hangers and fasteners to be used, however, we recommend that a “Z-Max” type of coating continue to be used on ALL exterior applications. The extra cost is worth the extra protection. Again, Simpson Strong-tie advises the use of Z-Max hangers on all exterior installations.
We are an Authorized Dealer for Grip-Rite Fasteners.
Find out more about Grip-Rite fasteners, nails, screws, nuts, bolts, and more.
Our Lakewood and Fort Lupton CO lumberyards have a large selection of the hardware you need for any project.
When you are at our Lakewood or Fort Lupton lumber yard buying your lumber, make sure to speak to one of our experienced staff who can help you choose the right hardware for your project. This will save you time and money.
Have a question about construction hardware?
Give us a call or use our Contact Form.
Lakewood: 303-988-5980 / Fort Lupton: 720-683-7162