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Box Columns Specs

We have had inquiries about our Box Columns. Above are some photos that may help clarify what they are, and the following is a description of the components and construction method. The finished columns are 9 1/2 feet tall, 6 3/4 inches thick and 18 inches wide. The height accommodates seven rows of two string bales.

Vertical struts 3 - 2"x6"x10' - cut to 9 feet, 3 inches.
Top plate, bottom plate, fire-break 1- 2"x6"x10" - cut two 18 inch pieces (top and bottom plates) and one 15 inch piece (center fire-break).
Sheathing Two sheets of 4'x8'x5/8" OSB - rip 18 inch wide strips from sheet. Insulation 6'x18" open faced fiberglass.

Construction Method:

Nail two of the 2"x6" timbers together with 16D framing nails, spaced about 6 inches apart and staggered edge to edge. This yields a nominal 4"x6". Lay the 4"x6" and the other 2"x6" on edge appx. 18 inches apart and nail on the top and bottom plates. Square the resulting box with a framing square and nail in the 15 inch fire-break at the mid-point (16D framing nails).

At this point we sheathed one side. Two pieces of sheathing are required for columns this tall. One 5/8" x 18" x 8' and one 5/8" x 18" x 18" OSB. Apply construction adhesive to one side of the box frame. Lay on the sheathing pieces and fasten with 8D nails every four to six inches around the perimeter and across the fire-break.

At this stage the columns were installed on the foundation. (doubled 2" x 6" facing to the outside of building - this thickness carries the load of the 2"x12" microlam perimeter joist) by drilling two half inch holes in the bottom plate that would accommodate two 1/2" x 6" J-bolts embedded in the foundation.

After this step the columns were stuffed with insulation and the other side of the sheathing was glued and nailed into place. This describes one box column and there seems to be a lot of waste material but when many are being constructed there isn't much waste. The box columns are attached to the perimeter joist with steel column caps from Simpson Connectors. The stirrups on the column caps had to be welded (by Simpson) at 6 3/4" wide to accommodate the width of the columns.


Box Column Details
We have had many people ask about the details of the box columns. Click here for details on how they are constructed.
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