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Window bucks and ICF


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By David in Salem, OR on 12/28/2005


In my area, they're recommending 3X material for windows and doors.  They say the 2X material is more likely to warp and bow.  Any thoughts?
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By Kenneth in Lees Summit, MO on 12/29/2005


I used 2x pressure treated window bucks for my ICF house.  I was concerned that PT lumber is usually pretty wet, and when it dries it twists and warps, but in actuality I didn't have any difficulties with my window bucks.  Be sure to make them to the R.O. dimensions for your windows, the ones on the manufacturer's spec sheets.  Also anchor them in to the concrete - this restraint is probably what prevented twisting and warping while they dried.  If you are too worried, used V-Buck or Universal Buck, although the cost is quite a bit higher.
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By Bob on 12/29/2005


What size anchors and how many per buck?
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By Marc in Defuniak Springs, FL on 1/1/2006


Bob,

I had no direction on this that was written or recommended by an authoritative figure (I went to a site here in the county and looked at theirs) so I put 1/2" anchor bolts every 2 feet on the bucks  (all around windows and 3 sides on the doors). I drilled a 5/8 hole for the bolt and the paddle bitted the washer and nut so they would recess. The bolts were $1.50 (galvanized) each and I also used the 1/2" on the porch ledgers (2x6) every 2'. (The engineer recommended that so I figured that was good enough for a load then it would be enough for the bucks) O-B Logic?

These guys on the boards have more experience than I do and may direct you in a different direction.

Hope it helps,

M


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By David in Salem, OR on 1/1/2006


Marc,

So, did you use 2X or 3X bucks?  Also, are you required to use pressure treated?  Is the PT wood in your area as "wet" as the stuff we get here?

David


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By Kenneth in Lees Summit, MO on 1/3/2006


Marc used a lot of anchor bolts for window bucks.  I was inclined to use two anchors on a vertical, perhaps one on the horizontal.  For the deck ledger, I used 5/8", although I don't recall my o.c. measurements off hand, and I can't go measure them as they are covered up by the siding.  I haven't seen your PT lumber, but ours is pretty wet here.  I would have used the Borate treated lumber, but couldn't get it larger than 2x6.

No matter what you use, brace those window bucks as you don't want them moving on you.


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By Marc in Defuniak Springs, FL on 1/3/2006


I have 2x' on all the openings, garages as well. As you can tell from the pictures we are just pouring. Friday we poured 90% of the first floor but because of the holidays we could not get concrete after 10 pm so we had to leave a wall dry. Plan is to pour that wall on Thurs. Kenneth will be surprised to know I even added more bolts. I bought some 4" -1/2" galvanized lags and put them on the outside edges all the way down 2' OC, to keep the bucks from twisting on the edges. Only because I had a couple of Lowe's gift certificates and they were burning a hole in my pocket. I am sure I have gone overboard with this but sitting there waiting for the slab to cure and watering it  most of the day today I could not help but worry.

My PT lumber here is very wet and since they have started adding the additives they add you must be careful how you handle them. Building my dock I got a rash from handling them without gloves. It was a very hot day and I loaded and unloaded and cut and nailed some 100 boards. I had the rash for a week. Now I use gloves. It is funny the chemicals never affected me like this in the past, but now I am more cautious in how I handle them.

M


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By Alvin in FL on 2/1/2006


I used all 2x10 pt for window and door bucks. If I had it to do over again, I would not use it. I would go with some kind of synthetic material that already comes in the correct sizes. I used Amvic blocks and they are 9 inches wide, so I had to rip all of the wood on a table saw first to get it down to 9 inches. This took a whole day to do and exposed me to a lot of chemical laced sawdust. Then all of it had to be assembled.

The wood was very wet when I got it and it is impossible to get pt wood that is not already cupped or bowed a little to begin with. You need to be careful to make sure any cups or bows in the wood go out when assembling or you could end up with a hole too little in places for your windows to fit if they bow in.

Before the pour, I shot 4 1/2 inch spiral nails through the bucks every 6 inches all the way around so that once the concrete was poured, the bucks would be thoroughly attached to the concrete and hopefully prevent any warping of the wood when it dried.

Due to a number of delays, it was 6 months from the time the bucks were put in before the windows and doors were attached. By that time, the wood had completely dried, and lo and behold, it still warped and twisted quite a bit. All of the doors and windows still fit into the rough openings, but the boards are twisted and bowed making it very close in some areas. I will be wrapping drywall into the windows, so it can all be covered up and never seen. If I had not have been paying attention when I assembled the bucks, the bows and cups could have ended up making my openings too small for the windows to fit.

All of this makes me wonder what would happen if windows were attached while the wood was still wet and then later twisted and warped. Could this damage the windows or make them not operate correctly because of tension from the warped boards?

Next time I will put up a few extra bucks and avoid the pt wood.

Alvin


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