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Why are steel studs more common than wood?


Author's Note

I found out quickly about studs the first time I tried to hang a shelf in my house. Before that, I'd never hung anything heavy so I wasn't aware of the fact that studs are usually 16 inches apart on the center. Let's just say that there's a reason why those home improvement stores sell stud finders. After looking at pictures of buildings framed with steel studs instead of wooden studs and learning about the benefits, I have to admit that steel just seems stronger and better. I would bet that even with all of the benefits of steel studs, that notion of steel as strength has probably been a big influence on the drive toward using them in more residential buildings.

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Sources

  • CEC Consumer Energy Center. "Steel and Steel Framing." 2012. (April 13, 2012) http://www.consumerenergycenter.org/home/construction/steel.html
  • Family Handyman Magazine. "Using Steel Studs." February 2001. (April 13, 2012) http://www.familyhandyman.com/DIY-Projects/Wall---Ceiling/Framing/using-steel-studs/Step-By-Step
  • NAHB Research Center. "Builder's Steel Stud Guide." October 1996. (April 13, 2012) http://www.toolbase.org/ToolbaseResources/level4DG.aspx
  • NAHB Research Center. "Insulating Steel-Framed Homes." March 1996. (April 13, 2012) http://www.toolbase.org/ToolbaseResources/level4DG.aspx?ContentDetailID=1283&BucketID=3&CategoryID=30
  • Robert McDonough Construction. "Steel vs. Wood." 2011. (April 13, 2012) http://rmcsteelhomes.com/steel_vs_wood.html
  • Steel Framing Alliance. "About Steel Framing." 2012. (April 13, 2012) http://www.steelframing.org/aboutsteelframing.html
  • Steel Stud Manufacturer's Association. "Steel and the Environment." 2008. (April 13, 2012) http://www.ssma.com/filebin/pdf/SFA_Green_Brochure_5_16.pdf
  • Thermasteel Corporation. "To Steel or Not to Steel." 2011. (April 13, 2012) http://www.thermasteelcorp.com/wood.pdf

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