Southeast Michigan Woodworkers

Gather, share, learn and enjoy with other woodworkers!
It is currently Thu Jun 22, 2017 12:35 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Back to the ceiling...
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2016 11:13 am 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:39 pm
Posts: 5891
Location: Livonia
Okay - the flooring in the shop (and laundry & half-bath) is almost done, the cyclone is partially assembled, the fluorescent fixtures are all hung temporarily in their final positions, most of the wiring is done - in short the shop remodel is into the home stretch.

I'm back to trying to figure out what to do with the damn ceiling. Any suggestions are welcome, but please look at my list of restrictions below. Note that virtually none of the restrictions (other than the one regarding accessibility) are mine - they're imposed either by the space I have to work with or the wishes of the LOML. This is a very public area as guests walk through my shop to access the half-bath any time we are entertaining a large group - usually over the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. In addition, Marcy has to pass through this area to get to the laundry, and has graciously allowed me to take on this project, sucking up a LOT of space that she was using, so I'm loath to argue with any of her preferences. I included a pic below that hopefully helps visualize the situation.

  • I decided against troffers for lighting as this is a shop and lighting needs to be where it needs to be, not where the structure of the joists and whatever ceiling system I put in dictates it to be. I have new 4' fluorescent fixtures that I'll be surface-mounting below whatever ceiling goes in. As I mention above I have an outlet box mounted for each and they're all temporarily screwed into the joists in their final positions so they'll be going back up exactly where they are now, mounted against the ceiling so I don't have to worry about troffers or cans or anything else to support the lighting.
  • Suspended ceiling. Ain't happening, at least not by me. If it's the only option I'll contract it out and cost be damned. I have a hard limit on how much I can drop the grid below the joists. The adjacent rec room which I did myself had to drop about 5/8" BELOW the top of the doorway into the shop, and it was still a royal PITA to try and get all the tiles in place around all the plumbing that runs under the joists. The shop area is ten times worse because the hydronic heating and water supply are in the shop so I have MANY more obstructions to work around. I'll slit my wrists and put myself out of my misery before I ever try to install a suspended ceiling in that area.
  • Anticipating some kind of surface-mount solution, I've left all of the furring strips in place on the joists. These are two stacked pieces of 1x2 (nominal) nailed along and under the joists. This allows the ceiling to be fastened directly to these furring strips while clearing all of the pipes that run under the joists. To my point above w/regard to a suspended ceiling, note that this represents the minimum "drop" below the joists to clear the plumbing, but obviously that space is filled with all of these pipes (both hydronic heating and water).
  • Whatever I put up can't be panels any larger than 2'x4' and each panel must be removable to provide access to the plumbing and electrical. The old ceiling was old Celotex acoustic tile and was filled with dozens of holes and crappy looking patches from every job we ever did that required electrical or plumbing work.
  • I looked at 1/2" foam sheathing which would have been perfect - it's light, easy to work with, the aluminum foil facing is reflective and looks beautiful in a shop, but if not backed with drywall it's flammable and gives off very noxious gasses when it burns. I wouldn't really care but I don't want to create an issue that would earn black marks from an inspector should we need to put the house on the market before we start assuming room temperature...
  • I've considered surface-mounting conventional ceiling tile using screws & fender washers. However, I'm not sure what to do with the joints. I looked at the 3/4" vinyl T-molding that is available in 100' rolls - the stuff that is used a lot in commercial counter or table tops to edge MDF or plywood. I'm not sure how I would secure that to keep it from sagging or falling out unless I cut it into approx 16" lengths and put the screws between the ceiling panels so the washers would secure both the panels and the T-molding, but there will be areas where the joints between tiles will fall between joists and there won't be anything to secure the T-molding other than the friction against the edges of the tiles. That might work, but it seems like a bit of a kludge.
  • I looked at fabric and Marcy nixed that.
  • Obviously from a cost standpoint I'm looking at this as a DIY project, but I'm not averse to working with a contractor to get this done and done right.

Thanks for reading folks!
Attachment:
Ceiling1.JPG
Ceiling1.JPG [ 108.39 KiB | Viewed 327 times ]

_________________
>>--Steve Sawyer->>
A bad day working with tools is better than a good day doing most of the other things I have to do.
blog: http://www.stephensawyer.com


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2016 1:18 pm 
Offline
Obsessed

Joined: Tue Mar 15, 2005 1:59 pm
Posts: 1677
Location: Ypsilanti, MI
Some form of wood or laminate flooring with the "tongue and groove" sawn off. Put it up with screws for easy removal if/when necessary. Something inexpensive from Lumber Liquidators or Habitat for Humanity ReStore. Has the plus of being thematic for the shop. :-)

_________________
Chip Charnley


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:05 pm 
Offline
Elite

Joined: Wed Mar 19, 2008 9:53 pm
Posts: 777
Location: South Lyon
How about 2'x4' sheets of plywood screwed to the joists. Small enough to be easily removable and to work into all the nooks and crannies but large enough to cover area. It would also be easy enough to paint. And it's fairly inexpensive. I'd think that 1/2 thickness would be enough. The joints would also be tight as you're working with factory edges on the rips. The crosscuts done with a track saw would also be tight.

d


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:17 pm 
Offline
Apprentice

Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 11:57 am
Posts: 38
Location: Royal Oak
They do make a surface mount ceiling grid that works like and utilizes the same type of ceiling tiles as a drop ceiling. I looked into a while back versus dry walling my basement. I do remember that some of them are exposed grid like a drop ceiling and some use rails with interlocking tiles. Some make it easy to remove a tile others not so much. I just googled "surface mount ceiling tiles" and it came up with a couple of systems. Hope this is helpful. Eric


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2016 12:49 pm 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2004 12:14 am
Posts: 1619
Location: Canton, MI
How about leaving it open and painting it white?


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2016 1:23 pm 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:39 pm
Posts: 5891
Location: Livonia
I just sent an email off to the folks that manufacture the Ceilng Link product to get a quote. The stuff isn't cheap, but it seems to check all the boxes...

  • I can use the same standard off-the-shelf ceiling tile used in suspended ceilings (on a per-sq-ft basis, by far the cheapest solution)
  • The tiles can be removed and replaced without damage to access the plumbing and electrical when necessary
  • Fits flush under the joists

_________________
>>--Steve Sawyer->>
A bad day working with tools is better than a good day doing most of the other things I have to do.
blog: http://www.stephensawyer.com


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Aug 17, 2016 1:25 pm 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:39 pm
Posts: 5891
Location: Livonia
Sorry, folks - didn't mean to ignore all the advise, but it seems that the move of our board left me talking to myself!! I made several posts that never showed up here...

_________________
>>--Steve Sawyer->>
A bad day working with tools is better than a good day doing most of the other things I have to do.
blog: http://www.stephensawyer.com


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2016 2:10 pm 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:39 pm
Posts: 5891
Location: Livonia
Hey - just wanted to give some more feedback on the good suggestions you folks have offered.

To say that I'm sick unto death with this project would be a gross understatement. This has involved a complete remodeling of the entire basement area as I was taking over a large storage and personal-use area belonging to the LOML, and has been going on for well over a year. In that time I haven't been able to do anything that wasn't involved with moving this project forward, and the ceiling will be the last step in the process - which doesn't include all of the niggling little chores to REALLY put the shop fully back into operation; Every cabinet, shelf and drawer has simply had tools and supplies crammed in wherever I could find space. Nothing is organized and I'll be spending considerable time correcting this which will involve building out some additional features for storage and organization.

Jim - I thought of that painting everything white approach, but for some reason that no-one can figure out (and you can see this in the picture above) much of this space has been packed with fiberglass insulation that would have to get pulled out, and besides, Marcy pretty much nixed that idea. Again, this is a very visible area when we're entertaining, and I want to respect her preference for a neat, clean-looking space.

That said, I'm trying to decide on a ceiling solution that is not only economical but FAST!! Planking the ceiling as Chip suggested would be very cool, but would probably take me a couple of months. Also, if I use some kind of paneling I want to keep all the pieces no larger than 2'x4' so they can easily be removed to provide access to the space between the joists and all the electrical and plumbing. Also, anything that I have to prime and/or paint before putting it up would, again, make this a much more drawn-out process consuming weekends and many, many weekday evenings.

This surface-mount product should go up much more quickly. I've also decided to pay a few hundred bucks to my son and a couple of his friends to help me. I figure if I get everything ready to go in advance - all the materials on-hand, all the electrical connections prepped, all the references chalk lined and have enough tools for everyone, we can hopefully get this ceiling installed in a day, or two at the most.

Thanks to all for your suggestions, and to you, Eric for encouraging me to dig deeper into finding a surface-mount product. I'm still waiting on the quote, but it looks like this product (Ceiling Link) is going to do the trick. I've found a number of testimonials for it on various DIY and home-improvement and maintenance forums around the web, and most seem to like it real well.

_________________
>>--Steve Sawyer->>
A bad day working with tools is better than a good day doing most of the other things I have to do.
blog: http://www.stephensawyer.com


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2016 3:02 pm 
Offline
Elite

Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 9:06 am
Posts: 1081
Location: Trenton, Michigan
Be sure to take a couple pictures of the surface mount installation and note any nuances of the job. My daughter is in a similar situation with her basement, tall kids, needs access to plumbing...

Steve.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Thu Aug 18, 2016 3:12 pm 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:39 pm
Posts: 5891
Location: Livonia
SteveStram wrote:
Be sure to take a couple pictures of the surface mount installation and note any nuances of the job. My daughter is in a similar situation with her basement, tall kids, needs access to plumbing...


I'll do that, but I probably won't be doing the install until (I'm guessing) mid-October.

_________________
>>--Steve Sawyer->>
A bad day working with tools is better than a good day doing most of the other things I have to do.
blog: http://www.stephensawyer.com


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2016 9:22 am 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2004 12:14 am
Posts: 1619
Location: Canton, MI
Yesterday I saw a basement shop that had a simple molding attached to the sides of the joists at the bottom and plywood panels set on top of the moldings...the panels were removable for access and kept above the joist height for added head clearance. His panels were square with alternating grain, but you could make them any size. A good way to use up scraps too (wasn't it Dial-up-Dave that had access to cheap scrap pre-finished ply?) Finish could range from none to stain to paint.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2016 9:42 am 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:39 pm
Posts: 5891
Location: Livonia
jbiddle wrote:
Yesterday I saw a basement shop that had a simple molding attached to the sides of the joists at the bottom and plywood panels set on top of the moldings...the panels were removable for access and kept above the joist height for added head clearance. His panels were square with alternating grain, but you could make them any size. A good way to use up scraps too (wasn't it Dial-up-Dave that had access to cheap scrap pre-finished ply?) Finish could range from none to stain to paint.

Jim - that's really an interesting idea. I wouldn't use wood, though - way too expensive. Maybe melamine hardboard. The existing furring strips would also need some attention, as some could just be painted, but others would need to be replaced, and some aren't continuous. I could easily rip 2x4's into 1 1/2" thick strips to replace them where needed. The only downside cosmetically I can see is that assuming I hang the panels right at the bottom of the furring strips, many of the pipes would be visible as they run right under the joists in the same plane as the panels.

However it's definitely worth thinking about.

_________________
>>--Steve Sawyer->>
A bad day working with tools is better than a good day doing most of the other things I have to do.
blog: http://www.stephensawyer.com


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2016 10:21 am 
Offline
Apprentice

Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 11:57 am
Posts: 38
Location: Royal Oak
Steve, there is a similar surface mount grid system called CeilingMax. Looks about like the Ceiling Link that you found. However, they have a 100 sqft kit for $140 special order at Menards but carry some of the 8ft sticks in store (white only). Never used this stuff but thought I would give you another option as I remembered being able to get it locally. Checked Amazon and same kit $120 free ship. Just another option to look at. Eric


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Aug 19, 2016 11:39 am 
Offline
Obsessed
User avatar

Joined: Tue Aug 22, 2006 1:39 pm
Posts: 5891
Location: Livonia
Thanks, Eric - I looked at both systems, and the Ceiling Link seems to be a better product on a couple of points. It's a bit cheaper, and it's a bit simpler - it uses the same channel both to fasten to the joists/furring strips, and to snap in from the bottom to secure the tiles. It is also more forgiving of a bit of variation in level of the joists/furring strips. One user described installing the CeilingMax system as "shim hell" because it doesn't flex enough to accommodate minor variations in the level of the joists - it all has to be perfectly level.

_________________
>>--Steve Sawyer->>
A bad day working with tools is better than a good day doing most of the other things I have to do.
blog: http://www.stephensawyer.com


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 14 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  

Forum hosting by ProphpBB | Software by phpBB | Report Abuse | Privacy