A Serious Alternative to Wood Framing
An alternative to wood for use in partitions in basements and other floors of the house is metal wall framing. Normally, frames are built of either 2″x4″ or 2″x6″ wood studs. Metal wall framing consists of U-shaped galvanized sheet metal studs instead. There are benefits and drawbacks but on the whole, metal studs are very worth considering when planning an expansion or remodeling of the home.
The basic process of metal wall framing is very similar to wood wall framing. First the floor, ends, and (if necessary) ceiling is freed of carpet and drywall to expose the floor substrate and attaching wall studs and ceiling joists. Make a chalk line on the floor denoting the position where the floor length will be installed. The metal floor stud is marked and cut with either a power saw or a pair of straight metal snips. Metal snips are far easier to use but of course require some hand strength. If more than one stud is going to be cut at once to save time and effort, a carbide-blade power circular saw is needed. This entails supporting both ends of the studs on a pair of saw horses to provide clearance for the saw blade.
A close up of metal wall framing. Metal framing members require
very different skills than conventional wood framing.
Image from Buildapedia.