This is a guide for anyone who is interested in installing cold-formed steel wall panels.
- Start with a poured and properly cured slab
- Determine if the slab is square and the proper size
- Determine if your wall panels need to sit on the edge of the slab or sit in at all
- Caulk lines at the appropriate distance from the edge of the slab if your wall panels do not sit on the edge
- Layout your panels staged appropriately in order around the building. We recommend staging heavy structural panels as close to the final place as possible. Lighter interior/nonstructural panels can be stacked inside the space.
- Cold-formed steel panels can be installed on a treated 2×4, construction adhesive, or a sill sealing foam roll. There are also other ways, but based on your method either apply to the bottom side of the panel or to the slab and start tilting up panels.
- We recommend that you start with a corner. If your panels have plywood, then you don’t have to worry about the studs being skewed. If your panels are just cold-formed steel, then check that the panel is skewed. Depending on the size of the building we recommend bracing to the slab to insure plumb panels. Getting the first corner is critical as it will help put up the rest of the building.
Bracing diagonally across the first corner may also help keep the panels from skewing if there is no plywood.
Check your panels to see if the track spacing the doors apart needs to be cut before installation. It is more difficult to cut the bottom of the track after installation. We usually cut through just the bottom part so that we can take snips and cut through the top part.
We typically use a ramset type construction gun to shoot pins into the foundation. Your structural engineer will show you the ground connection. Usually pins are not enough for the exterior walls, but they are sufficient for quickly putting up walls.
There are multiple ways to connect panels as you install buildings. We design a lot of our panels to be connected with stud track connectors like shown below. However, corners and flat plates can also come in handy for connecting corners. Another panel joint is back to back studs.
- Once you have installed all your panels, you are then ready to anchor down all the walls. Most of the time interior walls will have pins and exterior walls will have screw anchors, poured in straps, and hold downs.
Congrats! You’ve reached the end of this guide. You should have something like this once you are done:
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