I’ve been a professional builder and contractor for 20 years and am glad somebody finally has enough sense to develop a less corrosive treatment (“Pressure-Treated Wood: The Next Generation,” 4/09). In 2005, I built my own vacation house on San Juan Island here in Washington. ACQ lumber had not been on the market for long, and I’d already had some experiences with the extreme corrosion it causes. Using lumber that corrodes metal connectors made no sense to me, so before starting construction I negotiated with the local building inspector to use an alternative material for the mudsills, but he refused. (If I remember correctly, the Zmax hangers recommended at the time cost around $4 each, versus less than $1 each for standard hangers. Now it turns out that even triple galvanizing isn’t really adequate, and stainless is the only really safe thing to use — at over $7 per hanger.)
During the framing of the San Juan house, I had to move a door opening; it was in a shear wall and had a big hold-down (HD8A) next to it that needed to be moved, so it required engineering approval. I reframed the doorway and installed a new epoxy-grouted anchor and hold-down. I cut off the existing anchor bolt — a 7/8-inch galvanized SSTB. It...
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