A.Corresponding editor Paul Fisette responds: As long as you install nailed structural sheathing, an L-corner is certainly strong enough. Extra studs at the corner of a house are unnecessary for supporting the building’s vertical load and provide little significant benefit to improve a frame’s racking resistance, which is provided by the nailed sheathing.
When it comes to supporting the vertical (compression) load from upper stories and the roof, the stud at the end of a wall carries about half the load of most other studs. A stud in the center of a wall carries 16 inches of load (8 inches on either side of the stud), while a stud at the end of a wall carries only 8 inches of load — from the stud...
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