Structural Beams for a Cantilevered Balcony

On a tight infill site, a builder sets PSL beams to support projecting balconies.


The framing crew manhandles heavy PSL beams off the delivery truck on site.

Bracing Off

The crew braces the garage walls and prepares to lift the steel I-beams.

Bracing Off

A carpenter secures a block to the concrete slab for wall bracing.

Lifting the Steel Beam

The crane begins to hoist a garage header beam into place. These steel beams are sized to carry wall loads for three stories of building above.

Placing the I-beam

The crew gently eases a steel beam into place with the aid of the crane.

Installing a Nailer

A carpenter sets a 2x6 in place for nailing for wood floor trusses to come.

Marking for Bolts

A carpenter makes a mark through the pre-drilled bolt hole prior to drilling a bolt hole in the 2x6 nailer.

Drilling for Bolts

A carpenter drills a bolt hole in a 2x6 nailer.

Setting Bolts

A carpenter inserts a bolt through the 2x6 and the steel beam flange.

Preparing to Lift PSLs

A carpenter attaches a lifting strap to a PSL beam.

Starting the Lift

The crane hoists a heavy PSL beam off the ground.

Setting a Beam

The crew lowers one of the PSL beams onto the back wall of the building.

Setting a Beam

The crew guides the PSL onto the steel garage beam.

Parallel Beams

The crew sets the last beam for this level at the street side of the building.

Extended Support

A view of the structure from below shows how the steel beam supports the floor system as well as the cantilevered beams for the balconies.

Walls Under Construction

One upper-story wall in place above the garage opening. The cantilevered floor trusses carry significant wall loads down onto the steel I-beams (by comparison, the loads of the balconies are relatively less important).

Attaching Straps

A carpenter attaches a lifting strap to a PSL beam for an upper-story balcony support.

Attaching Straps

Carpenters rig up the PSL beam for lifting.

Hooking Up

Carpenters hook lifting straps to the crane hook.

Going Up

The crane picks up the heavy beam in the narrow space between the new structure and the existing neighboring building.

Flying Over

An upper-level PSL glides into place.

Upper-Story Work

A PSL settles into place for the balcony on the second occupied level, three stories above grade.

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