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Please, BUY yourself a good book on How To Build A Deck. For $30, give or take, it's $$$ that's well spent, buddy! Come on, you're saving a WHOLE lot more than $30, no?
Start here: WEB Links On Deck Building Consider visiting Amazon.com or even your local Bookstore.
Why would I suggest you buy a book vs. just giving you the answer to your questions??? Because if you're asking THESE types of questions, I'm SURE you have a few more, including ones you haven't thought of yet. Do you know what it's like to put in your posts 8' apart and find out you should have put them in 8' apart, ON CENTER??!
My best to ya and hope this helps.
Jay J -Moderator
PS: If you don't get a good book, it's no loss to me. You'll just write back wondering how to 'retro-fit' your deck after making a 1-3/4" 'mistake' ...