05:12PM | 04/22/04
Member Since: 04/16/04
5 lifetime posts
I'm scratching my head trying to figure out footings for a deck that is on a grade sloping away from the house. Somehow I don't think 10' batterboards are a practical solution, any takers?


02:46AM | 04/23/04
Member Since: 01/14/03
264 lifetime posts
Get yourself an assistant, a stiff measuring tape, and a plumbbob with 8-10' of string attached.

Have your helper hold the tape against the house foundation at grade. Pull the tape out and step down the slope to where you can hold the tape straight out and as level as you can with the tape about chin height at your end. Slip the string over the tape at a convienient whole foot dimension, allowing the plumbbob to hang free, close to the ground but not touching the ground. Allow the plumbbob to stop swinging, and when it's handging still, loosen your hold on the string sufficiently to allow the bob to slowly drop to the ground. Mark that spot and remember the horizontal dimension from the house. Have your assistant move the dumb end of the tape to the new spot, and continue this process, stepping down the slope until you've reached the distance your piers will be from the house. Mark that final spot.

Do this at least two more times within the area of the deck, and then connect the final points with a line parallel to the house. That line should be the centerline of your piers.


05:36PM | 04/23/04
Member Since: 12/27/02
543 lifetime posts
You attach your ledger, then level each rim using a 2x4. Square up the box, and drop your plumbs.

Per/code here in CA the setback to slope is 1>vert:3 horiz. so if we use a 2' sq. footing & 8" pier you would measure out 5' level then down at that point to get our 2' below grade depth. If it dropped 2' @ 5' then we dig down to 4' for the footing.

You may want to check your local codes, that's the ubc and covers all of the west basically.

Check out the site and look at the Petaluma project for a few tricks on placing the forms... that's a step by step deck project on a fair grade.

Alter Eagle Construction & Design


05:50PM | 04/23/04
Member Since: 04/16/04
5 lifetime posts
'preciate all the help, thanks guys!
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