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Now that we have our exterior walls and windows and all at in place, let's go ahead and add a deck to the back of our building. Now that deck is going to go directly underneath these doors that lead out to it. Also, it's going to go above this window right here. Let's get started by moving up to our First Floor plan. So that it's going to be centered on these doors as well as the window down below, or at least pretty close to centered, I want this deck to start just 1 foot off the structural edge of our house. So what I'm going to do I'm going to actually click on the Floor tool right here.
I'm going to use a line in a way that I haven't used a line before. I'm going to use the Line tool right here and instead of using a detail line, I'm going to use the actual lines that you would usually make up a deck, in order to give me that distance of 1 foot off at the end. Here I can see that on 1 foot off at the end. I am just going to move up a little bit here. I know that that's going to be where my deck is going to need to start. Also, I know that my deck is going to be 8 feet deep by 10 feet wide. So I'm going to select right here.
I'm going to move straight up, and I'm going to tell this to be 8 feet. The warning message I am getting is that this line and that little line that I drew down here are overlapping. That's okay. I'm going to delete that little line here in just a minute. Next I'm going to move straight over to the right, and I'm going to go 10 feet. I'm going to come straight down and then all the way back over again. Now that I've done that, I'm going to click on this line and delete it. I'm then click on this line and delete it, because I don't need them anymore.
They were just to give me the proper dimension off the end of the building. Now before I click on the big green check mark, we have a few properties that we need to change. The first property is that yes, this is going to be off the first floor, but also you need to verify that this height is correct. In this case, it happens to be correct, and it's going to be a -4 inch drop from where the first floor is at and step down onto the deck. If yours doesn't say -4 inches, go ahead and type in here at the Height Offset, -4 inches.
Also verify that this does say Floor Deck. If it says any other kind of floor, it's not going to be the appropriate floor for you to be able to create this design, so just leave it at Floor Deck. Now come up here to the big green check mark and click on it, and you'll now have your deck that's going around that 8 foot 10 parameter that we just drew. Just so you can see what it looks like up to this point, let's take a look at in a 3D View, so click on little house up here at the top. Now this by itself is probably okay.
The only thing is is it looks kind of small and flimsy up there. It's not really the cleanest-looking thing and if we were to render it, it really wouldn't look extremely nice. So in order for it to have a nice aesthetic appeal, we need to add some things to it. And those items that we are going to be adding to it are going to be some structural members. So back in the First Floor plan--I'm just going to double-click on First Floor-- I'm going to go up to Structure and I'm going to add some Beams. Now these are really structural beams. What these are-- and if come to the type selector list-- it's going to be some dimensional number, some 2x12s.
I'm going to click on them. Next, I'm going to move over to here and I'm going to draw these 2x12s from this point on up to right here. Next, I'm going to repeat that same process, except I'm going to do it from this intersection, back down. Now, I'm going to do the same thing from right here. I'm going to take it on over. Now as along as you did it in that sequence, you should have your boards coming up here, dying out at the end of the deck, and then this board stops just a little bit short of this board, and you have the same condition on the other end.
To clean that up, you can select on this board and pull this over. And they can either be touching or just right off the end; in this case I'm just going to have them line up with one another. I'm going to do the same thing down here. Now this deck is made out of smaller boards than the 2x12s. In fact, if I select on the deck, click on Edit Type, and go to Edit Structure here, we will see that this is made out of 2x8s, a 2x8, once it goes through the milling process, is about 71/4 inches thick, so this is structurally correct.
If I click on OK and click on OK on out, what this means is that these boards that we just added are going to be bigger and thicker, and are going to give the illusion that this deck is created out of much heavier, stronger material, if you will. And it's going to look a lot more cleaner and refined when the building is finally built. And it will just be prettier when it's all set and done. There is one more thing that we need to be able to adjust though. If I zoom in here, you will see that the deck actually comes to the middle of where these are at, and that's not where I want them to be.
So I'm going to use my arrow keys on my keyboard, in this case the up arrow key, to nudge these boards over. I will select on the next board, use my left arrow key to nudge that over, come over here, select on this board, use the Nudge command again to nudge that over. Now let's take a look at this in 3D to get a better feel for what it is we have actually drawn. Now up to this point, everything we've done has been okay. There hasn't even really been the ability to drop these down, but this is a problem, because we want the top of these boards to be lined up with the top of our deck.
But at this point, it's pretty easy. Simply select on each of these boards by clicking on them and holding down your Ctrl key. Next, over here, you have your Start Level Offset Distance. Let's make this be -4 inches and -4 inches. Click on Apply and you see these boards just drop themselves right down. And by doing this, we now have a--actually a thicker-looking structural member up there.
It's going to be a nicer material, too, when it's rendered. Also it's going to hide the fact that you're going to have your columns coming up here and tying into here and how any square structural connections might be taking place. These boards from a distance are going to hide those structural connections, so you are not going to see metal pieces or whatever might be holding those together--brackets, whatever the case may be. So in general, when you look at these from afar, you are going to have a nice, clean-looking piece of construction.
So if you are going to be building a deck, always make sure to use your floors and your flooring materials. Feel free to use things like beams, which when we think of a beam you might be thinking of something it would usually hold something up like this illustration might illustrate. That being said, in this case, it can also be used as a decorative piece to make your deck cleaner and more refined-looking.
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