I am new to this forum, but am looking for a path of guidance...
I am currently finishing my basement and as a part of this renovation I planned to remove a 18' section of load bearing wall to open up the recreation area. I even hired a structural engineer to provide some guidance and wide flange beam sizing and footing requirement so I could appease the city in that, indeed, I knew what I was doing and am going to do it the right way.
However, as I started to move forward with getting the beam purchased, I noticed that the engineer spec'd a beam that was a bit too deep for what I wanted...W12X30. So, I called up the firm and to my dismay, the engineer passed away and it was a one man operation! So, one, I can call up another engineering firm and deposit another 250 bucks or more, or two...I have all the engineering documentation with loads, etc.
What I would like is to get a W10X? beam in there to save a couple inches of space (I know this will be a heavier beam). Does anyone have any ideas other than hiring another firm? Also, there was no nailer plate specified in the design to sit on the top flange of the beam which would be great as that would save another 1.5 of headspace. Is a nailer plate truely required for lateral support (I would have engineered wood joists resting direct on the top flange of the beam)? One side of the beam will be located on the foundation (new beam pocket) and the other I would have a column with footing, spanning the full 18' (17'8" to be exact)
Any guidance is greatly appreciated!