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Important information to know about stud cut-outs

All trades on building sites need to be aware of the critical effect excessive cut-outs have on the integrity of the studs and the strength of the overall wall structure.

On a recent project, the carpenters correctly installed the internal walls, the plasterers lined one side and then they left it to the plumbers and electricians. On returning to finish lining the walls, the plasterer was shocked to find massive cut-outs with only small pipes running through them.

Some penetrations had the entire pan width missing from the stud, to the point where the flanges were buckling under the weight of the lining board! Such excessive remove a material effectively removes all the structural properties of the stud. Unscrupulous operators carrying out sloppy work practices are highly dangerous and they are mostly poor too, because the rectification costs were high and their relationship with the builder has soured.

Follow these few simple guidelines to ensure your workmanship will be backed up by Studco:

  • Never, never, never cut through the flange of a stud
  • Never remove the entire pan width of a stud
  • Keep cut-outs at least 20mm away from the stud flanges
  • Use the “W/3W” rule in the diagram at right
  • The maximum cut-out in a 150mm stud is 50mm wide
  • Work with the other trades on-site to co-ordinate placement of studs so everyone’s job is made easier
  • Cut-outs should be in the middle third of the stud
  • If you accidentally exceed these guidelines, tell the carpenter and ask him to replace the stud
Stud Cut Outs Guide

For architectural specifications or installation advice, please contact Studco Building Systems for fast, friendly service at  or call 1800 STUDCO