Planning to replace pavers with a hardwood deck in a U-shaped courtyard (about 8 x 8). The house has an "exposed slab" construction (rendered blueboard exterior walls) for termite protection, so I want to leave at least 25mm of the slab exposed above the deck. This leaves me very little height to work with (less than 250mm from ground to top of deck after removing pavers and excavating as far as possible while still providing drainage).
I read a suggestion in another thread that the bearers could be laid on concrete blocks - an idea I was thinking of myself - making it easy to provide short span allowing for smaller bearers (90mm max?).
Is this a good idea? Should I fix the bearers to the blocks? (How?)
Would it be OK to use a couple of widely spaced concreted stirrups to keep bearers in place with blocks between to provide weight bearing support? The base of the bearers would almost be at ground level.
The current plan is to use H4 treated pine for the bearers (and MAYBE for the joists). Decking will be spotted gum held down with a clip system ("InStyle Decking" from Urbanline - a Hervey Bay local company. Expensive but looks good - and easy to lift up if I need to clean up underneath.)
Would it be appropriate to do away with bearers altogether and place joists directly on the ground (or on blocks) with subsurface drainage?
Hope you can help.