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More stories about Backfill

  • Plasma-Screen Windows

    Computer engineer and part-time carpenter Ryan Hoagland, has developed a system for configuring one or more high-definition plasma TVs as a remarkably convincing substitute for conventional windows.

  • Beachside Storage Shed

    Forget the 5,000-square-foot beach house just out of sight in the photos.

  • Spiral Stair Rail from a Tube

    Spiral stair rail

  • A Brief History of Quonset Huts

    A hut for all seasons

  • Using Ship Masts for Structural Columns

    Suppose you wanted some wooden columns about 20 feet tall and custom-turned in one piece from straight tree trunks? There aren’t too many places you could find such a thing.

  • Robotic Transit for Perfect Foundation Layouts

    Although precise methods for layout have existed for thousands of years, not everyone seems to accord them equal value. Ponying up, say, $40,000 for a transit may strike you as over the top, but Hunzinger Construction of Brookfield, Wis., did just that.

  • An Affordable Solar Home

    Last fall, 20 college and university teams from the U.S. and abroad gathered in Washington, D.C., to take part in the 2009 Solar Decathlon.

  • Architect-Builder Uses Natural Tree Forms

    Architect Roald Gundersen and his team at Whole Tree Architecture and Construction are all for putting small-diameter trees — the “weeds” of the forest — to practical use.

  • Custom-Carved Corbels

    As part of a job finishing a side-porch addition to a Victorian home, I had to reproduce six decorative corbels.

  • Steam-Bent Shingles

    Renovations are a vital part of the routine at George Washington’s Mount Vernon, Va., estate, which is open to the public 365 days a year. Recently, Steve Ritter’s company, Cedar Shakes and Shingles, was called upon to install decorative red cedar shingles on the bell-shaped roof of a reproduction...