March 1995 Table of Contents

Custom Built-In Cabinets

It’s easier to match existing trim and other design features with built-ins than with shop-built cabinets. Here’s a step-by-step look at the design considerations, joinery, and installation techniques that make built-in cabinets a good choice. Read more

Foundation Waterproofing Options

When it comes to keeping water out of the basement, there’s a big difference between dampproofing and waterproofing. A contractor with nine years of waterproofing experience tells how to choose and apply products that will really keep a basement dry. Read more

Piping Layouts for Hydronic Heat

The design of hydronic heat distribution piping affects overall comfort levels, regardless of boiler efficiency. An engineer describes the pros and cons of four piping layouts for hot-water heat. Read more

Preventing Ice Dam Leaks

With heavy snow and unusually cold temperatures, heat loss from skylights can cause ice dams and leaks, even on vented roofs. When you can’t prevent ice dams, here’s how to protect against the leaks they can cause. Read more

Sonotube Tips

For decks and small additions, concrete piers are an affordable and sturdy alternative to footings and frostwalls. A veteran contractor shares tips and techniques on how to excavate, lay out, reinforce, and pour pier foundations with tube forms. Read more

Training Lead Carpenters

A job foreman needs more than good carpentry skills to manage the construction site. Here are the techniques a successful builder uses to find lead carpenters within his own ranks, rather than hiring from outside. Read more


Safe wiring practice, EPA defends radon policy Read more

Eight-Penny News

LVL package house, limiting liability for scalding accidents, economic warnings for spec builders, frost-protected foundations Read more

Q&A: Protecting Below-Grade Framing

Q: We are building an addition and want the floor levels between the old and new living areas to line up. However, this would put the floor framing slightly below the existing grade. Is there a foundation flashing detail to protect the floor framing and siding in this case? Read more

Q&A: Connecting to Aluminum Wiring Q&A: Connecting to Aluminum Wiring

Q: I recently did some work in a house where the electrician found aluminum wiring. The electrical inspector told us that pigtailing in standard devices with wire nuts was not acceptable. Instead, we must use aluminum-rated devices and special aluminum-to-copper connectors. I checked with the local supply house, but they said they couldn’t get aluminum-rated devices and had never heard of wire nuts rated for aluminum-to-copper connections. Any ideas? Read more

Building With Style: Searching for Style

Working with period house styles Read more

Kitchen & Bath
For What It's Worth

New layout tool, rugged rigid foam board, smart light bulbs, glaze for specialty interior finishes Read more

Toolbox: Adjustable Framing Braces

Adjustable wall braces for fast framing Read more

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