May 1996 Table of Contents

Exterior Trim: Alternatives to Solid Wood

While good-quality finish lumber has grown more scarce and expensive, the lumber industry has been developing wood-based engineered alternatives. Here’s an overview of the best options on the market today. Read more

Hip Rafter Layout Basics

Have you misplaced your rafter table? Are your calculator batteries dead? Don’t worry: A framing square is all you need to lay out hip and jack rafters. Read more

Low-Voltage Lighting

Besides giving greater control to display and accent lighting, low-voltage fixtures are less expensive in the long term than conventional incandescents. Read more

Roof Tile Fasteners for High-Wind Regions

When it comes to securing roof tiles, minimum code recommendations may not be good enough. A seasoned roofing contractor discusses the right and wrong ways to install roof tiles in high-wind and seismically active areas. Read more

Sales for People Who Don't Like Selling

If you’re uncomfortable playing the role of salesman, you’re not alone. An experienced contractor gives step-by-step instructions on how to plan and present a sales pitch. Read more


Safety railings & OSHA, cathedral ceiling design, lumberyard CAD criticized Read more

Eight-Penny News

U.S. builders in Japan, lead carpenter training, single nationwide building code drafted Read more

Q&A: Weathertight Windows for Wind-Driven Rain Q&A: Weathertight Windows for Wind-Driven Rain

Q: As a general contractor in the Blue Ridge mountains of southwestern Virginia, we often build vacation homes higher than 4,000 feet altitude, where wind-driven rain is a regular weather feature. On one site, the wind regularly reaches 50 to 80-plus miles per hour and actually blows rain uphill. We have a south-facing window wall full of fixed-glass and awning windows. The wall has 2x6 studs, 1/2- inch OSB sheathing, Tyvek housewrap, and 1x10 horizontal ship-lapped pine. With only a 3/8-inch lap on the siding, I can imagine that water might be driven behind it. But how is it getting past the Tyvek and OSB through the wall? Water drips from the interior window head jambs, and with the interior wall paneling removed, it can be seen on top of the sole plate. We had to replace some buckled hardwood flooring after a vicious storm last January, and before we repair it again, we want to make sure the wall won’t leak. Are there any methods or materials that you could recommend? Read more

Q&A: Preventing Drywall Corner Cracks

Q: I’ve noticed that whenever I finish drywall, fine cracks start appearing at inside corners a couple of days after the job’s done. What is causing the cracks? Read more

Q&A: Matching Old Mortar

Q: In an upcoming remodeling project, we will be uncovering a section of hidden stonework that will need to be repointed to match the existing exposed stonework. How do we go about matching the color of the mortar? Read more

Kitchen & Bath
For What It's Worth

R-25 foam foundation form, low-VOC adhesive, no-itch batt insulation cover, adjustable screw plumbs windows and doors Read more

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