August 1999 Table of Contents

Bending V-Crimped Valley Flashing

Keep runoff under control where roofs of different pitches intersect. Read more

Crawlspace Ventilation Update

Most crawlspaces should be carefully sealed, not ventilated. In many areas, however, the codes are still catching up with best practice. Read more

Hanging a New Door in an Old Jamb Hanging a New Door in an Old Jamb

When the door and the jamb don’t match, this finish carpenter’s scribing technique makes for a perfect fit the first time, every time. Read more

Managing Fraudulent Clients Managing Fraudulent Clients

Some clients who complain about your work are just looking for a way to get out of paying the final bill. Some even planned it that way. A psychologist specializing in construction fraud identifies common character types and shows you how to avoid getting caught in their game. Read more

Rafter Cutting Basics

A veteran California framer explains step by step how to lay out plumb, seat, heel, and plancer cuts on common, hip, valley, and jack rafters. Read more

Tool Test: Sliding Compound Miter Saws

Our tool editor looks at both single- and double-compound models with an eye toward accuracy, durability, and ease of use. Read more

Detail: Wood Trim for Vinyl Siding

On houses clad with vinyl, a simple rabbeted edge detail preserves the look of traditional wood trim at windows, doors, and corner boards. Read more


Fire separation assembly clarification, comments on new pressure-treated wood categories, Marvin Windows responds to article, support for women in the trades Read more


Toolmakers battle “tool counterfeiting,” SBCCI foam ban reversed, pressboard roof shingle suit settled, factory- vs. site-built quality and cost, the self-cleaning house Read more

Q&A: Sizing Steel Girders

Q: A while ago you ran an article recommending that you limit deflection of built-up wood girders to L/600 so that the floor joists wouldn’t vibrate excessively (see Practical Engineering, 8/97). My question: Does this also apply to steel girders, or is it mainly a wood-related issue, owing to the inherently greater flexibility of wood beams? In another words, would a steel beam sized for L/360 deflection be less bouncy than a wood beam sized for, say, L/480? Or should I absolutely make sure that all my steel beams are size for the L/600 limit? Read more

Q&A: Plywood for Oceanside Decking

Q: I’m building a wharf on a bay of the Gulf of Mexico. It is to be on 8-inch-diameter pilings with 2-by joists and cross-members. Can I use plywood for the decking? What are your recommendations? Read more

Q&A: Mechanical Plumbing Vents

Q: I saw a "rubber diaphram" device marketed as a cap for vent pipes that terminated in the attic. Its advantage was that it did not pierce the roof (highly desirable for expensive roofs like slate and tile), yet it would work to equalize pressures in the vent system. No mention of noxious gases or additional ventilation requirements was mentioned. Do these devices work, and are they accepted by the most common plumbing codes? Read more

Strictly Business: Learning To Say "No"

Turning down work without turning off prospective clients Read more

Legal Adviser: Recovering Costs for Hidden Conditions

Collecting payment when hidden conditions cause extra work Read more


Fifteen-volume business reference, woodworking primer, bathroom design and construction, HUD design guide Read more


GFCI-protected temporary power, polyurethane glue, corner sander, puncture-proof wheelbarrow tire, insulated vinyl siding, hydraulic work platform Read more

Other Articles
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Slab waterproofing admixture, carpenter pay rates Read more

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