January 2001 Table of Contents

Innovative (and Cool!) Safety Products

We evaluate an assortment of today’s safety products and ponder the age-old question: Can safety products actually look cool? Read more

Low-Cost, No-Cost CAD

If all you need are a few sketches for clients or subs, there’s no need to drop $1,000 on a professional CAD program — not when these free-or-cheap offerings will do the job. Read more

Making the Most of Skylights Making the Most of Skylights

By letting in daylight, skylights can enhance a room and even save energy in some cases. Here are some tips for making your installations look great. Read more

Reducing Drywall Callbacks Reducing Drywall Callbacks

A drywall contractor explains the techniques and materials he uses to prevent nail pops and visible seams. Read more


Building trades a good career choice; eaves membrane detail questioned; handheld penetrometer sources; more Read more


Liability for kids on the job site; builders selling Internet access with new homes; beetles plague California builder; growth control defeated in recent elections; more Read more

Q & A
Q&A: Venting a Basement Toilet Q&A: Venting a Basement Toilet

Q: I am installing an in-floor ejector pump for a basement toilet. Obviously, a wet vent is not possible, since I don’t want any upstairs fixtures discharging into the sump pit. How do I vent the toilet? Read more

Q&A: Which Side of OSB Goes Up?

Q: When OSB is installed on roofs, which side should face up — the slick side or the rough side? Read more

Q&A: Attic Ventilation Details

Q: I am improving the attic ventilation in a 30-year-old two-story house in Virginia. My plan is to install soffit vents and insulation baffles. The attic has gable vents with thermostatically controlled fans. Do I have to install a ridge vent, or are the Read more

Q&A: Backpriming Siding

Q: I have often read that wood siding should be backprimed before installation. But I believe that a primer without a finish coat is of no value, because I don’t think a primer can slow down moisture movement. Has there been any research or testing on thi Read more

Q&A: Reroofing with Heavy Shingles

Q: I intend to reroof over the original asphalt shingles on a 30-year-old house. I would like to install heavy 40-year architectural-weight asphalt shingles, without stripping the existing shingles. I am a little worried that the new shingles may add too Read more

Strictly Business: Making Allowances Work

Using allowances to streamline pricing Read more

Computer Solutions: Selecting a Laptop

How to select the right laptop Read more


Climate-specific building guides Read more


Ready-made business forms; ventilating fan for toilet bowl; generator wheel kit; rack for production door painting; hot wheelbarrow add-ons; more Read more

Toolbox: Checking Your Transit

Tuning up your transit Read more

Backfill: Ten Steps to a More Colorful Future

Need more color in your life? Try naming some. Read more

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