August 2005 Table of Contents

Buying a Compact Excavator Buying a Compact Excavator

Ownership can reduce your dependence on subs and create new sources of revenue, but be sure to consider all the costs. Read more

Fast Box Newel - Fewer Nail Holes Fast Box Newel - Fewer Nail Holes

This carpenter-friendly design eliminates most of the nail holes. Read more

Framing a Barrel-Vault Ceiling Framing a Barrel-Vault Ceiling

To simplify the layout, think in terms of a hip roof. Read more

Job-Site Safety Lessons Job-Site Safety Lessons

Experience may be the best teacher, but when it comes to matters of job-site safety, sometimes it’s better to learn from someone else’s. Here are 11 cautionary tales from JLC readers. Read more

Habla Espanol? Habla Espanol?

The ability to communicate in Spanish could become your most valuable job-site tool. Read more

Letters Letters

Note from New Jersey; snow-covered vent pipes; the continuing safety-factor discussion; more Read more

In the News In the News

Helping the homeless in Orange County, Calif.; Supreme Court ruling on eminent domain; second life for old latex paint; Harvard’s Joint Center for Housing Studies annual report; more Read more

Q & A
Fixing a Bowed Basement Wall Q&A Fixing a Bowed Basement Wall

Q. A foundation wall in my customer's two-story home has a 2-inch bow in the middle of its 53-foot length and two stress cracks located 10 feet from either end, all probably caused by backfilling while the concrete was still green. As far as I know, no re Read more

Q&A Prepping for Wallpaper

Q. The last time I was asked to remove wallpaper and repaint the wall, much of the paper facing on the sheetrock underneath came off, too, resulting in a lot of extra wall prep. What caused this, and what's the best way to prepare drywall for a wallcoveri Read more

Q&A Nailing into MDF

Q. My company installs prefinished millwork in a commercial environment, so we rely heavily on MDF-veneered products. Is there a fastener we can use in our pneumatic nailers that will prevent or at least minimize the "mushroom" that occurs when the fasten Read more

On the Job
On the Job: Slick Pocket-Door Trick On the Job: Slick Pocket-Door Trick

Slick pocket-door trick; smooth tube piers Read more

Protect Yourself With a Job Journal Business Protect Yourself With a Job Journal

In 1988 I went to work for a large commercial-residential electrical contractor. One of the first projects I worked on was a program to document what was happening on site. Read more

Who Pays When the Design Doesn't Meet Code? Legal Who Pays When the Design Doesn't Meet Code?

Let's suppose you're hired by a local restaurant to build a deck off the dining room so that customers can eat outside and enjoy the view. Your bid comes in at $30,000, and the owner accepts it. Read more

Kitchen & Bath
Kitchen & Bath Kitchen & Bath

Hot-water recirculation retrofit; bathroom lighting; cooktops Read more


Replacement windows & doors; interior millwork; slate & tile roofing Read more

Toolbox Toolbox

Bosch RS20 reciprocating saw; concrete tools; knives Read more

Who Says There's No Free Lunch? Backfill Who Says There's No Free Lunch?

Homemade biodiesel Read more

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