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    Installing Precast Garage Slabs

    Precast concrete slabs can add clear-span basement space for an unbeatable price, and are especially cost effective on steep slopes, as this case study shows.

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    Making Curved Railings

    A finish carpenter tells how he used composite and plastic materials to provide low-maintenance exterior details on a period house.

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    15-Gauge Angled Finish Nailers

    A veteran finish carpenter reports on the performance of nine professional-duty pneumatic nailers.

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    Problem-Solving Cabinets

    Besides providing storage and organization, manufactured cabinets are enhancing the appearance of every room in the house.

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    Secrets of a Floor Refinisher

    A long-time owner of a floor refinishing business explains how a specialist assesses and executes a wood floor makeover.

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    Tracking Your Time

    A time card can improve the accuracy of your estimates, cut worker’s comp costs, and increase your profit. A custom builder shares his system.



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    Airtight homes, cash accounting, woodshop noise, drilling holes in I-joists, more



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    Whirlpool bacteria controversy, critical habitat under review, European lumber imports, Business Tune-Up, more



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    Q&A: Plumbing Around Floor Trusses

    Q: We’re installing a fiberglass tub unit over a truss-framed floor. A small plan change moved the tub so that the overflow pipe lines up with a floor truss below. There’s just enough room to run the drain above the truss, but is it okay to run the drain horizontally for a foot or so beyond where...

  • Q&A: Insulating Above a Plank Cathedral Ceiling

    Q: What’s the best way to insulate over an exposed 2x6 tongue-and-groove cathedral ceiling on a log house in Colorado? Some have suggested using SIPs, but others have advised that, because this particular roof is cut up with valleys and dormers, I would lose the labor savings associated with SIPs...

  • Q&A: Mold Insurance

    Q: Given the recent spate of moldrelated lawsuits covered in the news media, is there an affordable insurance coverage that can protect general contractors from liability on this issue?

  • Q&A: Penetration of PT Chemicals

    Q: Our local lumberyard carries .40 CCA-pressure-treated wood. The label says the wood may be used for ground contact. The wood has needle marks from the treating process. When I cut the lumber, the treatment appears to be only about 1/4 inch deep, which doesn’t seem adequate for sill plates in...

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    Q&A: Cracked Manufactured Stone

    Q: Last spring I completed a house with manufactured stone columns on the porches on both the north and south sides. The columns on the south porch have cracked at the corners (see photos below), while the columns on the north porch are fine. The cracks are only on the two outside corners of each...


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    Super scooter, aluminum foothold, PVC trimboards, safer subfloor adhesive, prestained doors, replacement shower drain, cordless drills, lightweight backerboard, more