June 1998 Table of Contents

Building Above Grade With ICFs

From planning and layout to applying the finishes, a North Carolina general contractor describes the process of building his first house using insulated concrete forms. Read more

Practical Lighting Design

Excerpted from the recently published Lighting Pattern Book for Homes, this article shows how to lay out and choose fixtures and lamps for improved light quality and better energy efficiency. Read more

Retrofitting Skylights

A skylight specialist walks through his procedures for retrofitting skylights in existing homes, including selling the job, layout, and installation. Read more

Rot-Resistant Decking Options

A few years ago, the main choices for rot-proof decking were redwood and pressure-treated lumber. Environmental concerns and the search for low-maintenance materials have spawned a host of new products, including new hardwoods, wood-plastic composites, and synthetic materials. Read more

Spreadsheet Basics Spreadsheet Basics

Are you still doing estimates and job-costing with pencil and paper? A builder and computer expert shows how to automate the process using a spreadsheet. Read more

Solutions to Common Framing Problems Solutions to Common Framing Problems

Even experienced framers make mistakes. A wood-frame expert cites some of the most common errors he’s seen, and provides practical solutions for each. Read more


Rake wall layout options, rain screen siding details, charging what the market will bear Read more


Soil erosion on job sites under scrutiny, 2x4 vs. 2x6 wall framing study, opposition to pay-if-paid laws growing Read more

Q&A: Flood-Damaged Receptacles

Q: I am doing renovation in a house that was flooded. Is it necessary to replace electrical receptacles that were under water? Read more

Q&A: Squash Blocks & Web Stiffeners Q&A: Squash Blocks & Web Stiffeners

Q: I’ve been using wood I-joists for my floor framing. The designs have called for 1x4 crush blocking inserted between the top and the bottom 2x2 flanges and nailed directly to the OSB web. I’ve also heard of using 2x4s nailed to the face of the 2x2s, instead of being inserted between them. Which way is better? Read more

By Design: Infill Housing That Fits

Infill housing — a stylish solution Read more

Strictly Business: Finding Good Help

How to find good employees Read more

Legal Adviser: Collecting Money in Small-Claims Court

The ins and outs of small-claims court Read more

Kitchen & Bath
Kitchen & Bath: Profiting From Frameless Cabinets

Contractor-built frameless cabinets Read more


Carbide-tipped rebar cutter, inflatable knee pads, flood-detector sump pump, magnetic gate latch, flexible screening, new drywall corner bead Read more

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