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0
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1answer
26 views

What is the importance of “breathable” home exteriors?

I have heard many people say that it's important for a building's exterior materials to be able to "breathe." In particular, materials like brick are desirable because of their breathe-ability, ...
3
votes
3answers
152 views

Should I wrap home in Tyvek when re-siding?

My house was built in the 60s and doesn't have normal plywood sheathing. It has that old sheet-rock-like sheathing (it's black, I think it is exterior gypsum). Basically the walls (right now) go, ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

U.S. NEC on adding wires in a finished ceiling

I want to add a second outlet to my finished garage ceiling, about 14 feet from the existing box. The DIY info I found has all been about adding wires to finished walls. The question is how to get ...
0
votes
0answers
33 views

What material to use to clog previously cut central heating pipes

I used to have a central heating system which was never in use for years, because it couldn't be connected to central pipe inside other building. Last winter I finally dropped water from it and cut ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

When ordering crushed stone for path, how much should be ordered to allow for compaction?

I'm putting in a stepping stone path. The stones will be on top of 4" of packed, 3/4"- (three quarter minus) stone - which packs to a nice, solid base. My question is, if I know that the volume of ...
2
votes
2answers
93 views

How can I calculate the rotational force and motor HP needed to lift a 5lb sheet from a horizontal position to a vertical position from one end?

Essentially, I need to know the following: How do I calculate the rotation force along a fulcrum? Is there an equation? What is the weight of a 5 lb object at the fulcrum if the fulcrum is located ...
1
vote
1answer
72 views

Is this swing beam safe?

Please help. I made a swing for my kids and now am wondering how safe it is. The swing beam is pressure treated yellow pine 4x6 and 16 feet long. The swing hangers are attached to the 4 inch side of ...
1
vote
0answers
32 views

How can I reduce vibration transfer to piled foundation?

Situation is: new home construction about 50-75 feet from a railroad and the home is to be built on piles (or stilts) elevated about 12-15 above grade. I'll leave the underground considerations to ...
1
vote
1answer
73 views

Drilled a shallow hole in concrete ceiling and some water came out. What now?

We are on a ground floor of a condo building and to put up the partitions I drilled a small hole and after about 1" depth the drill fell into a void (about 1" more) and about a quart or so of clear ...
1
vote
0answers
64 views

What are large corrugated metals pipes for under commercial buildings? [closed]

I've recently seen several commercial buildings being built here in Michigan. These buildings are of the poured concrete floor type. The ones I've noticed where convienence stores and restaurants. ...
1
vote
2answers
58 views

Proper way to connect joist to top plate?

What's the proper way to connect an element like this: I was thinking hurricane ties but was wondering if there was a better connector.
1
vote
1answer
59 views

Possible to remove truss and add collar ties?

I am doing a pretty significant garage renovation and had a couple questions. I was originally going to just replace the loft (the original wasn't supported on top the stud wall on side which always ...
0
votes
2answers
61 views

Minimizing wall thickness for basement drywall?

I'm trying to optimize acoustics of my future home theater by maximizing dimensions to minimize standing wave problems. I would like to minimize the thickness of a finished wall consisting of drywall ...
0
votes
0answers
51 views

Covering Up A Large Gap In A Wall

I was looking for advice on how could i create a partition between my two rooms which have a huge frame in between them. The place was originally covered by curtains but putting up curtains on the ...
0
votes
2answers
67 views

Building a dock ramp for a dog

I have the week off for the fourth and I'm in a beginner DIY mood. At my lake house, we have a floating dock which is too high above the water to easily pull the dog out and he can't get out by going ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

How to build a sauna? [closed]

I would build my own DIY sauna, but I can't seem to find extensive information about it. Nor I can find plans to build one. How can I build one? My father has a lot of home building knowledge, but ...
4
votes
1answer
150 views

How to build deck starting in yard, ending on concrete slab?

Here are some photos of my backyard with rough dimensions. Needing help with how to end a deck from cemented posts in yard (at rear of house), to my back door. My trouble area is above the concrete. ...
1
vote
0answers
93 views

Using replacement windows in new construction

A few years ago I replaced my old drafty windows with high-quality replacement windows. Now I am doing some renovations, which will require some windows to be relocated to a different position. The ...
2
votes
3answers
123 views

How to buy a land and build a cottage in the United States?

I plan to buy a small residential land (<1 acre) to build a vacation cottage there. Since I want to explore possibilities across different states, I am searching for possible options over the ...
2
votes
2answers
121 views

Will standing topped off tree trunks work for holding up a building structure?

If I cut four trees off about 15' above the ground, and they are approximately in a parallelogram, Can I use them to support a building structure (say, a large shed)? Would I have to treat against ...
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Edge considerations on mosaic staircase

I'm renewing our old outdoor concrete staircase going to the garden. I've decided to install glass mosaic as surface finishing. I've got advice from the specialized shop regarding water-proofness of ...
0
votes
1answer
304 views

Calculating Tray ceiling dimensions

I am building a tray ceiling for my living room to install recessed lighting in. Is there any general ratio's for tray size to room size? I have looked everywhere and it seems most tray ceilings don't ...
0
votes
1answer
72 views

Help translate terminology relating to flat roof construction

I just bought a house which had an extension done 12 years ago. I am about to do some work in this area and want to understand what has been done before. Below is a screen shot of the bits of the ...
1
vote
0answers
64 views

Who pays for hooking up electricity to a new house? [closed]

I recently saw someone say that the utility company will pay to bring electricity into a newly constructed home. Can anyone confirm this? Does the electric company pay, or the homeowner, or is it ...
2
votes
3answers
934 views

Is a hexagonal house feasible?

Recently I have been considering the economics and feasability of building a house versus buying a used one. In my design I settled on a hexagon as the logical shape for the frame, which I am ...
0
votes
1answer
547 views

Making a timber frame cupboard door using an MDF insert to hold its shape

I have been working on a design for some cupboard doors. The requirements are: - Simple to build so that an low-skilled wood-worker (myself) can put it together. - Be strong enough that the door ...
0
votes
0answers
260 views

How to determine depth of non-load bearing post when NOT using concrete?

I'm building a trellis/clothesline and using 4x4s as the end-poles. The load on these will be pretty small, and mostly bending moments (almost all) and not axial stress. I live in southern California ...
1
vote
2answers
235 views

Unsure about my structural engineer, can you check his drawing?

I recently asked my structural engineer to provide some calculations and drawings to remove the arch and further open up the opening between the double fronted sitting room of my 2.5 storey (2 at the ...
1
vote
0answers
54 views

What open-source materials are available for understanding basic designs for bookshelves / cabinetry?

I'd like to build a fairly large (11' x 7') set of built-in bookcases with lower doors, and am trying to understand the critical components and construction steps. I'd like to find freely available ...
3
votes
1answer
262 views

Temporary toilet installation

I need to install a toilet in a my house while it is being built. The floor isn't ready yet and won't be for at least a couple of months and right know it is a rough concrete slab. Since the soil ...
2
votes
2answers
218 views

What is the purpose of this pole in my garage?

Why is there a three inch pipe filled with concrete sticking out of my garage floor? We've ruled out the obvious explanations: missle launcher, coffee table, NSA listening post, and Mario shortcut. ...
1
vote
1answer
139 views

What screws to use to attached tie-downs from shed roof rafters to top sill?

What screws should I use to attached tie-downs from shed roof rafters to top sill?
2
votes
1answer
46 views

Is High Friction Aggregate a type of stone or treatment applied to a stone?

I am doing some research about decorative stones and came across high friction aggregate. I am a bit confused and here are my two questions: Is High Friction Aggregate a separate type of stone OR ...
0
votes
2answers
886 views

What is the best way to build a simple desk capable of supporting several hundred lbs.?

I'm in the middle of designing a desk that will have to support several hundred lbs., but I'm unsure of what would be the simplest method of bracing to carry a significant amount of weight. All my ...
4
votes
1answer
761 views

How can I build a brick mailbox?

I'm planning to build a wall block mailbox with the wall blocks that are 3.75" X 7.5" X 11.25". I've worked out the plans that allow for a particular mailbox to fit nicely in a space. However, it ...
4
votes
1answer
411 views

What can I do about this gap between the sill/exterior board and the subfloor?

I just discovered that my sill plate and joist setup is different than others I've seen (and I was a Realtor, so I've seen a lot of sills). As you can see from the picture, there's a gap between ...
3
votes
1answer
444 views

Is this old basement floor concrete, grout, or something else?

What is the likely construction/material of the basement floor shown below? It's not very flat, and the surface appears sandy. It's almost as if some kind of skim-coat was applied to the dirt floor. ...
0
votes
2answers
425 views

What type of wall construction is shown in these pictures?

These photos were taken through a small hole in the wall of a house. They are of the inside of the cavity. The hole they were taken through is at a height of about 60cm from the internal ground floor ...
1
vote
2answers
862 views

How do I take apart a wooden retaining wall?

I have a retaining wall, sorta. It acts as a divider between homes rather than retain anything. Built the same way as one, with 6x6 boards, spikes, all that jazz. No deadmen, of course. I need to ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

Is it normal to find cracks in new concrete?

I'm having a house built and they just completed pouring the slab for the foundation a few days ago. When I inspected it today I noticed several narrow (but sometimes long; one or two do them appear ...
3
votes
1answer
261 views

How can I protect a house foundation from weather conditions?

I started building a house and had to divert my money into another situation which was urgent. It might take some time to retrieve the money so the building is on hold. Only the house foundation is ...
4
votes
1answer
218 views

Is there any way I can reclaim this space and still safely support the front steps?

In my garage I have a nearly useless room that's 6'x10' but has this ... strange shelf of sorts in there. When I went to bust up the drywall to see whats behind it I found out it's been there since ...
0
votes
1answer
2k views

Best solution for file folders of custom wooden desk drawer?

A few months ago, I bought a wooden desk. I want to put file folders in one of the drawers. I bought this file folder frame set (the kind you build) for file folders from Office Depot, but they ...
3
votes
3answers
3k views

Natural ways to keep the ceiling cool during summer

I live in the single floor independent house in South India with the ceiling exposed to sun. In summer it gets really hot. I am not an expert but was wondering if there is a traditional/natural way ...
10
votes
4answers
13k views

Is there an ideal height for a workbench?

Is there a universal standard height that people try to go for when building workbenches? Should DIY tabletops be tailor made to the height of the user and how does the ideal height of the tabletop ...
4
votes
1answer
663 views

How can I drill through rim joist/sheathing for a dryer vent?

I want to vent dryer through the rim joist of this home but it looks like this home has some sort of stone sheathing underneath the cedar shake. I can only see it from the basement. I can't really ...
4
votes
3answers
4k views

How can I calculate the load capacity of a platform?

I'm planning to build a very basic bed frame, but I'm not sure what size lumber to use. I was thinking of building the entire thing from 2x4s (legs would be 4x4), but I'm not sure if this will be ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

What is the expense and difficulty of moving an exterior kitchen wall?

I'm considering a kitchen remodel, that is in the front-right corner of a house, and surrounded by a covered deck on both sides. The deck extends out 8ft in the front and 9ft on the right. I'd like ...
5
votes
3answers
153 views

Where can I find plans for building a chicken coop?

I was hoping to build a chicken coupe for 3-4 chickens. Does anyone know where I can find some plans (preferably free) for building a decent chicken coop? It doesn't have to be the Taj Mahal, but I ...
12
votes
2answers
604 views

What should I keep in mind when building my house myself?

I inherited a piece of land and want to build a house on it. Nothing fancy: one floor, 2-3 rooms. Since I don't really have the money :D to build it "in one go", I'm going to build it over a longer ...