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6
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I use precision screwdrivers?

I am talking about those small and narrow screwdrivers with a thin handle. I can't get a tight enough grip on the handle to generate enough torque to remove a small screw. Do I have to use something ...
1
vote
2answers
68 views

What's the best way to shave off 1/8 of an inch from hardie board?

When laying hardie backer I was told to make my joints as tight as possible, so I imagine I'll run into this often. Currently I have a standard 6' board that just barely doesn't fit inside the lip of ...
40
votes
11answers
10k views

Is there a trick to applying caulk using a caulk-gun?

Perhaps it is just me, but no matter how careful I try to be, any attempt to apply caulk or cement or anything with a caulking gun into a crack results in total mess. The main problems that seem to ...
11
votes
5answers
2k views

Is there a technique or tool for consistently placing drywall screws correctly?

Is there a special technique or tool for consistently placing drywall screws correctly? I'm using a standard Dewalt DWD115K (with no auto-stop mechanism) so I'm usually paranoid of going too deep ...
10
votes
7answers
687 views

How can I pour a concrete pad with a circular hole in it?

Essentially, I'd like to put down a concrete pad for a patio, but leave a couple of circular areas within that patio unpaved (for planting shrubs). I'm familiar with the techniques for using ...
12
votes
2answers
557 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
844 views

How do I insulate around conduits and into difficult edges in my attic?

I am thinking about adding a little over a foot of insulation to my attics. I understand that there shouldn't be gaps between fiberglass batts (I read that this can reduce efficiency by 25%, whatever ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Can quick-drying mud be used on the same drywall joints where slow-drying mud was used?

I think I phrased the summary/title poorly but essentially, I'd like to know if all drywall mud coats need to use the same type of joint compound for all coats or if I can transition to quick drying ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

How do you determine the slope of a floor?

What are some methods for figuring out the slope of a floor? I've always heard the slope referenced as, eg: "1/2inch over 6ft." - is this the normal way, and/or are there other common ways to say ...
6
votes
3answers
639 views

What tool and technique do I use to achieve this finish in plaster?

Our shed (in Switzerland) has an outdoor wall that is finished with plaster texture called crépi here which Google translates as roughcast. The plasterer here says it is impossible to replicate today. ...
4
votes
2answers
498 views

How do I remove a fence post from a Wedge Grip support?

I'm in the process of replacing my back fence. One of the existing posts was damaged (crushed) during a tree fall. After finally digging this out, I discovered one of these in it. What I can't ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

When drywalling, do the pros cover electrical boxes, or work around them?

This may be a bit of a subjective question, but I was just thinking about it. I've seen many electrical boxes that are full of drywall compound, often to the point of having to dig the wires out of it ...
2
votes
1answer
6k views

What are some tips/techniques for applying knockdown texture to drywall?

I'd like to get advice on applying knockdown texture and fixing my own mistakes in the process. The consistency I'm looking for is something similar to this: As per an eHow article, I think the ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Proper way to cut a 2x4 using a miter saw

So I was just watching Holmes on Homes, and they were showing a quick close-up of cutting a 2x4, making two passes, cutting the top half first, then finishing it off: ...
2
votes
2answers
382 views

Tips for texturing ceilings?

I'm getting ready to texture ceilings for the first time using an air-compressor / hopper. I plan to practice first on some old sample sheets of drywall I have laying around but was also hoping to ...
2
votes
2answers
955 views

Building a mechanical Clock

this is probably off topic as it's not "home improvement", but still, it's DIY, so, here it goes: I want to build a mechanical clock. I've read technical things about how they work, this is not my ...
6
votes
1answer
682 views

Paper joint tape VS. Mesh joint tape

What are the pros and cons of each type of drywall joint tape? Are there situations where one should always be used over the other?
3
votes
3answers
208 views

Are hydraulics stronger against compression or tension?

I would like to use a pair of hydraulic pistons to raise and lower a surface that will hold about 150 lbs, and be capable of remaining in either fully extended or fully contracted modes for long ...
1
vote
1answer
408 views

How do I use a stopper-borer?

I need to bore a small hole in a rubber stopper (bung) like this: I have a set of tools called stopper-borers like these: But I can't figure out how to use them. Simply pressing on the borer ...
1
vote
1answer
131 views

Oil heater in a large room

I'm about to by an oil heater. One of the properties of a heater is the area of the room that the heater can heat. Say 15 m^2 or 20 m^2. The question is: what will be if I use the heater in a larger ...
7
votes
4answers
772 views

What should I do with a double gang box if I no longer need two separate switches?

We're relocating our TV to a side of our living room that has a power outlet controlled by a wall switch. The switch is part of a double gang box (1 switch controls the porch light, the other ...
3
votes
3answers
322 views

Dresser/Chest with convex front

I'm contemplating building a dresser and am looking at designs and such to get my creative juices flowing. Today I noticed that some dressers/chests have concave or outwardly curving drawers on the ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

How do I fix a pocket door wheel track?

I have a pocket door that keeps falling off its track. The metal track has become warped and bent down in just one or two areas. When I slide the door along the track and the front wheel goes over ...