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Questions tagged [carpentry]

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33
votes
5answers
21k views

Why are carpenters' pencils flat?

My assumption is that it's so they don't roll away. But if a carpenter spends the majority of his/her day working on a flat surface, a regular pencil wouldn't seem to have the tendency to get away ...
24
votes
5answers
3k views

How do you find helpers for larger DIY projects?

Question: In cases where you have the time and skills to do a project yourself, but physically cannot without a second skilled person to help, how do you go about finding and hiring someone that is ...
21
votes
6answers
8k views

How can I fix this gap between bookcases I made?

I just built two bookcases to line the wall of a room in my house and apparently didn't build them square enough so, when I put them next to each other, I get this giant gap. (I think the one on the ...
20
votes
17answers
230k views

When installing hardwood floors, should I use rosin paper, roofing felt, or nothing underneath? Why?

I've installed hardwood floors, over top of OSB subfloor with a layer of roofing felt in between. I copied this from the hardwood floor contractor who did a kitchen in my home once. He'd been in ...
15
votes
9answers
3k views

Basic power tool set for Home repair and simple projects

I have a feeling this has been asked before, but I didn't find it here. I've read a number of websites and there always seem to be a little fluff and maybe this favorite tool or that. I'm thinking ...
14
votes
5answers
42k views

Should I attach the fence post(s) where my fence meets my house? How do I do it?

I'm going to be building a 6 foot tall cedar privacy fence in the spring (with pressure-treated posts) and need to determine what to do with the two posts that meet the side of my house. In order to ...
10
votes
3answers
1k views

How to make a long straight cut in a board at an angle?

I have a board about 1.5" thick and 12" wide and 8 feet long. I need to cut the board diagonally and want the cut to be as straight as possible. (I am cutting the board diagonally. This does not ...
10
votes
2answers
5k views

How do I install a new, non load bearing wall in my basement?

I'm looking to finish my basement and simply want to wall off the concrete blocks that make up the wall. I want to insulate it as well so that it becomes a usable family room when I'm done. How do I ...
10
votes
4answers
8k views

Dowel joints in plywood

I plan on replacing my kitchen cabinets later this summer. The old ones were home made by the previous owner and are oddly sized so I need to make my own out of plywood. Is it possible to put dowel ...
10
votes
3answers
13k views

Window framing on old construction

I'm redoing a kitchen but I've hired a contractor to do a portion of the work. One of the jobs he was hired to do was to move and reframe two windows. He finished that job today and I'm really ...
8
votes
5answers
347 views

good books on carpentry

I have some experience with making basic furniture (beds, desks, shelving) and installing trim and fittings (hanging doors, replacing kitchens) and I am interested in learning how to get a better ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

Can I extend my loft hatch opening?

I am hoping to extend the opening for my loft hatch using the following method. I want to move the cross piece from position Q to position P. I intend to screw a temporary support across the top of ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

Broken step on staircase

We have a broken step on our carpeted staircase. How can I remove then refit the carpet without damaging it? When the carpet has been removed, I will have to repair the step if possible, then refit ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

How can I build a screen door?

I have a guesthouse with an unusual door, 32" x 76", and it needs a screen door. Home Depot has tons of cheap-o screen doors that could be cut down to maybe 32" x 78" safely, but an additional two ...
6
votes
1answer
5k views

How to stop a circular saw from locking?

I've been using my new circular saw for about a week. Today while making a plunge cut it just locked. It didn't get stuck on anything inside the board and it consistently locked every time I tried to ...
5
votes
6answers
3k views

Can insulation foam expand around window framing and cause warping?

I was just wondering if insulation foam (I used regular Great Stuff from HD) can expand in dry conditions around a window (frame) and cause warping and damage to the window up to and including ...
5
votes
3answers
20k views

Mitre Circular Saw blades for cutting Oak floorboards

I have two different blades (which are almost new) for my mitre saw. One has 24 teeth, the other has 48 teeth. Which blade should I be using to cut oak floor boards?
5
votes
4answers
69k views

Which nails should I use for shoe molding installation?

I'm about to install shoe molding all over my house. The baseboards are hung for carpet, but we're replacing the carpet with vinyl. So I have a pretty good sized gap to cover. I'll probably use 11/16 ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

How to rig up temporary steps?

My yurt is up, but I need some steps. The deck is 32" above grade. Eventually I'll build a landing / small deck, but I'm too busy with other projects right now (like closing in the yurt wall canvas!) ...
5
votes
1answer
36k views

How can I estimate the load capacity of a set of shelves?

I'm pricing and researching supplies for built-ins in my living room. The plan is cabinets on the bottom, a cubby for a TV and staggered shelves for several hundred HEAVY books above that. My ...
5
votes
1answer
13k views

Replacing sill (bottom plate) of wall

I need to replace the sill of an exterior wall (load bearing wall that faces the outside the home). I ripped the sheet rock off and noticed some very old termite which was apparently treated years ago ...
4
votes
6answers
983 views

Cutting a 4.5m long 2x6 in half with a circular saw

My question is about cutting 2x6 boards in half with a circular saw ("Skil"-saw). Now, I've looked around, and there are many sites describing how to cut off a small piece from a larger piece, the ...
4
votes
2answers
917 views

Rotten wood: to fill or not to fill?

I removed the paint from this wood, the top ring of a raised garden. While scraping I got to a soft part and easily removed this rotten wood, creating the hole in the pictures: it is 2x2x5" Should I ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Are there any good videos available that teach basic carpentry?

I apologies if this was already covered but I could only find a thread on books, and it was geared towards someone having some basic skills already. While I am far from useless, I never had a reason ...
4
votes
1answer
5k views

How can I make my woodworking project square?

I understand how one checks for square. But, what do you do when it's not square? I put together four boards to begin forming a cabinet. I checked for square and nudged it into place. Then I ...
4
votes
2answers
9k views

What are the differences between wood and composite shoe molding?

I'm about to install shoe molding all over my house. I'm deciding between composite (I think it's PVC) and wood. They are quite similar in price. How do these 2 materials compare in terms of: ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I know if a self-designed structure I build will be structurally sound?

I've recently begun designing and building structural updates to my house. For example, I've built some shelving units and a cabinet space. Everything has gone well so far, but I'm about to tackle ...
4
votes
3answers
4k views

Should I be concerned that the sill plate is not lined up with the foundation?

I am in the process of building a one level home in PA. After the formed concrete walls were poured and the framing began, I noticed that on one side of the house that the sill plate was flush with ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Can a load bearing beam be offset from lapping joists?

I'm replacing a section of 4'' load bearing wall by a large 8''x8'' steel beam, and due to the size of the beam it would stick out to one side too much if I were to install it exactly centered with ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

How to install coat hooks securely when holes don't line up with studs (batten depth?, length of screws?)

I have a single piece set of coat hooks to install on the wall. By single piece I mean that they are 6 double hooks all attached to a single piece of metal as backing. (source: pbimgs.com) There ...
3
votes
3answers
952 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 ...
3
votes
1answer
716 views

How to join two 1x6s to form a 23' baseboard with a seamless transition?

My upstairs hallway is 23' long and one of its sides has no doors on it, meaning the baseboard on that side covers it continuously. I am using 1x6 poplar for baseboard and the longest piece my local ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the easiest way to measure an irregular floor space?

I would like to order a comfort mat for the floor of a small kitchen. The company can make it to order but I have to provide exact dimensions. This is harder that it sounds though as the floor space ...
3
votes
2answers
50k views

real dimensions of 2 by 4 in inches/centimeters [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why are 2“x4”'s really 1.5“x3.5”? Just by looking at a 2 by 4 plank I can tell that it is neither 2in × 4in or 2cm × 4cm. What are its real ...
3
votes
1answer
540 views

How do I build a headboard for a bed?

I need to build a headboard in the next couple of days. My requirements: can be attached to the wall, I read something somewhere about French cleat needs to be attached to the bed, to stop the bed ...
3
votes
1answer
9k views

Is a 2x4 strong enough to hold up a porch swing?

I'm hanging a porch swing, but the beams run the wrong direction for the support hooks. I've looked up in the attic, and there's a 2x4, lying flat, that runs the correct direction. Will that be ...
3
votes
1answer
720 views

What is the point of this doorway “header”, and can I simply remove it?

We're remodeling a room with a severely undersized doorway - it is much shorter than the standard 6'8", so much so that I hit my head on the jamb if I don't duck when walking through it. After ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

Can I drill through joists?

My dad just bought a house and let me move in. He's home once every three months so its practically my house. I just have to take care of it. What I want to do is have my internet closet on the ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Should I pre-built rafter units, or build them in-place?

I'm planning a small roof - 12' x 16', gable style. Almost all the rafters will identical. Should I build rafter units ahead of time? 2 rafters + a ceiling joist + plywood gussets. I'd make a simple ...
3
votes
1answer
6k views

How do I go about framing a half wall into a full wall?

My house has an second floor open loft area with a half wall that overlooks the foyer down below. I would like to enclose the half wall, add a closet and door to create a fourth bedroom. How do I go ...
3
votes
2answers
486 views

Dimensional treated yellow pine lumber, non-standard widths?

I ordered lumber from Lowes for building deck beams, but now I realize after putting up the beam that while they are all level, the boards are of slightly different widths. Of the 2x10 boards I had ...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

How can I repair a dining room table with folding ends?

If so, I've got a nice old dining room table that folds down quite small (seats 2) but also can be pulled out with leaves to seat ~8. The ends of the table are supported by swing-out arms that are ...
3
votes
3answers
5k views

How to repair a closed-stringer staircase?

I need to replace the treads on my closed-stringer staircase. They are 100-year-old softwood with unsightly, disintegrating rubber covers glued on. One stringer is against the outer wall of the house, ...
3
votes
3answers
6k views

How to tighten a wooden bannister (newel post)

How to tighten a wobbly stair bannister? I tried going in from the basement ceiling, the floor boards are in the way. I tried drilling in a screw at an angle at the base to anchor to the bottom ...
3
votes
1answer
133 views

US Building Codes - Do I need a handrail on this initial section of stairs?

I realize that building codes tend to vary by jurisdiction, but I'm wondering, in general, do I need a hand railing and/or guardrail on this initial section of stairs as shown in orange? My hope is ...
2
votes
4answers
16k views

What are the main options for fastening MDF to MDF?

I am interested in building boxes and cabinets from 3/4" MDF (I know, I could buy plywood. Bear with me.) What are the main types of screws and fasteners I can use to do this? I am aware of glue ...
2
votes
5answers
10k views

How do I sharpen wood lathe tools?

I've had a lathe for about a year now (I have the JET 1442 with variable speed) and love it but noticed that I really suck at keeping a nice sharp edge on my tools. I have a small bench grinder I use ...
2
votes
5answers
679 views

Decent Brand Names for Beginner Carpentry

I have done a few small projects but nothing too extravagant without a table saw. I would like to get more into woodworking but the one tool I don't have right now it's a table saw. All the rest of ...
2
votes
5answers
8k views

How to cut 45 angles in quarter round shoe molding with circular saw?

I do not own a mitre saw, which seems like the best tool for cutting skinny quarter round shoe moulding at 45 degree angles. While I can manipulate the angle on my circular saw, which worked very ...
2
votes
3answers
72 views

Building a ledger for indoor use with with some cut to size 2 by 4s, should I stain or paint them?

I'm builduig a ledger for indoor use (to support a work surface) with with some 2 by 4s cut to size, my question is, should I stain or paint them to protect them? for spills etc, or is staining indoor ...