Questions tagged [construction]

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24
votes
4answers
57k views

Safe/professional way to transport lumber with just a roof rack

I'm doing some home improvement, and have the necessary skills, tools, etc, for the job. There is one thing I'm lacking: a large pickup truck for transporting lumber. A buddy of mine used to have one, ...
16
votes
10answers
6k views

Could a layman build a house from plans?

i am looking at pre-made architectural house plans on the Internet ranging from 300 to 800 square feet, some multi-level. I have no housebuilding experience. I don't imagine many of the millennials ...
16
votes
5answers
42k 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 ...
14
votes
3answers
5k views

Why did they hammer nails in half way and bent them over to secure supports?

In my 1950s house they hammered nails in half way and bent them over to secure the supports to the beam. Why was this technique used?
12
votes
2answers
1k 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 ...
9
votes
3answers
40k views

How can I eliminate home shaking caused by vibration from heavy traffic/poor road condition?

I need your help! I own a house near a state road (trucks, buses are allowed) near Philadelphia. With the bad snow years the past few years, our road condition deteriorated but not so badly (little ...
8
votes
2answers
14k views

Is there a good way to lay out a right angle?

Today we set up batter boards and put out marking strings to prepare for constructing a round deck. We wanted 2 strings that marked the center lines, crossing each other at 90 degrees. We set up ...
8
votes
3answers
3k views

Are these integrated diagonal wall braces structurally important?

I was helping a friend expand the width of a closet door, and when we pulled the drywall off the interior wall frame, we noticed some 45-degree wall braces in the interior wall. I am pretty sure ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

Is there a reason not to nail up drywall?

I have a bunch of drywall to put up. I am staring at a loaded 15-gauge framing nail gun, and a drill + a box of drywall screws, and boy oh boy does that nail gun look tempting. When attaching to ...
6
votes
2answers
10k views

How to make a rectangular pipe structure with clockwise threads

I'm trying to make a gate structure for my attic to prevent people from falling through the pull-down stairs opening. For this, I'm joining threaded iron piping together with elbow joints and t-...
6
votes
2answers
26k 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 ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

Should I form and pour the concrete all at once?

I want to build a dog kennel/run that is 4' x 8'. I am planning on pouring a 4" concrete slab. However, part of my design is that I would like the slab to have raised edges all the way around it (...
6
votes
5answers
8k views

Can I cut a hole in a 2“ x 8” joist that is less than 1/3 the height of the joist, leaves at least 2“ above and below the hole, but is 10” wide?

I would like to redirect a 5" air pipe to the other side of a 2" x 8", second story, floor joist so that I can have the vent exit a bathroom vanity kick plate. I realize I cannot just drill a 5" hole ...
6
votes
1answer
10k views

What are the advantages and disadvantages to timber framing vs. platform framing?

Within in the next 10-years, my wife and I would like to replace the old modular home on our property with a new house. I've been having some discussions with a friend of mine who is a huge fan of ...
5
votes
8answers
19k 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 ...
5
votes
3answers
32k 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 ...
5
votes
3answers
384 views

Resource for ballparking current home construction costs?

We're about to move several states away and have begun the house hunting process. We're moving to a region that, like most in the US, has seen housing costs tank, though it is a small enclave of ...
5
votes
3answers
244 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
705 views

How to modernise this raised concrete drain in the middle of patio?

I'm planning to take up an old garden patio and lay a new one. However there is an ugly raised drain cover in the middle. This is for inspection of the property's drain at the point where it connects ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I identify support beams?

I'd like to remodel a couple rooms in our home, but am unsure how to identify support beams when the time comes. Are there any easily-identifiable things I should look for to keep my house from ...
5
votes
5answers
60k views

Why do my new door hinges prevent my door from shutting completely?

I have installed some new standard 3" door hinges with a small corner radius on a 32" door. The doors are solid-core oak doors. The hinges appear to look fine and fit perfectly flush in the existing ...
5
votes
1answer
796 views

2x4’s embeded in the foundation wall

A home is going up right next door, and I noticed that the foundation walls have 2x4’s embedded in them. Won’t that cause the concrete to crack when the wood gets wet?
5
votes
1answer
3k views

What code requirements exist for low-sill, upper-floor windows?

I own a house in Texas (USA), built in 1885. I am renovating, enclosing the second floor back porch; it's essentially an addition, with a bathroom, a storage closet, and a hallway. The area will be ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Adjustable angle climbing wall with electric hoist and pulleys - how to lock the pulleys?

When I first set up the electric hoist wires, I had a snatch block pulley not just there at the wall near the hoist - but I had two on the climbing wall at each anchor point, and I hooked in the wire ...
5
votes
3answers
34k views

How do I properly jack up one side of my house?

As I write this, I have a slight lean as I walk on my floor in some parts of my house, and it's even worse on the upper floor. In some parts upstairs, it feels almost like you have to grab something. ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

What is this machine's purpose?

I was driving past a house under construction and saw this device in its driveway. It was operating, making a continual noise. Does anyone know what this machine is and what it does?
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How to leave low voltage wiring behind wall?

I am having a new home built and I am putting in my own low voltage wiring. In addition to standard network wiring, I am hoping to install CAT6 wiring for a few potential future tasks: surveillance ...
4
votes
1answer
2k 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
1answer
3k 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
2answers
3k views

How are rivnuts measured and what eyebolt fits?

At Amazon, I've seen RN14 1/4"-20 steel rivet nuts, RN516 5/16"-18 steel rivet nuts, RN1024 #10-24 steel rivet nuts, 1/4-20UNC, 3/8-16, M3, M5, etc. I also saw the following image explaining the ...
4
votes
1answer
345 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 ...
4
votes
3answers
10k views

Where can I find garage building plans?

If I wanted to build a detached garage/workshop, where can I find complete, detailed plans? I'd like to be able to estimate building cost from a materials list. I'm not certain what style I'd want, ...
4
votes
2answers
303 views

Help understanding Window anatomy

I'm renovating my basement, which has one double-hung vinyl window (pictured). I want to add one more on the same wall and trying to get a close match. The windows in this house were replaced in 2007 (...
4
votes
1answer
4k views

How high should I make my yurt platform?

I am building the floor/platform for a 30' yurt. It's basically a deck. 30' diameter circle pre-cast concrete pier blocks 4" x 6" pressure treated joists, 4' o.c. 1 1/8" tongue-and-groove plywood ...
4
votes
2answers
13k views

Water leak between sill and concrete pad

I'm repairing a three season room. I took it down to the studs, put in new sill plates and sliding glass doors. For the sill I put down Protecto wrap, latex caulk, a pressure treated 2x4 and secured ...
4
votes
2answers
13k views

What can I do about a house with internal concrete floor with no DPM?

My partner and I have just bought our first home.A 1950's bungalow which is need of refurbishment. So far it has thrown us a ton of surprises! The worst so far being the floor in one of the bedrooms. ...
4
votes
1answer
1k 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. ...
4
votes
2answers
2k 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 the ...
3
votes
3answers
15k 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 ...
3
votes
3answers
673 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 ...
3
votes
4answers
32k views

How do I extend a 2x4 by connecting another one end to end?

My hardware store only sells 8' cuts of 2x4s. How do I extend length horizontally with another 2x4 and support the joining best? Is there a joint or strong tie for this? I have three support legs ...
3
votes
2answers
5k 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 at ...
3
votes
2answers
720 views

Fast, easy and simple construction of a log store

We've just bought a whopping great log burner, and so our thoughts have turned to keeping it fed over the winter. I've plenty of ash trees, some beech, and an old sycamore that over the last couple of ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I build a deck that is easy to take apart?

I spent the day taking apart the platform for a yurt. It was a real pain, and I want to make it easier to take apart next time. Old deck construction details: Decking was 1 1/8" tongue-and-groove ...
3
votes
3answers
18k views

Guidelines for poured concrete over corrugated metal

It seems common in some commercial construction to use corrugated steel plates to form a 'deck' surface which concrete is later poured onto. The combined steel/concrete then forms a very strong floor ...
3
votes
1answer
944 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. ...
3
votes
1answer
4k views

How do I install concrete blocks to support deck stairs?

I just had a deck constructed and it failed inspection, partly because of missing concrete blocks where the steps meet the ground (see also my related question Deck handrail bracket). How would I go ...
3
votes
2answers
6k views

how to attach gutter when there is an additional trim board on fascia?

This question could be slightly misleading because I am not 100% sure of the terminology. I am replacing an old gutter - see existing installation below. My understanding (from this article) is that ...
3
votes
3answers
7k 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.
3
votes
1answer
3k 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 ...

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