The biggest project I’ve taken on to date is an addition I added to my home.  At the time I lived in a smaller home with my wife and two kids.   It was around 900 square feet.  As the kids got older we needed to either move or add on.  Pretty nice houses where I live are probably some of the cheaper in the country, however like most people, I’m on a limited budget.  I could either dump a lot of debt into moving into a bigger home, or could could cut my costs by at least 50% and build an addtion on to my home all by myself.  Given my desire to save every penny I can, I chose the latter.  Having already worked on wiring and plumbing projects in my original home I figured I could take on the challenge, so I did.  The first thing I needed to learn was Framing.  I’d done small projects such as building walls in my old basement to make it into a few different rooms, but I’d never done anything as large as framing in an addition.  So of course, the first thing I needed to do was buy some books.  I purchased 4 different books on framing, however there were only 2 that I ended up using the most.

The first book I used is the “Complete Book of Framing”.  This was the better of the two books.  It was loaded with pictures, diagrams, calculations, etc. that really helped me in the planning and building of the addition.  It also included information about the “International Residential Code” (IRC) as it applies to Framing and other related tasks.  If you could only buy one of the 2 books, this would be the one I would recommend.

The second book is the “Graphic Guide to Frame Construction”.  As the title indicates, this book was mostly loaded with detailed pictures and drawings on various framing techniques.  There was less in this one about planning and IRC codes and such.  It was still a great book, but I would use it in addition to the “Complete Book of Framing” book.

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A mix of home improvement ideas, DIY projects, product reviews, compiled from years of owning my own home and refusing to pay anybody to do, build or fix anything that I couldn't figure out myself.