Monthly Archives

April 2019

Removing Fence Posts Mounted in Cement Footings – DIY Fence Repair

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The best way to remove a fence post installed in a solid concrete base if the wood post is broken off at ground level without digging or using expensive equipment. There are plenty of solutions on the internet that are satisfactory when the fence post is strong and sturdy: use a lever to raise the fence post, excavate a trench at the side of the fence post and push the post out, raise the post using a bumper jack or high lift agriculture jack, or bring in heavy equipment – but each of these methods really doesn’t tackle the common dilemma confronting a home-owner after wind damage – the wood post is snapped off.

All too often the fence post is splintered so there is nothing available above ground that is solid, the base is of unknown dimension and depth, and the fence to be repaired is in a location close to structures that hamper accessibility of a backhoe (not even accounting for the rental expense or the harm they may cause to yards). In the event that only a few fence posts are damaged on a fence, the new posts really need to be set in the very same position – chopping the broken posts off lower than lawn level and installing the replacement wood posts utilizing an off-set is simply not a solution.

Applying a combination of approaches is the best approach – first cut down the hold the ground has on the post by using the Wood Post Puller (a simple engineering solution to the dilemma) and then execute the best lifting technique accessible. Making use of a brute force procedure of lifting concrete is plainly a poor idea; concrete is extremely strong when compressed, but tremendously fragile when pulled – in fact, the tensile strength of concrete is only about 10% of its compressive strength. Pulling the cement out of the ground is very likely to cause dangerous flying chunks as the concrete fractures under the tension.

Fence Post and Concrete Base Removal

Step 1: Remove anything fastened to the wood post and clear the area nearby the post and cement footing.

Step 2: With the water hose attached and water flowing, push the spike tool fully in the ground at the edge of the cement base.

TIP – Attempt to wiggle the post after the initial insertion – any type of shift of the cement base in the ground (even a vibration) will allow the water to force its way alongside the surface of the concrete footing and develop a thin layer of mud. If the fence post is broken try to jam a pry bar into the existing wood post and then push the bar forwards and backwards, or hit the cement footing strongly side to side with a sledgehammer. Now try lifting the fence post and cement footing using the instructions in Step 4 – often the wood post will come right out!

Step 3: Repeat step 2 at uniform locations around the footing – typical fence posts will call for less than 4-6 insertions of the spike tool, but stubborn posts can need the spike tool to be inserted every 2-3 inches until you have encircled the complete cement footing. If you are unable to pull out the fence post and cement base in Step 4, replicate Step 3 at even more locations around the post.

Step 4: [Different lifting methods could be selected] Securely force a pry bar into the cement base at about a 45 degree angle from the soil. Duplicate the arrangement on the opposite side of the cement footing. The closer the pivot is positioned to the footing the more leverage will be utilized. Two 5-6 foot pry bars are excellent but a multitude of various other things could also be applied. Completely insert the spike into the ground right next to the cement footing. With the water turned on completely to the spike, apply even downward force to both pry bars [requires 2 people], lifting the concrete base and post. Do not hurry up this step – permit time for the water to start building hydraulic force on the bottom side of the cement footing and help out on the lift. The water must be on during this action or raising the concrete footing will start building a sucking force pulling the fence post back down.

TIP – If the bars are sinking into the soil, support them with scrap pieces of 4×4, or old fence posts.

TIP – Begin the pry bar position at 45 degrees or less – if they are too vertical the bars will be pressing in opposition to one another and not lifting the cement footing out of the ground.

Step 5: Alternately remove either of the pry bars and reset back again to the 45 degree beginning position – using the other pry bar to hold the concrete footing during the reset. After both pry bars are reset, repeat Steps 4 and 5 until the post is fully removed from the soil.

Caution – the post and cement footing combined are heavy (frequently over 100 pounds)! If the cement footing stays complete you will be able to pull out the post and cement footing as one solid piece, if the cement footing has cracked quite often the pieces may be taken out together due to the fact that the pry bars compress them towards each other like a jigsaw puzzle. Even if the wood post is considerably rotten inside the concrete footing and portions break off they will be simply picked up after removing the main portion – just reach within the soil and peel the damaged cement from the sides of the hole and from the bottom.

Immediately cover or otherwise secure the opening to avoid any unintentional entry or injury.

Given that you have removed the post and cement and have a nice clean hole, don’t duplicate the bad decision by installing your wood post with cement. Excavate a 10 inch hole and set the wood post 1/3 of its length into the ground [a traditional 8 ft wood post should be buried at least 2 1/2 feet]. Use the correct supplies [a treated 4×4 fence post approved for direct burial] and set the fence post with crushed gravel. Put 6 inches of crushed gravel in the bottom of the hole and compress the crushed stone firmly every 2-3 inches as you fill the hole and true the fence post. Using this procedure, your fence should be vertical and sturdy for many years.

Source by D. Sawyer

Carpenters and Woodworkers Rely on Sturdy Milwaukee Power Tools

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Milwaukee tools are fast, safe and powerful. They offer a diverse range of features to help woodworkers' complete projects efficiently and productively.

Carpenters and Woodworkers Prefer High Performance Saws

Milwaukee too are rated some of the best amongst power tools, especially their high precision saws. Milwaukee sells high-performance saws that are suitable for divers cutting functions:

o 7 "circular saw with Quik-Lok cord – Features an adjustable main handle that provides users with maximum control and comfort, Quik-Lok cord, and power assisted brake. to reach depth and bevel.

o Sawzall – Helps woodworkers with the tough cutting jobs. Sawzall blades have tooth configuration and heat treating which are designed to enhance the performance in specific cutting applications. The blades are durable and Sawzall blades fit all Sawzalls and other competitive saws. They vary in price, style and length.

o Orbital Jig Saw 6268-21 – Includes anti-Splintering device, plastic shoe cover carrying case, two blades, dust shield, LED light provides accuracy and visibility of sight lines, and precision roller blade that yields accurate cuts of any shape. The Orbital Jig saw features power, ergonomics and versatility.

Milwaukee Features Quality Tools for Carpenters and Woodworkers

Because of their labor intensive work, carpenters and woodworkers prefer using quality tools like Milwaukee. Milwaukee sells a variety of cordless power drills that makes drilling jobs easier and more efficient.

Some of these drills include:

o Drill 850 850 Magnum – Features 8.0 amp motor, variable speed control, metal gear case and diaphragm, 8 ft. 3-wire rubber cord, 360 locking side handle, ergonomic textured grip, and two finger trigger

o Compact cordless drill series – Includes 12 and 14.4 volt cordless driver drills with Clip-LokT system. These smaller drills are great for smaller spaces, but still deliver high RPMs for fast, efficient drilling.

o Drill Mag press – Features powerful 9.0 amp, two coil magnet and simple two button control panel.

Woodworking shops have a tendency to become easily dirty and cluttered. Milwaukee also sells equipment to keep shops clean such as vacuums including wet / dry vacuums, tool belts, tool hooks and tool caddies. Milwaukee power tools also include sanders / grinders and smaller tools, such as wrenches and screwdrivers, that help assist with carpentry jobs.

Source by Bill McKyntire

Building a Cuckoo Clock – What You Need to Know

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A cuckoo clock is one of the most unique types of clocks in the world. One of the main parts of this clock that makes it so special is that of how the clock is made. This is a process that is very thorough and works to help with getting the clock to be perfect in terms of how it works. Here is a look at the process that is commonly used for building a cuckoo clock.

First wood is taken in to be used for the clock manufacturing process. The wooden pieces that are going to be used will be chosen by the person who is building the clock. These pieces are then cut to the right sizes and lengths. Hand tools are generally used in this process. These tools include rasps, saws and files. After the frame is made for this part of the clock it will be stained and laid out to properly dry so that it will look its best over time.

After getting the frame and the case of the clock finished up the clock can begin to be assembled. Clock movements are fit into the case of the clock. These movements are materials that work to help with getting the hands on the clock to move around properly. Standard types of materials that are used in other types of clocks can be used in this process. In most cases these clock movements have already been assembled so that the clock manufacturing process will be easier.

The materials that are used to make sound are placed on the top part of the cuckoo clock. The pipes that are used for producing sounds will be the main materials used here. Drive chains used here are extended on the wire hooks that are used to help with activating all of the moving parts of the clock like the doors and the bird or other types of figures. The cuckoo that makes the sound will be connected to the clock's bellows. The music box will be connected to the drive chains too.

A major part of building a cuckoo clock is that during clock manufacturing the wood that is used must be used to its best quality. This is important because the wood that is used for this type of clock can be very expensive.

Source by Karen Saffie

Subwoofer Sound Treatment: Why To Use Speaker Isolation Decoupling Pads and How to Make Your Own

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Sound is a difficult science to perfect because of its subjective nature. For people with substantial home theaters or entertainment systems for watching TV, movies and listening to music, tweaking and refining the sound setup is often the most difficult aspect of creating the ideal listening experience.

Part of what sets these special setups apart from standard in-TV speakers is the inclusion of subwoofers as a part of the audio arrangement. These produce the low-end and bass in shows and music that help simulate a studio or theater experience. But because of the strength and pervasive nature of low-frequency sound waves, subwoofers can cause bothersome vibrations that distract listeners and muddle sound. Bass can gather in corners of rooms and also sound “boomy” when a subwoofer is placed on the floor.

Fortunately, there is a way to combat the problems subwoofers present in a sound setup and maximize their qualities without any of the issues. That solution is decoupling.

By separating the subwoofer from the building structure, whether it is a floor or shelf, there is no bond to produce room vibrations as the woofer fires. This is exactly what a decoupler does; breaks the bond between the woofer and surface by serving as an intermediary damping agent. The vibrations a subwoofer can create aren’t just an issue for getting the best sound out of your speakers. These vibrations easily travel through solid surfaces in a building like the floors and walls and can be a major source of irritation for other members of your home or those sharing an apartment complex. Even if you don’t have any issues with the sound of your audio setup, a single decoupler can go a long way in keeping neighbors happy.

Many companies sell pre-made decouplers, sometimes called isolators. These are a great way to quickly solve sound issues you are experiencing, but for people who have a little time and want to save money, building your own decouplers is surprisingly easy.

On a basic level, a decoupler is nothing more than a solid surface resting atop open-cell foam. In a pinch, people have even paired sponges and books to create a makeshift speaker decoupler. But for a more professional appearance, there are some specific materials you will want to stick to.

The woofer platform in a DIY decoupler is best made from medium-density fiberboard (MDF). This is a much sturdier product than plywood and also non-resonant, an important quality in a sound treatment product. For optimal balance and aesthetics, the MDF surface should be no smaller than the widest dimensions of the woofer’s base. Sometimes speakers have feet that aren’t on the outer perimeter of the box, and only building to those dimensions can make for a decoupler that isn’t as stable as it should be. If cutting the board yourself, it’s also important to wear eye protection, as well as a mask or respirator since the material generates a fine dust when cut. Always refer to product-specific safety and handling guidelines before starting projects.

The base of a decoupler is where you get your vibration-reduction. Open-cell foam provides a substance that absorbs the vibrations before they have an opportunity to reach the floor and walls.

Some people have used simple packaging foam or old mattress remnants, which can work, but it’s important to remember that these pieces of cheap, old or damaged foam are supporting electronic equipment that may have cost thousands of dollars. To produce the best performance, as well as the necessary stability and strength, brand-new foam is always suggested. There are many varieties of foam with different firmness levels as well, and it’s important to get foam rated as firm. Firmness is measured by Indentation Load Deflection (ILD), and values in the 50s, 60s and 70s will offer a firm foam that is strong enough to support the weight of a subwoofer and stable enough to minimize rocking if it’s bumped. Contacting a foam manufacturer or retailer and explaining your project can help you get the right foam type.

Bonding the two materials is the last step, and it plays a major role. For the sake of stability, the foam shouldn’t be more than two or three inches tall, as that’s enough material to absorb vibrations without making the decoupling pad unstable. Foam should also be trimmed into smaller pieces so the MDF isn’t resting on a solid slab. The smaller the footprint of the decoupler, the less contact with the floor and the more difficult it is for vibrations to escape. One smart design is to cut rectangular blocks and glue them to the MDF in each corner, perpendicular to each other. A short end will always face a wide end in this design, giving sufficient stability while minimizing materials. Use spray adhesive designed for use in open-cell polyurethane foam projects and you will have a sound treatment product that makes your listening experience much more enjoyable.

Whether you decide to purchase a decoupling pad or make your own, they are the single best way to cut down on vibrations and improve the sound quality of your sound system.

Source by CH James

How To Build A Tree House That Will Last For Years

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Learning how to build a tree house can be a lot of fun. The single most important thing is to have a plan. A quality wood working project always begins with a solid plan. If you do not have a plan I'll show you where you can get some later on in this article.

The next step is to go out and buy all the material you need which will depend on what you have chosen for design plans and size. Start out building the supports for the bottom of the frame or floor making sure they stay on track with your plans. Now you should be ready to build the floor but just remember to make sure it's strong enough to hold at least a few hundred pounds and again, stick to the plans. After you get the floor set in you should be ready to start building your walls and then raise them up into place on your tree house and secure them down to the floor and framework.

You should now be ready to start the roof. Get a helper for this part if you can to make it easier but if you do not have one no worries because it can be done by yourself just like the walls. Now that your tree house is starting to look like a tree house it's time to add a little safety into it by putting up some railroads around the outside to keep the little ones from falling off.

Without your going to get super fancy and build a stairway, the ladder is the next thing you should probably build. Most tree house ladders should be built at least eighteen to twenty four inches wide and also be made of strong hardwood or even pressure treated for superior strength and longevity.

Well now that your tree house is nearly completed your ready for some of the more fun parts. You can have the kids help you out with some of these since they're probably going to play in it more than you. Kids love things like a quick escape rope ladder that can be thrown out the back window or maybe out of a secret floor hatch.
The possibilities are almost endless with ideas like bird nests or telescopes. You know your kids better than i do of course so some features will be unique to you and your childrens hobbies and interests.

One final thing to remember is that you absolutely must stain or paint your new project to weather proof it as much as possible. This is going to allow your children to enjoy their new toy for years to come.

Learning how to build a tree house will allow your kids to play even more games and use their imagination. Tree houses in my opinion are one of the coolest toys a kid can have. A tree house will give your children more time to spend outside getting good healthy fresh air and exercise instead of sitting around playing video games.

Source by A Cooke

Build Your Own Tree House – Pros and Cons, Fasteners and Hardware

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Tree houses are fun, bonding activities you can do with your friends or family, and can provide a unique and ideal hangout spot surrounded by Mother nature. One of the biggest differences in my opinion, between tree houses and other on-ground add-ons you can build on your property, is the fact that a house up in the trees sways – to varying degrees depending on the height and size of the tree and branches – and thus can add a unique and soothing feel.

There are several prerequisites that must be met before this particular project would be considered feasible for you. The first ones are also the most obvious:

  1. Do you have a suitable tree within your property on which you can construct your tree house? This question may be ambiguous to some, as what kind of tree exactly is considered suitable? Well, this depends largely on the size of the structure in question, as well as the expected load – number of people, furnishings, etc. The larger your tree house is, the larger your tree needs to be.
  2. How are you with heights? Now is not a good time to kid yourself or anyone else if you happen to be abnormally scared of heights! We’re all scared of heights to varying degrees, but if you lack the courage or ability to comfortably work at the needed height, this project may not be for you. Granted, it can be built relatively low to the ground as well and still be called a “tree house” – in which case, this may not apply.

Now that we have those out of the way, we can get into the other aspects of building. When compared with a structure on the ground, a tree house may somehow seem like a simpler project due to the fact that some of us have grown up “throwing” little makeshift tree houses up here and there. However, it’s important to remember that any halfway decent structure, whether on the ground or up in a tree, requires careful planning and implementation of standard safety code.

Here are some other questions you should ask yourself before commencing the planning stage:

  1. What will I use the tree house for? Depending on your answer, you may want a roof and walls, or you may find it unnecessary. In either case, a rail and/or walls at least a meter high is recommended for safety.
  2. How long do I want it to last? You may think that the answer to this question is obvious, but you should understand that the lifespan of your tree house depends largely on the materials you use and the quality and number of layers of your protective stain. Tree houses, by virtue of their definition, stand within and under the canopy of the tree in which they are built. Because of this, they are more susceptible to premature rot due to the prolonged shade and humid nature of their environment. The fallen leaves and branches scattered across the deck also serve as decay-accelerators unless they are regularly swept off.

Foundation and Floor-shape

One of the unique beauties of a tree house is the fact that you can simply build around the various branches leaving them exposed within your tree house, enhancing the “natural” atmosphere. As with an on-ground structure, you should start with building your base and floor. You may face complications with the shape of your floor due to the limitations of suitable branches to base off of.

Because of this, there’s a possibility you may have to settle for a non-square shape. This may be what you want, or this may be a problem for you. In any case, you should understand that there are some limitations placed upon you by the particular tree you’re working with. All branches used for a foundation should be able to single-handedly carry several hundred pounds, and more if you’re expecting higher traffic.

Tree Wood Density and Fastener Quality

Large tree houses that weigh more than the collective weight of their occupants should be designed carefully, as various factors such as the hardness of the tree and fastener quality and design come more into play. Wood will compress where the fasteners connect to the tree to varying degrees based on the hardness of the tree in question, causing a sinking of the tree house.

Professional-grade Tree house Fasteners – Are they Necessary?

There are various tree house fasteners available on the market today manufactured specially for their unique needs. However, the question invariably arises as to how necessary these customized bolts and brackets are in comparison to normal ones found in home centers due to their price. They often cost between one and several hundred dollars each!

The first thing to bear in mind when contemplating the pros and cons of these rather pricey pieces of hardware is that trees are living organisms, and are still growing, moving, and changing shape. Therefore, your tree house and the hardware on which it is mounted must accommodate this movement. Simply bolting the beams into the tree’s branches results in a fixed attachment that will force the tree to either pull the screw through the beam or try to grow around the beam.

The first of the two will result in a sudden and dangerous failure, while the second will result in an unhealthy and unnatural growth around the beam, potentially causing disease and decay to set in. Custom bolts and brackets are made with a certain allowance for tree growth, with a section of the bolt that is embedded deep in the tree’s heartwood and a large shank that allows axial movement coupled with a female part that is attached to the beam.

So to answer the question of whether these expensive custom parts are necessary, the short answer is yes, and no. Yes, if you lack the know-how to find parts that will accomplish the same purpose as the professional parts do, and no, if you do, and don’t require your tree house to last for fifty years. Home centers sell bolts and hardware with large diameters and lengths which can be used, but the entire shank cannot be threaded.

The half or so that is embedded into the tree must be threaded, but the remainder that acts as the cushion to compensate for tree-growth must be smooth. You also need a female piece that fits around the smooth shank that has a bracket which can be screwed into your beam. This female bracket then has the freedom to slide along the axis of the smooth bolt shank as the tree grows in girth. All parts should be stainless steel as well – others may corrode to failure.

Obviously, the big tree house building companies would disagree with the above opinion, and the ideal is to buy these parts. I’m just offering an alternative for those who don’t have a large budget but still want to construct a safe and environmentally-friendly tree house. There is also a chance you won’t be able to find hardware that meets the criteria, leaving you with no other choice.

The professional criterion when it comes to fastening your tree house to your tree seems to be “perch, don’t pin”. I agree whole-heartedly with this principle and any alternative I gave above shouldn’t contradict this. But not everyone looking to build a tree house is willing to spend tens of thousands of dollars, thus, your budget is a primary factor in determining the quality as well as what kind you would build.

In any case, it should be a safe and fun place to accommodate whatever activities you envision. Taking into consideration the damage inflicted on the tree as well as future complications that may arise such as those mentioned above when planning, is simply the responsible and considerate course of action.

Source by Aigo Shimonaka

Should I Have Windows In My Dog House I Am Building?

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I have to admit I am a do it yourself freak. I like to build just about everything from sheds to dog houses, to platform beds. On my latest project of building a dog house, I had to ask myself the question, should I have windows in the dog house I am building? Sheds have windows, real houses have windows, but do dog houses need windows?

I started to scour the internet looking for some reliable dog house plans. I also did some research to find out why most houses for dogs don’t have windows. Here is what I came up with. First off, even dogs like looking out the window when they are inside your house, most of the time, which is because they want to go outside to chase a bird or a squirrel. Or maybe they just want to go outside and sniff around. If they are in a doggy house, they can simply leave the house and enter the yard without you letting them out.

Secondly, if your doggy’s house has windows the likelihood of them staying clean is almost none. Your dog’s nose will be all over the window and it will be dirty in no time flat, meaning, he will no longer have a window to look out.

Now for the most important reasons dog homes do not have windows. They simply do not do as good of a job keeping heat in as a solid insulated wall. Likewise, during the summer they let too much heat in and the house will no longer stay as cool as you would like. There are some things you can do to help this, particularly the placement of the dog house in your yard. You can place it near a fence, near your house, or under a large tree. This too will help.

Of course you can use your dog door as a window for your dog’s home. These plastic, clear doors will help keep the elements out and will give your dog a place to look out if he wants to. If you are building your own house for your dog, I recommend you build an insulated dog house that is easy to clean. I would have either the roof or one of the walls open so you can easily clean your dog’s home every so often. You might also want to invest in a burrow bed during the winter months or add a heater to keep your dog plenty warm.

Source by Aric Goodin

How to Protect an Interior Wood Threshold

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Thresholds are sometimes unnoticeable. Not every doorway has them and those that do don’t always stand out. However, thresholds can be a nice addition to a doorway, especially if the floor at both sides is distinctively different from its neighbor and needs a separation barrier instead of abruptly meeting each other.

They can also be good for stopping drafts or preventing air, either warm or cool, from escaping or entering.

But what kind of maintenance do indoor thresholds need?

There are several things to consider such as staining, sealing with urethane, or painting. Each is a possibility but the final decision depends on you. The truth is a threshold needs some kind of coating to protect it from getting dirty, being marked up, or damaged.

If you have hard wood floors you could stain the threshold:

1. Lightly sand the threshold leveling it out on all sides.

2. Prepare stain.

3. If you want to match the color of the hard wood floor apply stain slowly in coats.

4. Once you’ve finished apply a sealer giving it several coats for extra protection.

If you want to paint the threshold:

1. Lightly sand the threshold leveling it out on all sides.

2. Prepare paint. It should be oil-based for the best shine and to be longer lasting.

3. Apply at least two coats letting it dry in between.

4. Once you’ve finished apply a sealer giving it several coats for extra protection.

If you like the wood color of the threshold you may want to leave it in its natural state. In that case you should still give it a varnish to protect from foot traffic.

1. Lightly sand the threshold leveling it out on all sides.

2. Prepare oil-based varnish.

3. Apply at least two coats letting it dry in between.

Finally add some caulking around the edges of the threshold to prevent dirt from getting caught in any open spaces. After all, the threshold will be crossed by many feet carrying all kinds of gook that may just stick around if given the chance.

Source by Jakob Barry

Exposed Brick Wall DIY

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How to create an exposed brick wall

Firstly, what you’ll need:

Brick chisel

Small crow bar

Plastic sheets

Scrubbing brush

Brick sealer

Dust mask & eye protection

Step 1

Protective sheets. As you can imagine removing the plaster from your brick wall is messy work! This is particularly important if you have an old house with the original plaster. Whilst it may seem like a bit of work it is definitely worth using plastic sheets (painting drop sheets are perfect) and taping them to your walls and ceiling to completely seal off the area you’re working in. It is also highly recommended to wear a mask to protect your lungs from the plaster dust, and even eye protection as the dust can easily irritate your eyes.

Step 2

Pretty easy to see what’s next. Simply make a hole the plaster using your brick chisel. This is a good chance to expose a small area of the brick, perhaps somewhere hidden, to see if the quality of the brick underneath is good. Once you’ve created a hole, you can either use the chisel or a small crowbar to remove the plaster. Just tap it lightly to get behind the plaster and level it off. Be careful not to damage the bricks with the chisel or crow bar by tapping too hard. When you get to the ceiling and side walls ensure you neatly remove the plaster without damaging adjacent plaster.

Step 3

Once all the bricks are exposed the next step is to clean the bricks. Some people use acid to do this, but this can be messy and dangerous and not really required. Just some warm water and a sponge should be all you’ll need to clean the bricks. Wipe the dust off with the sponge regularly wringing it in the bucket. Repeat this 2 or 3 times replacing the water between each time until most of the dust has been removed from the bricks. If there are cracks or noticeable holes in the bricks now is your change to patch them with some cement. Small cracks and holes are fine, just ones that may impact the look of the wall.

Step 4

Sealing the wall. Various types of sealer are available for sealing bricks. Look out for brick sealers in particular. You can normally choose between gloss and matt with most people preferring a matt solution as it looks more natural. Follow the instructions on the can for applying the sealer, which normally suggest applying it 2 or 3 times. The sealer will also darken the appearance of the bricks with each coat.

Let it dry and you’re done!

Source by David Grocon

5 Steps to Buy or Build a Warm Insulated Dog House

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I recently bought a house for my dog ​​Rocky on the local pet store. Truth be told, I had no idea on the subject, so I ended up buying the "best for my budget" which happened to be plastic made with some wood. I decided to go for the (unnecessary) larger size so Rocky would enjoy the extra space. It was very easy to assemble, and my dog ​​seemed to enjoy it … That is, until the cold months of the year came by. I made some terrible mistakes that could have been easily avoided if I knew what I was looking for.

After this experience I decided I would build it myself. After doing some research, (I'm an architect so I did the dog house plans myself) and a few weekends woodworking, I am now the proud owner of a modern looking, sturdy, weather proof, insulated dog house, and I have some very important insights I will share with you in this post.

  • Size should fit your dog.

I used to have the mentality people have about people houses "the bigger the better", however this does not apply on pet houses. Not if you have some cold weather during the year. Dogs like confined spaces during rough weather because they use their own body heat to warm their sleeping place. So you have to consider buying or building one that is large enough for your dog to get inside and be able to turn and small enough that he can easily heat it with its own body. If you want more specific measurements, go for the length and height of the house about 20% larger that your dog's length and height.

  • Design with a separate room away from the entrance.

The shape of the house plays an important role on the warmth it will be able to retain. First of all (and a bit obvious if you ask me) make sure it does not have a bigger door than necessary; as long as your dog can comfortably get in, it's OK. Secondly, a house with two rooms will make the room farthest from the door a warmer place to sleep. In this kind of houses, your dog has the option to either sleep close to the door where he can peek outside or go all the way inside into the second room where it will retain more body heat.

  • The floor must not be in contact with the ground.

This is extremely easy to solve. Either place some kind of base or deck or just mount a few bricks on each corner. If it ends up too high, just place a ramp at the entrance for easy access.

  • Easily insulate the walls.

Wood or plastic will not wind proof your pet's new home. The easiest way to make sure your dog will be safe from the outside weather is to place the same insulated sheathing used in real house construction. If your dog chews on things, make sure you add an extra layer of material to cover it up.

  • Leak proof roofing

Make you water proof your pet's home by installing the basic 3 layers of rain protection real homes have. Use underlayment paper, staple it to your dog's house roof, and place shingles on top of it. You can find both materials at any home improvement store.

Source by Mario Chow

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