In This Issue

  • July/
    August
    1998 Issue No. 21

    • New!
    • Tell Us Your Story
      Here's your chance to be featured in the pages of THis Old House magazine — and earn $250
    • Editor Spotlight
      Scott Omelianuk
      Scott Omelianuk, Editor of This Old House magazine, began his long relationship with home improvement at age 15, when he started working after school as a carpenter's gopher. After years of jobsite toil and practical jokes—including being s

      More Editor Bios:
  • A Great Renovation

    Features
    Dream House
    This Old House commissions one of America's greatest house architects, Robert A. M. Stern, to design a house that's old, familiar and warm on the outside but thoroughly modern on the inside.
    By Jenny Allen
    An American Craftsman
    For Charlie Keller, a blacksmith with a Ph.D. in anthropology, thinking is doing. At his Illinois smithy, Keller "thinks hot" —proving that there's more to working iron than heating, hammering and bending.
    By Walt Harrington
    Big Chiller
    Evaporative coolers —or "eevaps"—may be low-tech, old-fashioned and clunky, but many homeowners in the West love what they do to electricity bills during peak-air conditioner season.
    By Jack McClintock
    Amazing Grace
    The This Old House team wrap up the winter TV project, converting a San Francisco church into a spacious house that is cozy enough for two newlyweds.
    By Brad Lemley
    Mulch Makers
    Chipper shredders gobble bark, branches and bushes, then transform them into gardeners' gold-mulch. A cross between a food processor and a trash compactor, they are the perfect solution for piles of fall leaves.
    By William G. Scheller
    [XLINK {212625} {Building a Safe Deck}]
    A deck can handle even the rowdiest gang of fraternity brothers as long as the beam that carries the floor joists is properly bolted to the side of the house. Unlike bolts, nails can pull out — and without warning.
    By Curtis Rist
    The Poster: Rope
    For aeons, rope consisted of natural fibers twisted together. Today, synthetic—and stronger—fibers predominate. This handy guide not only shows how to tie the three knots that everyone should know but also charts a course through the complicated new offerings of high-tech lines.
    By Jill Connors
    Around the house
    Off The Wall

    Appliance Bootcamp

    At a midwestern compound, begoggled commandos undergo basic training to bravely save America's washers and dryers.
    By Jeanne Marie Laskas
    Power Tool

    Point and Shoot

    Tired of dented moldings, smashed thumbs and annoying tendinitis? Try one of the portable, gas-powered nail guns.
    By Arne Waldstein
    Hand Tool

    Mud Knives

    Special trowels smooth drywall's every blip, dip and dimple.
    By Jeff Taylor
    Materials

    Redwood

    The wood that built the West grows more valuable all the time.
    By Peter Jensen
    Technique

    Repointing Brick

    Touching up like a pro means using the right mortar. Lime-based putties take longer to set, but they won't break bricks.
    By Curtis Rist
    Finances

    Land Rush

    Before buying undeveloped property, get the dirt on the land.
    By Gary Belsky
    Architecture

    Patios Made Perfect

    Transition spaces require forethought. Otherwise, patios look like landing pads, and decks resemble forgotten scaffolding.
    By Dennis Wedlick
    The Money Pit

    Water Torture

    Learning to live with those inevitable roof leaks.
    By Brock Yates