Trim Carpentry and Built-Ins: Expert Advice from Start to Finish

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by: Clayton Dekorne

Topics include: overlay moldings, ogee crown, cup hinges, baseboard layout, baseboard stock, finish kick, jamb extensions, kick base, scribe panels, panel stock, reverse bevel, plywood backer, shoot board, hardwood dealer, stain grade, spring angle, standing trim, pinch sticks, horizontal nailers, outside miter, shelf pins, traditional stool, casing stock, meeting pieces, groove wainscoting

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From Book News, Inc.
A veteran carpenter and former senior editor of the Journal of Light Construction provides trade secrets, tips, color photos, diagrams, and resources for selecting materials and completing home projects from bookcases to trimming windows.Copyright Book News, Inc., Portland, OR

Book Description
Installing trim requires precision and know-how. This is the book that shows how to handle all common trim projects, including window and door casings, baseboards, wainscoting and crown molding -- and get professional results every time. Presented in a highly accessible format with 34 drawings and 230 color photos, this is a complete do-it-yourself book written by a professional carpenter.

Everything I wished my father had taught me -- My husband gave me this book as a gift, and it's provided wonderful encouragement (it's also a book he wanted, of course). Together we have completed some nice house projects together, such as converting our back porch into a sunroom and adding a new window in the dining room to bring in much needed light. We both agree the hardest part to do well is the wood trim, and it's what you see everyday afterwards. This book has been a wonderful guide and confidence builder for us both. It's not a beginner's book, but it's not at all too advanced. I pride myself on having learned some basic carpentry and how to use some tools, but with this book I've picked up some of the extras I wished I'd learned from my father (or any other family member when I was younger) about woodworking. The book's full of useful tricks and short cuts, as well as clear explanations about how all the pieces work together, and what the shortfalls we should be looking out for to get professional looking results. I'd recommend it to anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of carpentry who wants to take on some real carpentry jobs around the house. Next up for us: Wainscoting in the a bathroom, and then replacing the bland, little trim in our living room with elegant Victorian details!

Clear, concise, informative -- There are a lot of carpentry books out there, and most of them fill you with extraneous details that you don't want to read about, and don't tell enough about what you need to DO. DeKorne's book is a rare exception. He gets right to work, and much of the work of describing what to DO is accomplished with fine photographs and illustrations. I'm an engineer and think I know how material's put together, but I learned far more about how wood goes together (and will perform over its service life) than I ever expected. DeKorne doesn't just parrot the theory of woodworking, but takes you beyond the bench with details that allow you to trim out an old house with expert precision, even where nothing is square or plumb. There's nothing about dovetails, or mortise and tenon (what a relief!) but plenty about practical joinery. The sections describing compound miters are the best I've ever read. Finally I feel like I understand how to make an elegant crown fit in an old house.


Build Like a Pro: Trim Carpentry and Built-Ins
Clayton DeKorne
Expert advice from start to finish
Learn how to get tight miters and crisp details when casing doors and windows, running baseboard, and putting up crown molding. Trim Carpentry and Built-Ins shows you how to get professional results with all of your common trim projects. Among the latest in Taunton's Build Like a Pro series, Trim Carpentry and Built-Ins is filled with trade secrets and tried-and-true methods from carpenter and author Clayton DeKorne's 25 years in the industry. Detailed instructions with hundreds of photos and drawings can help you overcome challenges like out-of-square walls, floors, and ceilings. You'll also learn how to design and build custom built-in bookcases and cabinets to enhance any room in the house.

This book brings you:
. professional tips and trade secrets for installing trim with precision
. advice on common trim projects, including window and door casing, baseboards, crown molding, and wainscoting
. detailed instructions for built-in bookcases and cabinets
About the author
Clayton DeKorne worked alongside his tradesman father until he became a full carpenter at age 17. Over the next decade, he advanced from lead carpenter to trim contractor before taking a position as senior editor at the Journal of Light Construction and later as founding editor of Tools of the Trade. He lives in Burlington, Vermont.

Build Like a Pro: Trim Carpentry and Built-Ins

Clayton DeKorne

Expert advice from start to finish


How to Use This Book

1. Project Planning
Sketching a Design
Material Take-Offs
Pricing Materials

2. Trim Materials
Choosing Finish Lumber
Choosing Millwork

3. Trimming Windows
Trim Styles
Jamb Extensions
Picture-Framing a Window
Traditional Casing

4. Running Baseboard
Baseboard Layout
Cutting Baseboard
Installing Baseboard

5. Crown Molding
Crown Types
Prepping the Walls
Installation Strategy
Cutting Crown
Built-Up Crown Molding

6. Wainscoting
Designing Wainscoting
Installing Backer
Installing Tongue-and-Groove Wainscoting
Installing Modified Frame-and-Panel Wainscoting
Installing Chair Rail

7. Materials for Built-Ins
Composite Panel Stock

8. Basic Bookshelves
Bookshelf Design
Building Cases
Installing Bookshelves

9. Built-In Cabinets
Designing Cabinets
Building Cabinet Cases
Drawer Construction



Overall, this edition focuses on the mechanics of how trim fits together. However, I feel strongly that no carpentry work can ever be separated from design or from building science. Carpenters must constantly make aesthetic decisions concerning proportion, scale, texture, color, and pattern, and like every other aspect of the trade, successful trim design is the result of conscious, informed effort, not accident. Equally important, carpentry is always closely tied to the physical properties of wood, which govern how it behaves in a changing environment. Wood trim mechanics must always be addressed from the perspective of dimensional stability. How much a board moves dictates how tight a joint will remain.

With this in mind, I hope that anyone interested in becoming the best carpenter possible strives to become a student of the house building trades, including mechanics, aesthetics, and science in equal measure. When you understand carpentry, there are no strict boundaries among these perspectives -- they are each part of a whole way of thinking that is inseparable from the actual work. Above all, carpentry requires a way of thinking about the constructed world that cannot be learned in a book. At some point, a reader must pick up the tools and actively work with the materials. At that point, I hope the principles and methods described here will make that practice a richer experience.

As you read this book, bear in mind that I have written it from the perspective of a professional carpenter, adopting a "trade" perspective that equally values production and quality. Quality is always a relative term. You can go nuts with quality in carpentry. I have done jobs for customers who actually inspected miter joints with a magnifying glass and for others who didn't particularly care what the joinery looked like, as long as they could list "natural hardwood trim" in a rental advertisement. Doing each job "well" meant discerning completely different levels of quality.

The balance between production (getting the job done as efficiently and inexpensively as possible) and quality (executing it as elegantly and precisely as possible) sets a baseline for building practice. It's a baseline that works equally well for aspiring carpenters who wish to pursue the trade for its own sake and for homeowners who want the work they do to last for the next generation. That said, I feel confident that the methods described in this book will allow you to satisfy that person holding the magnifying glass, be it yourself, your supervisor, or your customer. But more important, the methods described here will allow you to get the work done.

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