Family Handyman

Family Handyman June 2017

When it comes to home improvement, you need information you can trust. Inside each issue of The Family Handyman, you’ll find see-and-solve expert repair techniques, a variety of projects for every room and step-by-step, do-it-yourself photos.

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FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK Want even more? Follow us on Facebook to see exclusive videos, behind-thescenes photos, and the latest tips and projects. Go to TheFamilyHandyman and click “like.” DO YOU PIN? All of our best projects and tips are on Pinterest, including complete plans for a summer pergola. Go to START YOUR PROJECT RIGHT AT FAMILYHANDYMAN.COM You’ll find indispensable how-to advice from our experts, easy-to-use project plans, and videos on all kinds of home improvement topics.…

stuff we love

WORTH THE SPLURGE Love at first bite I’ve been a charcoal snob for most of my life. But a few years ago I decided to buy a gas grill just for those times when I was in a hurry. I did my research, bought a Weber Genesis grill and was instantly impressed by the quality of its construction. It felt super-solid and had an excellent fit and finish, and its three burners delivered even heat and outstanding flavor every time. I gave away my charcoal grill and never looked back. Now Weber has introduced its Genesis II line, with prices ranging from $700 to $2,000. The Genesis II LX E-640, shown above, is the top of the line. You can choose between an LP model and a natural gas model. It features six…

handy hints

SHARE YOUR HANDY HINT WITH US! Citrus-rind seed starters Grapefruit, orange and other citrus rinds are just the right size for starting new seedlings. I make a hole in the bottom of each one for drainage and add some damp seed-starting mix and seeds. Then, when it’s time to move them outside, I plant the whole works in the ground— peels and all. The citrus rinds make the soil more acidic, however, so I only do this with acid-loving plants like radishes, peppers and the like. — JUDY WILDER NO MORE SMELLY LAWN CLIPPINGS After mowing, I dump all my lawn clippings into a “green refuse” bin. But after a day or so, the grass clippings turn into a slimy, smelly mess. To combat the stench, I raided my electric paper shredder and threw…

12 tips for spray-painting

The telltale signs of a bad spraypaint job are easy to spot. Stripes of uneven coverage, paint buildup in the corners, a stray hair in the finish —the list goes on. Worst of all is the dreaded run, an obvious sign that the painter applied too heavy a coat. Here are a dozen tips to help you get a smooth, consistent finish on your next painting project. For more on this topic, including how to build a spray-paint booth, search for “spray painting” at Spray-can trivia Ever wonder what gives spray cans their rattle? It’s a glass marble most likely made by Marble King, a company in West Virginia. Marble King makes spray-can marbles and most of the marbles sold in the U.S.A., 1 million a day, 365 days a year. 1. DISASSEMBLE…

finishing trim

Expert advice from the job site. MEET THE EXPERT:Gary Hakkinen is the sole proprietor of Empire Painting in Lake Elmo, Minnesota. He’s been painting, staining and varnishing residential homes and commercial buildings for more than 40 years. Sand wood for even finishes The trim you bought may look perfect, but it likely has imperfections from machining that won’t show up until you stain it. Sand every contour and flat area in the direction of the grain with a combination of medium-grit sanding sponges and pads. When necessary, fold 120-grit paper to get into tight cracks. Dry-brush crevices Stain will pool in cracks. Use a dry paintbrush to remove it from each piece after it’s been completely wiped. Wipe the brush on a clean rag or brush it on newspaper to clean off the stain between…

rustic barn door

If you’ve investigated rustic “barn” doors, you’ve probably gotten sticker shock. But we can help. In this article we’ll show you how to build a simple barn door, including how to distress new pine boards for a weathered look. Fooled by a forgery I’ve harvested loads of lumber from abandoned farmsteads. But Jeff’s fake barn wood fooled me. I really thought it was genuine until I took a close look. Even then, I was impressed with the quality of the counterfeit. And in some ways, fake barn wood is better than the real thing: There are no rotten, splintered boards, lead paint or musty odors filling the air. In fact, Jeff’s forgery made me wonder: Was collecting real barn wood—with all the sweat and splinters—a waste of my time? To see how Jeff…