Family Handyman

Family Handyman Winter 2018

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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stuff welove

TAX REFUND SPLURGE Low-hassle nailing My compressor frowned at me when I brought home a DeWalt cordless brad nailer a year ago. Now that I’ve brought home its big brother—the DCN650D1 15-gauge cordless angled finish nailer—my compressor won’t even speak to me. This duo has nearly put the noisy old relic out of business. What do I love about this nailer? ▄ For starters, the “micro nose” allows you to see your mark more easily and drive nails—from 1-1/4 to 2-1/2 in. long—precisely where you want them. ▄ Its dual-purpose headlights light up your work area and flash if your battery is low (left headlight) or if you have a nail jam (right headlight). ▄ Speaking of jams, this nailer has the easiest-operating jam-clearing latch I’ve ever encountered. It loads easily too. ▄ It comes with a…

handy hints

SHARE YOUR HANDY HINT WITH US! submissions@ Handy Hints Clever solutions from our readers ROLLER SPINNER To spin-dry a mini roller, chuck a 1/4-in. bit into your drill. Slip the roller onto the bit and pull the trigger. Centrifugal force whips the water right out. I recommend doing this in a bucket, utility sink or outdoors. SPIKE CARLSEN MAGNETIC TOOLBOX LABELS HANDY HINTS® Tired of trying to figure out which toolbox drawer had the tool I was looking for, I bought magnetic business cards at an office supply store ($25 for a pack of 100). I peeled the film off the front, stuck a piece of card stock on top of it (old business cards work great) and labeled each drawer. LAURA VOGEL MAKE YOUR OWN AWL I like to use an awl to punch small holes in drywall…

diy essentials

We all know that water expands when it freezes. That’s not a problem with the ice cubes in your freezer, but if that ice forms in your plumbing, it’s a potential disaster. A frozen pipe can crack, spewing hundreds of gallons of water into your home. Fortunately, you can take steps to help prevent a catastrophe and put your mind at ease. 1 Shut off outdoor faucets Turn off outdoor faucets at their shutoff valves. Open the faucet and then open the bleeder cap on the shutoff valve to drain any water out of the pipe. If you don’t drain the pipe, it can still freeze and crack. Leave the bleeder cap open with a bucket underneath to catch any drips. If the dripping continues, your shutoff valve needs to be replaced. 2…

best protips

WORKING IN THE COLD Before signing on with The Family Handyman, most of the editors here were employed in the building trades. And all of us have worked in Minnesota, where it can get nippy outdoors come winter. Travis Larson even worked in Greenland, where temps plummeted to 40 degrees below zero. We got together (inside) and pooled our favorite tips for staying comfortable and safe while working in the cold. Have a variety of gloves on hand Different tasks require different gloves. Tight, thin gloves are perfect for delicate tasks like grabbing hold of small screws or twisting wires. Keep thicker gloves or mittens handy for moving equipment or hauling cold, wet material. Oversize gloves or choppers like these will fit right over your formfitting gloves, so you can keep your hands warm…

swing-out storage

3 TIERS OF SHELVING Keep your most-used spices on the front shelf for instant access. The two inner shelves are perfect for items you use less often. If your wall cabinets are so full that you can’t find anything without constant reshuffling, we have the perfect solution. This swing-out cabinet provides two extra layers of shelving for great visibility and easy access. We chose to make shallow shelves on the front for spices and wider shelves on the back for bottles or cans, but you can configure your swing-out however you like. Narrow adjustable shelves behind the swingout provide even more storage space. Tools and materials You’ll find all the materials for this project at home centers or lumberyards. The plywood has to be cut accurately into the parts for the swing-out, and the 1x3s…

container storage

It’s always a challenge to find matching containers and lids. This rollout solves the problem by keeping them all neatly organized and easily accessible. The full-extension drawer slides are the key. To simplify tricky drawer slide installation, we’ve designed an ingenious carrier system that allows you to mount the slides and make sure everything is working smoothly before the unit is mounted in the cabinet. Tools and materials Our 24-in. base cabinet required a 4 x 4-ft. sheet of 1/2-in.-thick plywood for the rollout, plus a 2 x 3-ft. scrap of 3/4-in. plywood for the carrier. Yours may require more or less. We found high-quality birch plywood at a home center for this project. If you have trouble finding nice plywood, consider ordering Baltic birch or ApplePly plywood from a home center or…