From foundation to finish, a wealth of information is available on sustainable construction methods. Entire volumes have been published on individual green and natural building techniques! But with so many different ideas from which to choose, there is no single resource that allows an owner or builder to quickly and objectively compare the merits of each system for their particular project.
Making Better Buildings cuts through the hype and provides the unvarnished facts about the upsides and downsides of the most widely discussed materials and technologies. Drawing on the real-world experiences of designer/builders, this comparative guide systematically and comprehensively examines each approach in terms of:
Each chapter is rounded out by a chart that summarizes the material in a quick and accessible manner.
Whether you are an owner preparing to build a green or natural home, or a conventional contractor determined to integrate sustainable alternatives into your existing construction practices, this up-to-the minute resource will help you make the best decisions for your project, while meeting your energy, efficiency, budgetary and site-specific needs.
Author: Chris Magwood
Created by a wide array of builders and designers around the United States and beyond, these 59 unique and innovative structures show you the limits of what is possible. Each is displayed in full-color photographs accompanied by commentary by author Derek “Deek”Diedricksen . In addition, Diedricksen includes six sets of building plans by leading designers to help you get started on a microshelter of your own. You’ll also find guidelines on building with recycled and salvaged materials, plus techniques for making your small space comfortable and easy to inhabit.
Author: Derek "Deek" Diedricksen
Now, more than ever, people across the country are turning toward simpler, greener, and quieter ways of living, whether they’re urbanites or country folk. This large, fully illustrated book provides the entire family with the information they need to make the shift toward self-sufficient living.
Self-Sufficiency provides tips, advice, and detailed instructions on how to improve everyday life from an environmentally and organic perspective while keeping the focus on the family. Readers will learn how to plant a family garden and harvest the produce; can fruits and vegetables; bake bread and cookies; design interactive and engaging “green” projects; harness natural wind and solar energy to cook food and warm their homes; boil sap to make maple syrup; and build treehouses, furniture, and more. Also included are natural crafts readers can do with their children, such as scrapbooking, making potato prints, dipping candles, and constructing seasonal decorations. Whether the goal is to live entirely off the grid or just to shrink their carbon footprints, families will find this book a thorough resource and a great inspiration.
Author: Abigail R. Gehring
Shelters, Shacks and Shanties, Second Edition presents lively, step-by-step tutelage on building all types of temporary and long-term accommodations from both natural and man-made materials. Originally published in 1914, this practical classic is as essential a guide for today's modern homesteader as it was at the turn of the 20th century.
Included are instructions for dozens of worry-free shelters for you to choose from, including a sod house for the lawn, a treetop house, over-water camps, a bog ken and much more. Satisfying the builder's need for the creature comforts of home, it also provides tips on how to build hearths and chimneys, notched log ladders, and even how to rig a front door with a secret look. Illustrated throughout with a bounty of helpful line drawings, Shelters, Shacks and Shanties, Second Edition harkens back to the can-do spirit of the American frontier that still thrives today.
Author: D.C. Beard
If you dream of getting back to the land but you’re economically challenged, Dorothy tells how she did it—and how you can do it too. No previous experience is required—you can learn as you go and pay as you go. All you need is the courage to get started and the perseverance to keep going. Fresh, humorous, and poignantly philosophical, The House That Dorothy Built is an inspirational narrative of one determined woman’s journey of transforming a barren piece of property into a beautiful oasis. You’ll be shocked to learn the log home that took her six years to build burned down the day after it was finished. Her incredible rebuilding story of triumph over tragedy, and her boyfriend’s super-human strength and undying love and devotion, will amaze you!
Author: Dorothy Ainsworth
Permaculture is a low cost, environmental and creative approach to living. The Permaculture Book of DIY presents over 20 practical projects that show you how to cleverly recycle materials into useful and unique objects at low financial and environmental cost. Some projects can even be completed for free. Want to spend more time enjoying your home and garden? With this diverse range of projects you could be growing vegetables in your own geodesic growdome, relaxing on a recycled wooden pallet garden bench whilst enjoying a cider from your very own cider press, or generating your own power with a self-installed solar panel! Each project has been carefully tried and tested and is clearly laid out with step-by-step instructions and supporting photography and diagrams. It is suitable for anyone who wants to learn DIY skills, have fun and involve their kids too. Learn how to make your own: Solar food dryer Self-watering raised bed Pallet furniture Wood-fired pizza oven Rocket stove hot tub and much more!
Author: JOHN ADAMS
The Useful Book is a modern and energetically designed encyclopedia of DIY.with step-by-step instructions and illustrations, relevant charts, sidebars, lists, and handy toolboxes.Practice measuring, cutting, and nailing by building a birdhouse. Make a bookshelf or a riveted metal picture frame. The tools that everyone should have, and dozens of cool projects that teach fundamental techniques.
Author: David and Sharon Bowers
The first step into a new craft can be overwhelming: Where to start? What tools to buy? What projects to begin with? Thanks to author and internationally acclaimed woodcarver Chris Pye, this guide is filled with everything a beginning woodcarver needs to know.
Pye's Woodcarving Course & Reference Manual is akin to having a one-on-one course with a master carver. You'll learn what to look for in a workbench, the importance of commissioning your carving tools-there's more to it than just sharpening!-and how to make exacting cuts and execute a variety of techniques. Like any good instructor, Pye includes practice exercises to make you comfortable with the tools and techniques, so you can build your skills and carve with confidence.
Pye's conversational teaching style will encourage you as you follow the step-by-step instructions and work on a number of motifs, as well as projects for low, high and pierced relief, and in-the-round.
Author: Chris Pye
Do you have questions about woodworking? Spike Carlsen has the answers! Woodworking FAQ has everything you want to know, whether you're a beginner planning your first project or an experienced crafter putting in cabinets or making furniture. This book is like a master carpenter standing at your elbow to answer questions as they arise, including: How do I make base molding fit tightly on the inside corners? How do I prevent splintering on the end of a board when I rout it? How do I taper cut a table leg? Is there any way to take the wobble out of a chair without taking the whole thing apart? With its comprehensive information, friendly question-and-answer format, and convenient lay-flat binding, Woodworking FAQ will be the most important tool in your workshop.
Author: Spike Carlsen