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    $65.00 $53.75
    1. National Electrical Code 2005
    $123.00 $96.25 list($150.00)
    2. Land Development Handbook (Handbook)
    $53.00 $48.75
    3. International Residential Code
    $65.00 $54.95
    4. National Electrical Code 2002
    $99.00 $69.30
    5. Fundamentals of Building Construction
    $112.50 $90.00 list($125.00)
    6. Architectural Graphic Standards
    $103.50 $88.24
    7. National Electrical Code 2002
    $23.77 $22.73 list($34.95)
    8. Graphic Guide to Frame Construction:
    $109.20 $91.32 list($120.00)
    9. Mechanical and Electrical Equipment
    $118.00 $80.00
    10. Elementary Surveying: An Introduction
    $29.70 $26.74 list($45.00)
    11. Building Codes Illustrated: A
    $21.12 list($32.00)
    12. Concrete at Home : Innovative
    $86.27 $72.90 list($94.80)
    13. Estimating in Building Construction
    $199.95 $197.07
    14. Energy Efficiency Manual: for
    $79.20 $69.06 list($90.00)
    15. Construction Funding: The Process
    $89.95 $67.25
    16. Refrigeration and Air Conditioning
    $80.95 $55.95
    17. Electrical Wiring Residential
    $71.96 $55.95 list($89.95)
    18. American Electricians' Handbook
    $101.25 $83.11 list($125.00)
    19. Illustrated 2003 Building Code
    $39.95
    20. How to Plan, Subcontract and Build

    1. National Electrical Code 2005 Softcover Version (National Fire Protection Association National Electrical Code)
    by NFPA
    list price: $65.00
    our price: $65.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0877656231
    Catlog: Book (2004-09-22)
    Publisher: Thomson Delmar Learning
    Sales Rank: 7099
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    2. Land Development Handbook (Handbook)
    by The Dewberry Companies
    list price: $150.00
    our price: $123.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0071375252
    Catlog: Book (2002-03-29)
    Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional
    Sales Rank: 29523
    Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (6)

    5-0 out of 5 stars very good all-around reference
    I primarily work as a structural-architectural engineer and am becoming more and more involved in civil-site work. This handbook is exactly what I was looking for in terms of something that would quickly get me "up to speed" in the fundamentals of civil-site design.
    Of course, no single book could (or should) be thought of as a substitute for the experience and mentoring received from seasoned professionals in a design office, but this one has enough technical explanation and details to get you going with confidence.
    I choose this one over the Colley book (reviewed both before making purchase) as Land Development Handbook has more of the technical info that engineers would seek.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Difficult to follow!
    I am in a class at Community College of Baltimore County and we are using this book at this time. Our whole class along with the Professor find this book to be very difficult to follow. The book constantly repeats itself making it extremely boring to read and is not fluent at all. They have examples that reference charts that are 3-5 pages apart from the problem being discussed the formulas you almost have to figure out for yourself how they are used and there are alot of typos.
    I recomend burning this book!!!!!!!

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Must Have Pub
    Ever since I purchased this publication I can't stop using it. Every civil engineer should have this as part of their reference library, regardless of your area of specialty. It provides macro to micro scale explanations of general processes, design applications, etc in a very readable format. More times than I can remember I have looked to this book for an answer or at least for some guidance and was throuroughly satisfied. No it is not a definitive reference for civil engineers but its' breadth and usability overshadows any technical shortcomings. If I had to have just one reference book for my area of practice (general civil), this would be it. Yeah, yeah, the "Standard Handbook for Civil Engineers" is a more definitive reference, but I usually find out what I need in this pub.

    ps - Almost everyone of my fellow employees that has used the book has purchased their own, find someone you know who has a copy and check it out for yourself.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent, very thourough book
    This book covers it all. Although I've never used it for actual design, it covers quite a lot as far as verious issues you may encounter during design. It seems to be geared towards the East Coast. Highly recommended book.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A Book for the Project Engineer Engaged in Land Development
    This book is the first book that really reflects and addresses most of the "everyday" issues encountered in site design and land development. It has a practical application and includes most of the charts, tables and nomographs that are necessary to complete a given design procedure. It also provides very appropriate and helpful examples. ... Read more


    3. International Residential Code 2003 (International Residential Code)
    by International Code Council
    list price: $53.00
    our price: $53.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 1892395584
    Catlog: Book (2003-02-16)
    Publisher: Thomson Delmar Learning
    Sales Rank: 6169
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    4. National Electrical Code 2002
    by NFPA
    list price: $65.00
    our price: $65.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0877654603
    Catlog: Book (2001-09-19)
    Publisher: Thomson Delmar Learning
    Sales Rank: 7847
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Book Description

    The #1 electrical reference, the 2002 National Electrical Code®, is now available through today's #1 electrical publisher, Delmar Publishers! The single most important reference in the electrical industry, the National Electrical Code® (NEC®), is updated every three years and outlines minimum standards for all types of electrical installations. Adopted as law by states, cities, and municipalities, the 2002 edition of the NEC® features newly adopted articles on transient voltage surge suppressors (Article 285), sensitive electronic equipment (Article 647), fuel cells (Article 692), and more! The latest administrative rules (e.g., Article 80) and safety rules (e.g., Article 100 on flash protection and Article 430 on motor disconnect locations) are also included. An excellent resource for anyone involved in electrical design, installation, and inspection, NEC® 2002 provides 100% of the information needed to meet Code and avoid costly errors in electrical installations of all types. Delmar is pleased to make this authoritative reference by the NFPA - containing the most widely accepted and most frequently used criteria for electrical installations in the U.S. - available directly from us for the convenience of our customers who work in and around the electrical trades. It may be used independently or as a companion to any electrical book, including Delmar's best-selling wiring series as well as our guides to understanding and using the NEC®. ... Read more

    Reviews (1)

    5-0 out of 5 stars easy to understand
    Book contain useful topics, easy to understand, clear picture, helpful for practical work and passing exam. ... Read more


    5. Fundamentals of Building Construction : Materials and Methods
    by EdwardAllen, JosephIano
    list price: $99.00
    our price: $99.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0471219037
    Catlog: Book (2003-12-12)
    Publisher: Wiley
    Sales Rank: 145862
    Average Customer Review: 4.71 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (7)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Surpassed expectations
    Being a student in Construction Management Edward Allen's book was assigned as our text book. The course entitled materials and methods is intended to teach future construction manajors about the wide variety of materials on the market today as well as tradional methods of constructing with these materials.
    The book is chalked full of knowledge most of which would take a person hours, even days of research to uncover with other sources. It is very comprehensive. If you are active in the comercial building construction this book is a must for your refrence shelf. Residential construction owners/workers would gain considerable knowledge from the book it has plenty of useful information however I feel the book is leaning more towards heavy commercial.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Good reading--too expensive
    The author's readable style helps a lot. Also, interesting background material and history begin each chapter, and some industrial processes--glass-making, for example--are explained more fully. You won't regret reading this book, but you may be inclined to sell it when you're through.

    5-0 out of 5 stars very helpfull
    This book is a must have for every body who is in the architecture field...it's worth every penny..

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Book on Construction
    Simply put, this is one of the best technical textbooks I've ever read. It's basic stuff for someone just starting out in the discipline of architecture, but I'm keeping it as a reference for future professional use. It is clearly written and well illustrated and worth it's high price. I wish Allen would now write a book on Environmental Control Systems--everything in that field is too dry and too technical.

    5-0 out of 5 stars NOT JUST FOR UNIVERSITY
    We read this bookas a textbook when I was in college. It is so helpfull ,it explains the electrical and mechanical systems in detail.Now we are using it at the office. It gives you so much detail and explains how is the connections between architecture and mechanics(plumping,air conditioning,etc) with photos and diagrams .It is an expensive book, I agree but has a lot of information.Thats why we steel using it at the office . I like the book because it explains so clearly the plumping and the air condition systems and how to connect and use them architecturally in the buildings.I recomend this book all architecture students. ... Read more


    6. Architectural Graphic Standards for Residential Construction (Ramsey/Sleeper Architectural Graphic Standards Series)
    by Janet Rumbarger, Richard J. Vitullo
    list price: $125.00
    our price: $112.50
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0471241091
    Catlog: Book (2003-01-24)
    Publisher: Wiley
    Sales Rank: 34495
    Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Book Description

    * State-of-the-art information on energy efficiency, HVAC, home wiring, accessibility, indoor air quality, and more.
    * New pages on specialty rooms such as home offices, home theaters, spas, and wine cellars.
    * Content organized to reflect the needs of residential projects.
    * Cross-referenced for quick access to key information.
    ... Read more

    Reviews (2)

    3-0 out of 5 stars One volume encyclopedia
    Experienced readers will benefit from its brief summaries and drawings covering the broadest range of topics imaginable. Some economizing is evident in the paper and printing quality, some of the drawings look 50 years old, but there is lots of reference information, like span tables, solar position data, etc. Probably not the last word on every topic, but still worth consulting.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A wonderful resource
    Following in the terrific legacy of the benchmark Architectural Graphic Standards book, this edition clearly makes building for residences an easier task. I've found innumerable details that I've used in my residential practice on a daily basis, details not found in other reference books. Of particular help are the pages that give an overview of how parts of a house interconnect with each other, such as foundation-to-framing. Also, there is a wealth of info on HVAC, new window technology and other things I've found very, very helpful. ... Read more


    7. National Electrical Code 2002 Handbook
    by NFPA
    list price: $103.50
    our price: $103.50
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 087765462X
    Catlog: Book (2001-12-28)
    Publisher: Thomson Delmar Learning
    Sales Rank: 24827
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Book Description

    Produced by the NFPA, the popular National Electrical Code® (NEC®) 2002 Handbook contains the complete text of the 2002 edition of the NEC® supplemented by helpful facts and figures, full-color illustrations, real-world examples and expert commentary.An essential reference for students and professionals, this Handbook is the equivalent of an annotated edition of the 2002 NEC® that offers insights into new and more difficult articles in order to guide users to success in interpreting and applying current Code requirements to all types of electrical installations. A valuable information resource for anyone involved in electrical design, installation and inspection, the NEC® 2002 Handbook is updated every three years and provides 100% of the information needed to "meet Code" and avoid costly errors. Delmar is pleased to make this one-of-a-kind reference - containing the most widely accepted and most frequently used criteria for electrical installations in the U.S. - available directly from us for our customers who work in and around the electrical trades. It may be used independently and makes an excellent companion to books in Delmar's best-selling electrical wiring series. ... Read more

    Reviews (2)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Makes me feel smarter!
    I am desk jockey who does electrical design work. I have little in-the-field electrical experience. I use the NEC codes frequently to make sure what I design is code-compliant. I have a copy of the standard 1999 NEC book and found many parts of it difficult to interpret. This new "handbook" version has answered all of the questions and uncertainties I had about the code. It has an illustration and explanation for just about every question I could think of. Even when I don't need a certain thing, I have found myself leafing through the book just to learn more.

    I would recommend this to anyone, but especially engineer types or those who are inexperienced. I feel much more confident about my job and I don't have to ask electricans those questions that make you feel stupid anymore. Even master electricians will appreciate the explanations of code changes from the 1999 version. Overall, I can't recommend this book more, well worth the $50 or so more than the standard NEC book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing.
    If you hang around with fellow homeowners, there's a lot of water cooler conversation about various things, including the electrical code. This book just nails everything you ever wondered about, everything you haven't yet wondered about, and a few thousand things that you'll never need to know. Want to install a subpanel? Want to figure what gauge of cable to use to supply it? Want to know how to calculate the in^3 fill of a box? How deep to bury an underground cable? How to use raceways? That information totals about 1/4 of 1% of the contents of this book. ... Read more


    8. Graphic Guide to Frame Construction: Details for Builders and Designers
    by Rob Thallon
    list price: $34.95
    our price: $23.77
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 1561583537
    Catlog: Book (2000-10-30)
    Publisher: Taunton Press
    Sales Rank: 4007
    Average Customer Review: 4.67 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Book Description

    Teaching through hundreds of meticulous drawings, Rob Thallon's guide covers foundations, roofs, building systems and materials, durability, energy efficiency, and more. ... Read more

    Reviews (18)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great reference book with TONS of Practical information
    I am a homeowner and adventurous tinkerer with all things mechancial/technical. I have never swung a hammer for a living, and am fairly clueless when it comes to general construction. (I have installed windows, replaced drywall, repaired plumbing, and run electrical simple lines, never built anything from scratch).

    I am about to embark on a complete remodel of a previously converted garage, and wanted to do most of the work myself. Armed with a copy of Visio 2002, I planned the layout of the new room (about 20' x 15') which will include moving some interior walls and doors, blocking an exterior window, installing a new interior window, and extensive removal and replacement of siding, sheathing, drywall, stucco, flooring, etc.

    Well, I needed a book that could augment my basic "sense" of the way things should look with some actual technical information. For example, how exactly do you frame an opening for a new window or door? How do you frame up a new wall segment that joins to an existing wall segment? What the heck is a "king stud" any way?

    All of this information is laid out very nicely in a textbook-like format, with lots of diagrams. The great thing is the way that the author starts each section with an overview drawing (say of a typical exterior frame of a house), then points to specific features, which are then detailed in subsequent sections.

    I would liken this to a "Bentley Manual" for automotive repair; it will not tell the complete novice how to build a wall, but for someone who already knows the difference between a 10d hot-dipped box nail and a 8 x 1-1/4" Drywall screw it is a great reference and can add a LOT of clarity to the way that homes are actually constructed using "best practices". (It will also help point out all the shortcomings of the manner in which your 50's era home was built! :-)

    My only complaint with the book is that it is very sparse on "method" descriptions. Essentiallly there are just short paragraphs with brief descriptions that can sometimes be a bit cryptic. These would be very clear to a professional builder, but for someone like me, they require a bit of head scratching and guessing at times.

    I had great fun looking at the diagrams, then pulling off wall paneling and seeing the relationship between the drawings in the book and the actual construction of my home.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great Detail of Graphics For Do-It-Yourself
    This is one of the best books that I have found so far ! We are remodeling and renovating an old home built in the 1920's. The graphic layouts in this spiral bound book have been to a great advantage for the home do-it-yourselfer. Mainly for those who have some basic knowledge of construction and building.

    5-0 out of 5 stars my most-used reference book
    I am a residential architect, and I refer to this book constantly when drawing details for a variety of projects. No book could show every possible detail, but this one does a great job of illustrating and describing the situations most likely to be encountered. I have found that the recommendations are consistent with general construction practices in my area. I almost always turn to this book first when I get stuck and need a little extra information to complete my drawings.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Best Framing book for Do-It-Yourselfers!
    I had to replace a small shed roof (15'X4.5') on the back of a sun room and was very disappointed in ALL of the responses I received from the local contractors. Northern Virginia has been a hot spot for home renovations the past 5 years and apparently, these guys simply do not have to try to get work. Their complete lack of professionalism, responsiveness, and outrageous prices convinced me to do the project myself and thankfully, I found this book before I started. It provided clear, concise drawings and pictures that showed me, a beginner, how to frame, flash, and roof my entire project. The room is dry as bone now and I can't tell you how often I hear, "You did that yourself!". Great book.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great reference book with TONS of Practial information
    I am a homeowner and adventurous tinkerer with all things mechancial/technical. I have never swung a hammer for a living, and am fairly clueless when it comes to general construction. (I have installed windows, replaced drywall, repaired plumbing, and run electrical simple lines, never built anything from scratch).

    I am about to embark on a complete remodel of a previously converted garage, and wanted to do most of the work myself. Armed with a copy of Visio 2002, I planned the layout of the new room (about 20' x 15') which will include moving some interior walls and doors, blocking an exterior window, installing a new interior window, and extensive removal and replacement of siding, sheathing, drywall, stucco, flooring, etc.

    Well, I needed a book that could augment my basic "sense" of the way things should look with some actual technical information. For example, how exactly do you frame an opening for a new window or door? How do you frame up a new wall segment that joins to an existing wall segment? What the heck is a "king stud" any way?

    All of this information is laid out very nicely in a textbook-like format, with lots of diagrams. The great thing is the way that the author starts each section with an overview drawing (say of a typical exterior frame of a house), then points to specific features, which are then detailed in subsequent sections.

    I would liken this to a "Bentley Manual" for automotive repair; it will not tell the complete novice how to build a wall, but for someone who already knows the difference between a 10d hot-dipped box nail and a 8 x 1-1/4" Drywall screw it is a great reference and can add a LOT of clarity to the way that homes are actually constructed using "best practices". (It will also help point out all the shortcomings of the manner in which your 50's era home was built! :-)

    My only complaint with the book is that it is very sparse on "method" descriptions. Essentiallly there are just short paragraphs with brief descriptions that can sometimes be a bit cryptic. These would be very clear to a professional builder, but for someone like me, they require a bit of head scratching and guessing at times.

    I had great fun looking at the diagrams, then pulling off wall paneling and seeing the relationship between the drawings in the book and the actual construction of my home. ... Read more


    9. Mechanical and Electrical Equipment for Buildings, 9th Edition
    by BenStein, John S.Reynolds
    list price: $120.00
    our price: $109.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0471156965
    Catlog: Book (1999-12-17)
    Publisher: Wiley
    Sales Rank: 98948
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Book Description

    The definitive guide to the design of environmental control systems.

    For more than half a century, this book has been a fixture in architecture and construction firms the world over. It has also been the primary means by which generations of students have acquired the basic knowledge and skills needed to design environmental control systems. Twice awarded the AIA's Citation for Excellence in International Architecture Book Publishing, Mechanical and Electrical Equipment for Buildings is recognized for its comprehensiveness, clarity of presentation, and timely coverage of new design trends and technologies.

    Faithful to its proud heritage, this Ninth Edition provides students and professionals with the most complete coverage of the theory and practice of environmental control system design currently available. Encompassing mechanical and electrical systems for buildings of all sizes, it provides design guidelines and detailed design procedures for each topic covered. It also includes information on the latest technologies, new and emerging design trends, and relevant codes and zoning restrictions-and its more than 1,500 superb illustrations, tables, and high-quality photographs provide a quick reference for both students and busy professionals.

    Emphasizing sustainability in architecture throughout, this new edition includes expanded coverage of energy conservation and renewable on-site energy resources. It also features a new chapter on interior air quality, expanded coverage of building acoustics, and many new and updated tables and illustrations.
    ... Read more

    Reviews (2)

    5-0 out of 5 stars An author's view:
    My part of this book (mechanical and plumbing) is designed to first show how to minimize the need for mechanical equipment by designing with the climate and site firmly in mind. First configure a building to optimize daylighting, solar heating, and various climate-appropriate passive cooling methods. Also, to store rainwater when appropriate. Then, proceed to choose and size the back-up equipment. In this way, designers conserve non-renewable energy, utilize natural (on-site) energy sources, and also help building occupants stay in touch with the outdoors. I believe that we'll tend to care more about a clean outdoor environment if we are kept aware of its condition.
    For a summary of this approach, read Chapter One. I hope you enjoy this book, even when it is your textbook! That was my object. Suggestions? I'm at jreyn@darkwing.uoregon.edu

    4-0 out of 5 stars Top Notch Reference
    This volume is one of the best reference materials available for the MEP or Architectural Engineer. I found the descriptive detail and illustration that aided me in the learning process. I reccomend it highly. ... Read more


    10. Elementary Surveying: An Introduction to Geomatics, 10th Edition
    by Paul Richard Wolf, Charles D. Ghilani
    list price: $118.00
    our price: $118.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0321014618
    Catlog: Book (2001-06-08)
    Publisher: Prentice Hall
    Sales Rank: 278781
    Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Reviews (6)

    1-0 out of 5 stars how to survive the use of this book
    this book is terrible! There are very few helpful illustrations, some simply don't exist ie in the defining of angles and their relationships! for some problems/projects that are fairly involved, several completely different data sets are used, so if you were confused about something on one step you cannot derive understanding from the completion of the problem. So, you are forced to rely on the horrible text written partially in crat -things are explained in the longest possible way! The author and our instructor use different terms, it is awful.

    My tip: rely on lectures and labs and don't miss a single one, get a study budy or work with your lab partner immediately after class. AVOID USING THIS BOOK IF IT CONFUSES YOU like it does me. I came to this class with a fair understanding most of this already but the book muddles it up so bad I was forced to abandon use of it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Elementary Surveying
    Simply the best surveying text. The best feature is the way it introduces the basic concepts of a topic followed by a section of advanced concepts concerning the topic. This makes the book an essential reference for both students and practioners. This book is highly recommended.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great for Students
    I graduated form a Tech. school that used this book as the source of study. I thought that it, with the help of my instructor, was a great refrence. I still use it today to look up anything from state plane coordinates to legal descriptions.

    over all its a good book to have.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Wolf: Elementary Surveying (an educator's point of view)
    As an educator of over 20 years, I have used many elementary texts on surveying. This is by far the most comprehensive and easy to understand book for the student wishing to learn from the basics to advanced surveying topics. One of the things that I like about this book is that I have found it is applicable to both the on campus courses at the University of Wyoming as well as the off campus courses that we offer to experienced, practicing surveyors around the country. The topics are just as suited for my students in Florida as they are in New York, California, Mississippi or Hawaii, and that's saying a lot since the laws are different in all regions of the country. I have found that using this book has been very easy to present material useful to students taking the classes in any state while preparing for the FLS or LS exam, because it covers the topics to about the right amount of depth as the exam expects the examinee to comprehend. The only downfall of the book as I see it is that there are numerous wrong answers (in the back of the book)to the selected homework problems that answers are provided for. This can be frustrating at times as you can imagine. If you can find me, I'd be happy to forward a list of these erroneous answers, and the correct answers. This might be very useful for other educators. As per the rules of posting reviews, I can't put my email address on here. Bummer.

    5-0 out of 5 stars An outstanding text
    In my opinion this work is simply the best introductory surveying textbook available, and I've seen more than a few. ... Read more


    11. Building Codes Illustrated: A Guide to Understanding the International Building Code
    by Francis D. K.Ching, Steven R.Winkel, Francis D. K. Ching, Steven Winkel, AIA
    list price: $45.00
    our price: $29.70
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0471099805
    Catlog: Book (2003-03-14)
    Publisher: Wiley
    Sales Rank: 6299
    Average Customer Review: 4.75 out of 5 stars
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

    Book Description

    A practical, illustrated guide to the new International Building Code
    With the publication of the International Building Code, the building industry is moving toward a single universal set of construction codes, rather than the three regional codes previously in use. Now more than ever, architects need an interpretive guide to understand how the building code affects the early design of specific projects. This unique reference blends the graphic skills of bestselling author Francis Ching with the code expertise of Steven Winkel. It closely examines the portions of the building code that are most relevant for the architect and provides a simple and practical interpretation through words and illustrations. All the changes in the new code are explained in simple, user-friendly language that allows architects to get up to speed on the new code quickly and easily.
    Francis D. K. Ching (Seattle, WA) is a registered architect, a professor at the University of Washington, and the author of eight highly acclaimed architecture books, all for Wiley.
    Steven R. Winkel, FAIA (San Francisco, CA), is a project manager at Field Paoli, and an expert in building codes and regulations. He is also an AIA Board Member and past president of the AIA California Council.
    ... Read more

    Reviews (4)

    5-0 out of 5 stars ARE studying material
    This is an excellent book to skim through for preparation for the ARE. I definitely recommend Ching's two books: Building Codes Illustrated and Building Construction Illustrated. After spending several dollars on studying materials for the exam, I found that I got the most bang for my buck from: the two Ching books, David Ballast's Study Guides, Larry Paul's ARE Practice Exam, and Archiflash cards. These were the the most useful tools to get through the multiple choice sections as they most closely reflected the material covered on the exams.

    4-0 out of 5 stars For those who had trouble reading the code book
    I have alot of trouble reading any codes: BOCA, UBC, SBC...etc. I find it difficult to understand the language. After getting this book last month, believe it or not, I find reading code such a PLEASANT experience. It summarizes all the main sections of IBC, those you browse thru the most, into easy to read format with clear and good graphic illustrations. This is the first time I don't feel confuse anymore when reading the code. For best result, read it with IBC 2000 side by side. It's good buy, highly recommend.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Up-to-date and clear
    This books represents the latest and possibly the best attempt to explain the logic and art that goes into writing the new national model codes. It also explains through the insights of the authors how best to use the code and what to expect from it by way of future revisions and local interpertations. As a design professionsal I constantly struggle to explain to clients why, when life safety is involved, we cannot do certain things in buildings. This book will help inform both the professional and non professional interested user of the building code. Serveral attempts in the past have been made to cover this subject, but at the time there were several codes around the country. Now that we are catching up with the British in our understanding and use of fire science the IBC allows a new clearer understanding of what codes do. This book is simply the best effort in years to cover this material.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Not only the what, but the why
    As someone who lectures regularly on codes and standards, I find the Francis Ching book a refreshing reference. The diagrams make sometimes confusing code language easy to understand, and the text deals with the background of code development and explains why the code evolved the way it did. ... Read more


    12. Concrete at Home : Innovative Forms and Finishes: Countertops, Floors, Walls, and Fireplaces
    by Fu-Tung Cheng, Eric Olsen
    list price: $32.00
    our price: $21.12
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 156158682X
    Catlog: Book (2005-02-09)
    Publisher: The Taunton Press
    Sales Rank: 119124
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    Book Description

    Fu-Tung Cheng's surprise bestseller Concrete Countertops paved the way for a fresh look at a familiar surface. His new book moves beyond the kitchen and transforms this commonplace material into an elegant medium that can be used throughout the house. Combining cutting-edge design with helpful how-to information, Concrete at Home offers ingenious ideas for planning and building walls, fireplaces, mantels, hearths, and exterior and interior floors, as well as tips on incorporating architectural elements such as counters, sinks, columns, and water pieces into the project. The construction of forms, footings, and ties is detailed in clear, easy-to-follow instructions, and special attention is given to finishing techniques, including adding color, texture, and inlays. ... Read more


    13. Estimating in Building Construction (6th Edition)
    by Frank Dagostino, Leslie Feigenbaum
    list price: $94.80
    our price: $86.27
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0130604054
    Catlog: Book (2002-08-07)
    Publisher: Prentice Hall
    Sales Rank: 166327
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    Book Description

    Everything needed to understand Estimating is provided in this proven handbook, which combines coverage of principles with step-by-step procedures. The authors use the popular approach of tracing a complete project's progress throughout the book.Incorporates the use of computers as a key estimating tool. Includes a WinEstimator CD with each copy of the book; readers will develop good computer-based estimating skills through the use of this powerful software, which also includes practice spreadsheets. Keeps readers up to date on the latest methods and materials. Includes a revised and updated illustration program. Provides complete, book-long case studies for follow-through of both commercial and residential buildings. Examines the interrelationship between contract documentsand the quantity take-off of material.The ideal reference for construction managers, architects, and engineers. ... Read more


    14. Energy Efficiency Manual: for everyone who uses energy, pays for utilities, designs and builds, is interested in energy conservation and the environment
    by Donald R. Wulfinghoff
    list price: $199.95
    our price: $199.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0965792676
    Catlog: Book (2000-03)
    Publisher: Energy Institute Press
    Sales Rank: 127769
    Average Customer Review: 4.89 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    This is the primary reference, how-to guide, and sourcebook for energy conservation.It lets you improve efficiency and save money in all types of buildings and plants, ranging from individual houses to commercial buildings to large institutions and industrial plants.It is organized around 400 logically grouped energy conservation actions, presented in language that everyone understands.

    It's for everyone who uses energy, pays for utilities, manages property, operates energy systems, designs, builds, and values conservation and the environment.It's loaded with features that help you quickly find the right information for each application. "Ratings" and "Selection Scorecards" identify your best conservation opportunities."Traps & Tricks" ensure success."Economics" estimate savings and costs.It has been acclaimed by professional and non-technical users.Publishers Weekly says it "answers just about any question [from] homeowner, plant manager, energy policy guru ... as practically useful as it is informative."830 photographs and drawings illustrate the methods.Hundreds of examples give you a feel for real applications.A complete index makes it easy to find every topic and term. ... Read more

    Reviews (9)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Superlative! A must have!
    Superlative!  The ENERGY EFFICIENCY MANUAL by Donald Wulfinghoff is a "must have" for professionals, libraries, facility managers, policy makers, homeowners, and anyone else who is serious about saving energy and cashing in on lower energy bills. It is the ultimate energy saving resource for businesses, industry, and government. PLUS, it will save money and reduce pollution, satisfying corporate bottom lines, policy makers, and environmentalists all at the same time. This book is unique. Highly informative, illustration-rich, and user-friendly, it is treasure trove of everything you need to know about energy efficiency from A to Z. Don't bother looking elsewhere -- the ENERGY EFFICIENCY MANUAL simply has it all. This book will pay for itself almost as fast as you can spot a hot air leak or install an energy-efficient light bulb!

    -- Amy Vickers

    5-0 out of 5 stars A secret weapon for the energy auditor
    As an energy auditor I'd almost call the Energy Efficiency Manual a secret weapon, except it has so many good ideas that I can't help but show it to many of the customers and prospective customers I meet. The diagrams are very useful, as is the self contained but well cross-referenced way in which each improvement measure has been written. For example, talking to the maintenance manager of a hospital, we looked at the diagrams of hot/cold deck multi-zone systems while discussing the pros and cons of upgrading a constant volume air conditioning system to a variable volume system. It is by far the most useful book on energy management that I have ever read (well, in the case of the Energy Efficiency Manual, that I have partially read - its an enormously large book!), and the ratings of each of the measures are particularly useful, along with the practical, no-nonsense approach. The book is extremely well cross referenced and Wulfinghoff has covered an enormous body of knowledge in writing the book. As someone fairly new to the field I'm grateful that he went to the effort of documenting and making available his knowledge and 30 odd years experience in the Energy Efficiency Manual.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Everything you always wanted to know, in plain English
    I nodded my head in agreement while reading Wulfinghoff's philosophy about energy savings in commercial and light industrial facilities. He distills 20+ years of experience in this field with practical, no-nonsense how-tos to gain energy and dollar savings in a wide variety of facilities and end-uses: lighting, water use, steam systems, space heating, water heating, air conditioning, scheduling, pumps, energy management controls: its all here in a well-written, well-illustrated book.

    Perhaps best of all, the author goes beyond theoretical considerations of high-tech efficiency products, with precautions of what works and what might fall short. He also reminds facility managers to be mindful of the human factors that can foil our best efforts. He offers suggestions on how to plan and manage efficiency upgrades complete with information for building operators and occupants, so that the savings persist.

    Highly recommended for anyone managing energy use in facilities, ranging from individual buildings to college campuses to government facilities. [I am a local government energy manager myself.]

    5-0 out of 5 stars Provides practical advice for avoiding pitfalls
    Donald Wulfinghoff's Energy Efficiency Manual is a massive, 1,536-page reference work that is organized to guide the reader quickly to the right information for their particular energy project, problem, or inquiry. The first part of this "user friend" manual has 400 logically grouped activities for improving energy efficiency. each activity begins with Ratings and a Selection Scorecard to help the reader judge the merits and difficulties of that particular activity. "Economics" sidebars estimates the savings, cost, and payback period. The "Traps & Tricks" sidebars provides practical advice for avoiding pitfalls plaguing energy conservation efforts. Energy Efficiency Manual will earn back its cover price over and over again and is an essential, core reference for personal, professional, and community library energy conservation and energy efficiency reference book collections.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Efficiency in technical publications.
    I have been in the Architect/Engineering business for over 20 years. There were several cases in the past where this book would have been of great value. The Energy Efficiency Manual is now my standard resource in saving money and energy for my clients. Mr. Wulfinghoff has invested over 20 years in compiling this manual and this is reflected in the quality of the content. I am particularly impressed with the format, which is extremely accessible to anyone. The book gets right to the point in a highly straightforward manner. I would recommend that authors of other technical books take note and attempt the same. It would certainly make my life easier. In other words I honestly feel that I got my money's worth this time and recommend it to anyone who wants to save energy. ... Read more


    15. Construction Funding: The Process of Real Estate Development, Appraisal, and Finance
    by Nathan S.Collier, Courtland A.Collier, Don A.Halperin
    list price: $90.00
    our price: $79.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0471394661
    Catlog: Book (2001-12-14)
    Publisher: Wiley
    Sales Rank: 65314
    Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    The Third Edition of this highly regarded reference offers unrivaled single-source coverage of the financial aspects of construction funding. Updated to provide more current costs, address environmental concerns, and shed light on the latest methods used to fund projects, it helps readers solve the unique financial challenges facing today's construction industry. ... Read more

    Reviews (2)

    5-0 out of 5 stars MBA student
    Very interesting  book; very easy to read.
    As a small real estate investor I found it very helpful in understanding many of the ins and outs of real estate and financing, especially on the scale i would like to grow to.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A first class book on Real Estate Development
    The third edition of Construction Funding by Nathan S. Collier et al is a remarkable demonstration of insight and expertise. Collier and colleagues provide an exceptionally lucid description and analysis of the process of real estate development that is accessible to non-experts while being authoritative at the same time. In addition to being an excellent text for students and others interested in careers in real estate development, this book serves as essential background for all those whose responsibilities include any part of the development process. ... Read more


    16. Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Technology, 5E
    by Bill Whitman, Bill Johnson, John Tomczyck
    list price: $89.95
    our price: $89.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 1401837654
    Catlog: Book (2004-10-13)
    Publisher: Thomson Delmar Learning
    Sales Rank: 268989
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    Book Description

    The best in heating, cooling, and refrigeration just got better!This time-honored best seller has been updated and revised to provide superior hands-on information needed to successfully maintain and troubleshoot todays complex heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration systems.It fosters a solid foundation and understanding of environmental problems and their solutions, and displays a depth and detail of theory, diagnostics, and repair procedures that make this a fitting book for basic HVAC-R education as well as upgrading and certification training for technicians in the field.The fifth Edition includes information on typical operating conditions, and offers ample systematic troubleshooting techniques and scenarios with an eye to improving readers skills.This book has been developed around the National Skill Standards for HVAC-R technicians as funded by the U.S. Department of Education, and contains easy-to-understand language for grasping fundamental and advanced concepts in the HVAC-R field. ... Read more


    17. Electrical Wiring Residential SC
    by Ray C Mullin
    list price: $80.95
    our price: $80.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0766832848
    Catlog: Book (2001-11-30)
    Publisher: Thomson Delmar Learning
    Sales Rank: 65618
    Average Customer Review: 4.75 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    Electrical Wiring - Residential is a trusted resource for information on all aspects of house wiring, having been adopted as an essential component of numerous national training programs. One of the best selling books on residential wiring on the market for more than a decade, Electrical Wiring - Residential features hundreds of examples, calculations, plus full-color wiring diagrams, illustrations, and photos while conforming to the 2002 National Electrical Code (NEC®). The book explains the Code's new metric numbering system while utilizing both metric and the prevalent English system. The book begins by introducing readers to the basics of wire sizing, load calculations, and wiring diagrams. It then proceeds to address relevant NEC® rules and requirements, room by room, through an entire home. Discussion of the unique considerations of wiring a home for the handicapped, as well as an introduction to today's state-of-the-art home automation wiring, is also featured. A useful list of major electrical appliance manufacturers' web sites is provided in an appendix. When used together with the NEC®, Electrical Wiring - Residential offers its readers an unparalleled, hands-on learning experience. ... Read more

    Reviews (16)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Essential reading from a wise author for do-it-yourself'ers
    Don't sell yourself or family short, get this or another comparable book if you are going to tackle electrical work in your home.

    This book is somewhat technical and that may put some folks off. However, it is only as technical as is needed to provide for safe installation of electrical wiring in the home. I appreciate the code references, as a do-it-yourself'er it is important to understand why it is done as it is, because no home project is ever an exact copy of problem in a book. This book is an essential part of a do-it-yourself'ers library, especially if you are going to take on any substantial projects.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Used 1993, 1996, and 1999 versions of this book.
    I have wired four new homes and remodeled one using the concepts in this book. The homes ranged from 3200 to 5000 square feet in size. The 5000 sq/ft house used 400 amp service for the main panels. I am a do it yourself homeowner. I am a firmware engineer by trade so I don't wire for a living. This book was magnificent in helping me understand how to put the entire picture together for a large complicated home. These homes included security systems, phone systems, home audio systems, internet wiring, and of course power and lighting everywhere that I needed it. I learned so much from this book and the way that it walks through each room in the house. I recommend following it all of the way through on your own house plans. What it lacks I was able to find by looking at homes being constructed in the area. Things like how high up do I put the outlets and switches comes to mind. The code changes every three years and so does this book. I got most of my knowledge from the 1993 book. I used the 1996 and 1999 books on the later homes but the basics were already there. All code changes are very well covered in the latest edition and nothing is dropped from edition to edition that I know of. I am very impressed with Mullin's style and thought that I could show some of my gratitude back for the help that he gave me to do this over and over again. I have recommended this book to many friends who have also wired their own homes. If I needed to I would buy it again but I have decided to live in one of my houses for a while. What I believe this book has that others do not is a grasp of the whole picture. I was able to do the entire project each time with this book. I installed the service conductors from the transformer to the house. I built up the main breaker panels and subpanels. I performed the load calculations to make sure that all circuits were properly balanced. I don't think that many of the other wiring books cover all of these things. You can perform the entire wiring of your residential home by yourself with the knowledge that you can glean from this book and a few questions asked of your local inspectors and examining the work of electricians wiring in your area. Make sure that you follow the code and not the local electricians though because I do not know how some of them pass inspections with some of the work that they do. Good luck on your project.
    Thanks Ray for a great book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The best I have tried.
    This book is my electrical bible. I tried several books before I found this one. I bought it when I was trying to rewire an old house. The first 2 books I bought left me dazed and confused. I finally spent an afternoon in the bookstore browsing through every electrical book I could find until I ran across this. What a find. It not only explains clearly what has to be done, but why. The book makes good use of tables to summarize information and excellent use of diagrams. It not only teaches you to wire correctly, but teaches you the code as well. Highly recommended.

    If you don't know what a wirenut is, this may not be the book for you as it assumes some level of knowhow on the part of the reader. Otherwise, this is likely to be the last residential wiring book you will ever buy.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Dunwoody uses it -- you should too
    I went to Dunwoody Institute, and their electrical department uses this as a textbook for future electricians. The biggest downside is it doesn't cover some of the low voltage/HVAC in the depth that it does everything else. It has constant code references, but it also explains things plainly enough that most people can understand them. It is a little expensive, but I would definately recomend it.

    5-0 out of 5 stars comprehensive, yet easy to understand
    This is a highly detailed book that clearly describes how to wire a home that meets 2002 National Electrical code requirements. The book is nicely organized and contains a wealth of information on how to select proper wire and box sizes, locations for recepticles, lighting requirements, etc. However, it is not a "how to" book-it won't tell you how to fish a wire or change a circuit breaker. I used this book to completely rewire my 1950's kitchen and it took all the guesswork out of the project. Now every time I start an electrical project, I consult this book to make sure I do it correctly. One of my goals in life is to never have to call an electrcian for help again and this book has taken me a long way toward it. ... Read more


    18. American Electricians' Handbook
    by TerrellCroft, WilfordSummers
    list price: $89.95
    our price: $71.96
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0071377352
    Catlog: Book (2002-06-07)
    Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional
    Sales Rank: 44633
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description


    * Since 1913, the single source blockbuster for all essential information on designing, installing, operating, and maintaining electrical systems and equipment
    * Includes advancements in fiber optic cables, grounding, arc-fault circuit interrupter devices, and transient voltage surge suppressors
    * Complete with the latest updates on National Electrical Code(R), National Safety Code, and NEMA motor and generator standards
    * Features new information on high efficiency motors and electronic control of motors
    * Provides the latest developments in circuit calculations, transformers, wiring tables, lamp applications tables, and more
    ... Read more

    Reviews (4)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Not a handbook
    I would NOT recommend this book to any electrician, engineer, or architect. It is extremely difficult to comprehend. Gaining any practical information from this book is futile. I have had the twelfth edition over ten years. I used it to study for the electricians exam. I hated it then. Since that time, I have found it to be a very poor reference book. The thirteenth edition is no better. I understand why some electrician training schools might use this book - it is very comprehensive. It would make a good reference for a classroom lesson plan, but not a direct teaching tool. If you want to learn the material in this book, get the National Electric Code Handbook (and related materials published by the NFPA) and appropriate textbooks. FYI - I am a licensed electrician and a registered professional engineer.

    2-0 out of 5 stars A patchwork monster
    Another motley McGraw-Hill product. First copyrighted in 1913. The author appears to have died prior to 1976, and the book has been maintained by hired help. Don't try to use this as a textbook; treat it as a reference only. You never really know whether some item is up to date or 50 or 80 years old. Examples: There is a lot of treatment of two-phase (yup, 90 degrees) power, including at 25 hertz, and of multi-kilovolt series incandescent streetlighting, plus knob and tube wiring. Also, it is stated that the highest radio frequency in use is 30 megahertz, whereas in reality we're up to 1,000 or 2,000 times that just now. This book is a curiousity; charming if you have the cash, but if you don't, maybe you should be getting something more coherent.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Must For Every Serious or Professional Electrician
    W A R N I N G: This book is not for the weekend repairman!!!

    This is a very intense book for the professionals or for someone who would like to further their knowledge. This truely might be the last book an electrican will ever buy. A must for your library!

    5-0 out of 5 stars An Electrician's Life-saver
    I originally purchased this book on the recommendation of another electician. Many electrician training schools use this same book to teach their students. I found it to be easy to comprehend, and to be a wealth of information that has helped me enormously in my work, and to prepare for Electrician's exams. I would recommend this to any electrician (Apprentice, Journeyman, etc. I have used and abused mine so much, that it's time for me to purchase another copy - that's how useful a tool it is. ... Read more


    19. Illustrated 2003 Building Code Handbook
    by TerryPatterson, Terry Patterson
    list price: $125.00
    our price: $101.25
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0071423656
    Catlog: Book (2003-09-15)
    Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional
    Sales Rank: 109024
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    20. How to Plan, Subcontract and Build Your Dream House: Everything You Need to Know to Avoid the Pitfalls
    by Warren V. Jaeger
    list price: $39.95
    our price: $39.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0964782405
    Catlog: Book (1998-01-01)
    Publisher: Trojan Homes
    Sales Rank: 26760
    Average Customer Review: 4 out of 5 stars
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    Book Description

    If You're Thinking About Building A Home, whether you want to be your own General Contractor, and SAVE up to 50,000 Dollars or more, or you want to hire a builder, there are many things that you absolutely must know to avoid costly errors and mistakes. "HOW TO PLAN, SUBCONTRACT AND BUILD YOUR DREAM HOUSE" has been written by Warren V. Jaeger, a Master Designer-Builder, with more than 45 years experience. Thirty four chapters, more than 130,000 words, and dozens of diagrams take you step by step through the entire building process with practical advice and real life examples. Learn what needs to be done, when it needs to be done, and how to get it done!

    But, before you even think about construction, PART ONE guides you through: lot evaluation, drainage, sloping sites, public water and sewer connections, well drilling, septic systems, zoning, wet lands, flood plains, deeds and restrictions, easements, foundation designs and many vital considerations and decisions you must make long before you hire a builder or start to build. Part two covers: how to get plans, when plans are worthless, types of builders, how to choose the building process.Part three covers: the detailed process of construction, mortgages, financial discipline, hiring subcontractors, scheduling and supervision.

    There are great chapters on Radon, Principles of Electricity, Energy Saving Windows, and much much more. You will save many times the cost of this book alone by following Proper Insulation Techniques and Construction Methods revealed by the author.

    WARREN V. JAEGER explains the 69 essential rules of construction learned through his many years of practical experience. They cost him money to learn, and they will save you money if you follow them. Because the scope and detail of this book is so comprehensive we are including the complete Table of Contents so you can appreciate all the thing that are covered which you need to know to succeed.

    You wouldn't remove an appendix, or represent yourself in court, without the necessary knowledge. Don't undertake an expensive building project without getting the information you must have to succeed. ... Read more

    Reviews (16)

    5-0 out of 5 stars My Home Building Bible
    This is a wonderful and very comprehensive book covering every aspect of building a house in all climates. It contains information that I have not seen anywhere else. i.e. The chapter on looking at and evaluating a building site is very informative and insightful. Every step of the construction process is explained in detail. There are diagrams showing construction details, grading techniques and even showing how to survey and lay out a foundation yourself. There are special chapters on understanding electricity and it's role in your home, Radon and most importantly in this time of rising energy costs, how to insulate for maximum effect for both heating and cooling in hot and cold climates. I especially enjoyed the anecdotes and real life examples taken from the authors vast experience. Mr. Jaeger has the knack of explaining complicated things in a clear and easy to understand way. I am most impressed with his offer to answer all reader questions by E-mail and I can verify he keeps his word on that. I've never before heard of an author offering free consultation but he does. He answers all questions about the book and/or your own project. I read the prior "review" by "greeba" and I wonder how much of the book she actually read because she missed all the important lessons. She admits she got her knowledge from watching "The Brady Bunch" so how much can you expect? The paper is standard paper used for high speed electronic printing and I only noticed a few minor typos. The line drawings are technical diagrams, not illustrations. If you want pictures I suggest you watch the television programs that show all aspects of actual building in progress. Check out, "Hometime", Bob Villa's "Home Again" and "This Old House". Actually, I thought the picture of the Taj Mahal (the ultimate dream house) on the cover was a neat touch. What Mr. Jaeger provides from his 45 years experience as a pro builder, that pictures cannot supply, are the techniques and strategies of planning, managing and coordinating a construction job and a vast wealth of information you wouldn't ever think of. The most important lesson is Mr. Jaeger's instruction on how to get sub-contractors to do what you want willingly and how to keep them showing up. He also tells you how to avoid the pit falls and rip offs common in the construction game. This book is my home building Bible. The value of a book is not in the paper or a few typos or some pretty pictures as "Greeba" thinks. The real value is the information it contains. This book will help you save many thousands of dollars and contains all the information you will need. Any questions? Ask the author. For a proper perspective on this book check out all the reviews especially the one by George Ehrenhaft, an experienced builder. HE knows what he is talking about.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Very handy book but not complete
    I found this book very helpful. The author tells goes into extreme details for his home preferances. Since he does not like basements he does not go into great detail about pouring foundations for full basements. There are a couple of things like that. All in all I think he does an excellent job at stearing you around the big bumps. Luckily my concrete guy is my cousin so we had no problem at all. This book will however give you a ton of great ideas, and help you to plan everything well but if you know squat about the building process I would but more technical books in addition to this one. I worked for a general contractor through college so I am pretty handy. My advise is if you are planning on building your own home, congratulations and good luck. Most people that I have talked to say that it is too stressful, and they'll never do it again. If you are like me you will welcome the challenge. It is one of the most rewarding things you can do. I worked my full time job and did this and it not only gave me more energy than I have had in a while but it helped me get in shape from sitting behind this desk full time. You can always blow off the gym but you have to go to the site everyday.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Voice of experience--good advice
    The best part of this book is its easygoing style. Written seemingly entirely from memory, you'll understand and remember every word. The author skips the commonly available info and writes about the crucial nuts-and-bolts problems of building a house: what do you do if you've drilled a hundred foot well and come up dry? (Keep drilling.) His advice on some details, vapor barriers for example, is OK but you'll want to check the latest thinking on the topic too. Some harmless misinformation is passed along, like that Palladio, eponym for those short-tall-short windows, "invented" them. (He may have invented residential architecture, but those windows date to antiquity. In his day they were known as serliana, after the architect Sebastian Serliano.) The scientific explanations fall a bit short, and the chapter where he disparages Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory's engineering does not show him in a good light. However he does caution you that drywallers, more than any other trade, will try to rip you off with a high materials estimate. Stuff like that you can't get anywhere else.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Great first source
    If you want to have a house built, this is a great book to start with. The author is a general contractor who has seen it all and wants to educate readers about the building process. His intention is to prevent others from the pitfalls and scams of building, and simultaneously he explains the science behind plumbing, electricity, sewarage, insulation etc. He also discusses the attitudes and scams of subcontractors and local bureaucrats. This is not a how-to book; the purpose is to educate you enough so that you know what questions to ask as your house goes up.

    He begins with purchasing the land and ends with the final detailing of the house. He includes interesting anecdotes to make his points. I was impressed his ability to go from the abstract to simple things usually overlooked. Although I was lost in the section on laying the foundation, the book was written simply, and is easy to follow.

    My only criticisms are limited. There are occasional typing errors (I'm an English teacher) and a need for a few more illustrations. The author can also be opininated about his person tastes in decor and such, but I found that to be humorous and endearing. Finally, I don't think the book is titled incorrectly. Yes, you should read it if you want to be your own gerneral contractor. But I think this book is more about the risk involved in doing that. After 20 pages, I was convinced I would definately want a general contractor.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Had a lot of useful tips, but lacked a few key areas
    I would actually give it 4 1/2 stars if I was able. The book had many useful tips concerning windows, framing and insulating to produce an energy efficient house. It also had tips for hanging drywall, planning lighting and measuring techniques, as well as tips for dealing with contractors and inspectors; all of which are helpful. The authors distaste for basements leads to an absense of information on poured basements which are the standard in my area. He continually pushed slab houses and only had block wall basements as an example. This was disappointing. Not being a plumber, I also would have liked more information on tapping into city sewer and water and into gas lines. Most of his examples were of a septic system and well. The book was not edited well, as it had many spelling errors. If you are not looking for a novel, this should not bother you much because the information in the book is simple and very benificial. It is well worth the purchase price and should save you a lot of money and headaches if you decide to build your own house. ... Read more


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