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The Fine Homebuilding Podcast

The Fine Homebuilding Podcast embodies Fine Homebuilding magazine's commitment to the preservation of craftsmanship and the advancement of home performance in residential construction. Hosted by the magazine's editors, The FHB Podcast is an informal but vigorous show about the techniques and principles that allow listeners to master their design and building challenges.
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The Fine Homebuilding Podcast
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Apr 19, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors swap stories about some of their own spring projects before–among other things–debating the pros and cons of affordable alternatives to fine-homebuilding products.

In this week's podcast, one listener asks if he should break the budget if he really wants to do a top-notch remodeling job; plus, a non-builder listener confirms that builders and remodelers are clearly not the only professionals who give free estimates; and another listener send us photos of some brilliant job-site furniture that a bunch of contractors cobbled together.

Apr 12, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors offer advice about framing new stairs for a deck, choosing the right level for a whole-house construction project, and figuring out how to upgrade an old HVAC system for efficiency and comfort.

Patrick kicks off this week's conversation with an update on his trial of Spray & Forget mold remover to clean up the grungy siding on his house, then Rob contemplates some interesting architectural follies he saw on a local country road. Matt gets us into a more technical topic–one contractor's peculiar way of insulating the underside of a house built on piers–before the crew jumps into answering a few listeners' emails.

Apr 5, 2019

One podcast listener wonders if he should jack up his drooping joists or if he can just create a flat floor using tapered sleepers over the old subfloor.

On this week's show, Patrick, Matt, and Rob talk about rigid fiberglass insulation, saving energy with low-flow shower heads, and siding details on houses with garrison-style overhangs, before answering listeners' questions about leveling floor framing, bringing the grade up for an accessible entrance, and what books to read to become a better builder.

Apr 3, 2019

The Director of Innovation from this manufacturer of moisture-management products talks about how getting feedback from customers is an essential to making materials that meet today's home-building needs.

Apr 3, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors talk to the CEO and sales director of this world-renowned 130-year-old manufacturer of high-quality measuring equipment about why the simple spirit level is still popular in a world of lasers and digital displays.

Apr 3, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors chat with Caleb about how his family business made the transition from a traditional stair parts supplier to a leading manufacturer of custom metal floating stairs and modern railing systems.

Mar 29, 2019

One listener wonders why he's not seeing much demand for experienced carpenters in his part of the country.

Inspired by details unearthed during the renovation of a local 19th-century home, Patrick, Justin, and Rob dig into the history of high-quality house design and discuss Jonathan Hale's book, The Old Way of Seeing. Then it's on to listener emails, starting with feedback about the trade gap, where one builder asks why the work everyone is talking about is not materializing where he lives. Another listener tells the story of his company’s experience losing money by overdoing a big job estimate, and he suggests devising a clear job-estimating plan that strikes a balance between efficiency and due diligence. Of course there are also listener questions to answer, including how to tell stucco lathe from skip sheathing, whether or not to make an addition more airtight and watertight than the original house, and how to safely detail an at-grade entryway.

Mar 22, 2019

The FHB crew recaps details of a job-site video shoot they just wrapped up, and then address some listener questions about a variety of construction and remodeling projects.

Patrick, Matt, bring in video director Colin Russel to discuss the history, construction details, and benefits of the Rumford fireplace before answering questions about the pros and cons of interior footing drains, the best way to soundproof an in-law apartment, providing make-up air for fireplaces, and more.

Mar 15, 2019

Today's building pros are more willing to swap stories about their crafts than their predecessors were. Is that good or bad for business?

Justin Fink joins Patrick and Rob this week and starts off the show with discussions about learning from other tradespeople and about what it would take to get started in blacksmithing. Then the crew dives into several listener questions about insulating without removing siding; avoiding moisture build-up under mats in a basement rec room; keeping cold air out of a walk-up attic; and building a tornado-proof house with ICFs.

Mar 8, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors discuss questions about running a remodeling business, maintaining access to buried plumbing, dealing with leaky soffits, and more.

After celebrating Rob's viral success with an online video of his pedal-powered snow plow in action, Rob, Patrick, and Matt try to find answers to listeners' problems with leaky pipes, leaky walls, and leaky attic vents. Maybe we can nail down some solutions for the ever-present old-house moisture issues once and for all.

Mar 1, 2019

This week the editors attempt to answer several unique questions including "What's the best sealer for end cuts on decking?" and "Is there a reliable way to flash a masonry chimney to a standing-seam roof?"

Patrick and Matt kick off the podcast by grilling Rob about his messy metal shop–but they all agree that (most) craftspeople need to have a ready supply of scrap materials at hand to feed their creative projects. Then it’s on to an assortment of listeners’ emails, with questions about ventilation requirements for a metal-clad, slab-on-grade home; the ideal product for protecting end grain on cedar and hemlock that will be exposed to the elements; and options for keeping water out of the gap between a chimney and a metal roof.

Feb 22, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors end the 2019 show with a discussion about sheathing systems and their favorite finds of this year's show.

Feb 22, 2019

Justin Fink shows of his custom-built Dutch door before joining in discussions about French drains, siding details, and popular eras in American home building.

 

 

Feb 21, 2019

The editors chat with Debbie Hernandez of The Home Depot about it’s pro services and former Fine Homebuilding editor Chris Ermides about tools.

Justin Fink and Rob Wotzak talk with Home Depot’s Debbie Hernandez about Professional and Contractor Services and with former Fine Homebuilding editor Chris Ermides about tool tests, keeping up with tool technology, and how job sites are increasingly going 100% cordless.

Feb 21, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors sit down with Caleb Klein of Pella Windows and Doors and Janice and Kelly Stitzer of CIG Construction in Colorado about new windows and window trends, and building a business and business culture in a time when fewer people are interested in joining the building trades.

Patrick and Matt talk with a window and door manufacturer about window trends and a push toward putting higher-end features on mid-line windows, and chat with the owners of a Colorado roofing company about the dangers of being the lowest bidder, keeping good employees, and building a business culture that attracts and retains top talent.

Feb 20, 2019
We sit down with Terry Alsberg founder of Warmboard Radiant and Mike Guertin Fine Homebuilding editorial advisor. 
 
First on Patrick and Rob's docket is a comprehensive discussion about radiant heat in conventional and low-load houses. Then the guys talk about the right way to acclimate wood flooring. Here's a hint: you've been doing it the wrong way.
Feb 20, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors chat with Jim Edgeworth of The Bilco Company and Connor Crook of Diamondback Toolbelts about what it takes to build high quality tools and materials in the US.

Patrick and Rob talk with a couple of manufacturers attending the International Builders’ Show about how keeping in touch with folks in the trades plays a major role in producing gear and construction materials that perform well and are in demand. The guys also compare notes on the builder-show experience, and touch on the current state of skilled trades in our country.

Feb 19, 2019

Steve and Huber representative Tate Hudson talk about building science and producing quality homes.

Feb 15, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors attack several building and remodeling dilemmas, including the correct way to install asphalt shingles at roof edges.

This week's podcast starts with a deep dive into electrical consumption as Rob Wotzak describes how his Sense monitor is helping him find energy hogs in his home. Then it's on to mold removal, contractor relations, insulation choices, furnace makeup air, and best-practices for wind-proof roofing.

Feb 8, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors offer advice for several old-home upgrades, compare notes on their favorite home-building books, and invite listeners to stop by our mobile podcast studio at the International Builders' Show.

Patrick, Matt, and Rob share some great listener feedback about questions from previous shows (keep that feedback coming, folks!) before they discussed attic and staircase remodels in Maine, a garage-workshop in New Jersey, and a possible door replacement project in who knows where. There are a few special details to report this week: IBS 2019 is just around the corner, and we're looking for folks to chat with on the podcast while we're at the show; there's also a sweepstakes going on where anyone can enter to win a $500 shopping spree in the Taunton Bookstore. 

Feb 1, 2019

This week's podcast starts off with Matt's insights into residential construction methods in the many places he's lived around the world while writing for the newspaper Stars and Stripes.

Because the Fine Homebuilding editors have nothing to report on their personal home-remodeling projects, Patrick asks Matt to recount experiences he's had living in unique homes in Europe and the Middle East. Then it's on to the advice portion of the show, where the guys offer solutions for improving attic insulation, avoiding het loss through leaky recessed lighting, and repairing crumbling plaster or stucco on old masonry foundation walls.

Jan 25, 2019

The Fine Homebuilding editors discuss the dangers of remodeling a house without informing the local building department.

Patrick, Matt, and Rob share some great listener feedback about home-workshop air quality before tackling questions about legally renovating a home, the pros and cons of radiant floor heating, and solutions for air trapped in a hydronic heating system.

Jan 18, 2019

Several frustrated homeowners ask the Fine Homebuilding editors to suggest the best course of action for some common DIY dilemmas.

Rob, Matt, and Patrick–plus podcast producer Jeff–talk about their own experiences with homemade workbenches, plugged sewer pipes, and basement remodels before doing their best to solve a bunch of listeners' old-house problems.

Jan 11, 2019

One listener wonders which modern tools and materials are better and which ones are worse than the ones available to previous generations of home builders.

This week, Patrick, Matt, and Rob field listener questions about tool-manufacturing quality, crown-molding best practices, building a foundation for a covered breezeway, and designing an accessible home, after rambling on about several of their own remodeling projects.

Jan 4, 2019

Patrick, Matt, and Justin share stories about storm windows, energy-efficient homes, and drywall tape before tackling a few listener questions.

Justin Fink is back in the studio this week with an update on his custom storm-window project. After chatting about Justin's windows, Matt's trip to an informal building-science conference, and Patrick's new affection for fiberglass drywall tape, the crew discuss heating options for small buildings, closet-cabinet material choices, and why anyone still bothers to use Phillips screws.

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