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post-decks.jpgWith autumn on the way, it’s the perfect time to enjoy cool air again, and building a deck is an excellent (and affordable) way to expand your living space into the outdoors. Creative Homeowner’s Ultimate Guide to Decks: Plan, Design, Build offers in-depth advice on how to design a deck that meets the needs and expectations of your family, develop a reasonable plan for construction, and select the right tools and materials for the job.

The first five chapters provide important information regarding common challenges in deck building, the process of getting building permits and inspections, and careful selection of lumber that is durable, pleasing to the eye, and splinter-free. The thorough step-by-step instructions include projects ranging from digging post holes and pouring concrete to framing and bracing to adding stairs, railings, and benches, with helpful tips throughout on using your tools safely and effectively. The book concludes with a section on finishing and maintaining your deck after the job’s done.

The Ultimate Guide to Decks is a highly practical guide that even the builder with the most basic knowledge can use to create a fresh outdoor space. But it’s also worth noting that the Guide provides a strong emphasis on style as well, furnishing the pages with dozens of photos of various decks to inspire the mind’s eye. Who knew that decks could include built-in ponds, curved benches and planters, stairways descending gracefully into pools, gazebos, and warm lighting overlooking the hot tub? Now that’s a good reason to get back outside.

Cory, Steve, and Mike McClintock. Decks: Plan, Design, Build. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Creative Homeowner, 2005. (Softcover) ISBN: 1-58011-148-3


5 Responses to Book Review: Ultimate Guide to Decks

  1. PeterP says:

    Does it cover composite deck materials? I’m interested in them, but i’ve heard mixed reviews.

    I still miss good old arsenic laden pressure treated wood…

  2. Chuck Cage says:

    Peter: I don’t remember seeing composite materials in it, but I’ll ask Audra for you. (She reviewed the book.)

    If you get a chance, find a back issue of last December’s Popular Science. One of the Best of What’s New 2005 winners was TimberSIL’s “pressure-treated lumber without the poison.” Or, just check out timbersil.com.

  3. Sean O'Hara says:

    Peter: Chapter 5 is dedicated to Decking Materials. The mention of composite materials is brief. About two paragraphs to be exact. The first paragraph states that composites vary greatly from producer to producer.

    Some products are available nationally, but most of these products have only regional distribution. Your best bet might be to check out manufacturer’s product lines to find the best match for your needs.

  4. Troy Caver says:

    Peter, timbersil is a wood treatment that meets the greenbuilding codes and is just coming on the market. I notice some people have mentioned the old web site but that was compromised and is being messed up by a former employee, the new web site which has correct information on it is http://www.timbersilwood.com The plant making timbersil is in South Carolina and provides free delivery to distributors within 300 miles of the plant.

  5. Chris Olsson says:

    American International Forest Products is now distributing TimberSIL nationally. You can call for your nearest dealer @ 888-346-9200 or email timbersil@lumber.com . TimberSIL had a slow start but is now taking the market by storm. Look for TimberSIL in Local Media outlets and national Cable shows.

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