By: Otis Bradley
Mmm the sweet smell of wood! According to the NAHB (National Assoc. of Homebuilders), 90% of houses are wood framed.
When I was a kid I used to marvel at the guys walking the plate (walking on the top of a 2×4 wall – which is 3 1/2″ wide) with their 22 oz, framing hammers, nail bags and great tans. Framing was an art – there were no air guns. You had to be able to drive a 16d spike in a single blow (a big framing nail) or toe nail an 8d (using a shorter nail on an angle to pinch the 2×4 tightly to the plate) at the perfect angle.
Many of today’s “carpenters” have never swung a hammer, don’t know how to “toenail.” Wood has changed. We use “engineered” wood – wood chips glued together to form beams of sheets of “plywood.” But wood remains the material used to build most houses.
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by Otis Bradley
Project: Santa Monica – Craftsman Remodel
Architecture: Otis Bradley Company, Inc.
Builder: Otis Bradley Company, Inc.
Interior Design: Client with Otis Bradley Company, Inc.
Craftsman architecture is one of my favorites (I admit I have lots!). I like the bold, strong, simple massing and the way the structural frame is exposed as finish detail.
Although the homes often look bold and strong, having been built at the turn of the Century, most Craftsman homes have inferior foundations. Concrete was much different then – lacking metal reinforcement – and was typically much smaller than today’s foundations. However this home had been completely lifted off its old foundation and a new one was installed underneath it !
The entire home was constructed of redwood – the good old stuff! The 2×4’s, the mouldings and even the siding is all redwood.
Not a fancy craftsman home – I like to call this a “working craftsman.” Good solid but basic detailing.
The home had also been “remuddled” over the years. The kitchen cabinets were some kind of super cheap fiber board construction with no relationship to the style of the home.
After studying Craftsman furniture of the era like Stickley and others, we decided to go back to oak. We installed new oak floors throughout the house and oak cabinets as well. After looking at several different concept of Craftsman style ideas, we decided to go with a fairly straight forward wide frame and panel design.
Continue reading “Craftsman Kitchen Remodel – Santa Monica”
Every once in a while you just have to have a little fun! A recent design/build project…
This garage looked like a dump. The client, an avid sportsman, wanted something a little special without spending a ton of cash. Continue reading “Santa Monica – Garage Remodel / Pop Art”
Typical Corbel Patterns available from Lumber Yards
These are the patterns that are typically available from most lumber yards. These cuts can be made on the end of larger beams such as a 4×6 or 8×12. Many times, when larger (bigger than 2x)wood is used and left exposed, it can be nice to add a distinctive pattern on the ends.
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Typical Knee Brace Patterns available from Lumber Yards
Knee braces are used to brace a vertical post to a horizontal beam. Much like the corbel patterns, these patterns can be cut at the limber yard and used as exposed lumber on the house.
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