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The Home

January 2014 • Vol 21 No 1 R32.00 (incl VAT)

SA’S ORIG IN

AL

Beautiful ponds INSTALL NEW GUTTERS

• Construction options • Pumps and filters • Step-by-step guide

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plus

RSA R32.00 incl. VAT Other countries R28.07 excl. tax excl. postage & packaging

LIGHT UP YOUR HOME

Planning to build? All the important facts before you start any building alterations

Enter the Maktec/Makita ‘Make a Kitchen Gadget’ Competition


EDITOR’S NOTE

www.homehandyman.co.za

Happy New Year!

I

t is a new year and although I wrote this before many of us went away, I am hopeful you are all well rested and ready for 2014 and the challenges it might throw at you. I don’t know about you, but last year really flew by for me. I was just getting into the groove of things and suddenly we were talking 2014 in the boardroom… and what do you know – here it is! I want to take this opportunity to bring you the good news that our assistant editor Roelof Strydom was recently married to a lovely lady, Alta. Their wedding was particularly good fun – unfortunately I have no pictures to share of him or his bride dancing on a table as that didn’t happen… but to them from The Home Handyman team (see picture on p57), may this be the start of only good things. On a more formal note, a few things will change in the magazine this year. We have planned a few interactive competitions and lots of prize giveaways for starters. Please visit our website too as it was recently renovated to make it more user friendly with added articles and other benefits. Also remember to enter the Maktec/Makita ‘Make a Kitchen Gadget’ competition. Once again, Maktec/Makita has sponsored many prizes – not only are there two R10 000 tool vouchers up for grabs, but lots of other tools and goodies too. Find more details on page 17. Enjoy the first issue of The Home Handyman for 2014 and once again, Happy New Year!

The Home Handyman is published by Home Handyman Publishing cc ck2000/036356/23 PO Box 650484, Benmore 2010 10 Cypress Avenue, Bryanston Ext. 3, RSA email: editorial@homehandyman.co.za Tel: 011-462-5645 Fax: 011-704-3962 Publisher: Allan Swart Associate publisher: Michelle Funke Editor: Johann Stadler Assistant editor: Roelof Strydom Sub-editors: Lynne Yates, Loren Shirley-Carr Feature writers: Gina Hartoog, Andre Gous, Lynne Yates, Loren Shirley-Carr Editorial consultants: Sharl Bennie, Denis Lock, Bruwer Leykauf Photography: Loren Shirley-Carr Layout & design: Rosemary Johnston-Fitch HOW TO CONTACT US: Editorial enquiries: Tel: 011-462-5645 / 5796 / 5924 Fax: 011-704-3962 email: editorial@homehandyman.co.za Advertising representatives: Shelagh Page Tel: 011-723-9000 / Cell: 082-822-5959 email: shelagh@homehandyman.co.za Debbie Heard Tel: 011-465-4265 / Cell: 083-302-7493 email: debbie@homehandyman.co.za HOW TO SUBSCRIBE: By email: sarah@homehandyman.co.za By hotline phone: 011-462-5645 By fax: 011-704-3962 Online: www.homehandyman.co.za Subscriptions manager: Sarah Moodley Subscription enquiries: Tel: 011-462-5645 / 5796 / 5924 email: sarah@homehandyman.co.za Subscription rates: SA: R296.00 (incl VAT) for 12 issues Reproduction: AstraGraphics Printing: CTP Web, cnr Electron Avenue and Industry Road, Isando Distribution: Republican News Agency The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher or its agents. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of its contents, neither the editor nor the publisher can be held responsible for any omissions or errors. Every care has been taken to ensure that all the information and projects presented in this publication are accurate, reliable and safe. It should be noted, however, that the ideas for designs and product use are presented as suggestions only. The editor strongly advises that the reader check local by-laws and consult a qualified professional before undertaking any project and cannot be held responsible for any loss, damage, injury or death resulting from any information contained here. ©The Home Handyman, 1994. All rights reserved. No part of this magazine may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any information storage or retrieval system without prior permission from the publisher.

Johann Stadler, Editor

Roelof Strydom, Assistant Editor THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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CONTENTS

FEATURES 12 Natural beauty Turn your garden into a haven for wildlife by creating your own natural pond

18 Making plans Before you can build on to your home, you need to have plans drawn up. Here’s what to consider

22 Building blocks Choose the right bricks for your building project

26 Why paint fails prematurely

18

Find out why paint fails and how to fix and prevent it

30 Tool talk A look at six circular saws that will turn any sheet of wood into usable pieces in no time

32 The Home Handyman 2013 index 42

26

Looking for a particular feature covered in 2013? This handy reference will guide you to the right issue

34 Decking pleasure What to consider when planning a deck as well as maintenance tips for new and existing decks

38 Look on the bright side Light up your home effectively and efficiently

34

42 Replacing your gutters

Competitions & giveaways

Advice on choosing the right gutters for your home

WIN a Makita GA9020K Angle Grinder ............................7

46 Table restoration

WIN a Bosch PSR 14.4V Li-2 Toolbox .............................11

Willie Koekemoer gives an old battered dining room table a new lease on life

WIN a 32-piece 3-12mm tap and die set ...................… 49

Cover

50 Woodworker’s diary

Garden designed by Karen Gardelli

Denis Lock describes how to cut a finger joint

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN


12

REGULARS 4 Off the shelf

22

All the latest products for the DIY’er

6 Voice your views Your chance to air an opinion

8 DIY matters News, views and reviews from around the globe

10 Ask our experts

46

30

Your DIY queries answered by our panel of experts

49 Bright ideas Readers share their DIY ideas and projects

54 Woodworker’s corner A look at events in the woodworking calendar and an opportunity for readers to showcase their work

62 Subscriptions Save by subscribing to The Home Handyman and win great prizes

64 Tailpiece Reuben the Screwman tries to build a fish pond

38 THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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OFF THE SHELF Your guide to the latest products in the world of do-it-yourself

Strong bond

Drill, drive, done!

A new addition to Pratley’s adhesive range is Pratley Powda Bond. This DIY adhesive is an instant repair system that can be used as either a two-component or a single adhesive. It cures very fast and can be used to build up thick sections or fill gaps on repair jobs. The kit contains a special-grade, liquid adhesive and specially formulated black and white powder fillers. The bond cures within seconds and its formulation ensures good penetration of the adhesive through the powder filler and onto the substrate. A great way to see the product’s good powder penetration is by adhering an item to a transparent substrate like Perspex. Once cured, Powda Bond can be painted, sanded or filed and can be exposed to water. It also performs well on certain difficult plastics. Some suggested Powda Bond repairs include damaged car bumpers, cracked pipes, damaged television For more information remotes and swimming Visit: www.pratley.com pool pump valves. Tel: 011-955-2190

The Kreg Pocket Hole Jig allows you to quickly and easily make wooden joints. The system works with your own drill to bore out pocket holes in your workpiece. Because only one of the two pieces is machined, there is no need for measuring. The stainless steel collets are positioned at the optimal angle to guarantee the strength of the join. Once your pocket holes are cut, simply position the two pieces of wood to be joined. By using your drill again, the Kreg self-tapping screws are driven into position to complete the join. No need for time-consuming clamping or the frustrating wait for glue to set.

For more information Visit: www.vermontsales.co.za Tel: 011-314-7711

Lighting the way The Energizer HDL33A Headlight is the perfect hands-free light provider for camping trips or even for when your electricity provider decides it is time for the lights to go out. • Bright Nichia LED technology, 18 lumens • Lifetime LED bulbs practically never need replacing • Three LED bulbs: Two white and one red • Two light modes: Night vision and flood • Hands-free: Light where you need it without having to hold it • Swivel and tilt adjustment aims light • Comfortable elastic head strap • Slide button on/off switch • Runtime is approximately 30 hours on flood, per set For more information of batteries Visit: www.vermontsales.co.za Tel: 011-314-7711

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

Clean it up Norton recently launched the Beartex 2-pack in South Africa – a shrink-wrapped pack of two Beartex hand-sized abrasive pads. The green pad is used for cleaning and scouring metal surfaces, such as pots and pans. The maroon pad can be used for removing old polish and cleaning metals, as well as for removing old paint flaking off metal or wood surfaces and cleaning surface rust from metal surfaces. Both For more information the pads are washable Visit: www.norton.eu and reusable. Tel: 011-961-2000


Lock damp away A. Shak Damploc is a waterproof coating used for combating the effects of rising and penetrating damp on interior and exterior surfaces. It is suitable for use on concrete brick and cement-based plaster, but not for use on gypsum-based plasters. Follow these tips: • Apply Damploc to a clean surface; the surface can be damp, but not wet. • Remove all old paint from the surface and sand down any hard, impervious surfaces to form a key. • Wash the surface with a sugar soap or degreaser before For more information applying Damploc and rinse well with clean water. Visit: www.ashak.co.za • Remove any soft plaster or brick and repair or replaster. Tel: 0861-127-425 Prime any cracks with Damploc before repairing.

Reduce chlorine consumption Clinobrite is a direct substitute for pool filter sand that saves you money by scavenging unwanted ammonia from pool water, thereby reducing your swimming pool chlorine consumption. It is a filter medium with both ion exchange and superior microfiltration properties. Unlike ordinary filter sand, the surfaces of Clinobrite grains are not smooth. Clinobrite grains attract and trap extremely fine dirt particles and algae on their rough surfaces and not just between the grains like ordinary sand. In practise, a Clinobrite pool filter can remove 40-50% more physical dirt than sand filtration. It can also filter out much smaller particle sizes than sand. This greatly improves the clarity of your For more information pool water and gives much Visit: www.clinobrite.co.za longer service cycles between Tel: 011-955-2190 backwash operations.

Super sharp The Woodster Diamond Drill Sharpener DS 200 is ideal for the professional DIY user, small contractor and workshop. It is easy to use and requires very little skill to sharpen drill bits. It comes with a complete kit with spare diamond wheel, as well as a cleaning kit. It has a diamond wheel for accuracy and longer life. The sharpener is only for HSS and masonry drill bits.

Early detection Before drilling into a wall at home, use the advanced Bosch PMD 10 Detector to swiftly and accurately identify power cables, metals and drywall constructions – thereby eliminating the risk of personal injury or damaging important infrastructure features such as water pipes and power cables. The detection depth of the tool is 10cm for ferrous metals, 8cm for nonferrous metals, 5cm for power cables and 2.5cm for wooden and drywall substructures. The user-friendly detector has an integrated handle that enables the user to comfortably guide the tool over the desired drill position before alerting the user to a positive search result by emitting an audible signal and changing the colour of For more information its luminous ring. The Visit: www.bosch-do-it.co.za detection result can be Tel: 011-651-9600 read graphically on the illuminated display.

Specifications Model:

DS 200

Motor induction:

230V, 50Hz

Input:

80W

Grinding wheel :

Diamond

Weight approx:

2kg

No-load speed:

17 000rpm

Sharpening capacity:

1.5-13mm

Price

R820

For more information Visit: www.newcopowertools.co.za Tel: 011-315-1504

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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VOICE YOUR VIEWS Do you have any thoughts or comments on issues of DIY?

When lightning strikes Dear The Home Handyman, I read your articles with interest, especially the ones on renewable energy. I see there is a lot of investment going into wind and solar energy. This made me think: Why don’t the guys in white coats invest their energy (excuse the pun) in ways to harvest electricity from lightning? Christo du Toit, Port Elizabeth Ed replies: Although we have never thought of this topic as an idea for an article, it is a very interesting question – and it got me curious too. So I read up a bit and, in short, this should answer your question: Most places receive lightning very infrequently, but have a steady demand for electrical energy. The smaller the area you look at, the fewer the lightning strikes that hit within that area per unit time. Secondly, lightning has a high voltage, but not a huge amount of current. Controlled sources of electrical energy typically need it the other way around – lots of current at lower voltages. Consumers can use 120VAC, and they want a steady supply of it. Voltage and phase should not drift over time. Lightning can give you tens of thousands of volts over a few milliseconds and then be gone. Source: Department of Physics, University of Illinois

WINNING LETTER

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Winning letter This month’s winning letter comes from AC Muller who wins a Makita 5704RK Circular Saw

He nailed it! I bought an old house in Warden with wooden floors, which I decided to lift and tile over a period of time. This past weekend I decided it was the kitchen’s turn. On Friday night I pulled out all the nails to make life easier the next day for my two helpers. Early on Saturday morning they arrived and got ready to start lifting the floorboards. Now I had already removed four or so boards in my eagerness to start. Little did I realise that the method they use is for one to stand inside the hole, already there, and one to stand with legs spread over the board to be removed. They would both then jerk the board up to pull it out, nails and all.

JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

I watched them getting ready, completely forgetting I had already removed the nails. They gave the first board one huge jerk and as there were no nails, no resistance, the board flew up nailing the guy on top in a place where no cricketer wants to be bowled. His eyes grew bigger and bigger, and as hard as he tried not to, tears started flowing down his face. The one in the hole let go some Zulu words I do not know, but they did not sound like kind words. The guy standing on top slowly fell over forward into the hole where the boards had already been removed by me, leaving only his feet sticking out. My wife, hearing all this commotion, turned up, gave everything one look and chased me out. About half an hour later she came to me laughing like crazy. When I disgustingly enquired what was so funny, she remarked that they wanted danger pay or they would leave. I declined and they left. As Warden is a small town and news spreads fast, I could not find any more help in town, leaving me to do it all by myself. Needless to say, the project is going to take much longer now and I have decided to get a contractor to do it for me until the stage where the floor is filled, has a cement slab and is tiled. AC Muller, Warden


Tool conundrum I have been buying The Home Handyman magazine since I was about 16 years old. I have seen a lot of different projects and articles in the magazine and have experienced a lot of joy out of reading it. These days there are so many new tools and machines on the market and I would love to see an article where you compare tools and then have a section on where we can buy these tools. Yes, I know that you have had articles in the past that compare tools, but they don’t really tell me which one to buy. There are, of course, factors such as the tool’s features and its price, but if you could tell me which power tool is the best value for my money, it would be a great help. I have bought a few tools and thought I was buying the best for my money, but later found out there is a better one. This is not limited to tools; the same goes for wood glues, sealers, varnish, hand tools etc. I would also like a comparison between the different models of the same manufacturer; for example, Makita has so many 18V cordless drills, but which one is the best? We read the magazine to make informed decisions. Articles like this would give us an idea about what to buy. I can then decide what is best for me. Currently I have to guess and hope it is the right one. A couple of years back I wanted a router. The two options I could afford were from Bosch and Black & Decker. I bought the Black & Decker one, but found it not as good as it is very plastic. If I’d had an expert’s opinion on which one to buy, I would not have bought the wrong one and would have bought the Bosch, or saved another month and bought a Metabo. Another thing to consider is where these tools can be bought. I usually go to Game, which does not supply a variety of brands, and then buy a Black & Decker because I think it is the best, but around the corner at Builders Express, there is a

Makita. I know that this is not an easy task, but it could be two pages in each issue. Grant Watson, via email Ed replies: Starting with the January 2014 issue, we have a new article called ‘Tool talk’, which looks at various power tools. The first article in the series looks at circular saws from different manufacturers. It is a bit difficult for us to say which tool is the best as that would not be impartial on our side. We do, however, provide each tool’s specifications to enable you to compare them with each other and then try and make an informed decision based on that. I hope you enjoy these articles and that they help you.

A Makita GA9020K Angle Grinder

WIN! Share your opinion

Send us your views, ideas and opinions addressed to The Home Handyman: Email: editorial@homehandyman.co.za Please note: Winners’ prizes Fax: 011-704-3962 may take up to six weeks for By mail: PO Box 650484, Benmore 2010 delivery once the issue is on the shelf. Letters may be edited for length and clarity

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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DIY MATTERS News, views and reviews from around the globe

Jungle gym competition promotes early childhood development The children of Bambi Nursery School in Pretoria jumped for joy when they heard the news that the winner of the Lonza Wood Protection and Mintroad Saw Mills Jungle Gym Competition had nominated them as the prize recipient. Johann van Loggerenberg, the original winner, decided to donate his prize to the nursery school after he heard that their jungle gym was damaged and no longer safe to play on. Lonza marketing manager, Gerard Busse, says, “Tanalised E wood preservative-treated poles and sawn timber were used in the construction of the jungle gym to ensure its longevity. A high pressure vacuum treatment with Tanalith E, which is a copper azole-based wood preservative, will provide protection against wood destroying organisms, such as termites and wood borer, by rendering the treated wood fibre unsuitable as a food source, and also provides protection against fungal decay.” Browsers Garden & Home Centre, a retail outlet of Mintroad Saw Mills, undertook the construction of the approximately 20m2 jungle gym. It features a sliding pole, a swing, a climbing net, stair stringers, a slide and a sheltered platform with securely bolted protective railing. The jungle gym had to be installed in two separate units due to space constraints and, once safely installed, the children did not waste any time playing on it. Owner of Mintroad Saw Mills, Roy Smith, says, “Jungle gyms are an essential form of early childhood development so we were thrilled to be a part of this competition with Lonza.”

The children of Bambi Nursery School enjoying quality time outdoors playing on their new jungle gym

For further information, visit the website at www.tanalised.co.za.

Building industry recovers Corobrik’s performance last year was pleasing, notwithstanding the setbacks caused by the Marikana incident and civil unrest on the building industry. Despite these destabilising factors the building industry is bouncing up off its low base, albeit at fairly low levels. “Overall we see prospects improving, buoyed by government spending on infrastructure and raising expectations that 2014 will be a better year than 2013,” according to Dirk Meyer, managing director of Corobrik. “Architects are reportedly busier than previously and the qualitative and

quantitative indicators show a general recovery in the building industry. The number of commercial building plans being passed appears on a gradual upward trend and government spending on low cost housing and new or extended schools is also picking up.” Dirk went on to say that the middle and upper end of the residential market was also on a slight upward trend, with property prices recovering. “The middle end of the residential market is slowly coming back off its low base and there has been small growth in home improvements.”

Do you have any DIY industry news or views to share? Email: editorial@homehandyman.co.za 8

JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN


Children’s day care reopens its doors after fire The Kopano Day Care Centre, which caters for 50 local children aged between six months and six years of age, was officially re-opened on 25 November 2013 with several high profile guests in attendance, including Bosch South Africa’s managing director Steffen Hoffmann, Primavera representative Helmut Schwarz and Bakgatla Ba Mmakau Traditional Council chief Motsepe.

In addition to financial assistance, Bosch has donated, amongst other things, numerous electrical appliances, kitchen appliances, solar geysers, solar panels and replica Bosch toys to the centre. “Responsible corporate citizenship is one of our core values, especially in supporting communities from which we draw employees and conduct our business,” says Steffen. The temporary structure of the centre was made of corrugated iron, which was cold in winter and hot in summer. As a result, Bosch Home Appliances Division, Bosch Thermal Technology and Bosch Solar Energy, contributed much needed products to improve the comfort of the children. The site where the new home has been

Bosch South Africa managing director Steffen Hoffmann and Primavera representative Helmut Schwarz cut the red ribbon

built belongs to the Bakgatla Ba Mmakau Traditional Council under the chieftainship of Chief Motsepe. According to the building contractor, the high content of clay in the soil at the building site posed the largest challenge in building the new centre.

Osram’s cruise of success

Kopano Day Care Centre student Thapelo (aged 5) with his mom at the re-opening of the centre. Thapelo says he would one day like to be a pilot

Following the devastating fire in March 2012, the Kopano Day Care Centre issued a plea for help from the local business community. Multinational engineering and electronics company Robert Bosch GmbH stepped up to the plate by offering to assist with the construction of a completely new building for the crèche, through funding from Primavera, a global fundraising organisation whose administrative costs are paid by Bosch.

Osram ran a Halogen Eco sms competition in participating retail stores from 18 May to 18 August 2013. And, with much excitement, André and Hannalie Breytenbach received their grand prize from Osram at the Makro Alberton Store in November 2013. The grand prize was a boat cruise for two to the Portuguese Islands. Shoppers had to spot the difference between the old incandescent lamp and the new halogen Eco lamp on a display in-store. This was to emphasise that you can save energy without having to change what your ‘lamp’ looks like by going with Osram’s new halogen eco technology. The Osram halogen eco lamp has the same look and feel as the old incandescent household lamp, but you can save up to 30% energy,

and they’re dimmable. The ban on incandescent lamps (due to their high energy consumption) has already been enforced in Europe. There is talk in South Africa about the banning and when it will take effect locally, although nothing is confirmed as yet. Osram has taken the first step in phasing out the incandescent technology and replacing it with its new halogen eco range. Osram turned 60% of their GLS business into halogen eco with this promotion, creating and contributing to great energy savings. Five runner-up winners walked away with a R5 000 shopping voucher. Osram would like to thank the winners and other shoppers for their valued continuous support, and we wish Mr and Mrs Breytenbach a splendid trip.

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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ASK OUR EXPERTS Our panel of experts answer your questions on DIY problems

Kitchen island plan I am a 64-year-old woman and have taken up woodworking and am enjoying it tremendously. I would like to make a kitchen island and am looking for a plan that is not too difficult. Does anyone have such a plan to share? I have selected copies of The Home Handyman from 2005, but none have featured a kitchen island. Sandry Piek, Nelspruit

G INNIN

W Ed replies: It is great to hear that you have taken QUERY up woodworking and are having fun learning new woodworking skills. We have not featured a kitchen island project in the magazine before. It is definitely a project that we should feature in the future, so watch this space! In the meantime, if any of our readers have made one, perhaps they could share the plan with us. Otherwise I suggest that you contact Viv Martin at Hardware Centre on 011-791-0844 or visit www.hardwarecentre.co.za as they have several books on kitchen cabinets. Hardware Centre is a specialist woodworking store and offers a delivery service countrywide.

DIY courses

Built-in-braai problem

I want to know how an absolute layman can acquire the skills needed to do all the routine maintenance around the house himself. I’ve come across the DIY Divas workshops, but I don’t know how appropriate they are for a man. Manfred Swanepoel, by email

We recently moved into a new house and the previous owner had a gas braai built into the braai opening. The first thing I did was remove it and build a metal braai grid to braai properly. The problem I now have is that the smoke comes out the front and into our lapa instead of going out the chimney. The braai opening is 138mm wide, 105mm high (bottom to top) and 80mm deep. The chimney tapers and I installed a Whirlybird to assist with drawing the smoke up and out of the chimney. Please advise what the relation between the braai opening and chimney should be? I would like to keep the opening as big as it is, if possible. Heino Jakob, Windhoek, Namibia Darryl Smith, customer service manager at Jetmaster, advises: There are technical formulas to follow regarding the relation between the size of your unit and the size of the flue. For example: A Jetmaster 1050 Universal fireplace has an opening of 0,675m x 1.05m; this equals 0.70875 m2 The minimum size flue area you can use is 0.07 m2. The Jetmaster 1050 Square is 0.2m X 0.4m. This gives you an opening area of 0.08 m2 A simpler example is if you take our 1500 Super Deluxe unit as an example as it is the closest size we have to your opening. With this unit, the flue size we use is 350 x 500mm, and this is more than adequate to channel the smoke up the chimney. Also, the Whirlybird you have installed will definitely assist with the draw of your smoke. I hope this assists you in resolving your current issue. For further information speak to Darryl Smith at Jetmaster on 011-764-4632.

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

Ed replies: I am told that the DIY Divas courses are suitable for the layman, but have not personally attended any of them. Contact Janice Anderssen on 011-475-6096 to find out what is covered in these courses and whether they are suitable for you.

Winning query This month’s winning query comes from Sandry Piek who wins a Bosch PFS 105 E Wall Paint Spray System


Broken roof tile corners

Orbital sanders spares

I recently checked my roof before the rainy season really set in and noticed that quite a few tiles were broken on the front corners. Is this problem related to the tile, is it typical of expansion of overlapping joints or is it related to the way the tiles have been mounted on the trusses? Kindly advise on possible cause and corrective actions. Basil Evdemon, by email

I have two older orbital sanders – a Black & Decker and a Startel. Can I replace the Velcro on the older Black & Decker sander? If so, where can I buy it? All outlets only sell the machine itself and not the parts. Also, the four vibration rubbers on the Startel sander are broken. Can I buy the rubbers only; if so, where? Toekie Snyman, Nelspruit

Sharl Bennie, our building expert, replies: This is very common these days with modern tiles and I am not sure exactly what causes the corners to chip away on roof tiles, but have always put it down to people walking on the roof or hail damage. This does not cause any major problems with the waterproofing of the roof, but it does affect the aesthetics of the roof tiles. Perhaps we can ask the manufacturers of the tiles what their take is on this and if any preventative action can be taken. As it does not cause the roof to leak and is commonly seen on most roofs that I have worked on, I have put it down to the tiles being very hard and brittle.

Ed replies: Startel is no longer represented in South Africa; however, Double Ring Trading (DRT), a multi brand service centre for power tools, may be able to assist with a compatible spare for your orbital sander. Contact Jean at DRT on 012-333-6369. Black & Decker do carry spares for your model, the BD 190E. There are service centres or agencies countrywide that should be able to supply you. Contact Deon or Albert at Stanley Black & Decker on 011-472-0454.

Ed replies: We contacted Willem Grove at Coverland for a manufacturer’s perspective. This is a typical complaint with all roof tiles. The problem that causes the corner breakage is known as splay, which is a result of incorrect knife settings during the production process. If the tiles are pushed together, the corners can break. The same can happen when the tiles are walked on and due to thermal expansion between summer and winter. It is also probable that the tile was already damaged during the laying process and the broken piece just slipped away in wind or rain. It is easy to repair simply by removing the broken tiles and replacing them with new tiles. To avoid colour differences between old and new tiles in obvious areas, take some tiles from a part of the roof that is less visible and use them for the repair and place the new ones where they are not that obvious. For more information contact Willem on 011-222-7406. Ed suggests: Use RoofFix to fix broken tiles. The product is manufactured by A.Shak and is available at most hardware and building outlets. For more information contact A.Shak on 0861-127-425.

WIN!

A Bosch Cordless PSR 14.4 Li-2 Toolbox

Ask our experts Send us your DIY queries and you could win! Send to: The Home Handyman DIY Queries, PO Box 650484, Benmore 2010. Please note: Queries will be Fax: 011-704-3962. answered in the magazine. Email: editorial@homehandyman.co.za Winners’ prizes may take up Remember to include your physical address to six weeks for delivery once and telephone number during office hours. the issue is on the shelf.

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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GARDEN POND

Natural beauty Turn your garden into a haven for wildlife, and create a heartening focal point, by creating your own natural pond By Loren Shirley-Carr

Rocks of different sizes and plants around the margins give this pond a natural look

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN


A

sk any landscaper and they will tell you the same thing: Water is a vital component of a beautiful garden. It makes for an attractive focal point, and the sound soothes the soul and disguises ambient traffic noise (not to mention noisy neighbours!). A pool of water also creates a popular spot for visiting local wildlife, such as birds and lizards, and creates a haven for water lovers, such as frogs. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a lot of space, time or money to bring water into your garden. A small DIY garden pond can be created in the smallest of spaces by the most inexperienced of DIY’ers – as long as you have the inclination and the energy.

If you use bricks and cement to make your pond you need to make sure it is completely waterproof Pic courtesy of The Friendly Plant

Choose a site Your pond should ideally be sited where it can be enjoyed both by you and your garden’s wildlife. Consider a spot near your patio or alongside a pathway, preferably alongside some dense shrubbery where birds and other wildlife can seek refuge. For a natural look, find the lowest point in your garden where water would naturally accumulate. A pond also needs some direct sunlight (about six hours per day) so avoid positioning it in dense shade. Also be aware that fallen leaves can be bothersome to clean, so you may want to avoid areas below deciduous trees. If you have pets or children who may fall into the pond, consider a safety net or steel grid.

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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GARDEN POND

Turn your garden into a haven for wildlife and create a scenic focal point by installing your own natural pond

Choose water-loving plants like arums

Pumps and filters Decide whether you want a still or moving pond. A pump is not needed for a still pond, but a filtration system is recommended to keep the water clean and oxygenated, especially if you want to keep fish in your pond. Excess nutrients in the water caused by fish dung and decomposing plant material can cause algae to appear, which turns the water cloudy and makes it unhealthy. One A water lily way to keep your pond clean (Nymphaea capensis) is by using a bio-filter, a natural way to clean the water. A bio-filter provides a habitat for bacteria that digest all the excess nutrients in the water. The result is a clear pond that is no longer a suitable habitat for algae. Alternatively, you can create a natural ecosystem with moving water using a pond pump and water plants. By ensuring that at least half of your pond’s surface area is covered with plants, you will reduce sunlight levels and limit the growth of algae. A moving pond will reward you with the sound of splashing water, and small waterfalls, streams and fountains help to keep the pond water aerated, also preventing the formation of algae. Just make sure that you choose a pump with the appropriate strength for what you want to achieve.

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Pond surrounds

Dwarf papyrus (Cyperus prolifer)

Once your pond is in, you will need to adorn the edges with natural materials to create a water garden. Your pond should slope gradually towards the edges so that wildlife can climb out or stand in the shallow water. Consider placing rocks, pebbles and driftwood and old logs around the edges to create a natural look. These materials will also help to hold down the edges of the flexible and waterproof material to line your pond. Soften the whole look with marginal water plants, which should be planted in the shallow water around the edges of your pond. Choose water-loving plants like arums, reeds and dwarf papyrus (Cyperus prolifer).

Water plants Bring your pond to life with water plants. You can anchor these plants at the bottom of your pond using pots, however most water plants at nurseries come in specially designed aquatic baskets. Plants to include in your pond are water lilies (Nymphaea capensis), waterblommetjie (Aponogeton distachyos) and yellow water lily (Nymphoides thunbergiana).


Types of ponds Your pond can be created by using a preformed rigid plastic or fibreglass mould, by using a flexible plastic waterproof liner, or by using bricks and cement, a more time-consuming option. If you use bricks and cement, you will need to make sure it is completely waterproof by using cement-based adhesive to seal the pond or an outdoor silicone sealer. A pre-formed pond is easy to install, but using a liner offers more flexibility with regards to size and shape, and is also easy to install.

A waterfall keeps a pond aerated, which prevents the growth of algae

A preformed rigid plastic mould for a pond

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GARDEN POND

A small DIY garden pond can be created by the most inexperienced of DIY’ers

Step-by-step guide How to create your own water garden using a flexible plastic liner: Step 1: Once you have found the perfect spot, mark out the shape of your pond

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with either a hosepipe or a trail of flour. Step 2: Start digging your hole, making sure that you have a shallow edge that gently slopes in towards the middle of pond. This shallow area is important for wildlife such as frogs and birds to feel safe. The deep end of your pond should be about 75cm-100cm deep. Step 3: If you want to include a waterfall, dig out a little ledge – this will be covered by the waterproof liner along with the rest of the pond. Step 4: Line the hole with a little river sand to smooth out the contours. Step 5: Position the plastic liner to cover the hole, smoothing it out and making sure it overlaps the

edge of the pond. Anchor it with rocks and pebbles. Step 6: Fill to about halfway with water. This is to make sure that the liner fits snugly into its place before placing rocks and pebbles around the pond. Step 7: Position your rocks, pebbles and logs. Also place rocks on the waterfall, if you made one. You may want to grout between the rocks on the waterfall to keep them together – use cement and building sand mix. Step 8: Place the pump in the pond and hide the hose from the pump to the waterfall behind some rocks. Step 9: Fill your pond. Step 10: Plant water-loving plants, such as arums, ornamental grasses and papyrus, around the edges of the pond, and fill the pond with water lilies and waterblommetjies to create a natural water garden.


Design brief: •

Readers are invited to design and construct a useful kitchen gadget – it must be functional but there is no restriction on creativity. Let your imagination run wild or play it safe, that’s up to you. Ideas include pot stands, spice racks, recipe bookstand, paper towel holders, salt and pepper shakers, breadbin, bread board but the list is endless. • The kitchen gadget can be made from any type of wood, man-made boards (i.e. medium density fibreboard) and/or metal. Use any materials for the accessories and the finish which will enhance the aesthetics of your handiwork! • The kitchen item should not exceed 500mm (w) x 500mm (h) x 500mm (d).

The Home Handyman magazine will sponsor supplementary prizes of gift vouchers, storage binders and subscriptions

Judging criteria The kitchen gadget will be judged in two categories – “Innovation and Craftsmanship” with three winners in each category. • Innovation will look at creativity, taking into account, imagination, originality, resourcefulness and functionality. • Craftsmanship will be judged according to: • Quality of craftsmanship • Degree of difficulty • Joinery • Overall finish

How to enter • This competition is open to all South African citizens except employees of Home Handyman Publishing, Rutherford and its associated brands and their immediate families. • The entries must be constructed between 30 September 2013 and 25 February 2014. No items made before this date or shop-bought items will be accepted. • Two entries per participant allowed. • Closing date for entries is Tuesday 25 Feb 2014 (expect for entries delivered in Cape Town or Durban. To make allowances for shipment to Johannesburg, these entries must be delivered ONLY on Tuesday 18 Feb 2013 between 9am and 4.30pm). • Prizes cannot be extended, transferred or exchanged for cash or other product. • All entries must be accompanied by a completed entry form which is on this page or use the form on www.homehandyman.co.za or www.makita.co.za.

Entry Form: Name: Address:

Tel No: Cell:

Delivery of entries Email: • Entries must be securely packaged to avoid damage in transit. Declaration: I hereby declare that the entry submitted for this • Remember to attach the entry form with your full contact details on it. Please write competition is entirely my own work and that I adhered to all the ‘Make a Kitchen Gadget’ clearly on the packaging item. rules of the competition as stipulated. • Post to: The Home Handyman magazine, P O Box 650484, Benmore, 2010. • Or hand deliver to: The Home Handyman, 10 Cypress Ave, Bryanston Ext 3, Randburg, 2191 OR 87 Linksfield Road, Dowerglen, Edenvale 1609. (Hand deliveries weekdays between 8am Signed: – 5pm only) OR Rutherford/Makita/Maktec branches in Cape Town and Durban. (Deliveries ONLY accepted on Tuesday 18 Feb 2014 between 9am and 4.30pm). Date: • Rutherford Cape Town Branch: Cnr. Van Riebeeck and Jan Smuts, Beaconvale, Parow. Tel: 021 932 0568 General • Rutherford KZN Branch: 12 Halifax Road, Pinetown, KZN. Tel: 031 717 6400 Judging • Judging will take place at the publishers’ offices in Randburg on Monday 3 March 2014 and all entries including the winning entries will be displayed at Hobby-X, Coca-Cola Dome, Randburg which is on 6 – 9 March 2014. • The judges’ decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into. Winners will be notified telephonically before 6 March 2014 and arrangements will be made for receipt of prizes. Winning entries will be featured in the magazine.

• Entries and prizes can be collected at Hobby-X, ONLY on Sunday 9 March 2013 or from the address you delivered your entries to. Entries via Rutherford/Makita/ Maktec branches will be returned to respective branches for your collection on Tuesday 25 March 2014 between 9am and 4.30am ONLY. • By signing the entry form you agree to having your entry photographed for publication in The Home Handyman magazine. • Whilst everything possible will be done to ensure safe handling of all entries, please note that neither The Home Handyman nor Rutherford nor any of their employees will be held responsible for damage or loss of the entries.

For further info go to www.homehandyman.co.za or contact Tel: 011-462-5645 or Email: editorial@homehandyman.co.za 17 THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014


ALTERATIONS

Making plans

Building on to your home can be exciting, but before you start digging the foundations, you’ll need to have plans drawn up

S

o you’ve made the big decision. You need a larger home, but you can’t face moving, so you’re going to build on. Once the decision is made, you’ll probably want to get cracking as soon as possible. Before you fly head first into your new project, there are some important things you should know.

required for any fixed structures erected on your property and you need plans approved if you are going to break down walls or build new walls inside your home. You need plans to put in a pool, add a garage or granny flat or build a lapa or steel carport. Any changes to sewerage or plumbing fixtures within the home also require approved plans. Shade ports are excluded.

Yes, you do need plans

By Gina Hartoog

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A friend or family member may have told you that you don’t need plans for this or that, but the reality is that you probably do need to get new plans drawn up! Plans are

First things first If you don’t have a copy of the existing plans of the house, get a copy from your council. You can obtain a copy at the


building office of your local municipality. Once you have a copy of the last approved plans for your home, you can make final decisions regarding your addition and look for someone to draw up the new plans.

Council for the Architectural Profession (SACAP) or the South African Institute of Architectural Technologists (SAIAT). Plans should be completed within a month, but this also depends on the existing plans and work required.

Choosing a draughtsman or architect

SANS legislation

Depending on the size and type of alteration you want to make, a draughtsman or architect can be hired to draw up the plans. You will need to make an appointment with the person for a meeting at your home. While you may have a basic idea of what you want, ask the architect or draughtsman for advice on the project. Once s/he has inspected your home and has a good idea of what changes are required, s/he may be able to offer professional advice that could save you money. Plans need to be drawn up according to National Building Regulation Standards. Check that the draughtsman or architect you choose is registered with a relevant registration body, such as the South African

New building regulations, which came into effect in November 2011, do impact alterations to existing homes. Only the portions of the building that are being extended or altered are subject to these regulations. If you are adding a bathroom or kitchen, you are required to install a solar water heater or heat pump. Also, the size of the windows in the new building may not be more than 15% of the net floor space. Bigger windows require low emissivity glass. Calculations are required to determine which window frame and glazing will be most energy efficient. SANS calculations must be included on the plans. These include fenestration calculations for glazing and frames to be

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ALTERATIONS

Check that the draughtsman or architect you choose is registered with a relevant registration body

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used and roof calculations for the thickness of insulation required. The draughtsman will also need to calculate that the hot water usage falls within the parameters set out in the National Building Regulations (NBR). Lighting calculations determine if the number of lights proposed in the alteration also fall within these parameters. Architects and draughtsmen must attend a course in order to learn how to do these calculations. The draughtsman or architect is required to fill in a SANS 10400-A form, which is a 19-page document that must be submitted with the plans. The first two sections of the form are completed by the draughtsman or architect and the third section is completed by an engineer. The fourth section of the form is for the approval of an engineer. The

draughtsman or architect should be able to recommend an engineer to sign the plans and documents. You will also need to sign various sections of the form as the owner of the property. The SACAP Architectural Certificate of Compliance certificate must be completed by the architect and included in the plan pack.

Other documentation Once the plans and documents are complete, the draughtsman or architect will fill in a building plans submission form – if required by the relevant council. Two copies of each page of the plans will go to the council – one in colour and the other in black and white. Once plans have been approved, the homeowner will receive the colour copy back and the black and white copy is kept by the council.


Choosing a contractor

The homeowner also needs to supply a copy of their current water and lights account as well as a copy of the title deed of the property. If your property is bonded, ask your bank for a copy. If your new structure will be built over the property building line allowed by your council, you will need approval to have it relaxed. This form can be obtained from the town planning department. All neighbours on the relevant boundaries (even those across the street) must be asked to give their approval for the relaxation. If you are adding rooms or a living area to your home, a certificate of occupancy form must be filled in. Fees payable on submission of your documents and plans are calculated according to the square metres of the addition on your home. Draughtsmen and architects generally use runners to submit plans to council. This saves on their time – and yours. Should you prefer to submit your own plans, you are able to do so.

Waiting game The plans take between two to three months to be approved, depending on the council. Should you want to begin your building project before the plans are approved, you will need to apply for pre-approval. While you are waiting for pre-approval or approval, start looking for a contractor (see box) and get quotes in for your project. Information courtesy of draughtsman Alan Zerff of F3 Designs [owner: Greg Viadana (SAIAT)].

• A home builder legally needs to be registered with the National Home Builders Registration Council (NHBRC). • Master Builders Associations are active in most regions; although this is a voluntary registration the companies are vetted to ensure that they have all the required legal registration with SARS, UIF, active bank accounts and other requirements. • Request that the contractor provide you with a ‘Letter of Good Standing’ – this may be provided by the Compensation Commissioner or Federated Employers’ Mutual Assurance Company. The letter must be current – check for the expiry date. This will ensure the builder’s employees are covered for any work-related injuries that may occur while on the property. • Never sign anything without reading it first! Everything must be in black and white – avoid verbal agreements. • Don’t automatically accept the lowest quote. The contractor may be inexperienced at quoting, or accidentally or purposefully forgotten to add something – which you may be liable for later. • Do not let any work begin before a Joint Building Contracts Committee (JBCC) contract or similar is signed. • Arrange a regular site inspection with the builder (daily if possible) to ensure the work is progressing as agreed. If there are quality issues, sort them out immediately. Source: Master Builders Association North

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MASONRY

Building blocks A If you are planning a building project, one of the first steps is choosing the right bricks or blocks for the job. By Gina Hartoog

Pic courtesy of Corobrik

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brick is just a brick, right? Wrong! In this feature we look at the classification of clay and cement bricks and well as other building blocks that can be used in various applications in the home. Bricks are rectangular blocks used for building and they have been around for centuries. The most common bricks we know today are clay and cement bricks. Bricks and blocks are generally laid in mortar to build walls or other fixed structures inside and outside the home. In South Africa, the brick braai is a popular DIY project for the garden. Bricks are a durable choice of building material as they are able to withstand severe weather conditions and high winds. Cement blocks are often used to construct retainer walls in the garden.

Colour, texture and size Cement stock bricks are grey in colour. They are suitable for building work which is going to be plastered. Clay face bricks are available in myriad different colours to suit every taste and application. In most cases the colour of the brick is determined by the raw materials used and their mineral content, as well as any additives. Colour can also be changed during the manufacturing process - a long firing time results in a darker coloured brick.


Bricks are a durable choice of building material as they are able to withstand severe weather conditions and high winds An imperial or standard size brick measures 222mm x 106mm x 73mm.

73mm

Sentinel Retainer blocks are dry-stacked and lock into each other to form an attractive retaining wall that is part of the garden layout

222mm

106mm

Pic courtesy of DSM

Face bricks also have different textures which add to the completed project’s aesthetic appeal. A plain-coloured brick can look very different with the addition of a texture to the brick face. Three common textures for face bricks are satin, travertine and rock face. Satin bricks have a smooth finish, while travertine is more textured. Rock face bricks have a rough, stone-like face. Corobrik also includes a coral and rustic texture in their range. Cement and clay pavers are used to pave driveways, paths, patios and areas around the swimming pool. Brick strength is measured in megapascals (MPa). SABS approved masonry units are 7 MPa – 14 MPa bricks sold with a valid SABS Certificate, while SABS specification masonry units are sold as 7 MPa, without valid certification. Brick strength also depends on how long bricks are given to mature after production. They longer they mature, the stronger they are.

Glass bricks allow light into a room without compromising on privacy

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MASONRY

Types of bricks

Face brick extra (FBX) These are clay face bricks selected or produced for their durability and highest degree of uniformity of size, shape and colour. FBX is the golden standard of bricks. They can be used for both exterior and interior building projects where a high degree of perfection is required.

Face brick standard (FBS) FBS bricks are durable clay face bricks that are uniform in size and shape. They can be used for all general masonry projects. Tolerances are not as strict as with FBX bricks but the brick is still of a high quality.

Face brick aesthetic (FBA) These clay face bricks are selected or produced for their durability and aesthetic effect, which is derived from non-uniformity of size, shape or colour of the brick. Wider tolerances are allowed on FBA bricks (also called semi-face bricks). They are a popular choice where a rough or more rustic look is required.

Did you know? The Great Wall of China was constructed by the first emperor of the Qin Dynasty around 210 BC and is made up of nearly four billion individual bricks.

Non-facing plastered (NFP) NFP clay bricks are suitable for general building work that will be plastered. These bricks are also known as stock or plaster bricks. Non-facing extras (NFX) are clay bricks suitable for use, plastered or unplastered, in general building work where durability rather than aesthetics is the key selection criteria, for example, below a damp-proof course or under damp conditions or below ground level.

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Clay pavers (PB) Clay PB pavers are selected or produced for their durability and for their uniformity in size and shape.

Clay pavers (PA) Clay PA pavers are paving bricks selected or produced for their durability and for a high degree of uniformity in size and shape, and that have dimensions such that the ratio of work size length to work size width is approximately 1:1, 2:1 or 3:1. Most PA pavers have a bevelled edge.


Special-shaped bricks These are any bricks that are not rectangular in shape. They may be single or double bullnose bricks, angle and cant bricks, arch bricks, capping, plinth bricks and spiral bricks. They are available in the same colours and textures as the range of FBX, FBS and FBA bricks.

Decorative retainer blocks Retainer blocks are used to build retaining walls, level a steep slope or enclose a section of the garden. Retaining walls are becoming more popular in landscaping and are no longer designed to blend into the background. Decorative retainer blocks can be used to create a retaining wall that is both eyecatching and functional. They are available in various colours to suit your home’s style and colouring.

Cement stock brick Commonly called a ‘mampara brick’ in South African building lingo, the cement stock brick is often selected as a cheaper building option for walls that will be plastered. Cement stocks are manufactured to the standard brick size, but most manufacturers also offer a maxi size option. Bricks at 7 MPa are suitable for a single storey building or boundary walls, and 10 MPa bricks for both single g and double storey. an

Cement blocks Cement blocks can be used to construct exterior walls, boundary walls and, when used with re-enforcing, can be used for load-bearing walls. The holes in concrete blocks are called cores. They aid in insulation and lower the weight of the block. Steel bars can also be inserted into the cores for added strength during construction. A variety of colours, sizes, shapes and textures are now available, including interlocking concrete blocks. Compressive strength for blocks varies between 3.5 MPa and 7 MPa.

Glass bricks Glass bricks can be used to construct sections of interior and exterior walls and allow light to enter the home without compromising on privacy. They are a popular choice in bathrooms, on stairwells and in other focal areas in the home. Glass bricks provide a solution for an area with an unsightly view while still allowing light inside the home. They also have a higher insulating factor than regular window glass. They are easy to clean and come in a wide range of colours, styles and designs.

Cement pavers and interlocking pavers These come in a range of different colours and textures. They are durable and able to withstand severe weather. Interlocking pavers can be used on driveways or for commercial applications where there is heavy traffic.

Contacts • Aluglass Bautech – 0861-258 452; www.aluglass.co.za • Clay Brick Association – www.claybrick.org • Corobrik – 011 871 8600; www.corobrik.co.za • Decorative Stone Masonry SA – 011 964 2995; www.dsm-sa.co.za • Gauteng Brickyard – www.gautengbrickyard.co.za

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PAINTING

Why paint fails prematurely “

Find out why paint fails how you can fix the problem and prevent it altogether By Roelof Strydom

P

aint is probably the most common exterior finish used on wood, metal and walls,” says Herman Rabe, technical service consultant at Prominent Paints. When paint is properly applied to the appropriate substrate, it can give a service life of up to 10 years. Herman explains that all too often, problems occur during the application of the paint and the paint coat fails to achieve the expected lifespan.

Why does paint fail prematurely? Herman says, “There are two main factors contributing to early paint failure and we only have control over one of these. The first is the weather and the second is application related.” The weather is the primary reason for paint failing and unfortunately this is completely out of our control. Herman explains that the sun’s ultraviolet rays cause paint pigments to fade. Radiation from the sun eventually breaks down the paint film, which leads to chalking. The biggest enemy, however, is moisture and temperature changes which cause buildings to expand and contract. These movements stress the paint, weakening the bond between the paint and the substrate ,which leads to hairline cracks that quickly get bigger. Moisture is a major problem, especially on exterior walls, as paint is porous and moisture can penetrate it. “It’s the most

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common cause of premature paint failure on wood, metal and plastered walls,” says Herman. The paint on exterior walls is subject to wetting by various means such as rain and dew. Before painting it’s also important to clean areas that are protected from sunlight, like porches, eaves and walls covered by overhangs. Herman explains that dirty areas like these interfere with the adhesion of the new paint. Paint also fails due to human error. This is when it’s applied incorrectly or the incorrect paint is applied; eventually leading to failure. “It comes down to the paint not adhering properly to the surface because the surface has not been treated, primed or prepared properly before applying the top coat of paint,” says Bennum van Jaarsveld, communications manager at Dulux. Any raw surface requires a primer. Use plaster primer in the case of plaster or concrete, wood needs wood primer to seal and protect it, while metal requires a metal primer. If there are specific problems, like damp, these need to be addressed before any primer and topcoat can be applied. Other problems include the application of too few coats, meaning the application is

too thin, or when paint is applied over dirty or already peeling paint, which prevents the new paint from adhering properly. A third problem relates to the choice of paint, such as using oil-based paint when acrylic should be used or vice versa. People also often choose cheap paint, for obvious reasons, but then pay the price later as cheap paints have inferior binders and pigments, leading to early failure.

Avoid using cheap paints because they have inferior binders and pigments which can lead to early failure of the paint

When the correct paint is properly applied to the surface it can give a service life of up to 10 years

Fixing the problem

Always clean and prepare the surface before applying any primers and topcoats

• “Always prepare the surface properly by removing all the loose and flaky paint from the surface,” says Herman. • Wash the surface with a solution of one part Progold General Purpose Cleaner to 10 parts water. Where fungus is present, wash the area with Progold Fungal Wash at a ratio of 1: 6 and allow for a reaction time of three hours. After three hours, scrub the area with a nylon brush or abrasive pad and finally rinse the surface with clean water. • Allow the surface to dry properly, especially if it is a wood or cement surface, before proceeding with any paint application.

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PAINTING

Remove all loose and flaky paint from the surface

• Make sure you are using the correct primer for the surface as not all primers are the same. • In the case of rising damp or other moisture problems, use a reputable waterproofing company to first correct the waterproofing before starting with the painting. • Always apply the primer and topcoats according to the product specification on the container. The product spreading rates are printed on the back of the container as a guideline and are there to guide you in applying the product to standard, ensuring the correct product performance. • When painting parapet walls, apply two coats of Prominent Fibre Seal to the top of parapet walls before painting. • Don’t stop at one coat of your selected topcoat. The second coat will provide a far superior paint performance and is required for the paint to perform as intended.

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Preventing the problem Bennum explains that you should rather spend a bit more time preparing and priming the surface before applying the topcoat to make sure it’s protected against moisture, dirt and rust. Remember to adhere to the recoating time on the container. Herman explains that it is essential to waterproof parapet walls and house wall areas beneath the damp protective course. It is especially necessary on houses where the damp protective course is higher than the exterior ground level. He also notes that prevention is better than cure when it comes to the building of a new house. It will save you a lot of money in the long run. Sources Dulux, www.dulux.co.za Plascon, www.plascon.co.za Prominent Paints, www.prominentpaints.co.za

The surface must be properly prepared before applying paint. Metal objects require a metal primer


Troubleshooting paint problems Chalking This is when a fine powder forms on the painted surface and will present itself when you wipe your hand over the surface. Possible causes may be the use of low grade and highly pigmented paint or using interior paint for exterior application. The solution is to remove as much of the powder residue as possible using a stiff bristle brush or even a pressure washer on exterior surfaces. After the surface is clean and dry, apply a solvent- or water-based primer and then paint the surface with a topcoat. Chalking

Blistering These bubbles usually indicate a loss of adhesion in areas and the subsequent lifting of the paint film from the underlying surface. Possible causes may be that a solventbased paint was applied over a damp or wet surface, moisture has penetrated the home through the exterior walls or the paint was exposed to high humidity and moisture shortly after it had dried. If the blisters don’t extend all the way down, the solution is to remove the blisters by means of scraping and sanding and then repaint the surface with a water-based paint. If the blisters do extend all the way to the base material, you first need to locate and remove the moisture source. Next, remove the blisters by means of scraping and sanding, followed by an appropriate primer and then at least two coats of topcoat.

Blistering

Crocodiling or alligatoring This refers to patterned cracks in the surface of the paint film that resemble the scales of a crocodile. The application of an extremely hard coating like a solvent-based enamel over a more flexible coating like a water-based primer could be a possible cause. Another reason for crocodiling could be that the topcoat was applied before the undercoat was dry. To solve this problem, the old paint needs to be completely removed. You can use a heat gun to speed up the process. After the old paint has been removed, prime the surface with a water- or solvent-based primer. Once the primer has dried, apply two coats of water-based paint.

Alligatoring

Foaming or cratering These are tiny bubbles that form when the paint is applied. As the paint dries, these bubbles then pop and leave small depressions, known as cratering. Shaking a partially filled tin of paint could be a possible cause as well as applying paint too rapidly, especially with a roller, or even applying a gloss or satin paint over a porous surface. To prevent this from happening, buy good quality paint. All paint will foam to some degree, but good quality paints are formulated in such a way that the bubbles pop while the paint is still wet. Also avoid excessive rolling or brushing when applying the paint.

Foaming/ cratering

Fading Premature or excessive lightening of paint can occur on surfaces that are regularly exposed to sunlight. Causes may be the use of paint that is vulnerable to UV radiation, such as bright reds, blues and yellows. The use of interior paint on an exterior surface can also lead to this problem. Solve this problem by using quality exterior paint in colours that are recommended for exterior use. Fading

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TOOL TALK

Cut above the rest

A circular saw is an indispensable power tool for making long straight cuts. Here’s a look at six saws that’ll turn any sheet of wood into usable pieces in no time By Roelof Strydom

Triton TA184CSL Tip Set the blade depth so that only one tooth of the saw blade extends past the bottom of the wood. This reduces the chance of the saw binding to the wood or kicking back.

What to look for • A comfy grip and front handle that helps to steady cuts. • Side-to-side safety switches that prevent the machine from being switched on accidentally. • Buy one for your specific needs. If you need to do a lot of plunge cuts, then buy a plunge saw, but if you are only going to do rip cuts and the occasional plunge cut, a circular saw will be fine.

DeWalt D23620 This is a compact, yet powerful 1 150W saw with a 184mm blade diameter and no-load speed of 5 000rpm. It is able to reach a cutting depth of 65mm at 0° and has a maximum bevel capacity of 50°. The blade bore is 16mm and it has an efficient dust extraction port to minimise airborne dust. Available from:

With a 1 800W motor and no-load speed of 5 000rpm, the Triton is quite a powerful saw. It has a laser line for increased accuracy and safety. The depth adjustment is 63mm at 0° and 49mm at 45° respectively. A 185mm blade with a bore of 20mm is specified for this machine. Available from:

www.tritontools.com

Weight:

5.1kg

Power cord length:

2m

Recommended retail price:

R2 300

Bosch PKS 55 A This Bosch circular saw has an ergonomic design with a comfortable soft grip and weighs only 3.9kg. It has a 1 200W motor and no-load speed of 5 600rpm. The maximum cutting depth at 0° and 45° (maximum bevel capacity) is 55mm and 38mm respectively. The saw is rated for a 160mm blade with a bore of 20mm.

www.dewaltpowertools.co.za

Available from:

Weight:

5.1kg

Weight:

3.9kg

Recommended retail price:

R1 995

Recommended retail price:

R1 199

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www.bosch-do-it.com/za


Upgrade those blades The blades that are included with your circular saw will cut through a variety of materials, but perhaps not as cleanly as you would like. That’s why there are speciality blades. • For cutting material like Formica and melamine, a saw blade with a negative rake is required to prevent the material from chipping – in this case, the Tork Craft aluminium blade is a good option. • For cutting a variety of materials like wood with nails, plastic, PVC and laminates, the Tork Craft Universal Quick Cut blade is the way to go.

Technique: Tips on making three important cuts Plunge cut Rest the front lip of the shoe on the workpiece and pull back the saw’s guard lever to expose the blade, which will enable you to align the blade with the cut line. Finally, start the saw and dip into the cut.

Bevel cut You want as much shoe on the workpiece as possible, so plan the direction of the cut and flip the material face up or face down accordingly. Next, set the circular saw at the desired angle and make the cut.

Festool TS55R This machine is powered by a 1 200W motor with no-load speed of 6 300rpm. It has a blade and bore diameter of 160mm and 20mm respectively. It is able to reach a cutting depth of 55mm at 0° and 43mm at 45°. As an additional feature, it has a sliding viewing window that gives the operator a good view of the scribe mark and saw blade. Available from:

www.festool.co.za

Weight:

4.5kg

Recommended retail price:

R7 775

Woodster CS7131 Powered by a 1 350W motor and maxing out at a no-load speed of 5 000rpm, this saw has a cutting depth of 62mm at 0°and a maximum bevel capacity of 45°. The saw can take a blade of 185mm in diameter with a bore of 20mm. An additional feature of this Woodster circular saw is its laser line guide.

Notch cut Mark out the notch’s borders and depth. Next, set the saw blade to the correct depth. Before you start the cut, pull back the saw’s guard lever to expose the blade. Then cut the two borders first and ensure they are perfectly straight. Don’t worry about making straight cuts in-between. Just run the saw completely through the wood on each pass or you’ll be left with an uneven surface after knocking out the slices.

Makita 5704RK The Makita 5704RK has a 1 200W motor that drives the blade to 4 900rpm under no load. This saw is rated for a 190mm blade with a bore of 30mm and has a cutting depth of 66mm at 0° and 46mm at 45°. It comes supplied with an anti-kickback riving knife to enhance the saw’s safety.

Available from:

www.newcopowertools.co.za

Available from:

www.makita.co.za

Weight:

4.16kg

Weight:

4.9kg

Power cord length:

2m

Power cord length:

2.5m

Recommended retail price:

R950

Recommended retail price:

R2 159

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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Article index: 2013 Advice Water features, choosing and installing .....February 2013 ......... Pg 26 Tap and die set, how to use ..............................February 2013 ......... Pg 34 Personal protective equipment, safety.........February 2013 ......... Pg 36 Wooden doors, fix and prevent swelling ....February 2013 .........Pg 44 Tyre safety, urban girl’s guide ...........................February 2013 .........Pg 46 Property renovations ...........................................March 2013 .............. Pg 36 Property buying tips ............................................April 2013 .................Pg 44 French polishing ....................................................June 2013...................Pg 52 Braais, types of .......................................................September 2013 .....Pg 22 Gazebos and pergolas .........................................October 2013 ........... Pg 12 Construction safety law .....................................November 2013...... Pg 26

Building and repairs Brick braai, build a .................................................January 2013 ........... Pg 34 Walls and ceilings .................................................May 2013 ...................Pg 41 Clay brick facts .......................................................June 2013..................Pg 46 Bricklaying tips .......................................................July 2013 ................... Pg 38 Retaining walls .......................................................August 2013 .............Pg 18 Service a lock ...........................................................August 2013 ............ Pg 42 Clay brick braai, build a .......................................September 2013 .... Pg 26 Pizza oven .................................................................October 2013 ..........Pg 30 Home, building a ...................................................November 2013......Pg 30 Cost-effective ways to build a home ............December 2013. ...... Pg 12 Brick braai, build a .................................................December 2013 .......Pg 18

Bathrooms Installing a basin ...................................................January 2013 ............Pg 18 Refurbish a bathroom guidelines...................March 2013 ..............Pg 30 Design tips for small bathrooms....................September 2013 .....Pg 32 Accessories ...............................................................September 2013 .... Pg 34

Cladding Types and installation .........................................December 2013 ...... Pg 24

Drainage How to manage excess water .........................January 2013 ............Pg 23 Garden drainage system. ...................................August 2013 ............. Pg 12

Damp Prevent and fix damp problems .....................July 2013..................... Pg 12 Rising damp, understanding ............................July 2013 ....................Pg 18 Rising damp solutions.........................................September 2013 .... Pg 36

Drywalling Install a drywall......................................................July 2013 ................... Pg 24

Electrical Reducing household electricity usage .........February 2013.........Pg 38 Electrical safety ......................................................March 2013 ............. .Pg 38 Electrical certificates of compliance. ............April 2013 ..................Pg 32 Electric fence regulations ..................................September 2013 ....Pg 40 Electric fence information .................................October 2013 .......... Pg 26 32

JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

Flooring Underfloor heating and insulation ...............April 2013 .................. Pg 12 Natural stone advice............................................May 2013 ................... Pg 12 Concrete floors .......................................................July 2013 ....................Pg 22

Gardening Lawn care..................................................................August 2013 .............Pg 22 Herbs, planting and care ....................................November 2013......Pg 44 Revamp an old plant stand ...............................November 2013......Pg 46 Instant lawn ............................................................December 2013 ...... Pg 28

Indoor projects Floating shelves .....................................................January 2013 ...........Pg 30 Headboard, make a...............................................January 2013 ........... Pg 36

Insulation Insulation and r-values .......................................May 2013 ...................Pg 18 Insulating without breaking the bank.........June 2013................... Pg 12

Irrigation Benefits and installation....................................March 2013 ............... Pg 12

Kitchens Revamp on a budget ............................................January 2013 ............ Pg 12

Lighting Bulkheads and downlights, installing ..........January 2013 ........... Pg 42

Maintenance Outdoor metal........................................................September 2013 .....Pg 18 Protect wooden structures, how to...............February 2013 ..........Pg 18 Outdoor wood ........................................................October 2013 ...........Pg 18

Metalworking projects Bird feeder, make a ...............................................January 2013 ............Pg 52 Fire pit, make a .......................................................February 2013 .........Pg 30 Metal reading table, make a.............................March 2013 .............. Pg 42 Rustic bench, make a ...........................................January 2013 ........... Pg 26 Coffee table, make a ............................................April 2013 ................. Pg 26 Sheet metal shapes..............................................April 2013 ................. Pg 28 Notice board, make a ...........................................May 2013 ..................Pg 48 Bed, construct a metal ........................................June 2013.................. Pg 34 Candle holder, make a .........................................July 2013 ...................Pg 30 Hosepipe holder.....................................................August 2013 ............ Pg 34 Garden bench .........................................................October 2013 .......... Pg 36 Book/flower stand ................................................November 2013...... Pg 34 Lawn spike roller, how to make .......................December 2013 ......Pg 44

Mosaic Jacuzzi holiday paradise .....................................April 2013 ..................Pg 18 Decorate your garden wall ................................June 2013.................. Pg 42 Plant holder made from an old toilet pan August 2013 ............ Pg 38 Keys and remote holder .....................................November 2013......Pg 48


Outdoor projects Mosaic bowl for outside tap ............................February 2013 ..........Pg 22 Water feature for outside tap ..........................May 2013 ..................Pg 44

Painting Novice painters, advice for ................................May 2013 ..................Pg 30 Ladders and scaffolds ..........................................May 2013 .................. Pg 36 Preparation...............................................................May 2013 .................. Pg 38 Choosing the right paintbrush and roller June 2013 ..................Pg 30 Painting know-how...............................................October 2013 ...........Pg 22 Safe paint disposal ...............................................December 2013 .......Pg 32

Pest control Identify and control common pests ..............February 2013 .......... Pg 12

Plumbing Leaking tap, fixing a .............................................February 2013 ......... Pg 42 Installing toilets and basins .............................March 2013 .............. Pg 26

Renovations Paving installer, choosing a...............................March 2013 ..............Pg 46 Wall coverings, types and advice ....................May 2013 ...................Pg 22 Doors, choosing the right ..................................July 2013 ................... Pg 26 Managing renovations........................................August 2013 ............Pg 44

Safety and security Children’s room ......................................................May 2013 .................. Pg 26 Fire safety .................................................................June 2013...................Pg 18 Security gates, installation ................................December 2013 ......Pg 40

Swimming pools Installation options and safety .......................November 2013.......Pg 14 Solar heating pools...............................................November 2013.......Pg 22 Clinobrite pool filter. ............................................December 2013......Pg 36

Thatch Regulations ...............................................................September 2013 .... Pg 12

Tiling Custom tile designs .............................................October 2013 ..........Pg 46

Tools and Toolbox The latest in power tools ....................................January 2013 ...........Pg 41 Sharpen surface planer knives ........................February 2013 ..........Pg 52 Tube sealants, using different..........................March 2013 .............. Pg 34 Angle grinder safety ............................................April 2013 ................. Pg 42 Power planer, handling .......................................April 2013 .................Pg 40 Circular saw safety ...............................................April 2013 .................Pg 30 Painting equipment .............................................May 2013 ...................Pg 32 Sealant applicators. ..............................................June 2013...................Pg 23

Sharpen different tools.......................................July 2013 ................... Pg 42 Gardening tools .....................................................September 2013...... Pg 31 Innovative tools......................................................October 2013 ..........Pg 40 Apps for DIY’ers ......................................................November 2013...... Pg 38 Bandsaw....................................................................December 2013 ......Pg 50 C-clamp .....................................................................December 2013 .......Pg 52

Sustainability and water conservation Garden watering, save water ...........................March 2013 ...............Pg 18 Renewable energy and its future in SA .......April 2013 ..................Pg 22 Scientific ways to water and save ..................March 2013 ...............Pg 22

Water heating Cost-effective ways to heat water .................June 2013.................. Pg 26

Waterproofing Waterproof your roof...........................................August 2013 ............ Pg 28 Rising damp, how to halt ...................................October 2013 .......... Pg 42 Fish pond crack repair .........................................December 2013 ......Pg 48

Welding Tips to improve welding results .....................June 2013.................. Pg 38

Windows How to install .........................................................November 2013......Pg 40

Woodturning Segmented woodturning art ...........................April 2013 .................Pg 48 Hints for new woodturners ..............................August 2013 ............Pg 48 Safety and first steps of turning ....................September 2013 ....Pg 44 Lathe, finishing .......................................................October 2013 ..........Pg 48

Woodworking projects Carved gecko, make a. .........................................January 2013 ........... Pg 38 Sideboard, construct a ........................................January 2013 ...........Pg 46 Dining room chairs, construct .........................January 2013 ...........Pg 50 Wheels for a wooden vehicle, make..............February 2013 .........Pg 48 Wooden clock, how to make ............................March 2013 ...............Pg 52 Gym bench, build a...............................................April 2013 ..................Pg 52 Preparing your wood ...........................................May 2013 .................. Pg 54 Measuring and marking ....................................June 2013..................Pg 48 Routing corners ......................................................June 2013..................Pg 50 Table lamp, made from pinewood .................July 2013 ...................Pg 46 Magazine holder ...................................................July 2013 ...................Pg 50 Pocket-hole joinery, using a router ................July 2013 ....................Pg 52 Biscuit joiners .........................................................August 2013 .............Pg 52 Mortise and tenon joint, how to make a ....September 2013 ....Pg 48 Bread bin, make a ..................................................September 2013 .....Pg 52 Candle holders, make ..........................................October 2013 ...........Pg 52 Wooden bed, using knock-down joints........November 2013.......Pg 52 THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

33


DECKING

Natural-born decking It’s a new year and you might have considered installing your own deck. Here are some important aspects to consider as well as maintenance tips for new and existing wooden decks

D

ecks can be constructed from almost any material, but most will agree that wooden decks are by far the most beautiful of them all. Apart from just being a sight for sore eyes, they hold

What deck do I have? If you are unsure about the treatment your deck needs, sprinkle a few drops of water on a sanded down area of the wood. • Hardwoods will not absorb the water. • Softwoods will absorb the water.

other attributes too. They are fairly easy to install, maintain and repair – as long as you give them the TLC they deserve.

Choose your wood The first question should be what material to use for your deck. Before construction starts you need to decide on what type of decking boards you will use. Wooden decking can be made from a variety

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

of wood types. Put a lot of thought into the type of wood you choose for the project as different woods require different levels of maintenance, as you will see later on in the article. Take into account your climate, the size of the area to be decked and the amount of traffic it will have to withstand, and choose a wood with a density that suits. The density of wood goes hand in hand with its price; the lower the density, the more open grained it is; the higher the density, the more durable the wood. It makes sense to buy the very best deck boards you can afford. It is best to speak to a decking specialist about choosing a wood that will be durable, beautiful and affordable. When it comes to all living things, water is vital for survival. The same goes for trees; remember at one stage when your decking board was still a living tree, it had a high moisture content. A tree can be made up of more than 75% moisture, depending on the species. In Gauteng, where there are extreme moisture level changes in the air (from about 60% in summer to 12% in winter), you need decking boards with a moisture content below 15-18% for them to remain


Tip If any section of your deck stays wet for a day or more after rain, take steps to see that it dries out. You may need to sweep away leaves and dirt from between boards or where the deck meets the house. Perhaps a bush or tree limb needs to be trimmed back or a downpipe moved to direct water away from the deck.

stable. Any higher and the moisture will evaporate out of the wood into the dry, hot air and may cause it to warp or shrink. A wood like balau that is imported with a 25% or higher moisture content is great for coastal areas, which have high humidity, but not for the drier inland areas. If you live inland, always make sure the wood you buy for outdoor use is kiln dried to ensure stability of your deck boards.

The support structure The most important part of a deck is the substructure; using the correct methods and materials is very important. The column/poles structure, onto which the joists, bearers and beam structure are fastened, should be constructed from CCA treated gum poles. Beams, joists and bearers should be constructed with CCA

Take note! Never use a common wood filler outside because it dissolves. If you need to use a filler of some sort, rather use epoxy fillers, which are water resistant.

treated pine. The size of these planks will depend on the size of the deck and the span over a specific length. The bigger the span, the heavier it will be, thus requiring larger planks. The sizes of the planks are as follows: 38mm x 38mm, 76mm x 38mm, 114mm x 38mm, 152mm x 38mm and 228mm x 38mm. The planks should also be CCA treated.

Deck screws The three widely used screws for securing decking boards to the joists are brass, brassplated and stainless steel. Stainless steel screws are the obvious choice for decking installations at coastal regions because they are resistant to rust, but they are expensive. Brass and brass-plated screws can also be used as they are cheaper. • Use screws with lengths of 50-90mm. • Screws can vary between Pozi, square and hexagonal screw heads, with squareheaded screws becoming increasingly popular because they tend not to strip as easily.

Treating your deck Untreated wood will soon show the damaging effects of the weather, grime will build up, greying will occur and mildew and mould might form, while water, rust and oil stains will leave marks on your deck. But all this can be treated and your deck restored to its once natural beauty. Right form the start, the amount of maintenance required will depend on whether you have a hardwood or softwood deck. Hardwoods would have cost more in the beginning to build with, but are a lot

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DECKING

Weathered decks

Remember It is important to use the same product that was originally used on the deck as different brands don’t always work if you put the one over another. If your plan is to change to another brand, make sure you rid the wood completely of the original product.

more durable and need less maintenance. Softwoods also make suitable decks, but need more maintenance. An aspect that will also affect how often you have to treat your deck is the amount of exposure to natural elements and traffic, but a good rule of thumb is to treat your deck about once every six months for the first three years. Thereafter, annual treatment is adequate.

Regular maintenance When restoring wood, the most important aspect is the preparation of the surface before sealing. If your deck is in good condition, firstly wipe away old grime using a cloth well soaked in mineral turpentine. Then use steel wool and mineral turpentine to remove any stubborn dirt. Always work with the grain. Next, use a stiff plastic brush and mineral turpentine to clean out the grooves. Finally, wipe with a cloth dampened with mineral turpentine and leave the wood to dry properly.

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

If the deck is starting to wear, sanding is important, but this is only the case if the deck is a smooth one. Many decks are grooved and therefore cannot be sanded. Although it is not ideal, a steel brush will have to do in this instance to get into the grooves. If your deck is in very bad condition, the procedure will change. The existing finish/coating must be completely removed. Again, sanding is ideal, but not if the deck is grooved. If the deck has taken on a dull grey colour, the problem actually looks much worse than it really is. Chances are it’s covered with a thin film of mildew and only needs a cleaning. (Redwood decks are sometimes left untreated and allowed to go grey, attaining a silvery appearance that many people like.) Dark stains may be due to

mildew. Cleaning it with soap and water or bleach will clear up the problem – scrub the surface thoroughly.

Sealing and varnishing Seal your deck as soon as possible after cleaning it. Consult an expert about the various products available and how to use them if you are not sure. • Softwoods need to be sealed as the sealer will penetrate into the wood. • Hardwoods need to be varnished. Varnish creates a protective sleeve over the wood. Always remember to read the instructions on the tin before you begin. Work methodically so that you can go back and apply more sealer to dull areas where the sealer is penetrating more than elsewhere. This is particularly important with the first coat as it is essential that the surface stays evenly wet for 10 minutes after application to ensure proper penetration. It is very important that you let each coat dry hard before applying the next coat. Sand lightly with fine sandpaper or steel wool between coats. Allow 24-36 hours after the final coat has dried before using your deck again.


TM

         !   " #$% & '* "$  +,   '   '

Plascon Woodcare Natural Deck Coating is the perfect solution to keep decks looking naturally beautiful. This advanced, water-based formulation is designed to penetrate deep into the wood and refresh and hydrate the tired timber. It protects the surface from the sun’s ultraviolet radiation and seals it from moisture, minimizing cracking and mould buildup. Natural Deck Coating is safe to use, has a low odour and is easy to clean with cold water. It’s a natural treatment solution. It’s an indulgent treat. It will breathe life back into your timber and enhance its natural beauty.

PLASCON ADVISORY CENTRE 0860 20 40 60 www.plascon.co.za CopyrightŠ Kansai Plascon (Pty). Ltd. 2013 THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

37


LIGHTING

Look on the bright side

Pendants and track lighting add a modern touch to an open-plan home Pic courtesy of The Lighting Warehouse

Find out how to light up your home effectively and efficiently

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

L

Types of lighting

whether dim or bright, will truly complete the final composition,” says Melissa Davidson from The Lighting Warehouse. There are three basic types of indoor lighting - ambient lighting, task lighting and accent lighting. Melissa explains what light fittings are best suited to each of these and where they can be used to best effect:

Different types of lighting serve different purposes, including functional and aesthetic, and should be used in places where they are most suitable for best effect, making your home both userfriendly and beautiful. A clever choice of lighting can make a room appear larger than it actually is, add warmth and cosiness to a space, or it can add an element of clean minimalism to an interior composition. “Whatever kind of lighting you choose for your home, bear in mind that a professionally lit interior,

Ambient lighting “This is the lighting used to illuminate a space,” explains Melissa. “Also called general lighting, ambient lighting is mainly cast by light fittings that are installed in the middle of a ceiling. These days people are spoilt for choice as there are many types of light fittings that can be used for this purpose, such as downlighters, pendants, chandeliers, ceiling flush mounts and ceiling semi flush mounts.”

ighting plays a vital role in the atmosphere and functionality of every home. With the correct type of lighting, light fittings and globes, you can create the desired mood in all the different spaces in your home… and save energy at the same time.


“Decide whether you want the light fittings to be features or focal points in the room or whether you want them to be inconspicuous and simply there to provide light in a discreet manner, and then choose your light fittings accordingly,” says Melissa. If you want your lights to be part of the interior décor, remember to select light fittings that will complement and accentuate the style of the room or space. “Dimmer switches are always a good Remember to select idea as they will allow you to have some light fittings that control over the brightness of the light will complement and and thus the ambience of the room,” accentuate the style of the room or space she adds. Task lighting This is direct light cast for specific tasks, such cooking, reading, working at a desk or putting on make-up. “For task lighting to best serve its purpose, it should be glare-free and must vividly illuminate the area to avoid any eye strain,” explains Melissa. Most popular for this job are spotlights, desk and floor lamps as well as under counter lighting in kitchens or offices.

Accent lighting is perfect for illuminating features you may want to highlight in your home

Accent lighting Accent lighting is perfect for illuminating architecture, sculptures, art, water features, indoor gardens or any other features you may want to highlight in your home. Picture lights, wall sconces, wall washers, adjustable spotlights and uplighter floor lamps are ideal for adding drama and interest to specific spaces or objects.

Top three energy saving globes “A judicious choice of globes is one of the easiest ways to save energy in the home and cut down on your lighting bill, doing your bit for the environment at the same time,” says Melissa. Simply by purchasing the right kind of globe, or replacing old globes with more energy saving ones, you can green your home’s lighting.

In places where makeup is applied, such as bathrooms, the lighting should be bright and glare free Pic courtesy of The Lighting Warehouse

LEDs “Light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are the most energy saving globes available and their components are recyclable,” explains Melissa. “They use 90% less energy than incandescent globes and because of their lower energy consumption, there is a lower heat build-up and thus a cooler environment, so you save on cooling bills.” LED globes last between 20 000 to 50 000 hours and some globes are dimmable.

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LIGHTING

LEDs are now available in a variety of shapes and sizes, including candle globes, golf balls and tubes, and you can even buy complete LED fittings, such as LED under counter lights or dimmable LED downlighters. Simply replace your old halogen downlighters, incandescent strip lights or spotlight globes with energy saving LEDs and save on your electricity bill. CFLs “A simple and cheap way to reduce your lighting bill is to replace your incandescent globes with compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs),” explains Melissa. They use 80% less energy and last eight times longer than incandescent globes. They provide a bright light and also generate a lot less heat than incandescent globes, which means lower cooling bills in summer.

These days people are spoilt for choice as there are many types of light fittings

Pic courtesy of The Lighting Warehouse

Like LED globes, CFLs come in a variety of shapes and sizes, including candle globes, golf balls and mini spiral globes to fit almost any light fitting. Halogen energy saving globes “These use 20-30% less energy than an incandescent globe and are fully dimmable with a standard dimmer switch,” says Melissa. The three main types are household, candle and GU10 halogen energy saving globes, making them suitable for most light fittings.

More ways to save energy Dimmer switches By simply dimming your lights, you are saving energy – dimming a light by 50% reduces the energy consumed by 40%. Dimmer switches can be used with halogen energy saving globes and there are now dimmable CFL and LED globes available, however you will need to get a special dimmer switch that is either CFL- or LEDcompatible.

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN


Use a variety of light fittings to add character to your home, such as downlighters, lamps and chandeliers

Motion sensors Ideal for outdoor security lighting, motion sensors only switch on lights when they detect movement and automatically switch them off after 30 seconds to five minutes. “Motion sensors are an inexpensive and highly functional solution, and they are easy to install. In fact, many outdoor lights come with built-in motion sensors,” says Melissa. They are also handy to use indoors in places where we often forget to switch off the light, such as in the pantry or under the stairwell. Halogen energy saving globes or LEDs are best for this purpose.

The Osram 4w LED warm white candle globe is perfect for chandeliers where globes are exposed.

The 7w LED GLS globe in warm white is ideally suited for pendants, ceiling fittings or exterior lights

Daylight sensors cause your lights to switch on at dusk and off again at dawn

The Press Dimmer Switch will dim any of your lights

LED spiked solar spotlights are great for lighting up pathways in the garden

Replace your halogen downlighters with energy saving LEDs and save on your electricity bill Dimmable halogen energy saving globes can be used in chandeliers

You can green your home’s lighting by replacing old globes with more energy efficient ones Occupancy sensors Similar to motion sensors, occupancy sensors only switch on when they sense movement, and then switch off again when no one is there. They are ideal for bathrooms, pantries, dressing rooms or passages. Halogen energy saving globes or LEDs are suitable for these lights. Daylight sensors By investing in daylight sensors, daylight sensor globes and light fittings with builtin daylight sensors, you will save money and increase your home’s security. The sensor allows your lights to switch on at dusk and switch off at dawn. Halogen energy saving globes, LEDs or CFLs can be used with daylight sensors. Task lighting “Relying on your task lighting can save a lot of energy as you are concentrating light just where you need it and reducing background or ambient light levels,” explains Melissa. For example, installing a track of LED under counter lights to illuminate the kitchen table where you prepare your food negates the need for the ceiling lights. Go solar Lighting up your garden at night is wonderful for entertaining or highlighting certain features, and will improve your security. However, outdoor lighting can be costly to run. Solar lights are a great alternative – the sun charges the light’s battery during the day and your solar lights will come on when it gets dark. Source: The Lighting Warehouse, www.lightingwarehouse.co.za

Pics courtesy of The Lighting Warehouse

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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MAINTENANCE

There are many different types of gutters and knowing the facts about each can help you choose the right one for your home. In this article, we discuss your choices, offer some gutter maintenance tips and show you how to replace your gutters

Replacing your gutters

A

luminium gutters, copper gutters, steel gutters, galvalume gutters, zinc gutters and vinyl gutters are your six main choices of gutter material. Of all the types of gutters to choose from, there is a very good reason why aluminium dominates the gutter market. The metal is corrosion resistant, lightweight, easy to work with, available in a wide range of colours and less expensive than the other alternatives. Galvanized gutters are steel gutters coated with a layer of zinc. This type of gutter is strong, but is also prone to rust. Proper gutter installation is very important to ensure proper drainage and avoid standing water in your gutters. Leaf protectors will reduce the amount of leaves that will settle in your gutters. It is strongly recommend that you inspect and clean galvanized gutters often to prevent clogging and premature rusting.

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All types of gutters are constructed in one of two ways: They are either made in sections or constructed in one seamless, continuous piece. Sectional gutters are sold in sections and all DIY gutter systems are sectional. Snap-in-place connectors join gutter sections to each other and to the downpipes. The drawback to sectional systems is that all those seams will eventually leak. Seamless gutters won’t leak at the seams simply because there are no seams. The sections join only at inside and outside corners. Seamless gutters, made of aluminium, galvanized steel or copper, are extruded to custom lengths on the job site using a portable gutter machine. Once you understand the pros and cons of all the possible types of gutters and a decision on the design of a gutter system has been made, the next step is to decide on what gutter colours to use, which is usually determined by the colour of your roof and the exterior walls of the home.

1 Our gutters were in a state of disrepair and needed to be replaced

flashing. The only way to be sure the gutter is pitched toward the downpipes is to use a level in order to maintain a slight pitch towards the downpipes, which ensures little or no standing water in the gutter. A gutter installed level will drain because water levels itself, however, you will not have any water flow to self clean the gutter. Too much slope does not look good and you will lose some of the gutters’ holding capacity. A very important aspect of the gutter installation is a gutter sealant, which is used to seal the corners and endcaps.

2 Removing the old gutters

3 Make sure that you have help when removing long lengths

Installation Proper gutter installation plays a very important role in the maintenance of your home. Most homeowners don’t spend a lot of time thinking about their gutters, but understanding their importance may prevent you having some costly home repair bills in the future. Aluminium gutters are a great rain solution product. They are low cost, easily maintained and a long lasting solution for many homes. They are weather resistant and maintain their integrity in cold climates. Seamless aluminium gutters will not rust and have a life expectancy of approximately 25-30 years. Gutter hangers are brackets that interlock into the front and back of the gutter and are then screwed into the fascia under the drip edge flashing. For standard fascia gutter installations, gutter hangers, sometimes called hidden hangers, should be installed every metre. Seamless aluminium gutters are roll formed with a gutter machine at the job site. Look for a minimum of 20-year prorated warranty against corrosion, blistering, peeling or flaking. The gutters should be installed under the drip edge

Downpipes The purpose of gutter downpipes is to carry rainwater from your gutter to ground level and direct it away from your foundations. Getting the water out of the gutter is the most important thing. Remember that gutters are only there to catch the water, not hold it. Heavy downpours can overwhelm a gutter system that just meets the minimum requirements. Decorative downpipes are becoming more and more popular. Why not take your plain downpipes and transform them into attractive decorative downpipes to accent

5 The downpipes and elbows arrived preassembled and ready

4 Seamless aluminium gutters were roll formed with a gutter machine at the job site

6 The pieces are secured together using pop rivets

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MAINTENANCE

Airborne debris and seeds collect in the gutter system, so you should clean out your gutters at least twice a year

First a pilot hole is drilled between the two pieces being joined

your rain gutter system? There are a few ways you could add a decorative touch to your downpipes, such as: Decorative splash blocks, rain chains or conductor heads, also known as collector boxes, leader heads and scupper boxes. The outlet from the gutter to the downpipe can be drilled with a hole saw. The outlet is snapped in place and then sealed. Downpipes are secured to these outlets, sometimes referred to as drop outs. Using larger downpipe outlets and

Measurements are carefully taken before the gutters are formed

7

9

11

12

Making sure the downpipe fits

Installing using pop rivets

sloping the gutter towards the outlets not only allows the gutter to drain faster, but also aids in flushing the gutter debris out when it rains. Rainwater should ideally be diverted a metre and a half away from the foundation of your home by using a splash block, downpipe extensions or an underground drain line.

Gutter maintenance 13 The downpipes are then fixed to the wall

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

It’s easy to forget about gutter repair until the first heavy rains. With that first storm, any problems with your gutters

8 Then the pop rivets are put in

10 An X-cut is made where the downpipes are to be installed

will be quite apparent. Unless you are an experienced handyman or handywoman, this would be a great time to schedule a gutter repair. Even if you have gutter leaf protection, airborne debris and seeds will still enter the gutter system, so you should check and clean out your gutters at least twice a year. The most important time to do a good gutter cleaning is late in autumn after the trees have shed their leaves. Gutter repair is often necessary when gutters haven’t been cleaned in a long time. The weight of the debris can cause gutters to sag, leading to leaks. Heavy-duty expanded metal gutter leaf screens are the best way of stopping leaves and twigs from entering the gutter system. If your gutters do not drain properly, check the gutter slope by spraying water into them with a garden hose. The water should flow smoothly towards the downpipe. If it just sits there, the gutter needs to be adjusted. The gutter should be adjusted to remove any high or low spots that prevent the flow of water towards the downpipe.


Gutter safety

14 After being measured, the barge boards are cut to the correct size and shape

15 Confirming that the correct cuts have been made

16 Attaching the barge boards to the roof

Of all the household chores that we do, probably none is as dangerous as gutter repair and cleaning. If you decide to take on the job of cleaning your gutters, make sure to follow these safety rules. Plan your gutter cleaning when someone else is at home or let a neighbour know what you are doing. A stepladder requires level ground support on all four of its side rails. Make sure your stepladder is spread fully open and the spreaders are locked. To prevent tipping the ladder over sideways due to overreaching, the ladder should be set up close to the work. Never place your ladder on an unstable base in order to obtain additional height. Do not stand higher than the step indicated on the label marking the highest standing level. Always have three points of contact with the ladder. That means two feet and one hand or two hands and one foot. You can prevent needless gutter repairs by never resting your ladder on the gutter. While performing gutter repairs, you should always wear gloves to prevent being cut by sharp metal edges and to prevent contact with moist and rotten debris, which is a good place for bacteria to grow. It is always a good idea to wear a dust mask while cleaning out your gutters, especially if you have allergy problems. When you disrupt the gutter debris, you also disrupt a lot of dust particles and mould spores.

17

18

Once installed, the barge boards are painted to cover up the screws and any dirty fingerprints

The completed gutters give the home a much cleaner, more appealing look

You can prevent needless gutter repairs by never resting your ladder on the gutter

After the gutters are clean, perform a gutter inspection, checking for any possible gutter repairs such as holes, dents or missing gutter sealer. Check for loose, bent or missing gutter hangers or spikes. Gutters that are not properly secured to the house, i.e. improper gutter screws or gutters attached to rotten wood, will eventually not support their own weight. If you have a clogged downpipe, run a garden hose down from the top of the downpipe, turn the water on full blast and hopefully the clog will be cleared. If this does not work, try using a plumber’s snake. If all this fails to remove the clog, the downpipe will have to be removed and taken apart to find the clog. Usually the clog will be in one of the elbows. Regular gutter repair and cleaning are required for proper function, but the outside surface should also be cleaned for good curb appeal. Simple cleaning procedures should be performed on a yearly basis to reduce the build-up of deposits. For surface soil and stains, such as those resulting from industrial fallout, tree sap, insecticides or chimney fumes, use ordinary non-abrasive household detergent. The solution should be applied to the soiled surface by means of a soft rag, sponge or soft bristle brush with a gentle rubbing action. Source: www.rain-gutter-guide.com

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

45


READER’S PROJECT

Ashes to ashes, dust to dust,

a jewel rises from the rust Sometimes you see something and, like the weakest puppy from the litter, you pity it and want to be the hero who saves it. That is how I saw a battered dining table in a Kuruman pawn shop window By Willie Koekemoer

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

M

y wife, Christelle, and I recently moved from busy and vibrant Cullinan to Kuruman in the Northern Cape. As newly-weds, turning our house into a home became a priority… and on a budget, I must add. A new dining table had been on the ‘very important list’ for a while, but from the woodworker’s showrooms of Knysna to the local Bears, it seemed we would have dinners on the floor like the Japanese for eternity. p One af afternoon Christelle found the ft table chair set in a corner of tabl ble e and eight e a pawnshop. paw wnsho Up to that point, the Eye off Kuruman, Ku uruma an a mineral spring, had been about most exciting topic in our ab ut the m abou home. hom me. All this th changed in the swipe of a dusty du ustty duster dustte and a ‘Sold’ sticker covered the th he set set within with minutes. The battered puppy p pp pu py came cam m home to the Koekemoere. Within days the restoration projected Within nd commenced. c mmenced We knew it would not co be but we also knew we be an easy sy task, t wanted do this. The wood had been want wa nted tto od bumped bumped and bu bum an dented in various places, but importantly the wood still but more m re im mo had layer of varnish on it, had a protective protte protecting prot otecting ng it against wood borers and other elements. other biological ot biollog

The refurbished dining table


The initial work over the large flat area was quick

I started with a 100-grit paper

The entire table was not originally put together by a few wood screws, but with rather crafty engineering. The top is about 50mm thick and the rest of the support table a good 150mm thick, as if originally designed for a veterinarian, the kind who would expect to make an elephant lie on it for examination, perfect for newlyweds. The entire table can be taken apart into its individual parts without loosening a single screw, but only various wedges. These needed some motivation from a rubber hammer to get going. Taking the entire table apart made the sanding down process much easier, but not before sanding the top first.

Step-by-step guide Step 1: I started with the tabletop. My small electric orbital sander with 100grit sandpaper got the dust going. I was originally scared the varnish would frequently block the paper, but it seems the varnish was so dry that it was like sanding dried wood. Step 2: A belt sander would probably do a much quicker job on the larger flat areas, but I don’t have one so the orbital sander had to do. A 100-grit did a good job, so there wasn’t a need to go for a coarser paper. This would require sanding down from 80- to 100- to 120-grit to steel wool, in any

This is how the table is kept together

case. Once the top and sides were done with 100-grit, I immediately did the 120-grit and finished with the steel wool before moving on. Step 3: I never wanted the table spotless, so instead of sanding it to a 100% smooth and clean surface, I left some of the marks. It makes the job easier, but I told Christelle it is part of the table’s character. The legs were more difficult to sand with all the corners, holes and curves, so they were done with the electric sander as far as possible before I rolled up my sleeves and got those hard-to-reach places with my shoulder power. Step 4: Next were a few rest days and then the leg supports. Leaving work for later is always difficult, especially if progress slowed down a bit – it is hard to get going again, so it is best to get the work done sooner rather than later. Step 5: Last to be sanded were all the wedges and the wooden handles that

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

47


READER’S PROJECT

The first coat – the wood was thirsty

This is the underside of the tabletop

The top ready to be sealed

kept the top in place. The round handles were extremely difficult to sand and it was a tedious job, but I eventually got them done, one by one. Step 6: After three weekends of work, it was time for the table to be put together. But first I had to look for any spots where dirty fingers might have touched and give them a quick work over with the steel wool. Step 7: Before I applied any sealer, I cleaned the entire table, all still in its various parts. A wipe with a cloth did the trick. Next, I cleaned out the entire garage, swept, vacuumed and closed all the windows and doors. The garage was dust proof and I could start with the sealing. Step 8: After much debate about what oil sealer to use, I settled on Woodoc 10, a product that I know and have used before. I used a good synthetic brush that doesn’t lose its bristles easily. The first coat went

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

Note the large supports for the table

The supports about to be sealed

One of the family dogs, Windhoek, found this project just as interesting

on with a saturated brush. The wood was thirsty and the sealer penetrated quickly, so I kept on applying until the wood seemed satisfied. Afterwards I cleaned the brush with turpentine and left it to dry to be used again.

The final topcoat drying before the reassembly

Step 9: I left the table to dry properly for a week, although 24 hours would have been enough. I then smoothed the table with steel wool, wiped it clean and applied a second coat. A day or three later, a last coat followed. In all, I used about 2 litres.


IDEAS

Readers share their time saving, space saving or innovative ideas

Alternative uses for a vuvuzela Some items in life just have 101 uses such as the humble vuvuzela. Once the 2010 Soccer World Cup was done and dusted, my vuvuzela was used to chase pigeons away and even sometimes to annoy the neighbours during rugby time. I even tried getting different tones from the vuvuzela, but that was a no-go. Most of us DIY’ers have a couple of odd nuts, bolts and screws in a jar or two, but we usually struggle to get these small items back into the jar after pouring it out to find that that one screw we require. The light went on and I decided to use my vuvuzela to make things a bit easier. I cut it in half and now use it as a funnel when pouring the nuts and bolts back into their respective jars. Goodbye my dear vuvuzela; hello my great vuvafunnel. Thabochi Chilembo, Welkom

Congratulations to Thabochi Chilembo who wins a Triton MOF001 1400w Dual Mode Precision Plunge Router

Second chance for a cordless drill

WINNING LETTER

I took a 12V drill driver whose batteries had stopped charging and converted it so it could be powered by an external power source. I took the battery pack apart and drilled a hole through the bottom and inserted a cable through it. I removed all the cells from the pack and then drilled small holes through the contacts that were left in the battery pack housing and connected the cables to them. On the other end I fitted crocodile clamps to allow me to connect the battery pack housing. This way I can still use the drill with a normal battery pack and I can connect it to my car battery in an emergency. This helps a lot as I am a handyman and when there is no power around and the batteries get drained, I can still use the drill. Thabochi Chilembo, Welkom

Share your ideas!

WIN!

A 32-piece HSS tap and die set in a steel case from Vermont Send your bright ideas to The Home Handyman ‘Bright Ideas’, PO Box 650484, Benmore 2010 or email: editorial@homehandyman.co.za. Please include your phone number and physical address during office hours.

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

49


A WOODWORKERS DIARY

Beautiful locked fingers

Denis Lock describes how to cut a finger joint

I

was recently approached by a beekeeper for help with building wooden beehives. A beehive is basically a box and requires four corner joints. The preferred joint (see main photo above) for exterior use is a finger joint (also called a box joint or comb joint). It consists of a series of interlocking fingers that give the joint a high degree of mechanical strength. More importantly, the faces of the fingers (marked with an ‘F’ in the photo) provide face-grain-to-face-grain gluing areas. Collectively this is a large area and after gluing the resultant joint is very strong. The joint is a little tricky to make, but there is no doubt that this is one of the strongest ways to build a box. If accurately cut and glued with waterproof glue, the joint will not fail prematurely. I had been meaning to make a jig to cut finger joints for some time and this request was the impetus I needed. I set out to build a simple but accurate jig. There are basically two ways to machine cut (I wouldn’t try by hand) a finger joint. The first is on a table saw fitted with a dado stack. The second is using a router table: This gives cleaner cuts in the same amount of time. I selected the

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

Guides

2

Sled

latter. My router table jig consists of three components: A sled with a backing board, a pair of guide strips which are clamped to the router table and a facing board (one for each finger size) which incorporates the allimportant indexing key. The sled is a 400mm x 400mm piece of 6mm MDF. The backing board is a 400mm x 120mm piece of laminated chipboard

3 attached to the one edge of the sled. I used a pair of brackets and screws (see photo 2). Two M6 wood inserts (often abbreviated to ‘woodsert’) are fitted to the back inside face of the backing board. These are used to attach the facing board. A pair of M6 T-nuts would work equally well. The two guide strips are 100mm wide pieces of 6mm MDF cut to the width of


Indexing key position

The finger joint is a little tricky to make, but there is no doubt that this is one of the strongest ways to build a box

Must be square

5 Setting to cut groove

4

the router table (600mm in my case). Photo 3 shows the guide strips clamped to the router table with the sled that slides between them. It is important that the edges of the guide strips are dead straight and that the edges of the sled are straight and parallel. Spend the time needed with a long flat sanding block to achieve this condition. The sled must slide smoothly

6 between the guides with no play. As shown in photo 4, the front edge of the sled must be square to the guides. The fingers can be square or rectangular. I think that rectangular fingers look better: I aim for about three-quarters of the thickness of the stock. Let’s go ahead and use a 12mm diameter straight router bit and cut a joint in 16mm thick stock. The facing board is also a piece of 400mm x 120mm laminated chipboard. It is drilled and countersunk so that it can be attached to the backing board with two M6 machine screws. Note that a 6mm gap is left underneath it. Before doing so, it is marked as shown in photo 5: Four lines 12mm (the size of the chosen router bit) apart. Two of them are 6mm each side of the centre line of the facing board. Line up the two left marks on the facing board with the router (photo 5). Hold the sled firmly in place and attach the two guides snugly at each side of the sled.

Groove and slot cut

7 One more piece of 6mm MDF is needed: A 400mm x 70mm sled extension. Slip the sled extension (photo 6) under the facing board and set the bit height at 2mm (I used a 2mm plastic shim). Remove the shim, switch the router on and cut (by moving the sled forward) a 2mm x 12mm groove in the sled extension (top half – photo 7). Use a stop clamped to the table to control

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

51


WOODWORKERS DIARY

Indexing key

8 Key plus spacer

the length of the cut. Remove the sled extension, change the bit height to 16mm and cut a slot in the facing board (bottom half – photo 7). The next step is to make the indexing key. This is a short length of a dense wood machined to 12mm x 12mm (the size of the chosen router bit). I used hard maple. The key must be a snug fit in the slots machined above (photo 7). If you have a thicknesser, this is a relatively simple task. If you don’t have a thicknesser, be prepared to do some hand sanding to achieve a good fit. Glue a length of the 12mm x 12mm into the sled extension (photo 8) and screw the sled extension to the bottom of the facing block. Loosen the sled guides and line up the sled

9

First cut

11 Second cut

12 Third and fourth cuts

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

10

as shown in photo 9 (the router bit must just ‘kiss’ the spacer block). Use a piece of the same 12mm x 12mm strip that the indexing key was cut from as a spacer. Clamp the guides and check that the sled slides smoothly. We are now ready to cut a finger joint. Change the height of the router bit to match the thickness of the stock being used. Line up one of the box sides as shown in photo 10. Hold it firmly against the indexing pin and the facing board, switch on the router and move the sled smoothly forward. Use a stop to control the depth the bit cuts into the facing board: 8mm is enough. Rotate the piece just cut through 180˚ and place it over the indexing key. Butt the second piece of stock against the first (left side of photo 11) and cut the first slot in the second piece (right side of photo 11). Turn the first piece back through 180˚ and overlap the two pieces as shown in the left side of photo 12 and cut the second slot in both pieces. Reposition as shown in the right side of photo 12 and cut the third slot. Repeat this process until all slots are cut. Photos 11 and 12 were posed without hands for the sake of clarity. Hold the boards firmly and make slow, smooth cuts. Be particularly careful on the final cut of a joint. Practise on some scraps of soft pine. The completed joint is shown in photo 13. The slots have been cut a fraction deep and the fingers project


Finished joint

13

A good fit

14

15

A not so good fit

This project was motivated by somebody wanting to make beehives, but the joint has many other uses. I have made four facing boards to cut 6mm, 10mm, 12mm and 16mm fingers. These are bolted to the backing board as needed. Photo 18 shows a keepsake box made with 6mm finger joints. What about toy boxes, trays, linen chests, boxes for expensive instruments and drawers? Photo 19 (courtesy of Alexander Wildervanck Furniture) shows exposed finger joints on the drawers of a bedside pedestal. To quote Alexander: “Traditional joinery set in contemporary form removes that industrial mass production look we’ve been inundated with over the last few decades.” Use finger joints on one of your projects and give it a different look.

16

Guide geometry

slightly. Sand them flush after assembly. If the set-up shown in photo 9 was accurately done, the joint will fit snugly and not fall apart under gravity (photo 14). The joint in photo 15 was not cut all that accurately. You are probably asking where the micro-adjust facility is on this jig? Micro adjustment is simply achieved by small repositioning of the two guide strips. If they are moved in the direction ‘T’ (photo 16), the joint will be tighter; if moved in the direction ‘L’, the joint will be looser. The geometry of the router table and the guide strips is to our benefit. On my router table the following is true: If the clamp at A (photo 16) is loosened and the guide strip pivoted around the clamp at C, then the movement at B is one-third of that at A. I use what I call a guide registration block and a thin card shim to achieve micro adjustment. Let’s assume that the fingers are too small by 0,1mm and the joint is loose. Place a business card shim (0.3mm) against the right guide and clamp a registration block up hard against the shim (left side of photo 17). Loosen the clamp on the guide strip, remove the shim, swivel the guide strip up hard against the registration block and re-clamp the guide strip. Finally remove the registration block and adjust the left-hand guide to be snug against the sled. 18 The fingers will now be 0.1mm thicker.

Micro adjustment

17

A keepsake box

19

Finger joints are useful for many items, not just beehives

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

53


WOODWORKER’S CORNER Your guide to the world of woodworking

Hardware Centre, Randburg held its last show for 2013 on Saturday 30 November. We popped in and joined the festivities.

The Makita team making customers aware of their latest products

Some DeWalt power tools on display

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

John Young with a butcher’s block that he made


The Bosch compound mitre saw every woodworker wants in their workshop

Gerhard Wong carries out demonstrations using the latest lathe from Jet

John Young demonstrating the how to use the Triton table saw

Bruwer Leykauf shows off his skills on the router lathe

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

55


WOODWORKER’S CORNER Your guide to the world of woodworking The Woodworker’s Corner has been turned into a bragging space

All these items were made on the scroll saw and lathe and made great Christmas presents A gravity car, originally built and auctioned for charity

Please send us pictures of your projects. Write a caption with your name, inspiration, type of wood, etc. and send it to editorial@ homehandyman.co.za

Woodworking associations

Biltong cutters made by John Young

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

Woodworking associations’ details are available on our website at www.homehandyman.co.za


BOOK SHELF Viv Martin from Hardware Centre reviews the latest in woodworking literature

The New Router Handbook Author: Patrick Spielman Publisher: Sterling Publishing Co. Inc The definitive guide to the tool that revolutionised woodworking has been dramatically updated, expanded and totally revised to include the most complete, up-to-date information available on the router! First reviewed in 2010, this book, from the internationally acclaimed author Patrick Spielman, is the ultimate workshop bench reference, detailing all the techniques, from basic to advanced. The huge variety of routers, jigs and bits are comprehensively reviewed. Also included are: • Safety techniques and sharpening and maintenance procedures for bits. • Different routers and their capabilities. • Techniques for making and fitting exact joints with a handheld router and router table. • Techniques for routing wood signs, using templates and patterns to create designs in wood and for routing non-wooden material. • Commercial router tables and the ultimate router table that you can design yourself. • Details, tips and techniques that only the master of the router can provide. • Money-saving tips for making ingenious jigs and fixtures that will be invaluable for special or unusual operations. The specialised skills that every craftsman wants are now embodied in this one book. It is 384 pages and is a must for every woodworker.

For more information, contact Hardware Centre on 011-791-0844 (Randburg) or 021-421-7358 (Cape Town)

20th birthday bash The Home Handyman magazine celebrated its 20th birthday last November. Launched in November 1993 it has been published by the independent Home Handyman Publishing company for the past 13 years. This picture shows the team who helps to get each issue into your hands.

300mm Bowl Turning Capacity 1” x 8 TPI Thread

Nova Comet II Lathe 2MT Hollow Tailstock

419mm Between Centres

3/4HP, 220v Motor Variable Speed

Speed Range 250—4000rpm Forward & Reverse Switch

Pic by Richard Thomas

Back row from left, Michelle Funke, associate publisher; Lourens Prinsloo, associate publisher; Allan Swart, publisher; Rose JohnstonFitch, layout designer; Lynne Yates, sub-editor; and Gina Hartoog, editorial contributor From front left to right, Debbie Heard (standing), advertising representative; Sarah Moodley, subscriptions manager; Shelagh Page, advertising representative; Loren Shirley-Carr, sub-editor; Roelof Strydom, assistant editor and in front, Johann Stadler, editor

Standard Equipment: 80mm Face Plate, 150mm Tool Rest. 2MT Live & Drive Centre & Knock Out Bar. Oponal Extras:

14 Bree Street Cape Town (021) 421 7362

Dedicated 4 Jaw Chuck & 625mm Bed Extension.

C/o Malibongwe & Rocky street Randburg (011) 791 0844

THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

57


JUNE 2008

• Make an outdoor lounger • Solar geysers • How to hang and revamp doors

• Natural stone flooring • Energy efficient lighting • Make an adjustable roller stand

• New life for your bathrooms • Make an oak dressing mirror • Working with non-ferrous metals

NOVEMBER 2009

JUNE 2009

OCTOBER 2009

• All about paving • TIG welding explained • Make a wooden push cart

SEPTEMBER 2009

• Efficient MIG welding • Clad your fireplace • Make a wooden drill tray for your ladder

AUGUST 2009

MAY 2009

• Water features • Build a brick perimeter wall • Braze welding explained

JULY 2009

• Build your own garden shed • Make an aluminium case • Make a telephone table

• Make an archway • Make solar electricity work for you • Pathway ideas

NOVEMBER 2008

• Patio paving • Weld a fire hearth • Mounting a floating shelf

APRIL 2009

MAY 2008

SEPTEMBER 2008

• DIY kitchen installation • Installing drywall partitions • Replacing a glass window

OCTOBER 2008

AUGUST 2008

• Installing basins • Make a wine rack • All about generators

MARCH 2009

• Make metalworking jigs • Construct a wooden hexagon table • Fillet welding techniques

JULY 2008

• Create a grand entrance • Make a wine bottle caddy • The lowdown on welding joints

FEBRUARY 2009

• How to install laminated flooring • Take care of outdoor timber • Build a wooden bird feeder • Make a wooden mitre saw stand • Weld your own security gate • Discover arc welding

APRIL 2008

MARCH 2008

FEBRUARY 2008

Missing an issue?

• Do a kitchen makeover • Waterproofing outside areas • Turning a hollow lamp stand

• Build a boma braai • Build a workbench • All about boreholes

• Build your own deck • Damp-proofing your home • Construct a picnic table

• Build a garden arch bench • Make a hosepipe hanger • Construct a stylish headboard

• Build a racing car bed • Make a metal bench • Protect your wood against bugs

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN


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MAY 2010 OCTOBER 2010

SEPTEMBER 2010 • Install laminate flooring • Make an efficient water feature • Make metal dumb valet

• Thatching know-how • Make a metal herb stand • Install an intercom

• Lighting trends and ideas • Make a hammock stand • Construct a bookcase

• Window installation • Make a wooden tray • Switch to biofuels

No. of copies ordered: ....................... x R22.00 each = Total R ................................ Name: ....................................................................................................................... Address: .................................................................................................................... .............................................................................................. Code:......................... Tel: ............................................................. Cell: ...................................................... Email: ......................................................... Signature:.............................................. I wish to pay as follows: Direct Bank Deposit to: Nedbank Sandton Account No:146 9039 613; Branch Code:197005. Fax form and Deposit Slip to: (011) 704 3962 or 086 551 0749 Debit my

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• All-time best projects in one mag • Construct a jungle gym • Install your own cupboards

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MARCH 2011

• Construct a Wendy house • Build your own braai • Install garden lights

• How to tile kitchen walls • Kitchen design ideas • Make metal recipe stand

FEBRUARY 2011

• All about garage doors • Install a window seat • Waterproof your roof

• How to lay brick pavers • Make a metal braai • Construct a wooden deck

JANUARY 2011

DECEMBER 2010

• Install your own alarm • Make a metal double bed • How to harvest grey water

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• How to safeguard your home • Make a metal firewood holder • Construct a computer workstation

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AUGUST 2010

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• About ponds and water features • Garden irrigation • Hone your plumbing skills • Make a garden umbrella • Scroll-saw a nativity scene • Construct a metal bird feeder

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HOME HANDYMAN MARKETPLACE TO ADVERTISE ON THIS PAGE CONTACT: SHELAGH PAGE: Tel: 082-822-5959 OR DEBBIE HEARD: 083-302-7493

Design Stainless Products South Africa

k - Quic New ails! EZ R

Clock making kits R50 each A great gift idea or for the creative beginner

For all your balustrading requirements.

Assorted precision hand files 6”- 8”

From R50: Selected 5’,6”,8” Triangular, Half round, Barette, Warding, Cut 0-4

6th Floor Vunani Chambers, 33 Church Street, Cape Town (t) 021 424-8261 (e) tkh@capewatch.co.za

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STOCK THE HOME HANDYMAN MAGAZINE IN YOUR STORE!! We can arrange for Home Handyman magazine to be delivered to you, for re-sale to your D.I.Y. customers, or use them as gifts for your important clientele. For further information, prices etc. contact Hannelie or Sharon at: The Republican News Agency Tel: (011) 248-3500; Fax: (011) 474-3575 E-mail: rna@rnadistribution.co.za Please advise provincial area of your store.

Dampproofing & Waterproofing Association of SA IF: 1. Your problems seem insurmountable. 2. You are involved in a dispute with a developer, builder, estate agent or architect over the purchase or sale of fixed property. 3. You have been landed with a property that is latently defective without disclosure from the seller. 4. They have handed you a damp riddled house constructed on a slope or on founding material such as clay in a former wetland, conservation area or in a swamp or a vlei.

You need help – Fast! Contact David on 011 648-0378 www.dwasa.net

No problem is too large or too small for his assistance in solving JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

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AND METAL TURNS INTO MONEY! Get your brochure, price list & project ideas! SMS “HH’ & your email address to 083 327 9988 or email info@strongman.co.za Call Andries on 083 327 9988. Visit our Demo Centre in Heidelberg

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www.strongman.co.za THE HOME HANDYMAN JANUARY 2014

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

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Skylights

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63


TAILPIECE

Some time ago Reuben the Screwman had the ingenious idea of building a fish pond around a tree in his front garden. Just how difficult could it be? Let him tell you… almost impossible!

Eye-catching or eyesore?

S

aturday morning: I just got back from 702 Talk Radio, having shared my infinite wisdom on DIY matters, leading listeners up the proverbial garden path it seems, as I was about to embark on one of those journeys myself. Make no mistake, planting a seedling in our garden takes a certain degree of determination, let alone digging a pond. We live against a rocky hill and I am sure this is the spot where David and Goliath had a falling-out. You do not dig a hole here, you chisel one. The old saying “Experience is what you get when you get what you don’t want” seemed to ring true in this case. Off I went with spade and pick in hand. At the very outset of the project, I encountered my first problem… tree roots as big as my leg (now there is an axe in the picture – not a standard item on the list of tools required to build a pond – but this was not going to deter me in the least).

I was trying to convince myself that the muddy mosquito hatchery was going to have a magnificent impact on the ecosystem After three hours of digging, chopping and chiselling, I realised I was in some unchartered territory. It was time to reconsider the size and depth of the pond. One thing was certain; it was not going to be a koi pond. After a day of pure hell

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JANUARY 2014 THE HOME HANDYMAN

I had a hole that resembled the track mark left by a medium size truck. Pride comes before a fall, so steadfast and determined I slogged on the next day; it is true to say I did not rest that day. Finally it was time to plaster this embryonic koi pond. It was at this point that the inevitable happened – Kaeren (my wife) voiced her modest opinion on my construction site. A little voice inside me told me to take her advice and cover the hole, but this voice was overruled by a far larger voice attached to an even larger ego. Plastering was to go ahead, against even my better judgement, which did not count for much at this stage. Using some of the rocks I had excavated as eye-catching objects around the edge, I finished off the pond. A second plea by my wife to fill in the “eyesore” was not received well at all and was followed by a lengthy discussion of my abilities as a pond builder. A week later, the concrete had cured and it was time to open the sluice gates and flood the pond. Even at this late stage of the game, I was still trying to convince myself that the muddy mosquito hatchery in front of me was going to have a magnificent impact on the ecosystem and positively change the landscape for centuries to come. The so-called ‘pond’ graced our garden for some time. It was like having a family member in prison; you know about it, but you don’t talk about it. Then, one day I came home and noticed that the ‘pond’ had been filled in. Not a word was ever mentioned – until the writing of this column.


has gone digital! The Home Handyman Magazine e has ass now also made a digital version sion available, so you can choose between tw tween ween the printed or digital versions. ns. Single copies and subscriptionss are arre available for download at discounted rates.

Latest digital issue @ R 24.00 incl VAT (25% less than printed issues) 1 year digital subscription @ R 184.00 incl VAT (32% less than a printed subscription for 11 issues)

NB: Subscriptions for the digital version can only be done on www.mysubs.co.za and payment must be made to them. For further information contact 011-462-5645 or email sarah@homehandyman.co.za



The home handyman january 2014