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Jim Katen

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Everything posted by Jim Katen

  1. Jim Katen

    Electric panel line control?

    Looks like a motor controller.
  2. Jim Katen

    Post Frame Construction Home

    I'm very familiar with post frame construction and been accepted as an expert witness in that construction style. I've also inspected a couple of dozen local vineyard properties that use that construction technique. You can certainly build a very energy efficient residence with it - no doubt there. I question the cheaper and faster part, especially since this is your first construction project. It reminds me of all my friends who built geodesic dome houses in the '70s . . . (Ok, it's not as bad as that.) That said, I'll be very interested to hear about your progress and see how the cost and time work out, and I'll be happy to be proved wrong.
  3. Jim Katen

    Post Frame Construction Home

    I question your premise. If your final product will be cheaper, more energy efficient, and quicker to build, then why do you suppose that the vast majority of builders use stick frame construction in North America?
  4. Not me. I detest Vegas. I will be attending InspectionWorld in San Diego in January, however.
  5. Jim Katen

    Raised stair nosing

    If the risers are too high, then that would be wrong. Likewise, if the top and bottom steps are the wrong heights, that would be wrong, just like they are in 99% of the stairs that I look at. But these have nothing to do with the product. They have to do with misuse of the product. These are not a "technique," they're an approved, manufactured product and part of a flooring system. The manufacturer directs you to install them this way. I'm not a fan of the product either (I'm not a fan of most crappy building products out there), but I don't see them as a significant hazard. Heck, when I walk up & down stairs that are covered with plastic laminate, the little raised edges are annoying, but they do help to prevent my feet from slipping off the edge. Personally, I'd rather have them than not have them. (By the way, the lips are nowhere near 3/8", they're more like 1/8".) If you all want to orchestrate a unified rebellion against something, make it something that's truly horrid like sunken living rooms, boob lights, or, heaven forbid, stenciled inspirational quotations on walls.
  6. Jim Katen

    Copper and aluminum SEC

    It's not a requirement of the NEC unless the wire manufacturer or the panel manufacturer require it.
  7. Jim Katen

    Wood Pellet Insulation

    I occasionally see this stuff, but I've never found an official name for it. (It looks like cedar.) An old timer once told me that it was "mill tailings." If so, what milling process would produce it?
  8. Jim Katen

    HI Artography - Box of Cats

    I didn't know that McDonald was still manufacturing cats.
  9. Jim Katen

    Wait for it....

    Or the undersupervised . . .
  10. Jim Katen

    Room wall switch requirement

    I traced it back to the 1975 edition of the NEC. I couldn't find it in the 1971 edition. Seems odd, though. It was so common that there must have been a requirement before that, but it was probably in another article.
  11. Jim Katen

    HI Artography - Attic Porn 1968

    I remember that issue.
  12. Jim Katen

    Terrible home inspection advice

    Hey Jimmy, great idea. The first thing that comes to my mind is section 1.3 of the *old* A.I.I. Code of Ethics (of all things): Just to be clear and fair, A.I.I. no longer prohibits "overly scrutinizing" and they finally gave up on validating purchase decisions.
  13. Jim Katen

    HI Artography - Old Boiler

    Why do you think it was originally steam and not hot water?
  14. Jim Katen

    Flashing Integration/Exposure

    I think it's the opposite. You should see no more than the bottom half - preferably no more than the bottom third. I'm fine with the side-laps completely covering the sides of the flashings. As for the mastic, yes, it shouldn't be used on plastic flashings or on the top-side of asphalt shingles.
  15. Jim Katen

    Arc-faults for AC circuit

    Not if its fed with 240 volts. The NEC only requires AFCI protection on 120-volt single phase 15- and 20-amp circuits.
  16. Jim Katen

    Hockey Practice?

    Whoever did this has no future in the NHL . . .
  17. Jim Katen

    Boot flange fastening

    Sure. That's fine. No more than 1-1/2" apart makes sense. You can have them less than 1-1/2" apart without hurting anything.
  18. Jim Katen


    No visible signatures here using Chrome or Firefox.
  19. Jim Katen

    Crappy drill press

    A heavier motor on a machine like that will just highlight its other weaknesses: poor bearings, sloppy tolerances, and weak gears and springs. You can't turn a Yugo into an Accura by adding a new engine.
  20. Jim Katen

    Boot flange fastening

    Well, those screws are no more than 1-1/2" apart . . . That would be wrong with this kind of boot. The extremely malleable metal flange needs more screws. They're supposed to work by using the caulk to form a gasket - like an oreo cookie. If you don't have enough screws, you can't compress the caulk. Too many screws in this particular location really won't hurt anything. It's an old argument with a lot of myth baggage. The purpose of the screws is to secure the roofing panels to the deck. They need to be on the flats. This doesn't make leaks more likely. I'd love to see a set of manufacturer's instructions that say to put the fasteners on the ridges. As Erby pointed out, getting them just tight enough but not too tight is very difficult to do consistently. On the other hand, it's easy to consistently tighten the screws on the flats - and if they're consistently tight, they won't leak.
  21. Jim Katen

    clearance otra vez

    I'm perfectly fine with seeing a red silicone boot on a B-vent. Even at 500 degrees, it's not going to combust, just deform.
  22. Jim Katen

    Portland in Early September

    Hey, I had a great time and I'm glad that you enjoyed the PacificNorthwest. Those redwoods really are awe-inspiring. . .
  23. Jim Katen

    Crappy drill press

    Wind thread on bobbins. Power an ice cream maker. Use it as a bearing press. Use it as a mouse trap. (If you have to ask, your sensibilities are too fine.)
  24. Jim Katen

    clearance otra vez

    I've got one in my shop that's listed for 500 degrees F.
  25. Jim Katen

    Boot flange fastening

    Perhaps a few more screws then strictly necessary, but that's how those things are supposed to be installed.