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Fundamentals of Residential Construction, 3rd Edition

ISBN: 978-0-470-54083-1
688 pages
April 2011
Fundamentals of Residential Construction, 3rd Edition (0470540834) cover image


The leading guide to professional home construction—now updated and revised!

Fundamentals of Residential Construction, Third Edition features the most up-to-date explanations of today's residential construction systems. From foundation to roof and exterior finishes to interior details, this new edition thoroughly addresses the latest developments in materials and methods of house construction, including energy efficiency, framing, and roofing.

Abundantly illustrated with more than 1,250 drawings and photographs, including new photorealistic illustrations that bring the text to life, this Third Edition provides authoritative coverage on wood light-frame construction, industrialized systems of construction, insulating concrete forms, light-gauge steel frame, panelized construction, and a new chapter on multifamily construction. Topics covered include:

  • Plumbing
  • Building codes
  • Heating and cooling
  • Financing
  • Wiring
  • Roofing
  • Thermal insulation
  • Environmental concerns
  • Foundations
  • Finish sitework
  • Rough sitework
  • Wood and light-gauge steel framing
  • Engineered materials
  • Exterior and interior finishes

Organized in a logical, easy-to-follow format, Fundamentals of Residential Construction, Third Edition is the one-stop source for building professionals to gain a working knowledge of codes, management procedures, material, and all home building concerns.

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Table of Contents

Preface xi

Acknowledgments xi


1 The Context for Construction 2

2 The Construction Community: Builders, Contractors, and Developers 30

3 The Design Community 50


4 The Material Wood 72

5 Masonry 110

6 Concrete 148


7 Rough Sitework 170

8 Foundations 190

9 Floor and Wall Framing 218

10 Roof Framing 248

11 Finishing the Roof 276

12 Windows and Exterior Doors 306

13 Finishing the Exterior Walls 328

14 Plumbing 352

15 Heating and Cooling 370

16 Electrical Wiring 392

17 Thermal Insulation 408

18 Fireplaces and Stoves 434

19 Interior Surfaces 456

20 Finishing the Interior 474

21 Finish Sitework 496


22 Multifamily Construction 516

23 Low-Tech, Low-Energy Construction 546

24 Loadbearing Masonry and Concrete Construction 574

25 Timber Frame Construction 592

26 Light-Gauge Steel Construction 608

27 Panelized Construction 622

Glossary 643

Index 669

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Author Information

Edward Allen, FAIA, has been a member of the faculties of Yale University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and has frequently taught as a guest instructor at other institutions across the United States. Along with a teaching career that spans more than thirty years, he has designed more than fifty constructed buildings. He is the best selling author of The Architect's Studio Companion, Architectural Detailing, Form and Forces, and Fundamentals of Building Construction, all published by Wiley.

Rob Thallon, architect, Associate Dean and Associate Professor at the University of Oregon School of Architecture and Allied Arts, is the author of the following best selling series of guides: Graphic Guide to Frame Construction, Graphic Guide to Site Construction, and Graphic Guide to Interior Details. He has more than thirty-five years of experience in residential design and construction, and has designed and overseen construction of numerous custom houses and housing complexes.

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Instructors Resources
Wiley Instructor Companion Site
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Students Resources
Wiley Student Companion Site
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Fundamentals of Residential Construction, 3rd Edition (US $125.00)

-and- The Architect's Studio Companion: Rules of Thumb for Preliminary Design, 5th Edition (US $105.00)

Total List Price: US $230.00
Discounted Price: US $172.50 (Save: US $57.50)

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