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In Honor of Historic Preservation Month, Old House Journal is offering the opportunity to download 9 different pieces of FREE Do This, Not That, content!

 April 18, 2022


Do This, Not That! - Our Ray Tschoepe, contractor and professional conservator, shares helpful illustrations that show how to do common jobs the right way - and avoid pitfalls!


  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Buckled Flooring Roofs and bathrooms leak: pipes burst; accidents happen. Any time large volumes of water soak into wood floors, there's potential for buckling. Here's the right way to fix it. 
  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Sanding Wood Floors - The plaster walls are repaired and now all that remains is the floor. You know there's beautiful flooring under all the grime, and we'll show you how to uncover it.
  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Use Picture Moulding - Sometimes the traditional way really is best. This handy moulding system allows you to remove or reposition art without damaging the wall surface. 
  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Repairing Plaster Crown Moulding - Plaster crown moulding is beautiful, historic, and sometimes complex, but unfortunately vulnerable to water damage. Here's how to protect yours. 
  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Constructing Porch Column Plinths - A wooden porch is a valued feature of so many old houses. Still, porches come with a price. Make you're constructing yours using the correct method. 
  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Miter Joints Outdoors - Although the miter joint is designed to eliminate end-grain exposure, mitering sometimes makes matters worse. See the correct way to join your outdoor floor boards.
  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Wood Shingling Basics - Traditional shingling readily vents the underside of the roofing, very important for wood shingles. Take a look at how to apply wood shingles so air can circulate under them. 
  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Concrete Bonding Issues - If yours is a 20th-century house, it's likely you have some aging concrete. You might have been told that replacement is the only option, but that's not always true. 
  • DO THIS, NOT THAT: Don't Start a Fire! - Old-house owners are do-it-yourselfers by nature, but any projects worked on require that you take precautions. Use these safe protocols to avoid starting a fire while repairing plumbing. 

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