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41.

CONVERT YOUR HOME TO SOLAR ENERGY

Everett Barber & Joseph Provey
Paperback

Price: $24.95

This definitive homeowner's guide to solar energy has arrived at just the right time. With the cost of heating oil and electricity fluctuating wildly, consumers are clamoring for information on altern…

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This definitive homeowner's guide to solar energy has arrived at just the right time. With the cost of heating oil and electricity fluctuating wildly, consumers are clamoring for information on alternative energy. This book covers all the relevant technologies, including solar space and water heating, as well as photovoltaic electricity.

It's practical (with cost calculators, tips on taking advantage of rebates and tax incentives, and advice on finding specialized contractors). And it's authoritative, written by a recognized expert in the field, Everett Barber, Jr., who has 30 years' experience installing all kinds of solar energy systems. Co-author Joseph Provey has been writing about the topic for almost as long. Together, they cover every facet of planning, installing, operating and maintaining a residential solar energy system.

About the Authors

Everett M. Barber, Jr. is the founder of Sunsearch, Inc., a business he ran for more than 30 years until he recently retired to speak and write about energy matters. During that time, he and his company designed and installed thousands of solar systems in the southern New England area. In addition, Barber was an adjunct professor of Environmental Technologies at Yale University, where he taught courses in thermal analysis of buildings; system design for heating, ventilating and air conditioning; plumbing systems; electrical systems; and fire-safe building design. Barber is a member of the American Solar Energy Society, International Solar Energy Society, and ASHRAE. At the latter, he served on the committee that developed the internationally accepted standard for testing of solar thermal collectors.

Joseph R. Provey wrote his first articles about solar energy, wind power, wood heat, and saving energy during the last energy crisis, in the late 1970s -- and he's still on the beat. More recently, he has written on energy-related topics for Popular Mechanics, Fine Homebuilding, Handy magazine, and in his latest book, The Little Green Book: 365 Ways to Love the Planet. Provey has also served as chief editor to several national home improvement magazines, including The Family Handyman, Home Mechanix and Practical Homeowner.

42.

NEW CHAINSAW GUIDE

Walter Hall
Paperback

Price: $7.00

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $12.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Who needs a chainsaw? Anyone who cuts or uses wood! Learn simple saw maintenance, sharpening secrets and the best wa…

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CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $12.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Who needs a chainsaw? Anyone who cuts or uses wood! Learn simple saw maintenance, sharpening secrets and the best ways to use this handy homesteading tool. Regular Price $12.95.

43.

TRANSFORMING YOUR KITCHEN WITH STOCK CABINETRY

Jonathan and Sherry Benson
Paperback

Price: $24.95

With so many attractive stock cabinetry designs available, creating the kitchen of your dreams no longer involves the budget-busting price tag of custom-made cabinets. In fact, you'll be amazed as cab…

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With so many attractive stock cabinetry designs available, creating the kitchen of your dreams no longer involves the budget-busting price tag of custom-made cabinets. In fact, you'll be amazed as cabinetmaker Jonathan Benson shows you how to beautifully — and affordably — transform your kitchen by using money-saving stock cabinetry and a well-thought-out plan.

From having a solid design that meets the needs of everyone using the space, to advice and lessons on what to know before going cabinet shopping, or how to live in a construction zone, Benson and his wife, Sherry, a former chef and restaurant owner, show you how a little teamwork can make a kitchen remodel go more smoothly.

Transforming Your Kitchen with Stock Cabinetry will put you right in the heart of a remodeling project, which happens to be the Bensons' own kitchen, and guide you through the complete process. The inspirational gallery at the end of the book is filled with beautiful photos and gives true meaning to the term "dream kitchen."

44.

SHED NATION: DESIGN, BUILD AND CUSTOMIZE THE PERFECT SHED

Dan Eckstein
Paperback

Price: $8.77

CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $19.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Whether you want a storage structure, children's playhouse, art studio or workshop, you can learn how…

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CLEARANCE ITEM. PREVIOUS RETAIL PRICE WAS $19.95 AVAILABLE ONLY WHILE SUPPLIES LAST!

Whether you want a storage structure, children's playhouse, art studio or workshop, you can learn how to design and build the ideal shed for any yard with this Popular Mechanics guide. You'll learn how to site, plan and choose durable and attractive materials. There's easy-to-understand information on carpentry and structural anatomy, from installing a foundation to nailing roof shingles to framing a window. This book also includes a final chapter with shed designs that will help you get started building your own structure. Become a citizen of Shed Nation and enjoy your property to its fullest.

There are innovative plans for building several sheds, each with a different practical use, as well as contributions from Popular Mechanics readers who share their own designs.

The sheds include:

  • Small Is Beautiful: A 6’ x 8’ shed with solid framing, plywood sheathing and cedar siding. It’s big enough to hold a variety of tools, but won’t dominate the backyard.
  • The Groundskeeper: This 9’ x 13’ shed with a spacious layout and a crisp, no-frills design is ideal for the beginning DIYer.
  • The Big Red Shed: This handsome shed is a multipurposer’s dream; a 10’ x 12’ tool shed combined with an 8’ x 10’ open bay that’s great for firewood or tractors.
  • Classic Colonial: A stylish, multipurpose garden shed with decorative trim and architectural accents. Includes a 12’ x 12’ general storage space, 4’ x 12’ potting area, and a small loft for seasonal storage.
  • The Greenhouse: Complete instructions on purchasing a kit greenhouse in a variety of sizes (7’ x 9’, 8’ x 16’, or larger) allows for a big-league growing season.
For additional motivation, beautiful photographs present a wide variety of sheds, from tree houses to eco-friendly buildings.

45.

THE BIG BOOK OF BACKYARD PROJECTS

Paige Gilchrist
Paperback

Price: $19.95

Here's a mammoth resource that belongs in the library of everyone who owns a garden. It's a colorful treasure trove of the best backyard projects ever, from decorative to functional, from walls to wal…

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Here's a mammoth resource that belongs in the library of everyone who owns a garden. It's a colorful treasure trove of the best backyard projects ever, from decorative to functional, from walls to walkways. Providing solutions to every possible garden problem, this book furnishes comprehensive coverage of all planning stages: design, technical considerations, tools and materials.

Transform your yard into a beautiful oasis by making attractive and practical garden features using a wide range of materials. Whether you need more rustic seating or want to accent your perennial beds with a flagstone walkway, there's a perfect design here to fulfill your needs.

Need to enliven an ordinary setting? A garden floor can do the trick. Follow the instructions for making one of brick, ornamental gravel, stone or concrete. Want to define a space? Add a beautiful pathway. Find out how to put up a fence for extra flair, or choose one of 30 garden seating ideas, including a trestle swing. How-tos, photos, drawings, and patterns make construction easy.

Complete with hundreds of stunning color photographs, The Big Book of Backyard Projects will enable you to add function and style to your outdoor areas.

46.

BLACKSMITHING: HOT TECHNIQUES AND STRIKING PROJECTS

Jose Antonio Ares
Paperback

Price: $22.95

These amazing techniques and projects offer a modern twist on a traditional art — and they’ll transform your image of the blacksmith forever. Blacksmithing provides an accessible introduction to forgi…

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These amazing techniques and projects offer a modern twist on a traditional art — and they’ll transform your image of the blacksmith forever. Blacksmithing provides an accessible introduction to forging, the process of hammering or pressing steel to a finished shape (most often by applying high heat to the metal). More and more people are discovering the creative pleasure of going into an iron studio, applying high heat to steel, and hammering or pressing interesting shapes.

There's an overview of materials (such as various forms of steel) as well as essential tools (including hammers, torches and anvils). Master such techniques as creating a right-angle bend, forming a point, and making spirals and curls. You'll also learn how to craft your own nails, fasteners and brackets. Then choose from 10 beginner-friendly projects, from a simple trivet to a handsome weathervane.

47.

THE COMPLETE ROOT CELLAR BOOK

S. Maxwell and J. MacKenzie
Paperback

Price: $24.95

Whether as a way to manage challenging economic times or retain a garden's bounty, root cellars are making a big comeback.

This book takes a fresh look at the art, science and romance of …

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Whether as a way to manage challenging economic times or retain a garden's bounty, root cellars are making a big comeback.

This book takes a fresh look at the art, science and romance of building and stocking a root cellar. There are detailed, illustrated construction guides for making four different kinds of root cellars that are functional and attractive. These include never-before-seen models for apartment and condo dwellers and home owners without a basement.

The Complete Root Cellar Book provides technical information on using photovoltaics (solar cells) and other energy technologies to enhance a root cellar's performance and ecological sustainability. It also includes must-know information on how to choose, store and manage a supply of fruits, vegetables, nuts and preserves.

The book features 100 recipes that call for stored produce, many of which also make use of the root cellar's specific environment, such as sauerkraut and barrel-fermented dill pickles. These classic dishes, many with new twists, include:

  • Classic leek and potato soup
  • Golden puffed potato puddings
  • Maple pecan crumble apple pie
  • Classic carrot cake
  • Spiced pear butter
  • Three-onion relish
Root cellars are the best natural way to store food, and this book is the most complete and up-to-date reference available on this time-honored tradition.

48.

DIY PROJECTS FOR THE SELF-SUFFICIENT HOMEOWNER


Paperback

Price: $19.99

Build your way to a more self-sufficient lifestyle with step-by-step projects for backup and supplementary utilities -- including independent water, heat and electricity -- growing and storing food, r…

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Build your way to a more self-sufficient lifestyle with step-by-step projects for backup and supplementary utilities -- including independent water, heat and electricity -- growing and storing food, raising small livestock, beekeeping and more. Many of the projects require basic materials available at your everyday home center, but this book also provides valuable DIY resources for solar, hydro, greenhouse and gardening needs.

This book will help you build security with utility backup systems and become more sustainable, resulting in less dependence on city systems for basic needs. Whether you have a city plot or simply pots, this book includes all of the information needed to plan, build and succeed with greater self-sufficiency.

49.

ROUNDWOOD TIMBER FRAMING

Ben Law
Hardcover

Price: $39.95

This definitive manual marks the birth of a new vernacular for the 21st century. More than 400 color photographs and step-by-step instructions guide you through the building of anything from a garden …

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This definitive manual marks the birth of a new vernacular for the 21st century. More than 400 color photographs and step-by-step instructions guide you through the building of anything from a garden shed to your own woodland house. This practical ‘how-to’ book will unquestionably be a benchmark for sustainable building using renewable local resources and evolving traditional skills to create durable, ecological and beautiful buildings.

50.

HOUSING RECLAIMED

Jessica Kellner
Paperback

Price: $24.95

Housing is a fundamental human right. For most of human history, our homes were built by hand from whatever local materials were available. However, since the Industrial Revolution, most housing has…

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Housing is a fundamental human right. For most of human history, our homes were built by hand from whatever local materials were available. However, since the Industrial Revolution, most housing has become little more than quickly constructed, mass-produced, uniform boxes. At the same time, the invention and standardization of the 30-year mortgage and our ever-increasing reliance on credit has come to mean that most of us never own our homes outright.

Housing Reclaimed is a call to arms for nonconventional home builders. It examines how technological advances, design evolution and resourceful, out-of-the-box thinking about materials and efficiency can help us meet the challenge of building affordable, environmentally friendly, beautiful and unique homes. Focusing on the use of salvaged and reclaimed materials, this inspirational volume is packed with case studies of innovative projects including:

  • Phoenix Commotion — working together toward low-income home ownership through sweat equity and 100% recycled materials
  • HabeRae — revitalizing neighborhoods by creating urban infill using modern technology and sustainable and reclaimed materials
  • Builders of Hope — rescuing and rehabilitating whole houses slated for demolition
These projects and others like them demonstrate that building one's own home does not have to be an unattainable dream. This beautifully illustrated guide is a must read for anyone interested in creating quality zero- or low-debt housing, reducing landfill waste and creating stronger communities.

About the author
Jessica Kellner is editor-in-chief of Mother Earth Living magazine (www.motherearthliving.com) and a passionate advocate of using architectural salvage to create aesthetically beautiful, low-cost housing.

Recommended Product for Wiser Living: Today, more than ever before, our society is seeking ways to live more conscientiously. To help bring you the very best inspiration and information about greener, more sustainable lifestyles, MOTHER EARTH NEWS is recommending books and products to readers. For more than 40 years, MOTHER EARTH NEWS has been North America's "Original Guide to Living Wisely," creating books and magazines for people with a passion for self-reliance and a desire to live in harmony with nature.

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