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Lesson 1    Drawings and Specifications

By this time in your career, you have probably worked as an apprentice on various building projects. You probably did your tasks without thinking much about what it takes to lay out structures so they will conform to their location, size, shape, and other building features. In this chapter, you will learn how to extract these types of information from drawings and specifications. You will also be shown how to draw, read, and work from simple shop drawings and sketches.

Lesson 2    Woodworking Tools, Materials, and Methods

As a builder, hand and power woodworking tools are essential parts of your trade. To be a proficient woodworking craftsman, you must be able to select, use, and maintain a large variety of field and shop tools effectively. Keep in mind that you are responsible for knowing and observing all safety precautions applicable to the tools and equipment you operate.
Lesson 3    Fiber Line, Wire Rope, and Scaffolding
This lesson presents information on how to use fiber line, wire rope, and timber in rigging and erecting hoisting devices (such as shear legs, tripods, blocks and tackles), and different types of scaffolds and ladders. Formulas are given on how to determine or find the safe working load of these materials.
Lesson 4    Leveling and Grading
This lesson describes the common types of leveling instruments. It also describes their principles, uses, procedures of establishing elevations, and techniques of laying outbuilding lines. As a builder, you will find the information especially useful in performing such duties as setting up a level, reading a leveling rod, interpreting and setting grade stakes, and setting batterboards. Also included in this lesson are practices and measures that help prevent slides and cave-ins at excavation sites, and the procedures for computing volume of land mass.
Lesson 5    Concrete
Concrete is one of the most important construction materials. It is comparatively economical, easy to make, offers continuity and solidity, and will bond with other materials. The keys to good-quality concrete are the raw materials required to make concrete and the mix design as specified in the project specifications. In this lesson, we’ll discuss the characteristics of concrete, the ingredients of concrete, concrete mix designs, and mixing concrete. We’ll conclude the lesson with a discussion of precast and tilt-up concrete.
Lesson 6    Working with Concrete
Concrete is the principal construction material used in most construction projects. The quality control of concrete and its placement are essential to ensure its final strength and appearance. Proper placement methods must be used to prevent segregation of the concrete. This lesson provides information and guidance for the forming, placement, finishing, and curing of concrete. Information is also provided on the placement of reinforcing steel, and the types of ties required to ensure non-movement of reinforcing once positioned. You will also be provided necessary information on concrete construction joints and the concrete saw. At the end of the chapter, you will find helpful references.
Lesson 7    Masonry
Originally, masonry was the art of building a structure from stone. Today, it refers to construction consisting of units held together with mortar, such as concrete block, stone, brick, clay tile products, and, sometimes, glass block. The characteristics of masonry work are determined by the properties of the masonry units and mortar and by the methods of bonding, reinforcing, anchoring, tying, and joining the units into a structure.
Lesson 8    Light Floor and Wall Framing
In the normal sequence of construction events, the floor and wall activities follow the completed foundation work. In this chapter, we’ll examine established methods of frame construction and discuss in general how floor and wall framing members are assembled. An explanation of subflooring installation, exterior sheathing, interior partitions, and rough openings for doors and windows is also given.
Lesson 9    Roof Framing
In this lesson, we introduce you to the fundamentals of roof design and construction. We discuss the framing square and learn how it’s used to solve some basic construction problems. Thern we examine various types of roofs and rafters, and techniques for laying out, cutting, and erecting rafters. The lesson concludes with a discussion of the types and parts of roof trusses.
Lesson 10  Roof Construction and Trim Carpentry
The previous chapters have dealt with framing wood structures, including joists, studs, rafters, and other structural members. These constitute "rough carpentry" and are the main supports of a wood-frame structure. (Subflooring and wall and roof sheathing strengthen and brace the frame.) The remaining work on the structure involves installing the nonstructural members. This work, referred to as "finish carpentry," is divided into exterior and interior finish. Exterior finish material consist of roof sheathing, exterior trim, roof coverings, outside wall covering, and exterior doors and windows.
Lesson 11  Exterior Finish of Walls
This lesson continues the discussion of exterior finishing. The previous lesson covered roof finishing; this lesson examines the exterior finishing of walls, including exterior doors, windows, and glass.
Lesson 12  Interior Finish of Walls and Ceilings
Builders are responsible for finishing the interior of the buildings of a construction project. Interior finish consists mainly of the coverings of the rough walls, ceilings, and floors, and installing doors and windows with trim and hardware. This lesson discusses wall and ceiling coverings, including the closely related topics of insulation and ventilation. The next lesson deals with floor coverings, stairway construction, and interior door and wood trim installation.
Lesson 13  Interior Finish of Floors, Stairs, Doors, and Trim
This lesson continues the discussion of interior finishing. This lesson examines the common types of flooring and the construction procedures for a stairway and interior door framing. It also deals with the types of wood trim and the associated installation procedures.
Lesson 14  Plaster, Stucco, and Ceramic Tile
This lesson provides information on the procedures, methods, and techniques used in plastering, stuccoing, and tile setting. Also described are various tools, equipment, and materials the builder uses when working with these materials.
Lesson 15  Structural Coatings and Preservatives
The final stage of most construction projects is the application of protective coatings, or "painting." As with all projects, you should follow the plans and specifications for surface preparation and application of the finish coat. The specifications give all the information you need to complete the tasks. But, to have a better understanding of structural coatings, you need to know their purposes, methods of surface preparation, and application techniques.

Lesson 16  Project Planning, Estimating and Scheduling

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This is an apprentice-level course for the building construction trades.

Learners who are  using this course material also visit Free-Ed.Net's School of Building & Construction, where you can find additional construction and carpentry courses. Naturally they are free.

The content of this course is modified from a training manual provided by the U.S. Army. Occasional references to military situations and building specifications do not detract from the relevance of the lesson to civilian builders.   

 

David L. Heiserman, Editor

Copyright   SweetHaven Publishing Services, LLC
All Rights Reserved

Revised: May 18, 2013