What are some good ways to build my knowledge of Construction Details?

Hello all,

I am looking to learn more about construction detailing and the way things are built.  I work in an office that has a detail bank full of standard details of different scenarios for our use in compiling for CD phases but  I am wondering if anyone knows of any good resources to help me better understand these things and why they are built the way they are. This is just for advancing my knowledge of the subject because I enjoy learning how things are built.


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If you have a chance to shadow or even work with a landscape construction company or crew, that would be the fastest way to learn how something is built. 

I never built anything myself, but I did follow my landscape contractor boss around when he did site visits and the steps the workers had to take to build something that wouldn't crack, fall, collapse, lean, or otherwise fail was a great learning experience.

Eventually, you just absorb what 5/8- gravel, compacted sand, filter fabrics, and various types of masonry, rebar, and glue do with each other. He subbed out his trellis/gazebo/deck work so I'm not as familiar, but the Dimensional Lumber Sizes page on archtoolbox.com is a good resource. It's the good old common stuff that contractors can pick up at any lumber supply store.

If you can't go on sites in the middle of construction, try watching videos on Youtube that show the process of building things. Like 'This Old House', I suppose; they walk through the steps with wood sizes, angles of cut, and the different fasteners for different purposes; joining vs. carrying a load. Rafters for a roof are joined the same as rafters for a gazebo.  

Thanks so much for the response. I will definitely check out the resources you listed.


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