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August 2008
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Siding by One

In assembling the Artroom Expansion we are usingĀ  vertical 4×8′ siding panels.

The key to getting a good paneling job is having a fixed point where
you can measure from. In this case we want to have a horizontal line to
match the panel bottoms, and a consistent measuring point.

You want to work smarter not harder. There are any number of ways to apply it with a crew, but when you work alone, it can be difficult. The mission is to make the expansion blend into the original structure. Part of that is to have the siding match. Part of that is to match the bottom.
Here is a photo showing the paneling being applied.

One of the easiest ways to establish a horizontal line is to use steel studs and track. It is straight. lightweight, and can be applied simply and quickly. The photo below shows a piece of track installed onto the slab below the bottom plate of our wood frame.
Siding2Here is a closeup of the track attached to the foundation with a steel stud inside to stiffen it. You now have a fixed plane to measure from as well as a temporary ledge to rest the panel for nailing or screwing’


Just a note here: the blue stuff between the treated base plate and the
concrete slab is sill sealer, which forms a water barrier between the
slab and the wood frame above. It has been amazing how many different
folks from other trades have stopped by and have never seen sill
sealer. Always use sill sealer between concrete and wood.

The tools you will need are a hammer drill, a carbide tipped masonry bit, ‘blue screws’ and a 4′ magnetic level. In my case I am using a Tapcon Condrive tool. This is an 18V Dewalt hammer drill, which is probably one of the more versatile tools you can own.

Start on one end of your slab, and using a level and a clamp or two, drive a screw thru the track into the foundation 4-6” from the end of the track. Using the level, drill and install a screw about every two feet, with one more in the end of the track. Continue this for the length of your wall. Take some steel studs and tap them into place, to form a ledge to measure from and to rest your panel while you are attaching it. Friction will hold the stud into the track.

This makes attaching the panels a breeze as you are not trying to line up, hold and nail at the same time.

This is the Condrive kit with all the toys. If you are building a lot of stuff or attaching things into concrete this is a tool you want to have.

It is very good for attaching cabinet bases to concrete floors as well. Like here in the Walk In Closet Project.

Here is one wall done and and the track setup for the next wall. The paneling is straight, and goes up easy. The bottom edge looks a little ragged, but that is just the photograph. There are little bits of caulk that have squeezed out, as I ran a bead of caulk at the base of the wall before I attached the panels.


When you are done you have a few small holes to fill in, but the time you save in installing the panels makes it worth it. Plus you can reuse the track and studs on other projects. Alas, the blue screws will be a loss however.

2 comments to Siding by One

  • Love the Condrive, one of the best tools ever created for driving tapcons!

    We always used tarpaper as a sill sealer, I didn’t know there was a product specifically for that either!

    Great Post.

  • I’ll remember that when we reside the back addition. Still don’t know HOW we are going to do it…