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Green Building Bible, Fourth Edition
Green Building Bible, fourth edition (both books)
These two books are the perfect starting place to help you get to grips with one of the most vitally important aspects of our society - our homes and living environment.

PLEASE NOTE: A download link for Volume 1 will be sent to you by email and Volume 2 will be sent to you by post as a book.

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    • CommentAuthorRex
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2020
    What ho one and all,

    I do some DIY for an elderly neighbour who has just moved. Today, she was asking me if I could hang a few pictures for her. In practice, no problem. She has bought some picture hooks with masonry nails.

    I am a bit wary of nailing into a plaster / brick (may be thermolite?) wall. Not concerned about cables, but seems to me, nailing into a wall is likely to cause brick / block to flak off.

    Obviously, a rawl plug is better, but that is a larger hole. Is it worth pre-drilling a small hole and packing it with matchsticks or similar? Or am I being paranoid?
    Posted By: Rexnailing into a wall is likely to cause brick / block to flak off.

    It depends upon the type of plaster, a couple of trial picture hooks will tell. If they fail then drill and matchsticks sounds like a plan - and probably cheaper than plastic plugs.
    • CommentAuthortony
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2020
    I often use cable clip nails, if worried drill a tiny hole first

    A lot too much of the time you are likely to be going into plasterboard.

    Mirrors and heavy pictures etc prefer screw and plug
    • CommentAuthorrevor
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2020
    In the past I have found that the pins that come with the hooks are adequate if the plaster is sound enough. I would not use masonry nails they are too thick. The hook nail holes are angled so you get the dovetail effect and If you direct the pins (use hooks with 2 holes) sideways slightly you increase the dovetail effect. But being a belt and braces man I use 2 hooks a few cm apart to suit the picture so if one fails the picture does not fall off.
    Question Is timely I need to hang pictures on a newly (well 12 month old) lime plastered wall and I am concerned that the plaster will hold the pins the way that hard wall plaster does.
    • CommentAuthorowlman
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2020
    I don't think a 6mm hole with a decent nylon plug like a Fischer and a masonry nail makes much of a difference damage wise. I always use plugs and then a pan head screw the large head prevents any possibility of the picture cord slipping forward.
    • CommentAuthorJeff B
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2020
    I never use those type of hooks for the reason you give. I use the smallest wall plug possible. Even a very small diameter screw (3.5mm) can hold a surprising amount of weight if it is long enough (min 25mm). If the person ever decides to take down the picture it is a simple matter to pull out the plug and use filler to disguise the hole.
    • CommentAuthorgyrogear
    • CommentTimeFeb 4th 2020

    wall I'll be damaged...

    I always use 3M Command picture hooks or strips on a good surface. No marks left when removing them.

    • CommentAuthorRex
    • CommentTimeFeb 5th 2020

    Many thanks for the input. I will probably do a trial hole as the hooks she has are designed for two pins, which are supplied. If not happy, then a small masonry drill hole with some matchsticks.

    The hooks do have a facility to use a screw, but I don't have any small and long(ish) ones (although my wife may disagree!)

    Valid point about removing nails from a wall. Certainly a lot easier to fill the hole left by a screw / rawlplug. But she has recently downsized to this smaller bungalow so any hole filling will be up to the next owner.
    Agree with using 2 hooks per picture, I find it easier to get it level then.

    We just moved out of a rented property, the agent made us remove our picture hooks, which caused a lot more mess than had we left them, the nails were very securely into the plaster. The next tenant has already put their own hooks back in!
    • CommentTimeFeb 5th 2020 edited
    Posted By: WillInAberdeenAgree with using 2 hooks per picture, I find it easier to get it level then.

    Agreed, and the pictures stay level instead of needing constant tweaking. Plus it's an insurance policy against a hook failing though not sadly for the wire breaking. I recently had to replace a frame that fell off the wall.

    I suppose the best answer in a rented property would be picture rails. No need to remove and infinite flexibility.
    • CommentAuthorRex
    • CommentTimeFeb 5th 2020
    On a Sillars but different angel, another neighbour, recently converted his garage into a gym. Had the builders do it; wall battens, insulation, plasterboard (that was a mistake but he went with what the builder advised, when I had suggested Fermacell)

    However, I swung by a few days ago, and his wife told me about the argument they had following a picture falling off the wall and the glass breaking. Because of tee pb wall, he decided to use those self-adhesive stick-on hooks because someone in B&Q told him it would be OK.

    As I am sure we all know, they are only OK for a kitchen towel and even then, I would have my doubts.

    This is the same couple, who I posted previously, asking about hanging a 6x4 perspex mirror to get it flat. Again, he went with the builders suggestion and it is now glued to the wall. Not too bad but not really flat.

    Th gym I go to has some very large glass mirrors on the walls; seem to be attached by small hooks on the bottom and top and they are flat.

    But I am only a neighbour of course and what do I know?
    We have small kids and they broke a couple of pictures during indoor games of rugby or other daftness. We started using perspex instead of glass and it's working really well, noticeably lighter weight to hang and no discoloration.
    • CommentAuthorgyrogear
    • CommentTimeFeb 5th 2020
    we ended up hanging the KIDS on the wall by the back of the collar, works fine while we are watching the pictures...

    you just have to check them for discoloration from time to time...
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