Author – Todd Fratzel, P.E.

By Todd Fratzel on Uncategorized

picture of Todd FratzelTodd Fratzel, P.E.
Newport, NH

I’m a licensed professional engineer in the states of New Hampshire and Massachusetts. Currently I’m employed by a large construction company as Principal Engineer and project manager for the residential and commercial design-build division. I oversee the construction of custom residential homes, commercial building projects and the development of design-build opportunities.

My interests include custom home design, design-build, energy star homes, green building, structural design, land development and planning, finish carpentry and numerous home improvement topics.

I’ve written this home improvement blog in order to share my interests with other professionals, home owners, and DIY’ers. I’m also the author of Today’s Green Construction.

You can follow me on Twitter or on Plurk and you can also email me questions or comments.

About the author

Todd Fratzel

I'm full time builder for a large construction company in New Hampshire. I run their design-build division that specializes in custom homes, commercial design-build projects and sub-divisions. I'm also a licensed civil and structural engineer with extensive experience in civil and structural design and home construction. My hope is that I can share my experience in the home construction, home improvement and home renovation profession with other builders and home owners. I'm also the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Tool Box Buzz. Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions, suggestions or you'd like to inquire about advertising on this site.

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  1. Barry Rabkin says:

    Hey Mr. Fratzel,
    Your site is amazing, I’ve been reading for the past few hours and I’ve found your articles invaluable since I am renovating a fixer upper me and my fiancee just purchased and we’re in a little over our head. We’re completely redesigning the kitchen and I’d love to send you the floor plan and get your advice on the best way to arrange the appliances, cabintery, islands and what tweaks to add to meet our goals. If you’d help, I’m sure your advice would help the other readers and after seeing your kitchen I know you could give us some wonderful suggestions on ours. I hope to hear back barryrabkin1 at, thank you – Barry

  2. Anonymous says:

    Dear Todd,
    I want to tear down a wall in my house ( a bungalow ) to open it up, but I do not want the support beam to be lower than the ceiling, Do you have any tips?

  3. jdrewett says:

    My brother and I are remodeling a deer shack and thinking about hanging 1/4 inch plywood on the ceiling. We have insulated and will be attaching directly to the joists. We have access to a porter cable FN250A T-nailer and inch and a half finishing nails. Will this be sufficient to hold it up or would you recommend somthing different for the ceiling. Nothing fancy or expensive. Thanks JD

  4. Todd says:

    Finish nails will probably do the trick but the heads may pull out over time. I’d say tack it in place with the finish nails and then use some rink shank nails to secure it permanently.

  5. Hadleyfarm says:


    Can you recommend a good adhesive for gluing DOW 1″ blueboard to interior concrete basemant walls – I’m using 4×8 sheets of 1″” DOW


  6. Todd says:

    @ Hadleyfarm – If you go to your hardware store and look in the caulking section you’ll find at least one product recommended as an adhesive for blueboard.

  7. Marlon Meiklejohn says:

    Hello Todd. Thanks for leaving a comment on my blog. Yes, I’ve seen many photos of truss disasters. I certainly don’t want to be one of them.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Hi Todd,

    Read your piece about your french door with build-in mini blinds.
    Which mfgr makes this type of door?

  9. Todd says:

    The doors are Thermatru

  10. BruDaniell says:

    I found a fireplace built by you on the site. In it you describe rails and stiles for the columns. The pictures did not really show that much detail. Are the rails/stiles just 1/2 inch strips of 3/4 pine, and are they joined by making them 45 degree corners?

    I’m in the middle of making a new fireplace mantel in place of the one that was there and I really liked your design!

  11. Todd says:

    @ BruDaniell – Email and I can help you out. My email is

  12. Noggy says:

    Hi Todd…

    I’ve just recently become acquainted with your website when I entered a giveaway. I am also subscribed and have received several of your emails. I love brevity…thank you for keeping them short and sweet.

    I also took the liberty of listing you current giveaway for the Husky socket set at where I’ve been a member for some time. We have thousands of members who are homeowners and I know would love a blog with insights into Home Constuction Improvement. I don’t blog yet although I have started working on a layout but it will have to do with the new administration is Washington. But in the future if you should have a widget or something I can add to my blog as it progresses I would be happy to post it. In the meantime I will let my fellow members at OLS know about your giveaways. We’re like 50,000 strong so you should get some traffic.

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