When I moved to the West coast, from the East coast, it was a little bit like starting over as a builder. I had never heard of one-by-threes, one-by-fives or one-by-sevens. What ARE you talking about? I think the first time it came up was when I wanted to get some door jamb material. I asked the lumber yard guy if he had any 4-9/16" jamb material. He said, "No---but we have 1x5's?" I remember feeling like I must be on Candid Camera or in the Twilight Zone. But, no, he was serious---and the beginning of my learning curve. These things may have been available back East by "special order" or maybe I was living too "remote" from the "real" lumber yards, but I had never heard of them.
Seismic strapping was another thing I had to learn. I knew what anchor bolts were, but the metal required in homes on the West Coast would rival any teenager's mouth.
Perhaps the biggest adjustment was when I went into the roofing supply store----one of the largest in the NW--- and asked for 120 feet of D-flashing. Back on Candid Camera in the Twilight Zone! "Never heard of D-flashing Mister---what does it look like," he asked. I drew a little picture. "I think I remember ordering some of that stuff once," he says. I was accustomed to always using metal D-flashings along the eave edges of the roofs I installed. (I noticed recently that they now stock it---Don Quixote would be proud!) Out here it is rarely used. I see lots of damage to the eaves of homes that don't have metal drip edges. They are especially important on roofs with OSB and Plywood sheathing as these are more easily damaged by moisture than solid boards are---especially the OSB. Here are some pictures that show how water can wrap around the end of the shingles and wick into the roof sheathing.
Back to builder learning curves. I remember once when I was just starting out as a young carpenter, my boss sent me to the hardware to get a list of things. On that list was a pound of 14d nails. A bit of a kidder, he wasn't about to tell me there was no such thing. A week later, while shingling the house, I nailed his pant cuff to the roof sheathing.
PS, for those of you that are new to my blog (or for some other "unexplained" reason have never noticed) all pictures and smiley-face inserts (emoticons) have messages that show up when you point at them with your cursor.
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WA State, Home Inspector Advisory Licensing Board