Drop, Cover, and Hold On: International ShakeOut Day is October 18

Each year, an earthquake preparedness event known as the Great ShakeOut Earthquake Drill takes place around the world. The coordinated earthquake drill provides an opportunity for schools, businesses, homeowners and others to practice what to do once the ground starts shaking or swaying.
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From Our CEO: Why Company Culture Matters

“When people join our company, they don’t come for a bus stop. This is a career.”

Barclay Simpson

That quote from our company founder is one of my favorites. I had the pleasure to work very closely with Barc when he was alive, and I can tell you that he truly believed and invested in people. I’m certainly a product of that belief.
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How to Restore Your Home After a Hurricane

In 2011, it was Hurricane Irene; in 2012, it was Sandy and then Hurricane Patricia; 2017 gave us Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria and Nate. This year, with Hurricane Florence, we’ve been reminded that damage can’t be predicted by the frequency of the hurricanes or even necessarily where one ranks on the Saffir-Simpson Scale when it makes landfall. Many factors can make even a Category One Hurricane devastating.
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Cross-Laminated Timber Takes Wood Construction to Greater Heights Than Ever Before

Cross-laminated timber (CLT) is changing the way urban builders scrape the sky.

From London to Tokyo, the race is on to build the tallest wood-framed skyscraper in the world. Prized for its workability, low cost and visual aesthetics, wood was widely used by urban builders until the early 20th century, when fires triggered by the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake leveled the largely stick-built city. Until recently, the other knock on wood was a vertical one, in that stick-framed buildings generally top out at five stories, owing to the accumulation of dead and live loads in excess of the allowable loads for lumber.
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How to Beautify an Old Porch Using Outdoor Accents

Over the last year we’ve shared dozens of examples of how to use the Simpson Strong-Tie® Outdoor Accents® line of decorative hardware for adding strength and style to your new do-it-yourself projects. Have you considered using Outdoor Accents to enhance existing structures or backyard furniture? We’ve been waiting for such a project to come along, so when Pneumatic Addict’s Elisha Albretsen told us she wanted to use Outdoor Accents to redo her porch, it was an easy sell. Over two days, the DIYer swapped out her ugly support straps for our sleek strap ties and washers. The end result is night and day. See how she did it below, and check out her blog for more projects.
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Announcing: Give It Your Best Shot! Outdoor Accents Photo Contest

Have you built a pergola or backyard furniture using Simpson Strong-Tie® Outdoor Accents® decorative hardware? If so, this message is for you. We’re excited to announce the Outdoor Accents photo contest. If your project used any Outdoor Accents products, you’re encouraged to put your best photo forward.
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Simpson Strong-Tie Connectors and Fasteners Make the Strongest Partners

Parts, however solid and sturdy they are, won’t hold themselves up. They have to be fastened in place. That’s why we offer a complete line of fasteners that are designed and tested specifically for use with our connectors. However, not every fastener can be used with every connector. Here’s how to identify the right fastener-connector combination for your next project.
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It’s Alive! Self-Healing Concrete, Materials Science and Other Evolutionary Developments

Legions of catatonic organisms lie asleep in the matrix, waiting only for momentary exposure to water and oxygen in order to awaken — whereupon the organisms immediately germinate, grow and fulfill their destiny, sealing the cracks in the fabric of their universe before falling dormant once again.
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DIY: How to Build a Faux Barnwood Dining Table

The farmhouse table: it’s a classic that’s been around for ages, built out of necessity using the same rough lumber farmers used for their barns. Planed and constructed using hand tools, these primitive barnwood tables were the center of the home, where all of the meals were prepared and served. Fast forward hundreds of years and that classic farmhouse table is still going strong. Many farmhouse tables are now being built from reclaimed barnwood, which is a wonderful way to repurpose this old lumber. This trend has become so popular that old barnwood is now scarce and can be costly, as homeowners desire to use it in many furniture designs. In this post, DIYer and Simpson Strong-Tie Brand Ambassador Jaime Costiglio shows you how to create a beautiful faux barnwood table.
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Engineering with Kids: Popsicle Sticks, Spaghetti and Marshmallows

Back in March, a few colleagues and I were discussing how to prepare kids for college. With that subject in mind, I wanted to do something fun and meaningful for the kids in our community. So I organized some workshops in my back yard focused on engineering with kids who might be interested in exploring structural engineering — and summer was the perfect time to do it! We had a group of 12 kids, aged 7–11, who signed up and were all set to explore some engineering concepts. It was a learning experience for me, as well!
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