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Family Handyman’s Vintage Projects and Tips From the ’60s

Family Handyman has always taken great pride in teaching readers to DIY through the use of step-by-step projects. To celebrate our 70th anniversary, here's a look back at some of our grooviest examples from the 1960s.

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Installing a Dimmer, 1960

“One of the exciting features found in the most expensive new homes is a lighting system whose level of illumination is adjustable from full brightness to a very soft, intimate glow.”

*For more amazing vintage Family Handyman content, visit our 70th Anniversary page.
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The Wonders of a Power Drill, 1960

“A circular saw attachment converts your 1/4-in. drill into an efficient, small-size power saw that takes the drudgery out of wood cutting.” 

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3D Accent Wall, 1960

“You can achieve the dramatic effect of bold sculptured patterns on a wall using foamed plastic — at one-tenth the cost of stone grillework.” 

Here’s our 2020 version of this accent wall.

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Steel Pipe Replacement, 1960

“Be sure that the furnace has been turned off and that no steam remains in the pipes before you begin your work. Use a hack saw to make the cuts and then screw both sections of the cut pipe out of their fittings. Removal of these pieces of pipe may not be easy if they are rusted or frozen in place.” 

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Canvas Shades, 1962

“Here, and on the following pages, you’ll find three good ideas for using versatile canvas to get away from the hot summer sun — or to provide precious privacy.” 

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Pink Decor, 1962

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Tips You Should Know About, 1962

“If the markings on a steel square are illegible, you can bring them back to life. Remove rust or scale by wirebrushing, sandpaper the steel bright, and wipe clean. Then coat the entire square with black lacquer. When dry, sand the lacquer off the smooth part. It will remain in the engraved markings.”