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Top drawbacks to salvaged fixtures

Some items violate building codes, are health hazards
Published on Jan 28, 2011

Last time we paid a visit to the architectural salvage yard -- a place where, if you're diligent, you can find quality building materials that are cheaper and greener to boot. Today we continue the shopping list with more potential bargains, though they may require some careful vetting.

Structural items: Many salvage yards stock a plethora of materials such as brick, wood and steel beams, sheet metal, structural hardware, and the like. If you happen to find exactly what you're looking for (or, more likely, something that's close enough), you can save a lot of money -- often 50 to 75 percent over lumberyard prices. Occasionally, you may have to massage your plans a little to make use of a real bargain, but that's the nature of buying anything recycled.

Lighting fixtures: In general, older lighting fixtures are of much higher quality than modern ones, with heavier parts and more durable finishes. However, you should expect to rewire...

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