One aspect of being self-taught and working alone is you don’t know if your ideas are new and exciting or old as dirt. This came to mind recently when a song sprang from the truck’s radio and caught me unaware. It starts with a simple, recurring, six-note piano line. A female vocalist joins in, sounding like a really talented friend in your living room. The tempo changes with the addition of male vocals. After this interlude we strip back down to the piano line and female voice. The song was “Evermore,” title track to a recent Taylor Swift release. She’s collaborating with Bon Iver. It was the first Taylor Swift song I’ve ever heard. Now I get why the world thinks she’s great.

I may be among the last six people on the planet who have just heard Taylor Swift for the first time. It may be the same with this tip I want to share. Everyone may already know it, but here it is anyway:

When framing, it’s easier to build and tilt up wall sections with full and continuous bottom plates. But you don’t need or want base plates in door openings, so why put something in you’ll just need to cut out? If your plates don’t continue at the door openings, the section is floppy for the raise and more difficult to get straight. Once the section is up and braced you can cut the plate out at the doorways. This is an easy task with a handsaw. If you’re building on a concrete slab or just don’t want to mar the subfloor when cutting out the plate, try this: Before raising the wall section mark the bottom of the base plate at the door openings. You’re marking the bottom of the section that will be removed once the wall is in place. Take your circular saw and set the depth to half the plate’s thickness. Make a cut at this reduced depth on your layout lines on the bottom of the plate. The plate still has plenty of strength and will stay intact for the lift and subsequent placement. When you want to completely remove the section of plate in the doorway, saw it out with a handsaw. You only need to cut down to meet the base cut made prior to the lift. This keeps your saw blade well above the subfloor or concrete slab.