Question: Can you suggest a material that could be used to make an oversized bulletin board to cover half a wall so that my teen-age daughter has something to pin all the rock star posters and whatever with minimum damage to the wall? I don't want to cover the wall with dark cork paneling.
Answer: Why not obtain several large panels of acoustic ceiling tile and fasten these to the wall? You could even put up several, treating them like pictures with frames and all. The panels I'm talking about are used in suspended ceilings in offices and should be available at larger lumber companies. I'm writing this in an office that has such panels. The color is off-white and the texture makes them fairly attractive even without posters or photos. Use push pins to attach the posters.
I agree with you about cork: This is possibly the messiest material you can use for a bulletin board. I speak from past experience.
Q: My concrete patio has a low spot where dirty rain water collects. The patio is about an inch lower than the kitchen floor surface, but this easy access enables us to use our patio as an outdoor room. Is there an inexpensive solution to our problem, other than sweeping out the water after every rain and when we hose the patio?
A: There are methods to pour concrete on existing slabs to remove the low spots, but they probably aren't inexpensive. You have to make sure that the new concrete bonds to the existing slab. This can be done by roughening the low spot or with special adhesives. Your best bet is to ask a reputable concrete or foundation contractor about your problem. Meanwhile, keep sweeping!
Dale Baldwin will answer remodeling questions of general interest on this page. Send your questions to Home Improvement, Real Estate Department, Los Angeles Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles 90053. Baldwin cannot answer questions individually. Snapshots of successful do-it-yourself projects may be submitted but cannot be returned.