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General Contractors

NM Ridge Construction specializes in framing residential custom homes, additions and light commercial spaces. Although we are well versed in all the production framing techniques available, our primary focus is in doing high quality work. We have three priorities that we impress upon our employees in order of importance; safety, quality and then speed.

Our philosophy is simple in terms of a given task. All work shall be done as though by a twenty year journeyman. If a first year apprentice is performing a task, upon completion it shall match the quality of a skilled journeymen but take longer. If a skilled journeyman is performing a given task it shall be done with the alacrity of a carpenter of his experience. In either case the cost and the quality of the product will be the same.

Our aim is to know the project that we are preparing to undertake backward and forward before we drive a single nail. Because of this, communication and organization are stressed as important personal characteristics of our framers. Since our lead men are accomplished roof cutters, we are always considering the impact that other aspects of the framing may have on the roof, and visa versa. Also, we recruit our carpenters from the remodel and finish end of the spectrum rather then the production end  because we find it easier to teach production techniques to a person with a steady hand, than to teach a tract framer to do quality work.

Just as a framing contractor is required to possess a General B License, we require our employees to fully understand the impact their work has on the other trades we work with.


Our first intention is to complete the job for the price set forth and according to the schedule laid down in the contract document.  In our experience, however, most jobs do not go without some kind of hitch. Often the structural drawings don’t jibe with the architectural drawings or some other aspects of them are incomplete.

We believe our role is to bring to your attention any discrepancies or oversights in the plans before they become a problem and before extra cost incur. Most of the problems and added expenses can be avoided if they are addressed soon enough. To begin with we insist on installing all framing anchors in the foundations as part of our contract. In our experience it sometimes takes understanding of a full set working drawing to guarantee the hold-down locations are correct.


Our claim is that we can frame bigger projects more accurately, faster, with fewer hang ups and for less money than it would cost an average crew of general carpenters. 

Our company operates two or more framing crews all year long accepting occasional short breaks to install siding or exterior finish work. Through repetition we have become faster and more accurate then the average journeyman carpenters who may only see one or two frames per year.

We are regularly in contact with the most up-to-date engineering requirements and are familiar with the most recent tools and materials available. We have worked with many well known architects, engineers and general contractors in the Bay Area. We hold framing seminars 8 hours per month to teach our carpenters (and others general carpenters) to work smarter rather than harder. Our success is due as much to organizational skills as hustle.


All our estimating is done from a set of working drawings in our office. If we have any questions after having examined the blueprints, we will address them before settling on a price This allows you to call the Architect, Engineer or your client before being locked down by a price. Some General Contractors prefer us to fax our list of concerns to the Architect or engineer directly.

If you are only giving your client a rough estimate and don’t want to waste time talking, we will estimate as though the structural drawings supercede the Architectural drawings. In the case of additions, we do not generally need to do a site visit. We may request it, if we have questions after seeing the blueprints.


One of the first things that we do upon signing a contract with a General Contractor is to confer with the Concrete Contractor about their schedule. Since we install all the framing anchors at the foundations before the concrete is poured we can judge the accuracy of the concrete forms at that time. If there are deviations from the plans or problems with the dimensions of the foundations we will know it before we begin. We will describe what the possible impact the changes in the concrete could have on the framing.

After the concrete is poured and ‘signed off,’ the floor joists are installed. In the case of new construction some General Contractor will send us away for a week or so to allow for the plumbers, insulators and mechanical contractors to get in and out. Once their job is complete we return to finish the floors and the remainder of the framing.

After the shear-wall inspection is passed all the exterior doors and windows can be installed. The last inspection that effects us is the rough framing and this is called for after the plumbing, electrical, mechanical work and insulation is complete.


When our phase of the project is complete we continue to check in regularly. We want to make sure you remain satisfied through the finish carpentry stage and beyond.

For our track record continued good references and repeat business is essential. 



  Classes are held the last Friday of each month from 8:00 A.M to 4:30 P.M. All rafter calculations are sought by way of a steel square and through traditional graphic methods. The beauty of these methods are that they are easy to remember and don’t require any complicated mathematics.


  1. For the newcomer we go over the proper way to set up the square and the fundamentals of stepping off common rafters. Once the carpenter has mastered the use of the steel square to step off gable rafters and gable studs and has built a ¼ scale model, we begin hip and valley rafter calculations.

  2. At the beginning of the second class we review what was covered the previous month and go from there. All carpenters will be provided roof plans and will be expected to build them under supervision. The roof plans usually cover a full hip with a cupola or a couple of gable dormers.

  3. All further classes cover complex roof framing such as Dutch gables, Tudor peaks, polygons, varying plate heights and intersecting unequal pitches and curved rafters. Once again the carpenters will be handed roof plans and expected to calculate, cut and assemble them with a group of other carpenters while being supervised.

  4. Classes are held out doors and all models are built with 2x4 and 2x6 Douglas fir stock.

For more information, send me a message using the contact email form. To see photos of our projects, go to the NM Ridge Construction Portfolio page.

San Rafael, CA














































monthly roof framing classes with NM Construction in Albany, CA




© 2007 NM Ridge Construction