Sunday, October 31, 2010

For Halloween, I Dressed up as...

...a construction worker!! Steel-toed boots? Check! Tool belt? Check! Head lamp for working in the dark? Check!

Oh wait. That's my real life.

Troy was pretty serious about getting the siding done this weekend. To make that as likely as possible, we started work on Friday night. Worked a couple hours and got three courses run along the west wall.

Saturday we worked another couple hours in the evening and got the siding up to the window.
This afternoon Troy put the flashing and J mold the window and we got going again.

By 9:00 we had the west side finished and called it a day.

Sadly, we did not get to the north side. (Working until 2:30 in the morning probably would have gotten that done, but we didn't want to do that again.)

Despite not meeting Troy's lofty goal, we did show a good effort and have everything done that is visible from the road. That is a good milestone to reach in any case.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

More on Siding

Yes, work did continue on the following Sunday. (I'm talking about the 10th, a while ago, I know.) We started with it looking like this:
We had spent the night getting the plywood up. Now it was time to put the siding on top of it.

By the end of the day:
we had this much siding up; not quite done the tall section.

Work then abated for a weekend or two. But as my luck would have it, I got a Tuesday off. Tuesdays are days that Troy is home for half the day. He made big plans. Then he got lucky...he had only one or two checks scheduled and no exams. So he had the great plan of rescheduling the checks and working with me all day. Lucky me.

So 13 hours later we finished the siding up the tall stretch and some of the siding on the bump out:
 (The new stuff is on the lower angled part on the right; not the longer wall that still has windows.)

But that's not all. (13 hours for that much siding would make us very slow indeed.) Troy took out the rest of the windows and then my task was to clean up most of the glass.

We had a very lovely open view of the woods with their fall colours:
 Until we were done covering it up with plywood anyway...
That's about where we're at. You can make out the framed opening for the new window.Yes, it's quite a bit less window than what we had. But 1. it'll be warmer (and that seems more and more important as the temperatures drop!) and 2. it'll make more room for cupboards (and that seems more and more important as I have my kitchen "stored" in at least three different rooms).

Tomorrow we may put in the window. Or maybe it'll be more siding. I certainly don't know the plan. Whatever it is, I've been notified I'm on call.

One other job Troy's been working on is to fill the gaping cracks between the walls and the concrete floor. In this pic you can see the sunshine shining through the gap:
He's using foam and sections of 2x4s to seal up the openings and stabilize the wall. The angled studs were flapping in the breeze, so to speak, and the wall literally bounced as Troy tried to screw the plywood and siding to it.
It's not done yet, but it is starting to feel like the kitchen is getting sealed up.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A Hard Day's Night

Troy and I put in a good day's work today. The problem is that we didn't start until 6:30 or so.

Troy was actually home earlier than usual--they closed early because of the ND game. But I was off visiting my sister. (Really, I was picking up another oil stove for Troy, but it was only 30 minutes from my sister, so I was visiting her "on the side." That was when I put in a 2 mile walk to warm up my calves for standing on a ladder most of the night.)

So late start = late finish. 2:30 a.m., if I may get specific. Troy didn't want to stop, however, until the wall looked white again. Our own special shade of "invisible white." At least that's what he's hoping...

Oh, what were we doing? I guess I haven't said, have I.

We were filling in the gap on the outside of the house beside the kitchen with four layers of foam insulation (7 inches) and covering it up with plywood.

Here you can see the insulation is done, and I took the pic while waiting for Troy to cut the first piece of plywood:
 The bit on the left is the kitchen. The siding there's been covered with plywood and is ready for new siding. The lines you see there are actually chalk, Troy's attempt to make the plywood look like siding so it won't look different from the road. Yes, we're paranoid.
We did manage to get all the plywood up. Kept the deer from eating on the garden too. We could hear them pacing around in the woods but they didn't dare come out.

But finally it was done (that piece of it) and I proved once again that I can be in bed before Troy's finished saying, "You're done, honey. Thanks for your help."

I don't want to think about it, but tomorrow we put up the siding itself...

One thing I keep reminding myself of is how cold and wet it was last year doing the shop roof at this time of year. Today's hot and sunny weather is quite different!! and makes for a much better experience.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Don't Say I'm Not Responsive to my Readers!

So I had a request from a reader, who shall not remain unnamed--that would be Wendy--for some kitchen pictures. I don't really think there's much to show, but in this case, my opinion doesn't matter!

Let's start by putting our "worst foot" forward:
You can see the walls are all down to the studs. You can't see the work on the floor but it's is as far as I described in the previous post.

Here's a view in the other direction:
It's slightly neater on that side of the room. I've outlined the window that was replaced, in case it wasn't completely obvious. (Unfortunately, the outline isn't completely obvious, but anyway...)

Here's the hallway and the place where Troy took out the first window:

The kitchen is pretty chilly these days. Besides the removal of any insulation that was in the walls and the exposure of the cold concrete slab, we also have actual air flow:
See all that sunshine filtering in under the walls? At some point, Troy will be cutting 2x4s to fit between all those angled studs and gluing/sealing them with some foam. Right now the "braces" are actually pinned to the floor at all and flex at any provocation.

No pictures of the work outside, yet...apparently this weekend will be full steam forward on siding. (Julie and Joel, this would be your cue to confirm dinner and save me on Saturday night!! ;-)

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Didn't I say it would be a kitchen saga?

Work has been happening even if we haven't written about it. The interior of the kitchen is pretty much down to the bare studs. Half of the floor has been removed to the concrete slab below.

Two windows have been replaced. Replaced with plywood that is. Last weekend Troy took out the one that was in the little hallway between the kitchen and dining room. That was the first day I lit the woodstove. A 3'x6' hole is quite gaping when the weather has turned to nippy fall. He managed to get the window, sill, trim, etc, out and the hole framed and patched with plywood in one day. That's not the sort of thing you can leave for another day, though.

Last night he took out the south facing window in the kitchen. This was a little more work but he managed it. I spend part of my evening smashing glass and bagging it "safely" for the garbage man. Smashing glass sounds like it should be more fun than it was. It was also a lot tougher to do than I would have guessed. Even with a hammer.

Now the outside of that part of the kitchen is covered with plywood. The cement board siding has been ordered and picked up and is laid out in the shop ready to be pre-painted. Then it will go up over the plywood. That's the plan as far as I know it. I have to say this is going a lot faster than I would have guessed. (For hours worked, that is; it's still slow since most of the work only happens on weekends.) But perhaps this is a mis-perception on my part since Troy is doing most of the work.

I think it's also influenced by the expectations built up from building the shop. It's going to be a lot faster to do a piece of wall that's maybe 5' x 12' than to do a wall that's 14' x 70' (north/south walls) or 21' x 30' (east/west walls). That might have a little to do with it...

Work continues...stay tuned.

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