Monday, January 23, 2006

Walk The Plank

...The fun continues as we walk the plank:

Turning our attention inward, we now have a completely gutted downstairs--including no floor (but oh you should see our lovely floor joists!) Which means that we have "planks" that get us from our front door to our stairs (so we can live upstairs) as well as a plank to our make shift kitchen.

The kitchen is a thing of beauty--no plumbing, no range, no sink, no electricity, no problem. We have extension cords and bottled water. We've got an environmental nightmare taking place in our house everyday with loads of paper cups, plates, bowls, and plastic utensils being disposed of every single day. We need to coordinate our electrical appliances and our "lighting" (which consists of a light bulb being dangled over some framing)--because we tend to trip the circuit breaker a lot when everything is being run off of one circuit (but oh you should see the lovely color of extension cords! It looks like a rainbow in our "living room."). We are having the time of our lives--not!

While the floor was up we cleaned out the crawl space--removing 125 years worth of repair items, rocks, and wood that was left on the ground. We shored up a the last remaining foundation issues. We have sistered a new floor joist next to every old one. We have also sistered a new wall stud next to every old one. This will also help support the second story floor joists--since the second story was basically being held up by a 1X4 let into the balloon framing. Now there is a stud under each second story floor joists. We've put in a ton of "blocking"--between the floor joists and in between each stud (which will also act as a backer for the future wainscotting). The house is now incredibly "stiff." We've framed for the bathrooom and the laundry room...And now we are getting ready to hang the tankless water heater. Stuff is happening, but this is a tough time in our rehab process. It is not easy to live this way.

Not too much longer and we will at least have a subfloor--we are running electrical, plumbing, and HVAC ducting while the floor is up. We will also insulate the floor before putting down the subfloor--but I digress. We still have to walk the plank for a while...Calgon--take me away.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Un-Knocking On Wood....

...Or, Mother &#%$!!.

I've got a question: For those of you who occasionally bring in others to do work, have you ever acquiesced to the "pros" recommendations and regretted it?

Awhile back I mentioned that this would be the first winter in five years without leaks--WRONG. Unknock the wood.

On the side and back of the house we had a later addition that had a low pitched roof that butted up against the old part of the house. These additions were in poor shape and need to be torn down and rebuilt to better suit our needs...You know, like, not falling down. When it came time for the rebuild, I wanted (and was willing to pay) to have the low-pitched roof covered in Bituthene rather than the typical 30 lb. felt and traditional flashing. I wanted to run the stuff up under the existing siding on the main part of the house (along with the traditional flashing). The roofers laughed and laughed at that one...saying I was crazy for such "overkill."

After much consideration and ignoring that little voice in my head to the contrary, I thought I'd go with the "pros" with this one and save the money. Big mistake. LEAKS near the flashing and some of the water is getting underneath the felt. Mother @#$$!!. Let me say this: the bay windows that I flashed and all of the windows that I flashed are dry as a bone.

I know how to fix this, but it won't be pretty...and it will be time spent doing something that I had checked off my "to-do list" some time ago. One step forward. One step back. But before I install the sheetrock, new counters, and little things like, oh say, furniture, I need to get this fixed.