December 7, 2011

My Kitchen


Um...there's not supposed to be a cathedral ceiling....

The title of the post is a bit misleading. This is actually my kitchen and my master bedroom...and the giant void where there used to be the floor that separated them.

If you have an old house and you're thinking about gutting it, this is what happens, regardless of your plan. Trust me. There will come a point, early on, when you realize that your house is held together by memory and unicorn dust and then you'll need a structural engineer and a thousand dollars in LVLs. Trust me.

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Posted by Doug Mahoney at December 7, 2011 10:16 PM
Recent Comments

ouch,I feel ya Doug,reno on an old house is like planning an invasion, to quote Rummy
"There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we know we don't know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we don't know we don't know."

Everytime I plan to do something I keep this in mind so I don't get bogged down in a quagmire, but I never listen to myself. I'm racing to finish some things up before the snow comes.

Posted by: Kevin at December 13, 2011 8:38 PM

the main beam in my house is a railroad track. seriously. I'm just glad they didn't make me replace that beast.

still not following why I had to add 3" wide worth of lvls to support a little more than a doorways worth of moved wall.

I think they over-engineer to make sure they won't have a chance to be sued for the structure not being strong enough.

Posted by: cw at December 8, 2011 1:35 PM

I am going to be on the east coast next week and offered to help you....maybe do Saturday instead of Friday?

Posted by: rob at December 8, 2011 11:58 AM

I hope I don't ever gut the current house my wife and I are living in (our first). I would be driven legally insane in no time at all.

As far as earthquake resistance goes Marc, my living is walled in steel mesh reinforced plaster, sits on a slab (formerly a carpot) and last but not least my house is made of brick. If ever there's and earthquake in Alabama I'll just go nap in my recliner and clean up whatever mess it makes when I wake up rested.

Posted by: Moose at December 8, 2011 10:08 AM

Marc, it's funny, isn't it? Since we removed a chimney my 100 yr old 2x4 chestnut ridge beam has to be replaced. Now it's going to be a 2x14 LVL posted down in three places (as opposed to only one!) with the load being picked up by three beams (the ridge is 28' long), one of which consists of three 2x8 LVLs and 2 2x8 SPF as well as a 3/4" steel plate. Yikes. All in all, we're basically framing a new house from the inside out. If you happen to be on the east coast next week, maybe you can help me install a 28' 2x14LVL and a 15' 3/4" thick steel plate....hello...hello?

Posted by: Tool Snob at December 8, 2011 5:44 AM

Doug, I so feel your pain. On our last remodel phase I still remember my conversation with the architect / structural engineer. My question was something like, "Are you sure we need that many LVL's? Those 2x12's have been there for 70 years and haven't fallen down yet." That question was followed by muffled laughter and then the faint sound of a cash register ringing nonstop. In our case we sistered LVL's onto existing joists. On the plus side of all the overengineering on our project, there's now one part of our house that is earthquake resistant.
Good luck with this latest adventure amigo!

Posted by: Marc at December 8, 2011 2:14 AM
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