May 2, 2013
It's pretty sad when you can mine your house for gags as much as I've been able to.
This time it's the siding.
This may be one of the worst siding jobs ever done by human hands. Sure, it's mostly straight and the courses are kinda parallel, but look at the seams between the shingles. Look at how many of them line up with the course above or below them...it's almost like someone wanted to get water into the building envelope. There is one side of the house that I didn't photograph where a single seam runs down eleven consecutive courses.
I had a siding guy over to price out re-doing everything and he looked at the house and actually started laughing.
Oh and what's up with that cap flashing on the lower window in the first picture? And those ugly shutters...as soon as I strip this side of the house, they're going right in the dumpster.
January 31, 2013
I removed the foundation to my house and all I got was one lousy teeny-tiny plaster crack in the corner of the kitchen.
We actually built the addition against the house first (with its own foundation) and that helped brace the main house while we did the demo, so in this picture the entire foundation under the south side of the main house is gone.
December 3, 2012
This is the current condition of the corner that was originally pictured here.
December 3, 2012
No turning back now. The renovation has officially entered phase two (although it feels like phase 239) and the back yard has a crater in it. Even though this is a pretty big milestone, there are times when it honestly feels like this is never going to end. Onward.
February 17, 2012
So yeah, we had a little structural work to do at our place, and when I say, "little structural work" what I really mean is, "we rebuilt 80% of the house from the inside out."
Here's a shot of the new beam that spans the kitchen ceiling. It picks up half of the roof ridge one floor above it. I'd say it's never going to budge. I'd even go as far as to say, you could park a truck on my roof with no problems. The 16' beam consists of two 7"LVLs, two 7" SPF, one 7" chestnut, and just to make sure it's still standing after nuclear Armageddon, a 3/4" steel plate. The whole thing is bolted through with two 10-1/2" bolts every foot, top and bottom. Substantial.
January 19, 2012
The renovation marches on and has gobbled up about 120% of my free time. I've got a whole lot more in the way of thoughts on the general aspects of the project, but I'll save that for later.
Here's a shot of the nightly tool storage area. Through the project, I've discovered a number of MVP tools that I'm going to cover in more detail in the coming days. These are tools that I've been using that have really helped things along. You can pretty much see them all here: the Milwaukee M12 Jacket, the DeWalt worm drive, the Bosch Impact Driver, the Makita 15 amp Recip Saw and the Hardcore Hammer. There are others, but those are the ones at the top of the mind (probably because I used them all last night).
December 7, 2011
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.
November 8, 2011
I uncovered this corner of the foundation after taking off the "sun room."
I totally can't see it as being a problem. No way.
October 31, 2011
Our ongoing catalog of poor construction techniques continues with this doozie of a wiring job that I found buried in the wall when I gutted the place.
Seriously, wtf? Who does stuff like this?
Had I known that every time I turned on the light to the bathroom, I was sending electricity through this mess, I would have probably been content to leave the light off and pee all over the toilet seat.
After finding this and a few other things, I'm starting to lean towards the opinion that if you buy an old house you've got to gut it. Who knows what Jimmy the Homeowner buried in the walls. Frightening stuff.
October 26, 2011
So it's been about a month since I last posted (thanks Jay for the guest post). It's been my longest hiatus from the site since starting it in 07. I didn't intend to take such a long break, but I got busy with things. What things, you ask? My house, of course....which I'm gutting and now looks like this....
It's going to be a long winter.
January 10, 2011
- Hand grenades
December 7, 2010
This one has been sitting down in the basement for waaaay too long. It's pretty shameful that it it took my months to get around to fixing it. It's a miracle that I didn't end up with a basement full of water.
I don't think I've ever seen pipe corrosion quite this extreme.
But the other night I carved out some time and 20 satisfying minutes later, peace and order was restored to the tiny village.
If you've never sweated a copper pipe before, you should giver it a shot, it's not difficult at all. Here are a couple links with the basics:
One Project Closer
October 19, 2010
Here are a couple doozies of the plumbing in the basement....
January 6, 2010
"If a 1/8" caulk joint is good, then a 1-1/4" caulk joint must be better"
That seems to be the philosophy governing the construction behind the shower in the master bath. There's really no other way to explain the massive blob of waterproofing that surrounds the shower pan. Our best guess is that it took about two full tubes of caulking to complete. It's so thick it looks like it was applied with a trowel or maybe a frosting knife. And it doesn't just stop with the pan, it's also slobbered in around the faucet and fixtures as well.
And to top it all off, we just noticed a leak appearing in the living room ceiling, just below the shower. So it looks like the caulk joint might not even be effective. Awesome.