Friday, December 20, 2013

Carpet Installed

Finishing the flooring makes a world of difference in the construction zone. Carpet was installed in the new first floor living room, the stairs, and all of the areas we've been working on upstairs.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Thanksgiving Holiday

The holidays were filled with joy this Thanksgiving. Of course, I didn't get to experience much of it since I was sick and in bed the entire Thanksgiving day. After the stomach bug passed I set to work on installing the microwave in the kitchen, foaming and framing the basement, and finishing up odds and ends needed to pass inspection.

The basement handrail was installed.

Interlocking Styrofoam panels were installed behind stud framed walls to meet the energy efficiency requirements.

Jess has been diligently painting any trim that will end up over carpet, best to have this done before the installation.

The disaster of a kitchen is still not finished.

There is no room or time for the usual Christmas decorations. Jess improvised and created a vacuum Christmas tree. The glowing warmth of the green and red bulbs coupled with a few dust bunnies is sure to be a cherished holiday tradition.

The children stared in awe and wonder at the Christmas vacuum, cheering when the extension wand was placed atop and set aglow.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Boogers & Balusters

The old second story railing that guards the stair pit was ripped out. We are putting in a barricade that meets code. The newel post was set in place with a huge double sided screw and nut system. Balusters were set 4" on center.

The baby was sick the last couple of days so there wasn't much time to devote to this project. The picture is about as far as we got before stopping. We were a bit busy wiping all of the snot goo off the baby's face.

I came across some more sub standard wiring practices while I was rewiring the basement lights.

Our cabinet boxes finally came back from being 'fixed'. We requested that they be properly painted which required the maker to remake all new sides for a few of them.

So we went from this:

 To this:

The weather has certainly started to turn cold.  The older child and I have been getting some tractor rides in before the snow starts flying.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

A Long Weekend Too Short

We took some vacation time this Thursday/ Friday to make a long weekend. We used the time to make progress on all the little projects around the house.

Typical view out the back door.

The crown moulding in the living / kitchen area is up. Patching and polishing have started.

New hallway painted and trim installed. Worked out some minor electrical issues.

Guest bathroom vanity ready to be installed.

 Added more trim in the foyer. Hung another old warped door.

Installed the kitchen and laundry faucet, drains, and dishwasher.

 Can lighting in the kitchen is installed.

Getting the jamb prepped for the master bedroom door.

Monday, October 7, 2013

Kitchen Floor

It's difficult to feel like you are making progress when you work on the smaller parts of a project. We spent some time fabricating this piece of baseboard moulding so it will wrap around a low heat vent on the wall.

For a larger project we tackled installing the kitchen flooring. After one failed attempt at picking a floor (bought it and returned it) we decided on this:

Millstead Handscraped Hickory Chestnut 1/2 in. Thick x 5 in. Wide x Random Length Engineered Hardwood Flooring (31 sq. ft. / case)

The distressed look helps hide any dents or scratches in the floor, which should work out well with abuse from two boys and a dog.

The product went down easy with 1-1/4"  18 gauge 1/4" crown flooring staples.

Alas, we could not finish the project as we ran out of underlayment. We will probably wrap up this project during the week when we get some more.

I'm always amazed at a child's ability to sleep through nailing, compressors running, and other loud noises.

Monday, September 30, 2013

Some Kitchen Work

The kitchen cabinet doors are starting to arrive. There are various small issues with them that are being worked through but overall they look good.


The process of retrofitting new hinges onto old doors and making custom jambs continues. I fill the existing old hinge holes with a carved down shim and chisel off the exess. This allows me to mount the new hinge without the screws wanting to follow the old holes, which are a different pattern.

Gauge the door to hinge distance.
This ensures the jamb will be flush with the door when it's closed.

Transfer the distance to the jamb, square the hinge.

 Mark the hinge location and hole pattern.

Center punch and predrill screw holes.

Mount the hinge and carve the exact profile in the jamb.

 Route out the bulk of the material with the bit depth set to the hinge thickness.

Chisel out the remaining corners, remount hinges.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Shutters & Old Door Hanging

 I never realized how much shutters (even if they are fake) can dress up a house. Ours were installed over the weekend on all of the windows.

 The old doors from the barn are finally being hung. Some of the doors are only an inch thick, we are using the smaller ones for the closets and pantry. The unusual size and unpredictable shape of the doors are forcing us to do some extensive blocking between the rough frame and jamb. Once the jamb is in place we had to cut and mount custom jamb extensions to cover the gap.

 The top stile on the door below is more trapezoidal than rectangular making for some interesting angles.

The doors are going in now just to get the casing and baseboard trim set. Later we'll add the handle and latch hardware, door stop, and refinish the entire door.