Sunday, November 24, 2013

Odd and ends

This weekend consisted mainly of catching up on odds and ends. 

a) Started clearing the kitchen so that we can resume work in there.  We need to paint the ceiling so we need the floor space to navigate.

b) Swept up one of the basement rooms. This was actually an interesting little project.  Our basement was last remodeled in the 1930s when the funeral home used the space for embalming work. The ceiling and masonry walls have been plastered.  Unfortunately plaster and paint in such a humid space resulting in peeling paint. Feels like an abandoned building with the white paint literally falling off the walls in large pieces.  

Over the years this paint has crumbled and piled up with other dust/debris around the edges of the room. So anyway the whole basement is almost 2000 sqft so we decided to start with just a single room. We chose to sweep up the room that holds the new tankless water heater.  This room will be my winter workshop... To help prevent the mess from returning we first swept the walls to knock down the loose paint.   Then we swept the floors. It only took us about an hour and the room now feels a lot less spooky!

c)I also took out all my spare door hardware to see if I could piece together a set for the side door.  It has never had a lockset since we have owned they place! The only way to lock it was from the outside with a padlock. Lol.  This was how the bank secured the property when it was foreclosed...  I did buy an ornate set off eBay last year but it didn't quite fit so I had been dragging my feet installing it...  Well, here is the finished product...  

Old holes and stuff will be patched when we eventually get around to doing a full door restoration.  Also, I need to replace those steel/zinc screws with brass ones.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Hidden in the Walls!

Our master bedroom features a sitting room that is separated by a pair of pocket doors.  The doors have been taped shut since we bought the place.  Tonight I decided to remove the tape!!!  That might be a little dramatic, but it was a little suspenseful since we don't really know why they were taped up to begin with.  What secrets might they hold???  Some thoughts are:

Bees! We had a bee infestation and it is thought they might have found their way through the ceiling joints and into the room.

Energy - Perhaps these doors allow lots of cold air in from the unheated wall cavity.

Bats! - We get several bats in the house each year.  Maybe they find their way in from here...

Removing the grey duct tape turned out to be a pain.  It has dried out and will need manual scraping to remove.  I tried adhesive remover but it wouldn't reactivate the glue.  I guess I will add that to my project list.  Funny how everything with this house is complicated, lol.

Here are some pictures with captions.

Original hardware that matches the hardware downstairs.  Even a matching folding key.  Quite rare!

Whats that?  A newspaper!  It appears these doors were sealed on Saturday May 20th 2006

Very nice set of pocket doors!  Fancier molding on the master bedroom side and more plain on the other side.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Greenhouse Walls Reframed

I'm am making a concerted effort to finish up my outside projects before winter hits.  One of those projects is the 2nd story greenhouse.  It still leaks water into the kitchen below.  Over the past 30 years, water and insects have destroyed the 2x4 framing members and they all needed to be replaced.  I had done most of the demolition works earlier this year, but was dreading reframing it all.  Today I wrangled up a helper (Jimmy) and we made great progress.  Jimmy actually did most of the work.  We has lots of framing experience!

The wood is so rotten in just falls apart.

New 2x4 framing.  The siding will be replaced next year.

Jimmy framing up one of the walls.

Looking MUCH better!