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Showing posts from October, 2013

Punch List: Part the Fourth - Painting

The last couple days have been kind of tough for hitting the punch list.  We're at the point where a few things need painting but the nights have been pretty cold and we've been dodging raindrops.  But we have made some progress.

Now, I don't know the official "construction" name of this, but I have installed a board at the bottom of the porch walls.  Here you see it unfinished:


I put these pressure treated boards along the bottom all the way around.The plan was to paint them a gray that matches the "flagstone" color of the siding.  Then I primed them the other day:

I really like the look of the white at the bottom, but then it rained.  Every speck of dirt that splashed up was visible from half a block away (ok, not really, but in my mind it was bad!).  So I think we'll go with the original plan for gray - but it'll wait for next spring.  The fact is, those boards are too thick and stick out from the edge of the corner pieces and it just looks s…

Punch List: Part the Third - Hatch Door

After removing the shingles from the south end of the front porch, I figured I should cut an access panel into the wall so we could use the area under the porch for storage, you know, things like ladders, lumber and whatever else we have that we just don't know where else to stow it.  So I started out by drilling a hole in those beautiful boards.  In the picture below you can see a hole just to the right of the access panel.  When I was looking at the porch, I couldn't for the life of me figure out where the porch floor was in relation to the ground.  You'd think it would have been easy to figure out but believe me - nothing is easy with old houses. So that hole gave me a sense of where the bottom of the porch floor was and where the studs were.  From there it was just a matter of drilling another hole (still not exactly on the mark), drawing some lines and then cutting with the saber saw.  

After opening the whole, imagine my surprise when I found lattice behind there!  …

Punch List: Part the Second - Front Steps

As I mentioned before, the main portion of the current project is complete and now it's just punch list items.  Today was the front steps.  Originally, in that little triangle below the steps we had old wood lattice we had painted brown along with the rest of the stoop maybe a dozen years ago.  By the time this project started, that lattice was pretty worn out, and to do the siding on the stoop, that old lattice had to come out.  This morning, this was the view:


I'm not exactly sure how I installed the lattice originally, but there weren't any spots for affixing the new stuff.  So I had to put in some wood blocks:

Once that was complete, I just took my palm sander and gave it a good sanding.  Then I used Kilz primer to get it all ready for painting.

Then it was just a matter of sizing, cutting an installing the new lattice. I found that my Sonic Tool (my new favorite tool by the way) was perfect for making quick work of cutting the lattice.  I opted for vinyl lattice and t…

Punch List: Part the First - Sidewalk

I mentioned yesterday that the main portion of our most recent project is complete and now all that remains is punch list items.  Seems that list is a mile long, but I finished one item this morning - the sidewalk on the side of the porch.  Here's what it looked like this morning:


Three and-a-half hours, $34 and five bags of concrete later, one of the punch list items is checked off:

This side of the porch really turned out well.  Before the project there was a pretty substantial gap between the bottom of the porch and the old sidewalk.  I planned that all out to close that gap and it actually turned out the way I saw it in my mind (imagine that!).  I used about fifteen feet of that sidewalk divider and some scrap wood; and pitched the sidewalk away from the house.  Next summer I'll have to do some more concrete work, but for now this side is done!

The Big Reveal! (Uh, okay...The Almost Done Big Reveal!)

I can't take it anymore!  We've been working on this most recent project forever now.  Actually it's only been a few weeks, but between ordering material, waiting for it to arrive, the great delivery debacle, weather and jobs...it just seems like this project has been endless!  Well, it's finally done!  Okay, not really done done, but for the most part - done!  There are still some punch list things to do, but the main portion is complete.  So first, let's take a little trip down memory lane!  At the beginning of the summer the front of the house looked like this:


When we remodeled the inside of the front porch, it really revealed how shabby the outside was beginning to look.  So I got the idea to paint the railings on the front stoop...

Then the front door, and it started to look pretty good...

But then one day I decided the house would look so much better with shutters!  What I didn't mention in that post was that black shutters weren't the original choic…

Retro Project: The Front Stoop

As I've mentioned before, in the early days of our having 173, there were no digital cameras, the internet was in its infancy, the premier search engine was Buena Vista (or something like that) and we had dial-up AOL.  Seems like a different world ago!  We weren't at all diligent about taking "before" pictures so this post has some old prints that I just took pictures of with my cell phone.  Hopefully they're clear enough to get the general idea though.  Onto business...a Retrospective look at an old project here at 173.

Waaaay back when, when we first bought ol' 173, there was no front stoop and the steps had really tall risers and very narrow treads.  you can't really see them that well, but this picture gives you at least a little idea...


That picture is, I believe, from the early '70s.  This next picture is sometime in the '90s.  If you notice, in the above picture, you can see the hint of a pipe railing.    At this point someone before us ha…