Sunday, October 23, 2016

Putting on a Good Front

Eric is currently sawing some joists off the back of the truck.   Works great!   Here's an update on what's happened in the house the last few weeks.

In the last post on the house I listed a few things we wanted to get done before it got cold.  Here's how we're doing.

1.   Tear out old floor and joists.

Done.  The decking went to the dump.   We recycled all the good 2x4s and joists that we could.   They're all on the front lawn now, nail free.  So pretty!  [Ack.  This is why Country Living has never come knocking at my door.]

2.   Dig out new crawlspace.

Done.   Not fun, but less not fun than the first time we did it in the former ell.   This time it was just me and Eric.  The dirt was nasty, hard, and difficult to get out but we didn't have to bucket it and lift it out just us girls.   Eric did a lot of picking first to break it up.  We could shovel it into a wheelbarrow and easily get it out.    In the end, like anything worth while, with patience and one shovel full at a time, we got it all dug and moved.

Notice the concrete pier cylinder in this pic, holding the lower beam between the two downstairs rooms. Working like a charm.

3.  Gravel new crawlspace.  

Done.   Dudes.  Sometimes I wonder at the sheer tonnage of gravel I have moved in this place all by myself, much less the combined tonnage that all of us have moved.   Again, Eric and I did this ourselves and I confess I wore out because we had done a lot of dirt digging first.   It ended up that I filled the wheel barrows, then Eric moved it and dumped it in the hole.   When I got too tired to fill, I went and raked and raked and raked to spread it around the hole.  Pepper and Tibby LOVED it in there.   

In this pic you are looking from the east side of the newly graveled ell through the old living room foundation and into the newly dug and graveled west crawlspace.   I can stand up on the east side and my head barely comes to the top of those joists.  On the west side I have to hunch quite a bit.   Eric assures me that this will be 'quite comfortable' once the subfloor is in and he's putting in the wiring, etc.    I will take his word for it because once the subfloor is on, I'm never going down there unless it's to save someone else's life.  

4.  Pour concrete to join new foundation with old foundation.

Eric did that on his own.  It took three pours around some tricky schedules and some rain.   Got it all done and it looks great.

5.  Build new front wall.

In progress as I write this.   You can see the east side is framed and ready to cover with plywood.  [Ed:  Got slowed down by the south facing window in the west room.   It takes time to frame it right.   Ran out of light, but we did get a few studs in place on the west side of the front wall.]

6.   New inside floor joists and subfloor.

Also in progress.  This is a pic of the joists in the east room.  The floor joists for both rooms will be in by the end of the day.  [Ed: Didn't make it.  Got all of the east room, some of the west.  Then it got dark.]   The subfloor is waiting to be picked up at Menard's and will be in place next weekend.


Next up:
  • Finish framing south [front] wall of house.
  • Finish joists in west room.
  • Subfloor on both floors.
  • Exterior walls all closed up.
  • Windows for these two rooms installed.  [They're ordered!]
  • Insulation in the exterior walls
  • Insulation boards to button up the spaces between the old house and the new house.
Here's a pic of the house-within-a-house that we currently have.   I assure you that as the remodel goes forward, the old house will be entirely dismantled and pitched through doors/windows until there is not one nail of the old house left.    [Though we're hoping that many of the old oak and poplar joists in the oldest part of the house will be nice enough to use as flooring in the hallway and living room.  Fingers crossed!]

Until we get there, we need to button up these spaces for the winter:

This is the east side.   Notice the temporary ductwork that shoots cool/warm air into the guestroom upstairs.   We're going to really insulate that well.

This is the west side.    You can see that Eric filled the top with insulation last year.  That's what's next to the temporary stairway going upstairs.   It worked fine last year.   This year we're going to button up the side space between the old wall and the new wall. We'll likely use insulation board all the way down.  Pretty easy to place and will seal it up nicely until we do that center part of the house above the basement.  

This end of the house is under the guest room and the big room upstairs; the floors have been mighty chilly this month. We're hoping that sealing it up and getting the windows in for some solar gain will warm the upstairs floors a bit.

I'll post more pics soon!

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