Archive for This Old House
The construction project is in full swing here and the roof work is going well. All of the framing is kinda done at the back of the house.Â The walls actually look like they are taking shape. Jimmy and his crew have been doing a great job and Jennifer and I could not be happier with how things are going.
When I look at the pictures I shutter. The outside of the old house and the terrible old roof is getting fixed thankfully. When it all comes together it will be nice. There are a lot of little details that need to be worked out during the construction project but Jimmy is very attentive to details and together I think the project will turn out SWEET!
Tankless water heater is the next additional thing that we will incorporate into our remodel. The idea of having a huge tank full of hot water always on does not seem to be energy efficient nor ecologically sound. The idea of only heating the water that you want to use when you need it makes a lot of sense. From what I have read and looked at around the web the tankless systems seem to do a good job. We will try it out.
This saga of the Old House that would be renewed will continue for several months and will occupy my attention for a while. Rebuilding an old house, taking care of the tolls of time and fashion is an operation that requires patience. Its like doing a bypass operation on an old ailing heart, no I take that back, this is more like a heart transplant without the steroids! When we are done you will remember that this is an older house but see it running alongside of the youngest athletes in the race. Thats what I’m talking about. Here is an example. Water I mean lots of it!
As you may recall when Jennifer and I first purchased this Old House in Arcadia California the home of the Apaches, we replaced all of the plumbing from the street with copper piping. What I did at that time was to run a full inch and a half pipe directly to the back yard in future hope that we would be able to do something with the back yard space that was filled with a swimming pool at the time. That is an older story that was never told. Hmmmmm.
OK, so now we have our project going and today the plumbers came to “sweat” up some new copper outlets for the back yard and future sprinkler system. The picture above shows you the manly copper tubing poking out the the future master bedroom addition. I do not think that any new project will have any more water than is shown have. As a matter of fact none will except those that builders build for themselves. When the copper was sweated up we tested the line and filled up a bucket so fast everybody was laughing. These are the areas where skimping comes in big time for builders but not at this Old House project. We will have abundant water availability so long as the city and county allows us water use.
Maybe you have seen the movie or heard the quip from some friend about the nuts across town who bought the old ‘Mason place’ and have moved in. No we are not those people. But we did buy an old house here in Arcadia that has been in need of some serious remolding.
Jennifer and I have now been here in our “California Ranch house” built somewhere back in the stone ages of the 1950′s. Before we moved in we had all of the plumbing redone in copper. You have to love copper. Remember the line in the movie “Moonstruck” where the old man plummer is trying to impress his girl friend: shaking his hands in front of his face in that Italian way he says, “And then there is copper!” Great line from a great movie. The sentiment holds at least for me. Copper is the god of plumbing material. So we had all the plumbing replaced in copper before we moved in so we don’t die from poisoning in the first month in the house.
I get a tip from my friend “Wolfie” about an electrician guy that is from the Midwest and really does a good job with wires. We get him out to the house and 14 thousand dollars later we have new electrical service throughout the house and a bunch of new recessed lighting fixtures. The old electrical system was freekin scary – no grounding at any socket in the house and buried lighting ceiling fixtures under new popcorn. We got rid of all of the popcorn on the ceilings as well.
We had all of the wood floors resurfaced and a new kitchen put in with new appliances. Now we are comfortable. At least I am. Jennifer had other ideas. So now the real work begins with a designer and finding contractors and the like not to mention saying up all of our pennies for the new addition to the house.
This last week we finally got all of the plans approved by our conservative Arcadia City Hall inspectors. The demolition of the back of the house is done now and the foundation for the two new rooms are poured. Today we wait for the concrete to dry. Next week I think the framing starts. I am going to get into that a bit myself. All of this is really good stuff I think?
One of the things you discover in old houses when you tear down a couple of walls are all of the secret problems hidden in the walls. We have two that I can see now. One is termites that were not discovered during the inspection when we bought the house. The other is mold in the guest bath room wall behind the tile. Both of these problems will be solved. The termites damaged wood will be replace and eventually we will have to tent the house when the construction is completed. My real estate lady is working on this for us. The moldy wall will be torn down and the guest bathroom will be completely gutted. The only way to get rid of mold is to tear the wall away. The idiots that put the tile up in that bathroom did not install any barrier between the wall and the tile. Well of course the moister is going to seep through and mold will flurish. So This Old House project is in full tilt. You can see photos at flickr here.
After the first round its Bees One and Homeowner zero. The big patch job went well with steel wool closing up the main entrance to the Bee home in my home but the little buggers found a small crack in a seam between two fascia boards and went along their merry way yesterday flying in and out as usual. OK says Elmer Fud, “I’ll fix you little rascals, just watch me”.
This evening with caulking gun in hand and a grin on his face the wilily home-owner stole up the ladder in the closing darkness and squired a crap load of caulking in the offending joint sealing up the Bee home once and for all. At least until the morning when the Bees awaken and find another hole to get out of. So the saga continues with the Bees winning the Homeowner persistent. The tail of the battle for hearth and home continues.
You got to check out this video about Ryans bee attack and his broken leg that resulted from the inocent bee. This is no joke.
I am about the venture forth and protect my home and hearth against the incideous invasion of the house snatchers. I just looked at this video prior to climbing up a 26 foot ladder into BEE terrietory. The next post will let you know how this came out. Pray for my soul……..please.