Wednesday, November 22, 2006

All cleaned up for the executive tour. I'm ready to move in to this place. Just to recap on the obvious here, we are way behind schedule on this place. That said, I think it has reached "move-in" status and I'm about to start campaigning to this end.

I'm sure people are wondering what we are doing exactly. There is no paper or Tyvec on the exterior, just the old ship-lap siding. It makes me think that after all of this, to just stucco the outside would be anti-climactic. My neighbors and all who drive by on Stafford have become cynical. They don't know greatness. Perspective? Frank Ghery lived in a half de-constructed plywood shack for years (he probably still does). Taking a page out of his book, I could clad my house in something unorthodox like deer skin. Take care of the roadkill issue in Charleswood and utilize a renewable resource -- the White Tailed Deer.


OK, it's time to re-surface. Things have reached a bit of a stalemate wrt to my house, but I've got a few pics to show nonetheless. Before I do that, however, I'll drop a few in of a Carroll Construction project I spent a few days on. Here you can see how excited Peter gets when I'm on his jobsite -- he can hardly contain himself.

This two-storey addition is going to almost double the square footage of this storey-and-a-half. The whole main floor addition will be kitchen, with living quarters and bath on the second floor.

Friday, October 20, 2006

SNAP! Here's my pal "Cheech" Lorainne denailing the last piece of adjectival flooring. We found this wood flooring at a scrap yard -- it had been sitting in the yard uncovered for several years. Up close, this stuff looks like firewood but it cleans up nice.

Here are a couple of pics of the windows from the inside. The plastic is in preparation for the spray foam.

It was amazing how we just kept going farther and farther back in terms of stripping this house back to its bare frame. When we planned to do the basement, it was not our intention to do this extensive a renovation. I can see why it would be helpful to give these projects more thought before moving ahead.

Anyhow, what you see here are pictures of my bare stud walls with the sheets of OSB (and an old door) over some of the window openings and an uncovered opening on the North wall.

This is a nice perspective. The walk-out basement makes the house look tall -- it's simply all the height below grade that you would not normally see that gives it that effect.

You can see why we had to go with new windows on the main floor. The old ones you see are the original leaded glass units and are quite stunning albeit ineffectual.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Peter Hill Carroll calling the shots and arguing with Tim. Both of them are engineers. Notice that Peter is the only one drinking while everyone else is still working. Who hired this guy? Going without interior walls on the main floor required that we find other means of carrying the load of the second floor and roof. To achieve this, LVL's spanning the width of the main floor were posted down to the foundation walls. On the close-up, notice the hanger carrying one end of shorter LVL running perpendicular to the main beam.

Dave helping me prep for the floor heat system. Jumping ahead a couple of weeks to where I've finished building the front porch and stripping the stucco. It was around this time that I decided to go ahead with new windows from Duxton. Pics of that to come later.

Humiliated, Jerry walks away and concedes defeat in a battle of wits with Karl (background).

After the footings cured, the ICF's went up quickly.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Here are a couple of pictures of my uninhabitable basement. When we had finally removed all the material from the walls, we could see just how bad it was failing. At the time, there was a very light drizzle outside and within minutes, water began to seep through the walls into the footings. Needless to say, we felt vindicated in our decision to go ahead with the new basement.
Top left photo is from beneath my house, looking up at the I-beams extending into my backyard.

Here is my lovely house before the renovation. It's difficult to see in this picture, but the house is listing to the left. This was due to the failing foundation and after much deliberation we decided the best option was to replace the basement.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

I decided to start a blog to focus on some building projects that I find interesting. Currently, there is a project that is in the process of consuming me altogether -- my own house. It has been in the violent throes of renovation since May '06 but I will try and give a blow-by-blow account of what has taken place.