Wednesday, August 08, 2007

End of Summer, End of Projects?

I consider this week, when I start teaching workshops, the end of my summer. So I will slow down on projects, but won't quit completely. I have come to some resolution with the two I've been posting about lately, so here's a wrap up.


Over the weekend I cut plywood to fit the space between my doors and the corners at the front of the garage. The reason the whole front had racked out alignment was there was no support there. By placing 3/4 inch plywood from the foundation up to the top of the doors I think I've given enough bracing to keep it plumb.

I had only 8 1/2 inches from the door jamb to the corner. The corners had a 2x4 stud already, so I added a stud to the jamb side to have a edge to catch the plywood on. After cutting the piece to fit exactly I used 2 inch screws, set every 3 inches apart to hold the plywood in place. Here is what the north end looks like:

Here is the south end:

There was one diagonal brace from the top of the south end to the mid point of the north, that you can barely see the bottom of in the picture immediately above. I screwed the plywood into the bottom of this piece. I then added a new diagonal from the north end to the mid point of the south. You can see the bottom of that piece in the first garage photo above. Here is where the two intersect:

After I had all these installed I took the "come along" winch off and returned it to my neighbor. Here is the garage:

I still need to do door repairs, but now that it's square I could reroof it this fall.

Even though the garage is full of bikes and other stuff, I pulled the car in part way to see if it would fit. I have about an inch of clearance on each side mirror!


I finished the back corner that I'd been working on. Here is the final version painted:

And a close up:

I moved my scaffolding to the other side of the back porch yesterday. I'd like to get the rest of the back painted before winter!

Saturday, August 04, 2007

The Bondos of Matrimony

Today was our 16th anniversary. As Lisa left to go on a bike ride with our daughter this morning she looked up and, "Married for 16 years and you've spent 9 of them on a scaffold."

In spite of that, our marriage is at least as strong as the bondo I used to fix the barge board, more on that later.

As a dutiful husband I picked up where Lisa left off in the kitchen. Since she had stripped the nook table, as noted in my last post, I took it out for her to work on. Last week Friday I was home alone with a day and night to myself, I decided to work in the kitchen to surprise Lisa. I started by trying to loosen some of the plywood under the vinyl on the floor:

I soon discovered that even though there were LOTS of staples holding the plywood down, I could find where the plywood seams were:

It was removable with a large crowbar and brute force, pretty soon I had a good sized chunk out

If you look above you can see lines where there must have been 12 x 12 vinyl tiles just stuck right to the floor. Thankfully they were gone but the maple floor underneath was VERY STICKY. I went to Menard's and got a bottle of stuff to cut the glue residue, it worked great, but was $17 a bottle:

Luckily there was a plywood seam that ran right in front of the stove and fridge so I could clear out half the kitchen and not have to mess with under the appliances yet. Lisa was VERY pleasantly surprised when she came home Saturday.

I've spent the rest of the week working on the corner of the back of the house. All the bargeboards around the house had been covered in aluminum a long time ago, I pried back a piece to see what was going on. The end of the Northwest corner's bargeboard was about 75% rotted away, and so was a large chunk above the lookout post on the north side. All the aluminum did was hide it. So the past week I dug out all the rotted wood. Then I covered the surrounding area with wood hardener. Then I layered on the bondo for a few days, and when I built up enough I sanded it back down smooth. Here is the back corner:

And a close up:

I may have over done it on the wood hardener on the end!

Today I primed the whole area, and started screwing on the plywood braces for the garage. More about both of those next week.