Saturday, October 3, 2015

End of Summer 2015

We are still working on things big and small.  Here's a few things we worked on over the summer.

We finished the railing on the back deck.

Rather than using balusters, we opted to use horizontally strung cable wire.

First Dean marked out the measurements on the upright posts, then drilled the holes and installed these eye hooks.

 The cable is looped through this cable clamp  then through the eye hook and back through the clamp

 The the cable clamp is tightened.

 The cable goes through the middle post and is secured on the other end post with hook eyes and cable clamps.

 Once the cable was strung on both ends, it was time to tighten it up.  Back to the starting post to tighten the nut which pulls the cable taut.

I made some cushions for these free-cycled deck chairs that I had picked up.

I only took on this project because I could not find the right size cushion that I wanted in a store.  I am not a very confident sewer.  I looked at some tutorials on You Tube and decided to give it a try.  They came out OK.  Not perfect, but functional....

We made some progress on the upstairs bathroom 

We installed the shower fixtures.

The replacement shower control that I bought had some problems.  If installed as instructed, water would have leaked behind it. 

So here is the shower controller valve.

Some spray foam insulation was used to fill the gaps.

Then the remainder of the space was filled with grout.

Now we are ready to install the fixture.  First a squirt of silicon caulk.

 Our new supervisor checks the work...

Then another squirt of silicon caulk.

 And finally the cover piece.

Dean continued working on insulating and enclosing the walls in the garage.

Initially he was putting up drywall, but then switched to OSB panels...

We put in a central vacuum system.

We had put the plumbing for this into the walls a looong time ago, back before the drywall was even hung, and we finally bought the vacuum and hooked it up.

We fixed the plumbing for the washing machines.

Do you remember how our stupid plumber had plumbed the drain pipes for the washing machine  with out any insulation between it and the exterior wall?  And the pipes would freeze in the winter?  

Dean re-plumbed the whole system and it works great, of course!

I did some painting.

Painting the G shed.

 And I'm painting all the exterior doors in Benjamin Moore Cottage Red to match the entry door.  Here I am working on the basement double doors while Missy monitors my progress.

Dean is working on re-building the wood stove.  

A couple of the soapstone slabs had cracks in them, so they are being replaced.

We moved more rocks. 

What is it with rocks?  We love them!

We have been working on the area at the center of the driveway, and had most of it done already.

For this section, we are working with smaller rocks that can be moved using a hand truck, a crow bar, and some muscle.

Using my muscles!

My favorite way of "fine tuning" rock placement is to kick it into place.

We are leaving this break in the wall so we can get into the area for working.  We might put a gate in here at some point in the future.

We started on the new generator project.

Remember how I said at the end of my post on the generator shed that Dean decided he wanted to switch to a propane based  generator that kicks on automatically when a power outage occcurs?  I was not kidding! 

 So he got to work building a concrete slab for the new generator to sit on.

Here's the form with re-bar in place.

Bags of concrete.

Filling the form. 

In the next phase of this project, while digging the trench to run the wiring conduit out to the electrical service box, Dean discovered yet another mistake made by our former builder.  Oh yes, I kid you not!  

But that is a whole 'nother story that I will relate in the next episode of Moore House Home Build, so stay tuned.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Out Door Shower Re-do

We had been enjoying our first outdoor shower on the north side of the house for a couple of years.  Then last fall we built the deck and the shower ended up under the deck.  So we decided to move it to a sunnier location.

Here's how it went down

We moved the shower control to one of the deck supports

and Dean got to work on the new plumbing.

These copper sections connect with the PEX piping that runs under the deck.

Back when we were doing a lot of rock moving, we had set aside a very large flattish rock that we thought would be good as our shower floor.

We excavated a nice size whole, filled it partially with crushed stone, added a layer of landscaping fabric and with the help of the backhoe and our supervisor, set the stone in place.

Here's what it looks like without a dog standing on it...

More crushed stone went in around the big rock and covers the fabric.

Next, I had this idea to use an old wood shutter that I had gotten from a free-cycler to build a small wall for the shower that would be a place to hold soap and shampoo, etc.

Taking the old hinges off.

We secured the shutter between 2 pressure treated 4x4's

Here we are digging the hole to place the wall.

 We dropped the lower part of the wall into the hole and back filled with crushed stone.

I painted the whole unit, and added some plants around the shower area.

I put up these cute bird hooks and bird soap dish  that I bought on Etsy from Riri Creations

The soap dish needed a hanging bracket as it was intended to sit on a horizontal surface, so dean fabricated one.

I found this small metal shelf at The Friday Barn, and spray painted it to go with my color scheme.  I liked that the bottom was perforated to let water run out.

These were all mounted onto the little shutter wall, along with some spray painted plastic clips that hold our razors.

So this replaces the system we had been using before.

Much better!

Some more plantings gives it an oasis feeling as long as you look past at all the junk still under the deck...

Ready for a pleasant outdoor shower experience!