Monday, June 27, 2005

Things are moving fast again. It is amazing what we can get done when Annie and I only have 20 hours a week of other commitments. Last Wednesday the windows finally came. When they did they broke one screen, but that is minor and we will get that sorted out. That afternoon and the following day we finished the last of the insulation. We even had enough left over to do the whole bedroom.

Then we started cleaning and emptying the house. According to the city we cannot live in the house until there are things like a smoke detector, heat, and a toilet. So before the inspector came we had to move all of our living stuff into storage. Since we did not have much it was a pretty quick process.

Friday we got our insulation inspection. I had hoped the inspector could verify we had fixed a problem between the plumber and electrician. Unfortunately the inspector just laughed at our solution and told we needed to call another inspector the next week. I talked to him today and he did not believe we had a good solution to the problem. I hope this can be solved soon.

The drywallers did start today. They decided to deliver the sheetrock by hand. I think the will start hanging today. I told them not to do the part around the problem pipes. I hope that we can get this problem resolved this week so they can close up all the walls. I am so happy to see what the house looks like with drywall.

We have a bunch of new pics, that I will publish soon.

Monday, June 13, 2005

To Hang Drywall

Hanging drywall is a goal that we cannot seem to attain. It seemed so much simpler when we started this project. Now there are so many different things that must get hidden in the walls it is daunting. We are getting very close but I feel like I have been saying that for a long time. Every day we go to the house there is another large project to tackle and of course, we cannot hang drywall until that task is complete.

I know that there is a finite set of tasks that must be complete before drywall is hung. So if we continue to execute those tasks we should be able to hang drywall. It just seems that we discover things that need to be done faster than we can actually finish the other tasks. So the list of things that needs to be done seems to grow overtime rather than shrink.

Enough of my bitching. Over the last week we finished (almost) the V-channel. There are a few little spots that need to be leveled, but nothing too hard. We poured leveling compound in the kitchen. That is some really weird stuff. It has the consistency of milk when wet, and concrete when set. The stuff will seek level which is great if your surface is sealed. We had problems closing all of the holes in the floor. As a result we lost a significant of the leveler right through the floor. After quit a bit of messy frustration we have a floor that is almost level. Close enough for laying concrete board and tiles. The floor was off level by almost an inch in places!

We also started hanging cement board. All I can say is that I am glad that we are hiring drywallers. Just putting up a few small sheets is hard. We have not even started the taping and sanding. I don’t want to think of how long that will take.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Parental Help

Well I have been very lazy about writing. Finals got to crazy to think about much else. I know I got one A, but that was from an easy class. I don’t know all of my grades, but I know that I did get one B. It means that I will have to retake at least one class if I want to get a PhD. I really did not think UMBC would be this hard.

The house was effectively put on hold during finals. We are still without drywall. There are a few little bits of framing left to do, but the main thing holding up the house is windows. We are waiting on Baltimore Window factory. They said they could make the windows in a little over a week. It is now 9 weeks later and we still don’t have our windows.

My parents came out over the weekend to help out. We were able to get a lot done. We finished almost all of the framing. We also installed insulation, and V-channel. V-channel is sheet metal formed into long pieces that have ‘V’ like profile. We installed the channel because our roof is too unusual to hang drywall on. The channel is up, but we now have the monumental task of trying to create a level, or a least flat surface. That is the task for next weekend.

We also started the construction of a trap door. We got a trap door cut and supports installed. The door has recycled old floor boards so it matches the rest of the house. We have not figured out the hard part which is how to hinge it. We are trying to find the system that would make it very easy to access and hardly shows from above. We have discussed different hinges, wheels, tracks, springs, hydraulic lifts and all sorts of other things. I don’t know how much time we will spend on the hinges right away. There are so many other things, it might just have to wait.