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shadytrake 07-15-2012 03:15 PM

1952 Brick Traditional overhaul
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Hi Everyone,

My husband and I live in a TPWWII (Traditional Post WWII - yes that dates my husband :whistling2:).

I bought it in 1997 before we were married and we have been gradually overhauling it ever since. I'll have to dig out the old photos (pre-computer crash) to post, but here are the most recent projects.

Originally we had a 100' Elm Tree in the front but it was hit by lightning about 5 years ago and split. We were so lucky that it grazed the side of our house and hit the truck in the driveway. (Getting a truck repaired is a lot easier than dealing with homeowner's insurance). Anyway, we had the Elm removed. I have pictures of that, but I'll have to dig them out.

The main project in the overhaul is the kitchen. The original kitchen was a narrow galley and when I moved in, carpet, ugh!

Needless to say, that had to go. Here is the original demo.

The next step was expanding the kitchen. I had an architect come in and draw the original rendering and then give us three possible options for the expansion.

The main reason to bring in the architect was to find all of the load bearing walls. Since we knew we would be doing the main demolition and framework, we wanted to know which walls could come down easily.

You can see in the last two photos that we broke through the original galley wall and a fake wall. These used to separate a laundry from an old pantry that had been converted to a closet.

shadytrake 07-15-2012 03:30 PM

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Here are the original rendering and the new plan (sorry for the scribbles. When I change my mind, it's easier to write over the original plan than to keep drawing it).

You can see the original opening to the kitchen from the master bedroom is walled up because the opening from the old closet will become the new doorway.

We were afraid that the previous owner had opened up the original exterior to add the "master bedroom" (he called it a workroom) and hadn't supported the load correctly. The easiest way to correct that was to close up the original opening to the galley by adding an extra header and walling it up. (sorry if my terminology is not accurate).

With the two walls down, three rooms became one big room for the kitchen. We will have an L shape. The only structural change is to open up the room to the living room to give a more open feel. That wall is structural (running the entire length of the house).

The easiest way to open it up was to take the old opening to the hallway from the living room and put in an extra header and wall it up. That gave us the needed support to open up the kitchen. We only opened it the width of a doorway. It really opens up the space while the walled up hallway creates privacy to the guest bedroom, bathroom, and office.

More to come...

shadytrake 07-15-2012 03:45 PM

Jumping ahead a few years...(long story, suffice to say it was better to live off the kitchen remodel money than lose the house). :yes:

We finally got going heavy on the kitchen last fall (2011). We had a long (2-year) debate about the washer and dryer. Originally, we had placed them in the kitchen along the back wall. Thinking this would be the final placement, I purchased a new Bosch front loader to replace my old Frigidaire washer that finally broke. I didn't replace the dryer because it still worked.

Well, we put the washer/dryer in the kitchen spot and used it there for 2 years. I hated it there! Every crumb from our makeshift kitchen migrated to it and it became a dumping ground for everything.

So,....change of plans. Ripped out the plumbing and decided to put a stackable unit in the pantry. The only problem is the new washer won't fit! It's too wide. There is no way that we are breaking into the pantry wall (load bearing). So, have to sell the Bosch (or donate it to the Goodwill).

That wall will now hold a floor to ceiling pantry. (no place to dump junk now).:no:

shadytrake 07-15-2012 04:09 PM

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Next chapter. We purchased the cabinets a couple of years ago when they went on clearance (Lowes decided to change from natural Maple to a Birch with what they call a Saddle finish).

The only thing we didn't purchase were the pantry cabinets. See above post #3. We will have to have the pantry cabinets custom built or search for some new/used ones.

Anyway, moving on. After a long debate about the floor, we decided to save money. Half of the floor had original Red Oak strip in really bad shape and the other half (original kitchen) had 1 layer of carpet and 4 layers of laminate over subfloor. The subfloor was even with the oak strip.

It was not worth it to try to save the original strip and weave in new strip for the other half. The quotes were averaging $1000. No way. We thought maybe we should install new strip over the old but nothing we looked at would match the original in the house for our price point and we would have to really seal the floor to avoid doggie scratches.

As it turns out, luck was on our side. A friend who owns a restaurant bought the space next to his restaurant (an old paint-your-ceramic store). The flooring in the store was a Red Oak laminate floating floor. He was going to rip it out and throw it. In exchange for my husband helping them with the expansion of the restaurant, he allowed us to carefully remove the flooring.

So we got our flooring free. We decided that instead of trying to completely match the original, we will let it be unique. If the next owner wants to install original flooring, they can just take it up easily. A floating floor sits on a foam pad and is not nailed down.

We rented a sander to level the subfloor (it had settled a bit). Since the floor is not perfect, we decided to install the floor before the base cabinets. That way the cabinets will be on top of the floor and have full height.

I set out and installed the floor by myself. Hubby will install the thresholds. I think I did a pretty good job. :thumbsup:

shadytrake 07-15-2012 04:13 PM

I forgot to talk about the electric and plumbing.

For those inquiring minds, we hired a professional electrician to pull the permit and do the electrical.

We had a plumber move the gas line to the new location. The final work will be done by the pros under permit.

The initial work has already been inspected and approved under permit. With 1952 wiring, we are having to expand the circuits and we don't want to fool with that. Luckily the service has already been expanded.

shadytrake 07-15-2012 04:36 PM

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Next step, cabinets. We installed the uppers first. Note: these are pre-fab cabinets from Lowes. There is nothing fancy.

This house is in a neighborhood where the max price is under $90K (and that's stretching it) so it would be really easy to over-improve. Have to be careful.

Flooring - Free
Sander rental - $50
Cabinets - Retail $1,800 (clearance price $900)
Insulation/New Mold/Water resistant drywall - $200
Plumber to move gas line - $50
Electrician - 70% due to this point. $1500. (special note: electrician is running new wire and re-configuring the circuits, because the prior owner did some jerry-rigging). We are getting a good deal.

Bosch Washer screw up - $950 (ugh).:furious: No way to really recover this except to donate it and take the charitable deduction. We've had it on Craig's List for several months with no takers.

Paint/Tape/Supplies - $300

Total spent so far to this step: $3950

shadytrake 07-15-2012 04:58 PM

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Here is some information about our appliances. I know, I know...all of these HGTV shows encourage stainless.

After owning a side-by-side stainless fridge for the last 10+ years, we decided that it is a PIA to keep clean of fingerprints.

After doing a lot of research and shopping around, I found an incredible deal on a Sears Kenmore slide in gas range with an electric oven and warming drawer. Someone had custom ordered it and when it came in, was the wrong size (I know how they feel. :whistling2:)

Anyway, I got it for 75% off! What a steal. I got the matching dishwasher about 6mos later. About 1 year later, the microwave/vent-a-hood went on sale so I took advantage and paid cash.

Appliances Kenmore brand in biscuit.
Range - retail $1300 (sale $325).
Dishwasher - $250
Microwave/vent-a-hood - $200

We splurged on some other items. One of my "must haves" is a hot-water dispenser. These run about $200. We are hunting around to see if we can find a deal.

We got a highly rated disposal. One of the tough decisions was the sink. All of the information I have read about them states that the deeper the sink, the less splash. Also, since we are not going with stainless, a stainless sink doesn't make sense.

After a lot of searching, we found a nice biscuit double sink made of Lucite with Microban. It will look great and it was economical.

Disposal: $75
Sink: $150
Hot Water dispenser: ?

Appliances so far: $1,000

shadytrake 07-15-2012 05:10 PM

Some of you may ask the question, why is the sink base not centered on the window. With such a small kitchen to work with, we wanted as many cabinets as possible without having to pay for custom.

If we had centered the sink base, we would have had to give up the dishwasher or re-locate the stove. By shifting the sink base to the left by 3", we were still able to have a regular sized base cabinet to the left of the sink and a dishwasher to the right.

The original plan had a blind left base, then the sink base, then the dishwasher. After manually placing the appliances and the sink base, we realized the blind left base wouldn't fit correctly anyway.

So it all worked out for the best. :thumbup:

shadytrake 07-15-2012 05:29 PM

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Jumping forward to real-time today. I had mentioned that we did a lot of our purchasing up front when we had the money. We did the same thing with the granite.

Originally we intended to splurge and go for a granite slab (the one BIG item). Well, last summer, an un-insured driver ran a red light and T-boned me in our truck. We LOVED our reliable Toyota long-bed truck. It had almost 200,000 miles and we owned it outright.

Of course, she totaled it. So instead of getting the granite slab, we put the extra money to get the same truck with the long bed (but the newer model AND a crew-cab). Lucky us, I found a used one in the exact color as our previous. It was fate. :thumbsup:

Sorry, back to topic. When I was in Lowes, I found a really nice granite tile that they sold in-stock. These were on clearance sale. So I dragged hubby over to look. He was dead-set on Uba Tuba granite. I showed it to him and showed him the price and it was too good to pass up. We bought 4 or 5 boxes of the tiles. I think they were $25 per box of 10 tiles if I remember. The style is Santa Cecilia (or St. Cecilia).

You can link here for the thread about the colors.

I really like it better than the Uba Tuba.

shadytrake 07-15-2012 05:38 PM

So today's project is to get the under-layment installed and the Durock set. Will post when completed. We are on track for a finished kitchen by the end of this month. I can't believe it. We gutted in April 2002. This is the longest kitchen remodel (10+ years). Did we set a record?

shadytrake 07-15-2012 09:13 PM

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Well hubby got too tired to get the Durock done today. But he did get the ply installed and it is level.

Here is a picture of the sink. It is a CorStone. These sinks run over $200 now.

shadytrake 07-15-2012 09:28 PM

Update on the sink. We decided to exchange it after I double checked the most recent reviews. Not good. Will keep you posted. Have to find a replacement that is more durable and fits our color scheme.

shadytrake 07-20-2012 09:41 PM

Took back the sink today. The nice manager let us get store credit since I can't find the receipt. After a long "discussion," we finally decided on a Franke composite granite in a rusty brown color (matte finish). The reviews are mixed for this type of sink. A lot of 5 star mixed in with a fair amount of 1 stars.

We are taking a chance since it is a dirty color and we don't have kids. The wear and tear should be light. Pics later.

Durock going in tomorrow!!

shadytrake 07-29-2012 05:42 PM

A Few Updates
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Hi All,

Just thought I would post some exterior photos of our house. You can see the small shingle patch on the roof from when the Elm tree fell a few years ago. The roof has 3 layers and is about 15 years old. It is almost ready to be fully replaced. We don't like the color of the shingles which is why the trim color of the house doesn't pair up nicely. We like the dark brown trim with the brick color so the roof color will change...eventually. :whistling2:

Since the windows are still in fairly good condition and replacing them would have been about $1000 for really cheap crap, I decided to go DIY on them. I scraped, sanded, and removed all of the old glazing. I then re-primed, re-glazed, and re-painted them. Since they are old single panes which have no real RV value, I decided to order exterior mount storm windows. The color choice was a special order but they came with screen windows which is really nice for airflow and keeping the bugs out. The storm windows also protect the old windows from so much UV decay (the front of the house faces West and gets a beating during the summer afternoons).

Also one photo up close of the main front bed (a little overgrown because we have been ignoring it lately).

shadytrake 07-29-2012 05:48 PM

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Here is an up close of the 2nd stage of glazing and painting. It is a labor intensive job and is best done in the late fall when the weather is nice outside and the mosquitoes are dying.

You can see that I have completed the glazing and painting on these 2 windows. I have 3 windows left to do. I also had to replace a couple of panes (luckily we have a glass company in town...a cheap option).

The kitchen window trim will need some replacement which is why it isn't painted. The trim is rotted at the bottom.

Now all I have to do is complete that and then mount the storm windows.

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