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Old 10-14-2011, 12:41 AM   #151
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-215.jpg1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-218.jpg1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-223.jpg

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-204.jpg1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-217.jpg1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-233.jpg

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Old 10-14-2011, 12:47 AM   #152
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Wait, so all you do is mud the spaces and nails? To easy.
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Old 10-14-2011, 12:52 AM   #153
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


LOL. Yup. Pretty much.

I did get some washboard effect in places because the knife kept hitting the texture on the other walls, but otherwise, it's almost good to go.

I think shooting a consistent texture would be much harder than this. That and the sprayer costs a bit of dough. Think I'll cheat and cover the whole wall with bead board after I prime it.
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Old 10-18-2011, 08:44 AM   #154
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Just realized you said nails. Yes, and no.

You can use nails to save a few dollars. I find them harder to control (from breaking the paper) and that they're more prone to backing out in the future and showing through the texture, especially if a cantilevered load is placed on them (like a TV mount). Screws are the better option, IMO.
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Old 10-18-2011, 09:18 AM   #155
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Over the long work weekend, progress of course stalled again. My surges of full days of free time, followed by zero free time (ad infinitum) seem to have several advantages and disadvantages. It's great for when I have projects that 'have to be done in one day', like anything that's electrical, for example. I have to reset the clocks far fewer times than if I had to do it in 2 hour spurts. However, with things that require a dry or cure time (like drywall mud), it turns out that I need a secondary project to work on during drying or small amounts of labor will stretch out to take forever. The latter seems to be what happened this week.

The second coat of mud went on last night, without sanding between. I only have a 4" and 6" knife, and don't care to buy 8", 10" or 12" knives for a wall that I'll be covering, so it's receiving its sanding right now.

We decided on full-height bead board. Three sheets should run about $54 or so. I should already have a can of drywall primer, so that'll go on the wall. I'll be using an interior/exterior latex primer on the sides and back of the bead board panel, then applying some Duration to the front. We still have a can of the white from the interior paint job (that is on hold), so I think I may just use that. The wife wants the bead board cream or off-white, so we'll have to reconcile that difference before we can continue. I don't think it'll give enough contrast with the walls unless a bright white. We'll see what pans out.

I still have to actually pick up the bead board, pick out the chair rail, and decide on a new base board. That's on the books for today. I may as well try to pick out a matching baseboard and door/window casing while I'm staring at it in the store. This is the style we're working towards, and about the same wall color.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-228.jpg

Or this...

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-229.jpg

We're going a bit away from the very-high-and-flat moulding that's traditional and going with something a bit curvier, as seen here.
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Old 10-18-2011, 09:29 AM   #156
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Started working on the tile layout for the living room while overtired yesterday morning. I manged to crank out the thing and get it planned out. Here's what I came up with.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-230.jpg

Unfortunately, it's a lot of cuts. But hopefully it pays off in equity. Here's a breakdown, by number of cuts.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-231.jpg

Zero Cuts
One Cut
Two Cuts
Three Cuts

Unfortunately, I pulled the measurements copy-and-paste style from my 3D model and took them as granted. Nope!

It was only off by " in two directions, but I drew it up for a width nearly 9" too wide. Grrrr. I'm redoing it now, because I think it will have a substantial impact on the layout.
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Old 10-18-2011, 10:18 AM   #157
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Figured out the pattern with the updated dimensions. Of course, nothing's final until it's thinsetted to the floor. And even then...

I had to shift the center field to one side and reduce it by one tile width. Otherwise, I was getting these odd ~1.5" slivers of the 12" tile along the border edges. While this design calls for another 2 tiles wastage than the one with slivers, I think the improved feel of the center field will be well worth it.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-232.jpg
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Old 10-18-2011, 06:07 PM   #158
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Back from Lowe's, again. Ready to start get this project rolling!

Got the van this time, so I was able to bring back the full (4'x8') primed MDF beadboard sheets.They're certainly not tip-top condition, but I think I cherry-picked the best six. I'll probably return the worst looking one when I get the next set.

I also picked up some additional baseboard and door casing. I got five 7' pieces, which should be enough to put on the bathroom door and inside the front door. I'm adding rosette blocks on these ones, and if the look works well enough, I'll retrofit the other casings with them as well.

Grabbed two more door knobs while I was there; one bath/bed, one closet. Two packs of white paneling nails and a new Stanley miter box (with saw). This should keep me busy a little while.

For reference, here's what I went with.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-233.jpg
3-7/8" MDF base

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-234.jpg
2-1/2" MDF casing

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-235.jpg
2-5/8" MDF chair rail

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-236.jpg
4'x8' sheet of 2"-spaced bead

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-237.jpg
Stanley miter box with saw

For the record, I wanted larger moulding, but decided that the increased cost of replacing all the existing stuff wouldn't be worth it, especially considering this is an exact-match with what we already have.
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Old 10-22-2011, 08:27 PM   #159
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Once again, I find myself not having posted updates in four days. Gah, how the time flies. Part of it has been my lack of will to email myself the pictures, clean off the EXIF data, rename, rotate, upload, etc. Anyhow...

Lets see. After my last post, I installed the door knobs I purchased. They're the same as before, so if you haven't already seen them, just go back a page or two for a photo.

This time, I noticed in the instructions that it said the wavy part should point up. Interestingly enough, I installed the last two up-side-down. I inserted the lock pin, popped each side off and swapped them. They feel much better now and are much easier to grip. So now the bathroom and hall closet match the two of the other 3 knobs in the hallway.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-239.jpg

Once again, I found a pile of graphite inside the beat up old brass knobs. The bathroom door didn't lock before, so I'm thankful that can be done now. Also, the catch plates are much improved.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-240.jpg
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Old 10-22-2011, 08:39 PM   #160
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Two work days ate up another 24 hours, plus the sleep in between.

We've had the MDF bead board sitting in the living room with the new moulding, getting acclimated to the humidity present. This, along with priming of the back and ends, seems to help minimize expansion and contraction of the MDF and eliminate the necessity to caulk the joints twice per year.

This morning I decided that I didn't want to install 6 full sheets (let alone the rest of the house) with ghetto rigged-up work areas. Thus, I went shopping for things to make my life easier (and some things that I had forgotten last time).

From Lowe's, I grabbed 10 Hem-Fir 2x4x8's, four sets of folding sawhorse braces, some knockdown texture in a can and an extra tamper-resistant receptacle/plate to finish the living room wall. From Harbor freight, I picked up six 12" clamps/spreaders, shaded safety glasses, a high-carbon steel blade for the Chicago Tools ripoff of the Multi-master and a baby sized 8oz hammer for the wife. From Sherwin-Williams (15 miles out of my way), I picked up two gallons of Duration Interior in satin, one in the trim color and one in the primary wall color. At 40% off and with a $10 off $50 coupon, it was about $28/gal. I got another two gallons of the same paint, but untinted, that I'll have tinted for free when I need them.

The hammer, seriously, has about half the handle length of my 16oz or 20oz hammers, and even less when compared to my framing hammers. The claw almost bumps my wrist when swinging it, and it's certainly all arm strength that powers it. Perfect for the wife.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-242.jpg

A lunch of KFC to go completed my 5-hour round trip. Gotta love this...

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-241.jpg
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Old 10-22-2011, 08:50 PM   #161
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Unfortunately, ten 2x4x8's was enough to make only enough pieces for only one set of sawhorses capable of handling full sheets. With 32" legs, they sit about 34" high, are precisely 48" wide, and have four 8' 2x4 stretchers with a sheet of 4x8 press board on top. That leaves two 2x4x8s left over, and one spare 32" leg. Looks like I need another four.

As a note... the 2x4s at Lowe's were terrible. I didn't want green Douglas Fir and could only fit 8' lengths in the Accord, so that left only Hem-Fir as an option. I picked through at least 30 boards before choosing the ten I did, I saw two red wood mites, and at least 3 boards covered in black mold splotches while sifting through them.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-243.jpg

With the sawhorses assembled, I set about cutting a sheet into thirds. This meant measuring in 37-3/64" from each end, marking, then clamping the guide bar's nearest end at those marks. Even though the sheet would divide evenly into thirds at 32", I had to leave exactly 5" for the circular saw frame and 3/32" for half of the blade's kerf. Cutting with the blade set at about 3/8" (on a 1/4" sheet) with the finished side facing down minimized tearout and loss of primer surrounding the cut.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-244.jpg

Afterwards, the primer went on easily. I wasn't worried about the coat being perfect because I knew it would probably never been seen again by another human being and because my main goal was to seal out moisture. Unfortunately, cutting before priming led me to the realization that drips quickly migrated to the finished side of the sheet not just around the outer edge but also along the new cuts. Every other sheet will be primed, then cut to save me having to sand the front edge back down.

For reference, the primer is Kilz 2 interior/exterior multipurpose. I was tempted to get Sherwin primer today, but couldn't justify the increased cost for $18/sheet MDF stock. The roller is a synthetic no-name-brand with 3/8" nap, chosen because it's what I have leftovers of from painting the interior walls.
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Old 10-22-2011, 08:56 PM   #162
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


While the first sheet was drying, I came inside to work on the last bit of the drywall project. I had sprayed the right edge where the corner was never textured due to the faux-stone, and ran out as soon as that 8' segment was done. Since I got a can today, I figured it was time to finish it up.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-245.jpg

In hindsight, the stuff from Lowe's I got today is much thinner in consistency than the previous can from Ace. Since it's a water-based knockdown texture, it ended up giving a much shallower texture than I expected and drying even thinner. Two coats were needed to get anywhere near a good match. It was also very easy to spray too much and knock down large areas, which I like to call "slicks".

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-246.jpg

I'm not sure I got the consistency exactly the same, but I think it's good enough. Note that it's not primered yet, so it may still change in depth.
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Old 10-22-2011, 09:05 PM   #163
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


And lastly, I laid out two of the four walls for stud locations. It required me removing the baseboards on the long wall, which it turns out were held on with a combination of way too many wire nails and way too many panel nails. Literally, there were, on average, 4 nails every 6".

The top row was easy enough to remove. I used my new high speed steel attachment to slice right through them. The ones at the bottom of the wall were shot direction at the footing and sill plate. When the nails entered the wall, it's obvious that they struck the concrete and bend into a squiggly S-shape inside the drywall. Prying them out was very difficult, especially while trying to salvage the MDF base they went through and trying to preserve the drywall as much as possible. But, it's done.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-247.jpg

Once it was done, I laid out the expected stud locations off of one of the glass shelves I installed previously. I then drilled in with a 3/32" spiral bit directly below, just above the sill plate. Assuming I hit a stud, I then moved " to each side and drilled again. This assured me that I had hit the center of the stud. On all but one stud, I was dead on the money. Probably due to a framer's error, there is one stud that's about 1" off center in the middle of the span, falling right on a 4' sheet break. I'll have to carefully toe-nail that seam.

I have to go move sheets #3 and #4, and finish priming sheets #5 and #6 before bed. I want to be able to start painting the fronts and get at least the three full sheets installed tomorrow. Ideally, I would love to have all of the cuts made on the bead board. We'll see how it goes.
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Old 10-22-2011, 09:12 PM   #164
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


I just noticed that we've passed 20,000 views.

Thanks everybody for the interest!

I know it can be slow going or sound preachy at times, but I'm trying my best to take the hand and make it all make sense to somebody with no previous experience and who has just tuned in. My hope is to teach some basics, provide a steady framework upon which to expand, ease the freak out factor from simple things like opening walls or wiring switches, and to inspire others to start their own projects.

If I've left anything out, or anybody has questions, please don't hesitate to post and ask... and point out if I've made any fatal mistakes.
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Old 10-23-2011, 12:43 PM   #165
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


On Friday night, I made a 90 minute trip up to North State Public Radio to work as a phone volunteer for their fall pledge drive. I've been giving to Nation Public Radio as a payroll deduction for nearly a year, so half of my motivation was to get a behind-the-scenes look at where my money was going.

As it turns out, each station has an independent budget and, thus, separate pledge drives. Each station pays its own staff (or uses a mixture of volunteers and paid staff) and purchases most of their programming at the national level from companies such as National Public radio, American Public Media, etc. While some programming is locally produced (such as most of the shows are composed of mostly DJ'd music and local news), most of the programming is acquired in this fashion. To help the member stations, the national producers include pledge drive segments during certain times of year, causing most stations to run their pledge drives at the same time. To make matters even more confusing, some stations have translator or repeater stations, which have a separate station designators (starting with W if east of the Mississippi or K if west of the Mississippi) but are otherwise real-time mirrors of their parent station.

As it stands, my money has going to a show production budget at NPR. While this helps offset the cost that must be passed on to each member station, it does nothing to help them actually purchase it. As a result, I'm spreading my donation around at the national level instead of helping my local station. I'm fine with that, but I felt a bit guilty once I revealed my donation strategy to the station staff. Once all was said and done, I worked phone for three hours, commuted another three hours to and fro, and accepted approximately $600 in pledges. That felt good, but it was only a drop towards their $175,000 goal. Of course, a Friday night at the same time as Game 2 of the World Series doesn't make for very high donations. I had hoped to get some goodies from the Sierra Nevada Brewery gift shop on the way back, but they closed minutes before I arrived.

Last night, I was scheduled as a volunteer driver for the base's Airmen Against Drunk Driving chapter. It seems that they only call when on nights when I'm so tired I leave my phone in the living room. Not last night! I received a call just before 2am to bring three airmen from a neighboring town back to the base. They were on temporary duty for training, so it was refreshing to know that they had our chapter's phone number or at least where to get it in the middle of the night.

In combination with being woken up early by the parrot, yesterday's heavy work load and the lack of rest has made for a slow start this morning. I'm just about done with two cups of coffee and so I am probably about ready to get moving on the bead board sheets. The carpenter just primed the new knockdown texture, so I think I'll start by painting the front of the center full sheet, then finish laying out the studs on the short wall segments while that dries. Once the primer dries, I'll see if I can get the right-side full sheet scribed to the far-from-perfect corner. After that sheet is cut and drying, hopefully I can get the two pieces with a 45 degree rise (one at the stairs, and one at the recessed transition) measured out.

Wish me luck!

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