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Old 10-28-2011, 04:50 PM   #181
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Looking again closely, it looks like only the holes made on the butted edges needed to be patched. All of the diagonal holes in the grooves seem to be fine. Re-applying spackle there took only seconds.

The new base, casing and rail and rosettes received their first coat of Duration Interior Satin in Westhighland White. It's much more difficult to roll out the curves on this Victorian-style trim than I had guessed it would be, even with my 3" wide 3/8" synthetic nap roller. All the same, it's done.

Taking a lunch break before I start painting the beadboard. Hopefully I can have it prepped enough to start installing the moulding on my next day off.

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Old 10-28-2011, 11:31 PM   #182
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Got a fair amout done after lunch. Indeed, every square inch of bead board received a coat of paint. That means that the three full sheets are finished now, and the other sheets need only a second coat. I wanted to recoat or attach the char rail, but decided that I wanted to leave more dry time before I did. All the same, that one coat of paint hid every fingerprint mark, every nail mark, every seam, and evened the prime tone out ever so slightly darker.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-268.jpg

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-269.jpg

Please excuse the project clutter.
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Old 10-28-2011, 11:39 PM   #183
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Instead of rushing the drying on the paneling, I decided to do the only thing that I could at that point: attach the new door casing.

The old stuff was a pine moulding, but very plain, and very beat up from countless dings and coats of paint. While this is merely MDF, I think it still looks just fine. At 1/4" wider, I didn't have to worry about exposing layers of paint edges, and it has a bit more curvy Victorian flair than the old stuff.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-270.jpg

I know that the casing is not fluted, but I decided that I wanted to use the rosette blocks anyway.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-271.jpg

I hadn't accounted for the increased thickness when I purchased the 1-5/8" panel nails. I may need something longer to get a firm grip. I had to drill the holes myself with a 3/32" bit. I really wish they'd come pre-drilled.

I'm sure it will all look a lot better with a light sanding, spackle, sanding, spackle, sanding, primer and paint.
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Old 10-31-2011, 01:56 AM   #184
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Got a few minutes of work in today. Decided that I wanted to see what the finished product was going to look like. I managed to get about 17' of chair rail and 12' of base board up.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-272.jpg

The base board has to follow the uneven floor while remaining somewhat straight, so it's really a matter of balacing the size of the gap between the base and floor with the straightness of the line it creates.

The chair rail I hung by eye, without a level, string or line. It ended up being within 1/64" anywhere along its length, except in the the inside corner, where it's off by 1/16" or about 1/2" of its length. Next time I'll use the level, but that's certainly not bad for using just my eye.

I couldn't even find the holes I spackled on the bead board.
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Old 11-01-2011, 04:24 PM   #185
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Worked the weekend, so not much got done the last few days. I seem to have this habit of working all day the morning before a long work weekend, then pulling an all-nighter at work. Needless to say, I sleep well after the next shift or two. If I didn't adopt this system, I'd have 2 days less to work on the house per week and I find that if I don't exhaust myself this way, I have trouble falling asleep because of a racing mind.

After the latest shift, I had to go re-register the car. On the 45-minute drive to a DMV location with a reasonable wait time, I ended up having to pull over in a shady neighborhood to take a nap while parked in a self service car wash. I figured it was better than falling asleep while driving. Because somebody fraudulently used my debit card a few days ago to spend ~$60 on iTunes, my card no longer works and I had to go to bank to withdraw cash. I figured while I was in the neighborhood, I may as well stop by Lowe's...

What started as a pit stop for one piece of base and a package of nails turned into a lumber cart full of Hem-Fir and moulding. I think the wife will be pleased when I put up this crown.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-279.jpg

Last night I worked on the living room until just after dark, when the Trick or Treaters started early. I went through $10 in bags of candy in the first 30 minutes, so I ran to the corner market for another $10 worth that lasted the rest of the night. I fell asleep on the couch about 8:40 and wife woke me up around 9:00 when the last kid left. There's a lot more children than I thought there would be in this quiet little town, but that's just fine because there's still a few caramel chews left over for me. :D

Another mandatory administrative day this morning meant that I had to report in just after dawn in my service dress, so the rest of last night and this morning were burned. On my way back home, I stopped off at the base education office to schedule a CLEP exam (because the Community College of the Air Force doesn't recognize my Calculus or Business Statistics credits from a California State University as valid math courses ). I ended up taking the test as a walk-in, two weeks less prepared than I'd have liked. It was frantic dash at the end to fill in the blank answer with random guesses, but I eked out a score of 68 (with a score of 50 representing a median C-average). Not too shabby for what little time I spent cramming to remember math from too many years ago.
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Old 11-01-2011, 04:55 PM   #186
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Check out what little progress I made yesterday!

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-273.jpg

The chair rail was continued to the corner. It's just shy of 1/4" short, but I think it'll be filled, shaped and smoothed with caulk just fine. I also got that near-12' length of base cut and attached, at which point I decided I dislike working with 12' pieces. I don't have the setup to easily cut them (4' longer than my tables), they don't fit in my car, they're hard to move around in tight/furnished spaces, they're heavy enough that you can't hold them up from just one end while nailing and they can bow significantly under gravity over their length (even on-end). It's 8' pieces from here on out.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-274.jpg

Here's some idea of the dips I'm working with in this flooring. The random smudges hide it slightly, but follow the line from corner and you'll see what I'm talking about. I'm not yet sure if I'll bother using a leveling compound before tiling or if I'll just work with what I've got. It's a remarkably low traffic area.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-275.jpg

The chair rail is done on the stairs piece. With a 16" rise over a 27" run, I calculated the cuts out to 74.4 (assuming the two horizontal pieces were level and the center piece was symmetrical). I could have kept both end pieces at 90 and cut the center piece at 58.8, but I like the look of it more this way. Plus, 74.4 is twice as close to the 75 detent than 58.8 is to the 60 detent... even though I don't trust a hand tool to a 1 tolerance.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-276.jpg

New hinges on the door. I unscrewed the hinges between Trick or Treaters assuming it would be an average hollow core door. Nope. It's easily 50-60 lbs and fell right onto my big toe. Remounting it solo was tricky until I broke down and fetched a pry bar to stand on.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-277.jpg

The front door never had trim, so I added it there. I was tired of seeing the rough-in insulating foam always mocking me. While I was at it, I knocked the finished frame around a bit, shamming closed a gap at the top right (as seen from this side) of " between the door and frame to now 1/16". Since this is an exterior door, it should help considerably with heating costs.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-278.jpg

Here's my new stack of moulding to prime and paint. Whooopeee! This is by far my least favorite part of this whole process because of the messiness, waste and wait time. For reference, there's 24' of 3-7/8" base and 56' of 3-5/8" crown in this picture. I wanted larger moulding in this entire house, but was afraid that it would make small spaces feel smaller if it was too large.
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Old 11-03-2011, 05:27 AM   #187
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


It's been a hectic but interesting few days. Even though I invested substantial amounts of time, I'm afraid I didn't accomplish as much as I'd have liked. Doesn't that just always seem to be the problem when creating quality finish work?

I picked up another 6 sheets of bead board to continue into the dining room and down the hallway. I estimate that I'll be able to make it with 5 sheets if I don't screw up any cuts at all (HAH!), so I grabbed six. I also picked up another 8 2x4s to set up the second set of saw horses (eight 32" legs, two 48" braces, four 96" stringers). Right after cutting, I wasn't paying attention and nailed the braces in as legs and was forced to cut them down. That left me a few pieces of waste and with only three stringers. Oh well, it still works. I didn't sheet the second table like I did the first, as I'll be using this one primarily for priming, painting and drying space.

I started on coping the quarter round where it meets the chair rail and base board, realizing just how tedious this work is with mostly hand tools. Here you see two lengths of " primed quarter roung being coped to the profile of the top end of the base board.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-280.jpg

I cheated. The piece is alway cut out in the picture. I forgot to take a true before shot. See for yourself.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-281.jpg

And a blurry ass shot of it mating with the base.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-282.jpg

Coped both directions and then filed, here's another blurry shot of its final resting place. Note this is a dry fit.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-283.jpg
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Old 11-03-2011, 05:56 AM   #188
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


I pre-drilled the panel nail holes 5" O.C. I figured they wouldn't get deep enough to bite the stud at the corner, and I was right. A decent squirt of Elmer's Pro Bond on each of the backsides gave a pretty good hold. I also buttered each end with the pink Dap spackle and filled the gap between the chair rail and the adjoining wall. With nearly 1/8" gap, it felt like pretty sloppy work. I don't know why I didn't rip it down while I had the chance to re-do it easily.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-285.jpg

Note that I'll be adding another piece that will be coped around the middle and top of the chair rail. I figured it would be wise to do it in multiple pieces. As it was, getting these 3 copes to line up well at the same time was rather difficult.

After all that small work with the fiddly bits, I started to lose patience while spackling the chair rail. Once they started looking this rushed, I decided it might be a good idea to just give it a break instead.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-284.jpg

I managed to get all of the base and crown from the previous post with one careful coat on the front and one backside primer coat to each of three full sheets. I had hoped to get them cut up into manageable pieces, but a grocery trip was needed, taking up the last of my day.
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Old 11-07-2011, 01:43 PM   #189
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


There's been progress this weekend. Not as much as I'd like, but still some!

First, I forgot to include a shot of the second set of sawhorses.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-286.jpg

On Friday, I made another trip into town for materials. The same stuff as before: base, casing, rail, nails, paint, etc. This time I was buying for the rest of the house's common areas, so there's a bit more heft to the materials pile. I'm going to recondition and reuse as much base as possible, so there's very little here. I'm not sure how much I'll need to repurchase due to poor condition.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-288.jpg

Not a whole lot got done, but I did manage to knock together a mockup for the (planned) coffers.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-289.jpg

It's a pretty basic construction. 2x4 base bolts to the ceiling, then 1x4s are nailed to each side, and a 1x4 fingernailed back a bit for a slightly reveal. Here it's a little larger than I'd like, but that's why I made mockups: to practice on something nobody will ever see. Afterwards, crown is installed, but I haven't gotten there just yet.
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Old 11-07-2011, 01:49 PM   #190
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


The wife was wonderful enough to lend me a hand this weekend. In exchange, I had to watch a chick flick. Fair enough. At the end of the first night, I'd gotten this far with the wall. I couldn't go much further due to my materials still being fairly raw. Note that the right-most piece isn't nailed on yet at this point.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-287.jpg

The wife spackled and sanded most of the living room base board and chair rail. Meanwhile, I manage to get the base cut and installed for the stairs. I left the top-most piece loose because the adjoining paneling isn't on yet, and that will create a ~3/16" offset.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-290.jpg
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Old 11-07-2011, 01:54 PM   #191
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


I went to take some materials outside and noticed how dirty the floor was. Covered in sawdust, it needed a good sweeping. Afterwards, I realized that I never did work on the problem area between the foundation and the patio slab at the back door.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-291.jpg

I decided it was time to get it worked out. The vacuum made a cameo appearance, sucking up plenty of rocks, thinset globs, spiderwebs and most of an action figure.

It just so happens that a month or so ago I was at Lowe's. Somebody had bought a bunch of pea gravel and spilled a good 10 lbs in the parking lot. Not to let it go to waste, I scooped it up with a piece of cardboard into a grocery bag. And that's exactly what I filled the hole back up with.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-292.jpg
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Old 11-07-2011, 02:10 PM   #192
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


While Saturday's work was all to the right of the front door, Sunday's was all to the left of it. Removing the baseboards, I learned something about the sequence of colors that the interior walls have been at one point or another. You can also see how I layout my studs.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-293.jpg

I make a guess at which direction the wall was framed from, then drill around with the smallest bit I have at that mark. If I hit, I move left/right in " increments until I find each edge of the stud. A vertical line on each side with an X in the middle is my preferred method of annotating the layout. After, I lay 2" wide x 6" long strips of painter's tape on the floor at show where they are once I put the paneling up. It really helps to know exactly where to nail this bead board without having to guess around. Usually I use pencil, but for this spot, I used a Sharpie.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-294.jpg

From looking closely at each layer here, I can tell the interior's last five colors: avocado > deep blue > medium brown > warm grey > ivory. Somehow that progression seems to match the order I'd rank them in from least universally liked to most.

The wife gave each new piece of molding two thin coats of primer on the backside. It was raining when I (lit.) ran inside with them on Friday, so that gave them two days to acclimate.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-295.jpg

And of course there was more...

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-296.jpg

Here's the progress at the end of Sunday, just before I turned in early.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-297.jpg
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Old 11-08-2011, 06:36 AM   #193
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Today was the first day of rest I've taken since long before this project started. I don't know that it even counts because I spent the morning running out to get a printer, the entire afternoon scanning documents and receipts, and the night at work.

Certainly feel more rested. Ready to get back to the project in the morning.
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Old 11-10-2011, 04:22 PM   #194
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


Spent the last few days mostly scanning in paper documents I've had around here. Picked up a printer/scanner/copier and figured I'd test it out. I haven't decided yet whether I'll keep it or not. We'll see.

Being practically paperless for several years, the 6-9 month stack of papers really irked me. I managed to scan several hundred pages the first night, and another 85 documents yesterday morning. It took some time, I'll admit, but I hope to earn it back during tax season when I itemize (hoping for zero tax liability this year). Yeah, there's still some paper and unsorted digitized files laying around, but they'll be done in due time.

I did manage to get some small bit done last night. The ~22" section of wall between the full bead board sheets and the entryway never got done. I've been putting it off because it's not seen often and was going to be a nightmare like the stairs piece was. I tackled it last night.

1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project-img_0953.jpg

I wanted to keep the same slope as the stairs piece on the opposite end of the room, but that wasn't possible due to the shorter length of this wall section. In the end, I ended up with a 45 slope (and thankfully my miter box has a 22.5 detent for the chair rail). I ended up just cutting it an inch over the shortest width and scribing the inside corner. After I freehanded that cut, I nailed the damn thing in place still as a big rectangle, an inch too wide, and a inch too tall.

I drew out my lines in red pen, placed a piece of scrap galvanized sheet metal behind it, and went to town with the multi-tool. Much easier than the measure-cut-fit-measure-cut-fit dance I was doing before.

I didn't get the last piece of chair rail on the right because I ran out of prepared material (more on that momentarily), but I did get the 4" piece behind the railing end piece cut and nailed into place, then fastened the end piece back down with 2" 6d finish nails. Please excuse the copious MDF dust.
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Old 11-10-2011, 04:27 PM   #195
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1958 Ranch Home, Full of Character - First Home, First Major Project


All of this morning was spent painting the moulding that the wife primed last weekend. I managed to finish 24 pieces, for a total of 177 linear feet of the curviest, most irritating stuff to paint in detail with a roller.

Didn't see much of a need for a picture, considering it looks almost exactly the same as when I started, just cleaner and more uniform. Yey for white trim. :\

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