Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Thursday, December 25, 2008
I have to give the hvac guys some credit. They did a good job keeping the ductwork in the joist bays:
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
The plumber is just about finished roughing in the fixtures. He set up the laundry room supply and drain, while the hvac guy installed a pan that will give us more clearance for connecting the dryer vent:
They installed the cast iron tubs in the main bathroom upstairs and the guest bathroom on the first floor. The plumber said he hadn't actually installed a cast iron tub in ten years. And this house has three of them. That's one of the reasons we aren't going with a builder--we get full control over everything that gets installed. I'd much rather have a good, heavy cast iron tub than a cheap plastic one. The framing around the tub was perfect--not more than about a 1/2 inch of clearance at the front and back of the tub:
The hvac guys made good progress too. Openings for ducts and returns (each room--except for closets--gets its own return). I wanted to avoid putting any duct work or plumbing supplies in unconditioned spaces (exterior walls and attic). We got pretty close. We'll have the supplies for two closets run through the attic because there simply isn't anyplace else good to run them. I'll also have the supply for the guest bath toilet running through the exterior wall between the bathroom and the garage.
Here is the family room showing our new windows, fireplace, and a whole pile of hvac materials:
Monday, December 1, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
The weather forecast says flurries tomorrow night and Friday morning. Then snow showers on Sunday. Hopefully, the roofers can prioritize the valleys and tarp the ridges on Friday or Saturday to prevent a whole bunch more snow melting into the house.
Monday, November 24, 2008
The roofers should be there tomorrow, depending on how much they had to delay their current job due to the snow. HVAC, rough plumbing, and fireplace all start next Monday. Windows are also delivered next Monday, and the framers will be back to install them on Tuesday--the same day that our next snow storm is predicted.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
They still have a bunch of work to do on the front. They have to finish sheathing that last gable, and build the soffits and fascia for the whole front of the house. I'll try to get better pictures tomorrow and over the weekend when they're further along. They should be finished with sheathing, soffits, and fascia on Saturday. So the roofer can start on Monday. We have a slight chance of rain and snow on Monday, but the rest of the week looks good. Keep your fingers crossed.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
That's our roof sitting there. This morning, I got to the site at about 8:00, the crane was there, and they had already raised the first gable:
One more picture from a funky angle. This time, it's Tim, the lead carpenter positioning one of the trusses for placement.
I guess it's pretty important to keep the crane level. Here it sits with its wheels off the ground:
Thursday, November 13, 2008
This weekend, I'll start caulking. I'll be filling every gap I can find in the framing, making sure that I eliminate every air gap that I can even before the insulation goes in. We'll also try to figure out how we're going to store the interior doors. We got a good price on flat panel cherry doors made by the Wausau Door Company here in Wisconsin. We'll use five panel doors that are similar to those on our old house. We ordered them from Home Depot, hoping it would take them a while longer to get them to us.
They arrived yesterday--two weeks ahead of schedule. We could store them in the workshop, but it's still pretty wet down there--the slabs above and below are still drying out. So we'll have to find a conditioned storage unit to store them in for a month or two.
I'll be glad when the house is fully enclosed with a roof, windows, exterior doors, etc. But that's still a few weeks off. It's been raining pretty consistently: every day for the last week. When I checked things with a moisture meter last weekend, the walls were pretty good--about 10% to 12% moisture content. The subfloors? Not so good. They soak up water like a sponge, so they are at 25% and up. The ideal here in the winter is 7%. If things are much wetter than that, I'll risk cracks in the drywall and cupped floors. So it looks like I'll have to get the heat turned on as soon as I can just to start drying things out before the insulation goes in.
Next week will hopefully be much better in terms of weather. Not much rain expected, just a little bit of snow early in the week. By this time next week, the roof should be framed. Roofers should be able to start late next week or early the week after, along with the mechanicals.
The power company was out to mark for the gas line and to install the electric meter today. Hopefully, they'll start digging for the lines tomorrow. But with my luck, they'll arrive at the same time as the trusses or the crane early next week.
Here are a few new pictures. Here's how the front of the house looks. The walls that look incomplete on the right side second floor are actually interior walls. The trusses have to go in before they can finish the exterior:
Here's another view from the northwest corner that shows the garage:
The second floor interior walls are done too. We showed Zeke his new bedroom for the first time. Here's one with Linda's room at the front, Zeke's room on the right side, and Danny's room on the left:
Monday, November 10, 2008
By the time I got back in the afternoon, the exterior walls on three sides of the house were done:
It looks even better from the outside. Here's the east wall of the house at about 5pm:
They also put in the workshop stairs:
Now I won't have to climb into the basement through the window! Tomorrow they'll finish the second floor exterior walls, and maybe even the interior walls. Roof trusses are scheduled for Friday, and the exterior stone should come this week too.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
But there were also some unavoidable delays. The roof trusses, which I had hoped would be ready Tuesday, won't be delivered until Friday. That moves everything out by about a week. The windows won't be delivered until December 1st. But I did order the thin stone veneer for the front of the house to get delivered next week, so I'll be able to get a head start on that. I'll be setting the stone myself, so I'll finally be able to do something concrete (no pun intended).
We've had some weather delays, but not too bad yet. Just a day or two. The biggest delay is the roof trusses. Tim, the framer, waited until after we had garage walls up to verify the truss measurements. It was necessary because the foundation walls in the basement were poured out of square. He wanted to be sure that he could correct that error without having to increase the size of the trusses. He could. Luckily, I spec'd energy heels on the trusses, and I have 2x6 walls, so we have some room to play. They'll just have to shim the siding when they install it so it lines up with the foundation below.
The second delay was around the windows. I called in a change to Pella to increase the size of the basement windows and to upgrade the doors to use decorative glass. The sales rep told me I called the change in just in time. But then somebody from Pella called me and told me I missed the deadline and they were going to charge me a 50% restocking fee for the door (about $1000). It also delayed the whole window order by 10 days. I'm fighting the extra charge. But I'm not worried about the delay--it will allow me time to get the roof on before the windows are delivered. Since the windows are a "finish" item, it will be much better if I don't get them wet.
Here are some pictures of the work done so far. First some pictures of the garage. The walls are all up, and they started on the roof above the window bump out:
Here's a view from the inside. Looks like we'll have enough room for all of our junk, and maybe even be able to park one of the cars here:
The second floor joists and subfloor are up (for the most part):
And they've started on the second floor walls:
A view of the stairs from the second floor:
I was hoping that we'd be able to get all the way to the roof without any rain. That sure didn't happen. We got hit with the same storm that dumped four feet of snow on South Dakota in the last couple of days. Although by the time it got to us, it was mostly rain. So everything has been washed clean of sawdust, even the basement floor:
Despite the rain, they did get a start on the workshop stairs:
I'm buying a moisture meter from Woodcraft this morning. I want to be sure things are dry enough before we put the insulation and drywall up.
Finally, here's a picture of the Northeast corner of the house that shows we are actually closed in on all four sides
This weekend, I'll do some cleanup. Next week the framers will finish with the second floor walls, and hopefully get started on the roof on Friday.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
To start with, when we arrived at the site, the rain was just about past, and we had another great rainbow:
Followed by a pretty good sunset. This time we caught it from the front porch:
See, sometimes it does pay to be a flatlander. The stairs are in, and it was quite a view at the top of the stairs: