Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Square Grand

Sorry for the lack of posting lately, I was out of town for work. I'm just now getting back to work on the house.

This weekend we bought a piano for the foyer area of the house. It's a Baldwin Square Grand made sometime in the 1870's. We got a great deal on it so we couldn't pass it up.

We had to drive up to Nashville to get it, it took 5 people plus a pallet jack to get it in the bed of my truck. Once we got it to the house it was only me and the girlfriend though.

Luckily I can back the truck right up to the porch steps, the drop is only about 2' that way. I was able to slide it out of the bed and tilt it up on it's side. Then I was able to get a hand truck under it and wheel it into the foyer. That was the easy part. This piano weighs at least 600 pounds, probably closer to 800.

We put the 2 legs on the top part of the piano then I lowered it down on to them. With that done we moved around to the other side, got the hand truck under it and tilted it up enough to get a bottle jack under it. Then came the fun part, I had to deadlift the piano up high enough to get a 2x8 under it cut just a little longer than the legs. We were then able to put the other 2 legs on.

Here are a few pics of it before we cleaned it up:

And here are a few pics of it after scrubbing and oiling the wood (I have not touched the internals yet):

Above the keys is a large mother of pearl inlay, and above that you can barely make out the name, D. H. Baldwin & Co.

My brother restores pianos so we hope to get the internals restored soon.

We also picked up a few other things recently. In the nursery we got a really nice mahogany crib and a really nice oil painting, it's 4' x 2.5', the frame is plaster on wood:

Friday, April 17, 2009

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Antique furniture

We didn't get any work done on the house yesterday. Instead we went antique shopping. We picked up a desk and a dresser.

The desk needs some work. It's solid oak with a lot of carved details.

The dresser is the most awesome piece I have ever seen, it standes 9' tall and is made from very thick, heavy walnut. The pictures do it no justice, it's a very impressive piece in person.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Laundry room/Attic access

Our laundry room is going to be in the attic space above the dining room and kitchen. The only access to this area was in the bathroom but the shower will be covering it up so I needed to make a new entryway into the area.

The new entryway will be from the back spare bedroom. Here is the corner of the room where the new doorway will be.

Here is the rough opening for the doorway.

Since the dining room/kitchen ceiling is a foot higher (11 feet) there will have to be a step up to get in to the laundry room. Here's the view from inside the attic.

Next I started cleaning out in between the joists, there's over 100 years of dust, coal soot, knob & tube wiring, and old bits of cedar roofing shingles everywhere.

I stopped at this point for a few reasons, first I had stepped on a 3" long nail earlier in the day and my foot was starting to swell up pretty bad, but mainly because I need to get a few things before I can lay the rest of the sub floor down. I need to get some R-30 insulation, and I need to get the sub-panel and install it first.

The sub-panel will be installed here in the laundry room and control the entire upstairs and a few of the overhead lights downstairs. I also have to wire up the overhead lights before the sub-floor can go down.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Main bathroom walls

Yesterday I was back at work in the main bathroom so the plumbers can get in there this morning.

I went through 5 cans of Great Stuff on all the chinks in the siding. Then I insulated the walls.

The areas with no insulation are for the pocket windows.

Then I put the greenboard up.

We then put the tub, toilet, and vanity in the bathroom because the plumbers will need them in there today when they install the plumbing.

I will go back and mud afterwards.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Sunroom Floor

Yesterday I installed the sunroom floor.

Then we brought in our sunroom furniture temporarily to make sure everything would fit properly.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Kitchen Cabinets

The cabinet guy showed up with the hood vent and the rest of our cabinets today (minus a door that he is still waiting on). The first thing I did was to install the final upper cabinet and install the mullion doors on the end cabinet (we were shorted a hinge).

Next I built the pantry and fridge cabinet (the pantry cabinet is the one we're waiting on a door for) and then installed the fridge.

We're really not happy with how the hood vent turned out. I'll probably end up getting the parts and building my own (if you want it done right, you gotta do it yourself...).

By the way, I dont know what the deal is with my camera, it's a new one and a really good one but these pictures do the cabinets NO justice at all. I think it's the lighting and the settings I have the camera on...

There is still a lot left to do, install the end panels on all the cabinets with exposed sides, valence above the sink, crown and light bars, toekicks, and build the oven cabinet.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Main Bathroom floor install

One of the things that keeps sidetracking me is that I have to constantly keep ahead of the plumbers so they dont get held up. They're working another job so they're only there 2 days a week as it is.

The floor in the main bathroom is one of the things that was holding them up. The floor is terribly sloped. I needed to level this off before they install the plumbing.

The first thing I had to do was make shims to level the floor. The high point of the floor is near the door, then it slope down in both directions. To make matters worse about 2' from the outer wall it slopes up a little bit then slopes sharply down. First I checked the foundation under the bathroom and found it to be solid. Then I made the shims. Each shim had to be cut to match the section of floor it was going on. I did this by running a string line and taking measurements at key points along it.

With the shims in place I laid the subfloor.

The flooring we got for the bathroom and the sun room is 5" white oak.

It goes down very easy. Because of the random length pieces I didnt have to cut a single board. I would lay out one whole row at a time then nail them down.

This last pic shows the color better than the other pics.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Sunroom siding

Yesterday I worked on the siding for the sunroom. I didn't get much done because it kept raining on and off for most of the day.

I still have a lot left to do...

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Sealing and grouting the floor

On Thursday I sealed the floor. I put 2 coats down then let it dry overnight. On Friday I grouted then sponged it 3 times. Today when I came back there was still a slight haze on the floor.

I'm going to try to scrub it tomorrow then put down another coat of sealer if I have time.

Today I also laid down a sub-floor in the sunroom in preparation for the oak flooring.

I had to use left over plywood scraps because I'm out of plywood and my truck is broken down for the time being.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Travertine flooring

The travertine floor is in! It came out great.

Next I have to seal it then grout it. The colors should really pop when it's sealed.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Self-leveling cement

Yesterday I put a coat of self-leveling cement on the backer-board because there were still a few spots I was concerned with. Hopefully it will be level enough for the travertine now.