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Author Topic: That 'big project' I've been banging on about for a few years now....  (Read 28035 times)
Sorontar
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« Reply #150 on: May 04, 2020, 01:21:51 pm »

Yes, remove the path, deepen the hole, build a subterranean laboratory, extend passageways to the nearest major waterway/cave, lay traintrack for future underground mechanical transport, cover construction with dirt, lay pretty path.

Simple!

Sorontar
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Sorontar, Captain of 'The Aethereal Dancer'
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James Harrison
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« Reply #151 on: May 04, 2020, 02:11:15 pm »

The path is not a priority at the moment. It's serviceable and largely in one piece. Considering it is uniformly supported and only subjected to foot traffic, it's fit for purpose, if not exactly aesthetic. If I were to break it out right now- which I'm not, lacking a sledgehammer and skip- I've got nothing to hand to replace it with and no funds to hand to purchase a replacement. Maybe when I seriously start in the garden, perhaps.
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Deimos
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aka Countess Millicent Addlewood


« Reply #152 on: May 04, 2020, 02:20:50 pm »

Ahhh, the Möbius loop of home (or motor carriage or locomotive) restoration.

You need to fix A, but you find that to do A, you have to fix B first.
So you start on B only to find that C has to be completed before B can be attempted.
And so you start on C only to discover....yep, C can't be done until A is finished.  

Been there ...good luck. In fact I'm still there...(it's a Möbius strip after all...) Tongue
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If you're alive, it isn't. -- Lauren Bacall

"You can tell a man's vices by his friends, his virtues by his enemies."

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James Harrison
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« Reply #153 on: May 04, 2020, 02:27:51 pm »

How does the song go? https://youtu.be/Ge_4SlJWfl0

Feels quite apt at the moment.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #154 on: May 04, 2020, 08:05:54 pm »

Ahhh, the Möbius loop of home (or motor carriage or locomotive) restoration.

You need to fix A, but you find that to do A, you have to fix B first.
So you start on B only to find that C has to be completed before B can be attempted.
And so you start on C only to discover....yep, C can't be done until A is finished.  

Been there ...good luck. In fact I'm still there...(it's a Möbius strip after all...) Tongue

Yes, I'm a bit of a sadist when it comes to that sort of job. Not only do I have the 1900-1920 period home, I'm also the proud owner of a 1970s British sports car (well, built 1970s.  The design is very late 1950s).

Work this evening has run to making a start on getting the other tree out, which is a slightly easier job as it's a slightly smaller tree and should, fingers crossed, require a slightly smaller hole. 
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Deimos
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aka Countess Millicent Addlewood


« Reply #155 on: May 04, 2020, 09:46:20 pm »

SNIP
I'm also the proud owner of a 1970s British sports car (well, built 1970s.  The design is very late 1950s)...

MGB?

SNIP

Work this evening has run to making a start on getting the other tree out, which is a slightly easier job as it's a slightly smaller tree and should, fingers crossed, require a slightly smaller hole.  

"...[T]hat hope which springs eternal...."   Wink
« Last Edit: May 04, 2020, 10:14:40 pm by Deimos » Logged
Banfili
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« Reply #156 on: May 05, 2020, 12:52:48 am »

It's a joy, isn't it!
My house is the first one that I have lived in in my life that has been owned by the occupant! My parents never owned a house. I grew up in rented housing, so was quite excited to finally get my own home. So far I have invested something like $50,000+ into renovations and modifications, and it still needs painting, or replacing the weatherboards with other cladding, insulating the walls, new guttering and resealing the roof!!

It just never ends - and there is never enough money!
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Deimos
Snr. Officer
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aka Countess Millicent Addlewood


« Reply #157 on: May 05, 2020, 08:55:40 am »

It's a joy, isn't it!
My house is the first one that I have lived in in my life that has been owned by the occupant! My parents never owned a house. I grew up in rented housing, so was quite excited to finally get my own home. So far I have invested something like $50,000+ into renovations and modifications, and it still needs painting, or replacing the weatherboards with other cladding, insulating the walls, new guttering and resealing the roof!!

It just never ends - and there is never enough money!

What has been the single most expensive project/renovation (if I may ask)?
Over here it's typically the kitchen, and in a house of my size --1400 sq ft,  kitchen ~ 10x10 -- it's about $20K -$25K (USD) depending on appliances being replaced.

I still have to do mine and I know it's going to run about $25K, not because of the appliances, which I will not replace just yet, but because I'm going a little bit spendy on the cabinetry, have new lighting installed and move the stove about a foot to the left.     
« Last Edit: May 05, 2020, 09:40:40 am by Deimos » Logged
Banfili
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« Reply #158 on: May 05, 2020, 10:02:38 am »

It's a joy, isn't it!
My house is the first one that I have lived in in my life that has been owned by the occupant! My parents never owned a house. I grew up in rented housing, so was quite excited to finally get my own home. So far I have invested something like $50,000+ into renovations and modifications, and it still needs painting, or replacing the weatherboards with other cladding, insulating the walls, new guttering and resealing the roof!!

It just never ends - and there is never enough money!

What has been the single most expensive project/renovation (if I may ask)?
Over here it's typically the kitchen, and in a house of my size --1400 sq ft,  kitchen ~ 10x10 -- it's about $20K -$25K (USD) depending on appliances being replaced.

I still have to do mine and I know it's going to run about $25K, not because of the appliances, which I will not replace just yet, but because I'm going a little bit spendy on the cabinetry, having new lighting installed and moving the stove.    

My kitchen is a mission-brown 1970s abomination, with wallpaper the same as Mrs Brown's back entry in Finglas, Dublin!! I have peeled off most of the top of the wallpaper, and am left with the mushroom-y flocking from underneath. The previous owners ripped out the lovely 1960s kitchen to put the brown monstrosity in - I have decided that if I don't really look at I can live with it for now!

The real estate agent (I was thinking of selling a few years ago) said not to replace the kitchen at that time, as anyone who bought the house would probably want to put one in to suit their own taste. As it looks like I will be here for a good while yet, a new kitchen is on my list (at about $10-15,000), the outside work is needed first. The kitchen is last on the list.

I have some mobility issues, so the first steps were to future-proof access and the bathroom. Stage one was to rearrange the laundry by  removing the big cupboard and installing a shower and new laundry tub. The cupboard was replaced by a flat-pack in the back entry. Had to have the shower installed there so that the bathroom could be gutted, and turned into a shower room, with shower, loo & handbasin - overall, stage one was probably the most expensive, being a double job. I have also had a handrail fitted at the front door.

Stage two was the addition of a lovely deck, with access via an up-to-standard ramp. Some of the timber stumps were replaced by concrete ones.

Stage three was reflooring and building in the front verandah which was pretty much wasted space, & turning it into a sunroom - included a small storm porch, so no getting wet while opening the door! This involved shifting a canvas blind from an outside window which was under shelter (couldn't see the reasoning for having it there!) Width of the new sunroom was decided by the width of the blind, which actually worked out perfectly!! That completed the first part of the renovations, and now I come to think of it, that was the $50,000 worth! This was in 2013.

Stages four and five happened a couple of years later, in 2016, when I had the carport on one side of the house extended to the end of the building, and the fencing modified - it has a bit of a dogleg now! Did that because the ramp I had incorporated in 2013 invaded the carport space, and the car wouldn't fit - at least, I could get the car in, but couldn't get out of the car!
Because the building of the sunroom left the front room a bit dark, my builder then cut a chunk out of the western wall of the house, and put a window into the space. I use it as an office/library/study and needed the light. A canvas blind that had previously occupied the eastern lounge room window was now under the new carport, and was redundant. The new window was made to fit the old blind, and duly installed. Another $10,000 worth, now I think about it! And a new door on the shed!

So, $60,000-odd thousand, in all, and still some external work to be done! Both myself and the builder are into up-cycling and recycling, which is why the blinds were shifted, taps moved, etc.!

So, really, about $60,000 = $10,00 a stage.
« Last Edit: May 05, 2020, 10:15:13 am by Banfili » Logged
Deimos
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aka Countess Millicent Addlewood


« Reply #159 on: May 05, 2020, 11:44:11 am »

Oh my! If you had had a crystal  ball at the time you first started all that you could have taken your own advice that you gave James, about totally ripping something out (e.g. his sidewalk) and replacing it rather than trying to shore it up/fix/restore it.
In your case just raze the house and start over!  Grin

Truthfully it is really a lot easier to do just that, if one can afford  to do it that way.  
Folks not far from me have bought an older house (like mine over even 10 years older than mine, c. 1960s, mine was built in 1970) Then they totally razed the old house and had a bigger one built on the lot.

Disadvantages: 1) the people obviously must have somewhere else they are staying for the 6 -9 months it takes to build the new one, and
2) the new one tho' it is priced appropriately for any new build, the quality is inferior to the old house.
It still "meets code" as we say, but the materials are cheaper, workmanship is not as "polished" (referring to appearances), nice details are lacking. My house is better built than a lot of the newer houses that cost twice the price of mine (at current market value).  
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Sorontar
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« Reply #160 on: May 05, 2020, 12:09:11 pm »

We moved into a 1972 flat roof home September last year but so far we have had
- plug gas leak -> plumber for $AUD 100-200
- replace all the gas and water external plumbing -> 2 weeks of plumbing work and more than $20,000 work
- had a pool full of red dust from the bushfires (lots of work and $50-100 pool chems)
- broken pool pump due to dust from bushfires, $500 (I think)
- install a new split cycle heater/cooler for $3000

Still got
- two roof leaks to fix, one of which is right behind my chair in my office.
- broken electrical wiring outside the verandah (possum ate it)
- broken electrical wiring for garden lights (lawnmower ate it)
- shower drainpipe that plugs up every 4 months

Moving home is fun! We don't want to have to modify anything.

We had escaped (and sold!) a mission-brown 1977 house that had huge cracks across the ceiling. Som eone was actually happy to repair it! (They were a builder).
« Last Edit: May 05, 2020, 12:15:02 pm by Sorontar » Logged
Banfili
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Australia Australia



« Reply #161 on: May 05, 2020, 01:03:54 pm »

Oh my! If you had had a crystal  ball at the time you first started all that you could have taken your own advice that you gave James, about totally ripping something out (e.g. his sidewalk) and replacing it rather than trying to shore it up/fix/restore it.
In your case just raze the house and start over!  Grin

Truthfully it is really a lot easier to do just that, if one can afford  to do it that way.  
Folks not far from me have bought an older house (like mine over even 10 years older than mine, c. 1960s, mine was built in 1970) Then they totally razed the old house and had a bigger one built on the lot.

Disadvantages: 1) the people obviously must have somewhere else they are staying for the 6 -9 months it takes to build the new one, and
2) the new one tho' it is priced appropriately for any new build, the quality is inferior to the old house.
It still "meets code" as we say, but the materials are cheaper, workmanship is not as "polished" (referring to appearances), nice details are lacking. My house is better built than a lot of the newer houses that cost twice the price of mine (at current market value).  

The house itself is is structurally sound, craftsman built, hardwood frame - it's just the 'peripherals', so to speak, that need attending to - it was built in 1968.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #162 on: May 05, 2020, 05:20:34 pm »

SNIP
I'm also the proud owner of a 1970s British sports car (well, built 1970s.  The design is very late 1950s)...

MGB?

SNIP

Work this evening has run to making a start on getting the other tree out, which is a slightly easier job as it's a slightly smaller tree and should, fingers crossed, require a slightly smaller hole.  

"...[T]hat hope which springs eternal...."   Wink

No, not an MGB- I had it's smaller sibling, the Midget.  But we don't talk about that.... afterward I bought a Spitfire (no, not the machinegun-toting Merlin-powered type) which has been fun and infuriating in about equal measure. 
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Madasasteamfish
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09madasafish
« Reply #163 on: May 05, 2020, 07:20:39 pm »

No, not an MGB- I had it's smaller sibling, the Midget.  But we don't talk about that....

Ah, the driveway ornament you so often referred to.

I bought a Spitfire (no, not the machinegun-toting Merlin-powered type) which has been fun and infuriating in about equal measure.  

I wish I could have been able to see it, and witness its' performance last summer.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2020, 10:37:59 am by Madasasteamfish » Logged

I made a note in my diary on the way over here. Simply says; "Bugger!"

"DON'T THINK OF IT AS DYING, JUST THINK OF IT AS LEAVING EARLY TO AVOID THE RUSH."
James Harrison
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Bachelor of the Arts; Master of the Sciences


« Reply #164 on: May 05, 2020, 07:35:59 pm »

Oh, we were going to Penhryn Castle in it, weren't we?  And it started playing up dropping out of gear when I was getting it off the hotel carpark.  Probably a good job we didn't go in it, it failed the MOT later that week because one of the chassis rails was cracked. 
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James Harrison
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« Reply #165 on: May 08, 2020, 09:14:29 am »

Plans for the long weekend:

1) The second of the trees to be removed: this last week I've done a fair bit of work removing branches and digging out around and underneath the tree.  There are three roots I can see still supporting it; one right in the middle of it about 2" across, one on one side going under the pavement about 2", and one on the other other side going under the pavement about 5" across.  So somehow I've got to get a saw into the non-existant gap betwixt trunk and pavement and work down.  The good news is that the tree moves so freely and with such violence now that I think just getting most of the way through the larger root would weaken it to the point of failure. 

2) Whilst digging out around the tree I've found some fragments of old decorative tile.  Hopefully whilst removing more soil and getting the tree out I'll be able to find some more.  This might give some more definitive dating evidence for the age of the house- it doesn't appear on the ordnance survey maps prior to the 1921 issue (revised 1923), but the building's architectural style and detailing seems more in keeping with a late Victorian or Edwardian date- certainly pre-WWI at any rate.  In an ideal world of course I could just visit the town record office but even ignoring damnable plague it's only open I think the third weekend of every month and you have to ring up in advance and book the records you want.  And when the online database of those records simply gives one number to several boxes of documents and plans covering the period 1890- 1954.... the phrase 'needle in a haystack' doesn't begin to cover it.  There is another option- in 1910 or so there was a nation-wide land survey undertaken for tax purposes and the records for that are well-documented- but that would involve a trip to Kew.  Which is obviously out of the question right now.   

3) I've been able to buy the paint for the sitting room walls.  This will be an involved job!- all 500 or so books need to be removed, all the furniture moved and covered, then get the ladders in.... but I'm looking forward to starting it.  The main wall colour I've got, however the white gloss for the woodwork will have to wait until next payday. 
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James Harrison
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« Reply #166 on: May 08, 2020, 10:52:54 am »

Scratch point 1.  Both trees are now out- no more gardening for a little while!  (Unless I can get a gardening fork, in whcih case the soil needs breaking up and turning over).



That was exhausting and backbreaking and I'm glad it's over and done with.  The roots are cut off below the soil so if they start to grow back I might need to dig it out again and prune. 



Whilst digging the second tree out I found a few pieces of tile, which once cleaned up it turn outs actually fit together.  A modest effort on Google this morning suggests it was made by Craven Dunnill Jackfield of Ironbridge, founded 1872 and still active today.  I'm now investigating whether they have an archive of designs and patterns which would tell me whether this is a floor, wall or fireplace tile and whether they still make them. 
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SeVeNeVeS
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« Reply #167 on: May 08, 2020, 11:32:55 am »

I would guess, judging by the colour and where found, if 25mm 1" thick that there could be an original floor or garden tile, is it glazed? if not, odds on.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2020, 11:38:31 am by SeVeNeVeS » Logged

James Harrison
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« Reply #168 on: May 08, 2020, 12:23:24 pm »

Nope, not glazed, and it's roughly I should say 0.75" thick.  I'm guessing the patterned side (the photograph) would have been the underside. The other side (not photographed) is just a smooth unmarked surface.  The fragments I've got add up to a triangle roughly 4" x 3"; judging by the details on the back, I reckon an unbroken one would probably be 5 or 6" square.
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SeVeNeVeS
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« Reply #169 on: May 08, 2020, 12:37:14 pm »

Garden tile. I'd bet on it. If you found a reddish one too, there's your garden path design plan sorted.  Grin
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James Harrison
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« Reply #170 on: May 08, 2020, 04:10:08 pm »

I've not found a red tile, yet.  I've found a couple of old broken bricks and roof tiles by the wall, but that's it.  Of course, both gardens need going over with a fork to break up the soil so who knows what will turn up when I get around to that?

~Addendum~

First coat of paint applied to the fireplace alcove and the back wall of the sitting room.  It took three hours or so and I'm worn out and bored to tears by the idea of more painting tonight.  Tomorrow I might move the sofa and do another wall or two.
« Last Edit: May 08, 2020, 04:18:27 pm by James Harrison » Logged
Deimos
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« Reply #171 on: May 08, 2020, 04:19:55 pm »

Isn't it VE Day over your way? Why not take a well earned break from breaking your back. Cool
That Möbius restoration loop will still be there Monday morning, juneau... 
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SeVeNeVeS
Master Tinkerer
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England England



« Reply #172 on: May 08, 2020, 04:33:42 pm »

Builders and renovators can be very lazy, dumping what they tear out over the years in the property to save skiip costs, have you had a floor up  yet? (I'm assuming floorboards under, let me guess, Laminate? Roll Eyes ) What about the loft? I'd be straight up there with a lead-light inspecting things. When I used to fit heating I have seen broken up cast iron and marble fireplaces and most of a sandstone bay shoved under the floor, so you never know what could be lurking........
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James Harrison
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« Reply #173 on: May 08, 2020, 04:51:00 pm »

Isn't it VE Day over your way? Why not take a well earned break from breaking your back. Cool
That Möbius restoration loop will still be there Monday morning, juneau... 

It is indeed, it's a Bank Holiday in honour of being the 75th Anniversary.  Sorry, let me rephrase that.  It's the early May Bank Holiday, shifted a few days.  Government decided last year that it would do too much damage to the economy to let everyone have a one-off three-day working week by giving us the May Bank Holiday and then a VE Bank Holiday a few days later.  Which rings pretty hollow right now of course. 

Builders and renovators can be very lazy, dumping what they tear out over the years in the property to save skiip costs, have you had a floor up  yet? (I'm assuming floorboards under, let me guess, Laminate? Roll Eyes ) What about the loft? I'd be straight up there with a lead-light inspecting things. When I used to fit heating I have seen broken up cast iron and marble fireplaces and most of a sandstone bay shoved under the floor, so you never know what could be lurking........

How did you guess I've got laminate in the reception rooms?  Cheesy  I'm in two minds about it, it may come up it may not.  Below which are of course the floorboards and, this being an old house, below the floorboards there's an airgap ventilating to outside via a couple of airbricks.  I understand this is a safeguard of sorts against one or other of the types of rot.   
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SeVeNeVeS
Master Tinkerer
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England England



« Reply #174 on: May 08, 2020, 05:35:43 pm »

Below which are of course the floorboards and, this being an old house, below the floorboards there's an airgap ventilating to outside via a couple of airbricks.  I understand this is a safeguard of sorts against one or other of the types of rot.   
Ventilation is vital, underfloor, cavity, loft etc, what gets me is cavity insulation, I have heard so many stories of yes, the house is eco friendlier now, but I have damp, dry-rot, wet-rot and mould.
Chimneys are another thing, every-one blocks them up, but they are a vital source of air change, the cold you feel is actually updraft, we try to achieve a hermetic seal with double glazing and insulation to save on fuel bills, but at the end of the day a house needs to naturally breath with lots of fresh airflow, cold as that maybe.

 Tongue
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