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Author Topic: That 'big project' I've been banging on about for a few years now....  (Read 33713 times)
SeVeNeVeS
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« Reply #325 on: June 27, 2020, 01:57:17 pm »

I'm looking at reinstating the wooden blocks. 
Not quite sure how committed you are to traditional methods, but some plasterboard built out and stuck on with dot and dab to the same level as the existing plaster, leave a 20mm gap from the floor, packing complete. Use a solvent free gripfill type stuff to stick the skirting to the plasterboard and a few well placed nails, leave to go off, then caulk with the same adhesive, which should be stainable.

If any of that makes any sense, I'm surprised Grin
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James Harrison
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« Reply #326 on: June 27, 2020, 02:34:08 pm »

That makes sense actually. 

At the moment the situation is this:
-skirting boards taken down for cleaning up;
-awful old wallpaper removed from behind the radiator so I can just build a custom radiator cover;
-awaiting a return visit from the plumber as one of the old valves that was giving problems last weekend started dribbling and dripping this morning and- well although I have tightened it up, that just seemed to make matters worse as it was went from drip-drip to a constant dribble.  My guess is it's given up the ghost and needs replacement.  Not a fan of these radiators and central heating lark of late.
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SeVeNeVeS
Master Tinkerer
***
England England



« Reply #327 on: June 27, 2020, 02:58:40 pm »

Just had a quick look back at the photos and it appears you have roll top radiators. Not the most efficient these days, so although extra expense, whilst replacing valves, maybe the rads too??.......

I know it's easy for me to say, it ain't my money.

What type of boiler do you have? Combination?
« Last Edit: June 27, 2020, 03:00:25 pm by SeVeNeVeS » Logged
SeVeNeVeS
Master Tinkerer
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England England



« Reply #328 on: June 27, 2020, 03:25:45 pm »

If space is an issue in the hallway, maybe a repro cast iron column rad, with no need for a wooden cover.

something like this.....

https://www.featureradiators.co.uk/cast-iron-radiators/core-column-radiators-302mm-to-1802mm-high-up-to-33-rrp.html
« Last Edit: June 27, 2020, 03:32:58 pm by SeVeNeVeS » Logged
James Harrison
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« Reply #329 on: June 27, 2020, 03:34:47 pm »

That one you've linked to is very very similar to the one in a box in the dining room waiting to be installed in the sitting room.  I do very much like the Vicwardian-styled cast iron ones and I was/am intending to gradually work through and replace the existing radiators with more period-appropriate examples.  It's just the expense (which is more difficult when you find yourself having to spend money intended for improvements on ongoing repairs and maintenance to stuff you're trying to save up to replace). 

Do you recall, several years ago, there was a Government grant scheme to encourage people to have central heating installed?  A neighbour of my parents took advantage of it and the end result was/is the cheapest nastiest radiators on the market and pipes randomly appearing out of ceilings, floors and walls, with the cheapest nastiest fixtures and fittings.  The appearance of my central heating, radiators and pipework is about on that level.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #330 on: June 27, 2020, 10:15:26 pm »

Combined butcher's bill from two weekends of plumbing issues; best part of £600 I could have better spent elsewhere gone (so be surprised if there's any appreciable progress that requires, you know, more than a few quid spent this month), one radiator wrecked, two sets of radiator valves replaced, entire system drawn down and pressurised twice... I'm tired.  I'm just so tired.

The hallway, I'm going to split that into smaller projects. First project from the front door to the foot of the stairs. And then I think I'll call a halt to proceedings indoors for the year and sort out the front garden.
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SeVeNeVeS
Master Tinkerer
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England England



« Reply #331 on: June 28, 2020, 08:11:50 am »

Combined butcher's bill from two weekends of plumbing issues; best part of £600 I could have better spent elsewhere gone (so be surprised if there's any appreciable progress that requires, you know, more than a few quid spent this month), one radiator wrecked, two sets of radiator valves replaced, entire system drawn down and pressurised twice... I'm tired.  I'm just so tired.

The hallway, I'm going to split that into smaller projects. First project from the front door to the foot of the stairs. And then I think I'll call a halt to proceedings indoors for the year and sort out the front garden.
Ouch! 400 of which I guess was labour. Plumbing really is not that difficult, 100 quid spent on tool basics, youtube and google. confidence and looking stuff up could save a fortune.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #332 on: June 28, 2020, 09:48:08 am »

It was youtube, google and (over)confidence that has caused at least half of my difficulties in the first place.  From now on, 'water' joins 'gas' and 'electrics' on the list of things I want absolutely no part in....
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SeVeNeVeS
Master Tinkerer
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England England



« Reply #333 on: June 28, 2020, 10:22:03 am »

OK. possibly a wise decision.

It can be good to step back for a while to ponder. I spent 5 years constantly wrecking and changing my house, knocking down walls, turning the stairs around, loft room, new heating, re-wire the electrics, conservatory, kitchen, bathroom.............. got totally fed up with it and left it for 2 years.

Then I discovered Steampunk............ Aaaand started wrecking the place all over. Tongue

Take a few months to recover both financially and physically, the enthusiasm will return.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #334 on: June 28, 2020, 10:57:44 am »

The room I've finished so far gives me encouragement.  I just think I've burnt myself out for the moment (stupid costly DIY mistakes, no get up and go for my other interests, slowly finding my interest, enthusiasm and work ethic at my job ebbing away....)  I think I just need to get way from *all* of it for a little while. 
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James Harrison
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« Reply #335 on: June 28, 2020, 08:01:24 pm »

Right, plan for the first part of the hallway. 

1) Some of the tiles are loose and need to be re-grouted, so I'll need to clean out 110+ years of dust and grime etc from the edge of the tiling, make sure it's all clean concrete there, and re-grout. 

2) Skirting boards need several layers of paint removing and then staining/ varnishing. 

3) Copper pipework.... I really want to take this back to copper and lacquer it, as it can't be hidden make a statement of it.  However as has been demonstrated anything I touch plumbing-wise WILL turn around and rip my head off, walking away with the contents of my wallet having done so.  With a modicum of care and hours of VERY careful paint stripping and wire wool work, it might be possible.  But I'd obviously want to stop far short of anything in the way of valves and whatnot.  I'll have a think about this one. 

4) Most of the wallpaper has been removed, and the lead paint below shows no sign of real damage or decay.  So I'm minded to note where it is and how much of it there is to alert any future owner of the house should I sell on (not planning to at the moment!) and paint over it. 

5) I want to build a bespoke Arts and Crafts style timber cover for the radiator.  In my mind I'm imagining something inspired by Charles Rennie Mackintosh or Gustav Stickley. 

6) Walls to be painted a very light cream or ivory colour to try to draw as much light as possible in.  I'm not a fan of white, it just looks too stark, but a creamy off-white tone is palatable.   
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James Harrison
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« Reply #336 on: June 29, 2020, 07:53:39 pm »

Well the paint is come off the skirting boards easily enough, at the moment, even if it looks like it will a multi-stage process of stripper- scraper- stripper-wirewool- palm sander. 

The wallpaper seems to come off the walls easily enough when wet, so I don't see problems there. 

The jury is still out on taking all the paint off the pipework, now whether I just clean down the vertical pipes and leave the horizontal ones running up to the radiator in the painted state... considering the horizontal ones will eventually be largely hidden by the radiator cover. 
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Cora Courcelle
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« Reply #337 on: June 29, 2020, 08:11:43 pm »

Copper paint for the pipes?

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James Harrison
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« Reply #338 on: June 29, 2020, 08:19:34 pm »

Copper paint for the pipes?



This might sound absurd but I have a dislike of faking things.  I'm firmly of the school of thought that if you want something to look like wood/ copper/ brass etc, you should use wood/ copper/ brass etc. 
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James Harrison
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« Reply #339 on: July 02, 2020, 07:54:26 pm »

I've made a tentative start taking the paint off the pipes, very very slowly and gently.  I've also decided to concentrate on getting the wallpaper off, and how much of it left will probably finish that tomorrow or Saturday. 

Then to strip the skirting boards.... that's a job that's probably just shy of half done.  Two of the boards are more timber than paint but the largest is yet to be even touched.  Then the discovery that whoever put the doorframes in used that awful rubbery sealant stuff to secture them, not to the plaster but to the wallpaper... result? It's gone through the paper to the plaster, and removing it takes chunks of the plaster out.  I'm going to call in a plasterer to sort that out as it's rapidly going past what I feel competent to repair. 

Today a fascia and guttering man was called in to give a quote.... I would like to reinstate the cast iron gutters and the fascias are going to pieces...
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James Harrison
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« Reply #340 on: July 03, 2020, 10:40:01 am »

Well, I'm on holiday for a week and a day and because my planned jaunt up a Welsh mountainside has been postponed (thank you very much, whoever thought that a wheezing wild animal was a sensible dinner option) that means more spare time to spend on the house. 

So this morning I've finished off removing the wallpaper in the entrance hallway to reveal the old paint in all its glory. 

For those taking notes, it's all of one wall and one side of the archway. 

From this point the plan is to call in a plasterer to make good where the old plaster has failed, and then cover this all up with a light cream / ivory colour with stained timberwork and the dark floor tiles (reminds me- pop out to the hardware store later to pick up some tile grout).











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Sir Henry
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« Reply #341 on: July 03, 2020, 01:23:23 pm »

I've done up a few old houses over the years (in a 'restore to former glory' rather than 'strip down to modern minimalism' kind of way) and my suggestion at this point would be to cancel the plasterer and with the money you save, fill and sand the holes in the plaster yourself, paper the wall with thick lining paper and then paint that.

Thick lining paper does a wonderful job of smoothing down old walls, which always have bumps, scratches, dints and dips and takes paint very forgivingly - if you're doing it in cream or ivory you may well save yourself a coat. And it's dead cheap.

When we moved in to the place we're in now I had access to an A2 copier so I designed and printed my own 'wallpaper'. So much cheaper than buying a Sandford or Morris pattern.

Now I'll go back and read the previous 14 pages and see that my points have been made and refuted earlier...  Wink
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James Harrison
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« Reply #342 on: July 03, 2020, 01:41:21 pm »

The main issue (which you can't really see in the photos) is the areas where it's crumbed away and left huge gaps and holes down to bare brickwork.  Not saying I couldn't fix that myself; just saying I couldn't take pride in the result. 
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James Harrison
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« Reply #343 on: July 03, 2020, 01:51:31 pm »

Regarding the copper pipework...

I've been having a go at cleaning the stuff up in the hallway and, although the paint comes off, it is an awful lot of effort for a result that- well, yes it looks good.  It just takes so long and I honestly think if I were to carry on with it it would lead to the project stalling.  Also of course it means a bit of coercing pipes this way and that to be able to get all around them and- well my luck so far with the plumbing has been woeful at best, hasn't it?

So, what I'm now considering is to keep the pipes the same colour as the wall and just buy some nice new brass / copper fixtures for them.   
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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #344 on: July 04, 2020, 12:04:10 am »

The main issue (which you can't really see in the photos) is the areas where it's crumbed away and left huge gaps and holes down to bare brickwork.  Not saying I couldn't fix that myself; just saying I couldn't take pride in the result. 

I agree. A professional plaster job will look better and will be finished much faster. If a uniform finish is a problem, I'd suggest using a primer before applying color, even if the color is very light.
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James Harrison
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« Reply #345 on: July 04, 2020, 10:11:44 am »

Plasterer has visited and given his assessment.  The one wall is more or less life expired (well I kind of guessed that anyway as it was crumbling more and more as I took the wallpaper off), the other side is newer plasterboard and skim but it appears hasn't been secured back to the wall, or the dabbing holding it in hasn't taken.  I didn't notice this earlier but if you lean up it, it deflects. 

So summary is that the lot needs taking down and replacing.  I've been told it's probably a day's work to put it all right again. 
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J. Wilhelm
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« Reply #346 on: July 04, 2020, 11:51:11 am »

Plasterer has visited and given his assessment.  The one wall is more or less life expired (well I kind of guessed that anyway as it was crumbling more and more as I took the wallpaper off), the other side is newer plasterboard and skim but it appears hasn't been secured back to the wall, or the dabbing holding it in hasn't taken.  I didn't notice this earlier but if you lean up it, it deflects.  

So summary is that the lot needs taking down and replacing.  I've been told it's probably a day's work to put it all right again.  

Welp. There you go! Either way just filling in holes and covering with paper as a type of base wasn't going to work...
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James Harrison
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« Reply #347 on: July 04, 2020, 12:44:32 pm »

Yep; I wasn't expecting the hallway to become a bare brickwork job but there you go  Cheesy

Radiator's got to come down, I'm guessing the associated pipework has also got to be removed, all the plaster needs to come off....

On the bright side, I've been advised that the awful plastic trim around the front door is neither structural nor keeping the building weathertight, so that's come down today in readiness (to take the plaster up to the door).  Also, if the radiator and pipework do have to come down, I'll be able to ask the plumber to put new copper pipe in and either set them off the wall far enough for Menson clamps or soruce something in brass a bit more aesthetic than the bargain basement teflon things presently holding the pipes in place. 
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SeVeNeVeS
Master Tinkerer
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England England



« Reply #348 on: July 04, 2020, 02:06:02 pm »


Today a fascia and guttering man was called in to give a quote.... I would like to reinstate the cast iron gutters and the fascias are going to pieces...
You can get some quite convincing repro cast iron look guttering and downpipes, plastic, so will not rot over time.

Some random googly website to show examples........

https://www.brettmartin.com/en-gb/plumbing-and-drainage/products/cast-iron.aspx

NOT cheap tho. Sad
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James Harrison
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« Reply #349 on: July 04, 2020, 02:13:25 pm »

Yeah, that's been suggested and although I usually insist on honesty with materials I think with things like guttering you also have to consider the maintenance aspect.  I'm waiting on the quote at the moment for cast iron and if it is on the steep side I'll reconsider plastic.  I've already agreed to a timber-appearance plastic fascia, so-watch this space. 
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