Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Bathroom plumbing

The shower valve behind this tile was not working. I twisted the handle for the hot water and it broke in my hand.

I entertained the idea of replacing the valve portion. Replacing the innards of old valves is a very reasonable thing to do. Upon closer inspection I discovered that the plumbing in the wall showed signs of leaking. I cut into the plaster and lath wall and discovered old galvanized pipe that needed to be replaced.

I went to the local plumbing store and bought a shower set and got busy replacing it. Cutting out old galvanized pipe is difficult even with proper tools.

I was happy knowing that I am upgrading the plumbing and will soon have a beautiful new shower set.

After spending most of my day I finally got the unit installed to discover one of the valve stems wasn't tapped from the factory. It wouldn't hold my fancy new handle. by this time it was too late to exchange it since the store was closed. I decided to simply tap new threads into it--my first error in judgement. I tapped the threads and my handle held perfectly in place. I turned the water pressure on and the valve no longer worked--in the on position. arrgh.. I took the the valve apart and found that I had broken it during the tapping process.

It was late and I was defeated. I shut off the hot water and called it a day hoping that the plumbing store was open on Saturday.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Kitchen plumbing

I don't know how most people do it. I have loads of plumbing experience and I am just barely able to prevail.  I knew that there would be undiscovered issues but this issue took almost an entire day of precious time before we can move in. The kitchen sink obviously has been leaking for quite some time. I assembled my extensive plumbing kit and the few parts necessary and crawled under the house. The crawl space is very spacious I can sit on my knees and be upright throughout most of it.

I dug and cut out the bad pipe and installed new copper pipe under the kitchen sink. Luckily the local plumbing store gives me Sun Light & Power prices plus and additional 10% off. I didn't expect that! Two words, "shop local" it really is the best thing for everyone in the end.

My next endeavor is the bathroom tub. The bath/shower valves that are behind tile are old and leaky. I had to cut into the stucco in our bedroom to gain (behind) access to remove them. Being old, the faucets are offset to not correspond with any existing factory models. It seems that I have two choices; tear out tile work and use a factory handle and diverter set or buy pricey components and build my own to fit existing holes. Since I am not prepared to start any tile work at this time I plan to build my own. This should be quicker and the more elegant solution. Albeit twice as expensive I am consoled by the fact that I can do all the work myself likely saving hundreds of dollars. I only hope that my local plumbing store has the valves I want to match the handles we have chosen.

The tub drain and over flow are another matter altogether. I need to replace gaskets, rebuild them and use the old technology. It will be easiest and the best solution.
Today it the final day before we begin the great migration of boxes to the new house. The new fridge arrives tomorrow along with a new dishwasher. Yes, for those concerned parties Tristan will still get an weekly allowance for doing the dishes. Duties will simply change a little. We got an incredible deal on the new matching fridge and dishwasher, they were in the scratch and dent section. The exact fridge I had researched and planned, a dishwasher plus 4 year guarantee for the same price at the un-dented fridge. Tabitha is so excited to have a place to hide dirty dishes dishwasher. We hope to be sleeping in the new place by tomorrow night. The pre move check list follows:

  • two clean and livable rooms to sleep and store stuff in.
  • a refrigerator
  • a clean bathroom with working shower/tub
  • back yard containment, fence fixed and locked gates
  • remove nasty front porch carpet
I cannot wait to sleep there. I can walk to work. I can work on the house anytime of day or night. These are exciting times. The list of closely following important improvements are:
  • install washer and dryer
  • prepare upstairs for a house blessing
  • prep, sand and finish flooring in master bedroom
  • paint master bedroom
  • makeover master/Tabitha's closet to more useable space
  • prep, sand and finish flooring in office/sewing room
  • paint office/sewing room
  • makeover office/Karl's closet to more useable space
  • move-in and install new stove
We love our new house it will be "home" soon. 

Monday, October 22, 2012

More and more photos

It always ends in tears these days

There is a bit of water damage in and coming from the bathroom.
This is the view from the master bedroom to the bath.

The downstairs bathroom

View into the kitchen from the dining room, facing north...

The dining room, fireplace and Rome digging in his bag.

pulling more and more staples.
I got that ladder just behind me at an estate sale. It is so sturdy that Tabitha has been cleaning ceilings four rungs up. That is amazing...


The problem with buying a big house--there are many surfaces to clean.

Such beautiful light in the front room
and a beautiful girl too.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Toly took a bunch of photos of us cleaning today

hundreds of staples. Tristan was a big help--he always is..
O'Melays working together
such a serious photographer.

How they left the place--keeping it real

the downstairs back bedroom

No picts of the used condoms and the awful porn left here.

upstairs back bedroom

These pictures don't really do this justice. 
The strong smell of urine and cheap vanilla cigar smoke keeps the the gag reflex at "stand ready"

Respectfully yours,

Friday, October 19, 2012

flooring removal

We managed to get all the tack strip up from the downstairs. It was surprisingly difficult. The strips shredded into splinters instead of coming up in large pieces. I also made a dump run it was slightly over a ton. I had to wait in three queues, one for the mattresses, one for the refrigerators and the last for general refuse. Of course I had to wait to pay to get out too

If you ever know of, or become a person that puts down carpet padding. I have one request. Please be lousy and miserly at your job. Carpet padding doesn't need a staple every four inches. where is it gonna go anyway? it is frickin laying flat under the carpet. It doesn't need so many staples.

Also, I told Tabitha today that if she ever catches me building anything out of particle board shoot me on the spot--just put me out of my misery because surely have lost my mind.

It took me close to two hours to remove the vinyl and particle board underlayment from a small 4 by 7 hall section of the house. Three words, Ring Shank Nails. What is up with that? There were hundreds of them. Why?

By the end of the day tomorrow things will be very different at the O'Melay house. Progress is being made and it will be beautiful.

Hardwood floor discovery

Out tenants finally moved out. They were low-income/section-8 and lived up to most of the negative stereotypes. The house was and still is filthy. Two tons of refuse of the worst sort has already been taken to the waste transfer station. I have another huge load probably a ton or so to take this morning. I estimate another large load to follow by tomorrow. I could carry on about the filth and disgust but i need to talk of things that will be and the hope that lies there. Tabitha and I finally got down to the carpeting in the entire house and tore it up. It revealed the most beautiful surprise--lovely hardwood flooring.
this picture doesn't do this room justice. two of the rooms (living, dining) need no initial help. Our bedroom and future office need re-finishing. the upstairs needs serious repair in the front bedroom and the back bedroom seemed alright. although it was dark last night and it might reveal more today. the main room upstairs seems pretty good definitely a good sanding needed. more after todays efforts...

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

the new house day 1

tabitha and the kids take possession of our house this morning at 9 am. I have to work and cannot be there for the initial shock. so very exciting. there will be photos soon.
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