Wednesday, November 8, 2017

in partes tres

The builders are away on another job this week, and I am using the time - and the quiet - to tackle other things and generally recharge. So this seems a good time for a little Construction Project 2017 report.

The whole project is actually divided - like Caesar's Gaul* - into three parts. Thinking of it this way helps me to keep the Overwhelm at bay. After all, Caesar supposedly dictated his commentary while riding his horse and conquering Gaul...I'm just trying to keep a roof over my head. Easy-peasy, right?
Even if the project is big enough to have Three Parts.

(There are also a few "small jobs" associated with the larger three, but progress on those separate items just feels like a big bonus.)


PART I


Part One - and the impetus for all the rest - is a necessity: repairing the roof. At a minimum, this meant removing two existing layers of shingles and the heavy tarpaper beneath, and putting down a new layer of wimpy modern tarpaper and a new layer of shingles. Instead, I went the extra mile and chose metal roofing instead of new shingles. Greater material costs and more skill required to do the job properly, weighed against anticipated longer roof-life and less (some say zero) concern about moss growth or ice-damming.


After the old roofing was removed, a layer of weatherproof plywood (the green you can see in the picture below) was added to create an even surface. Can you see the carefully fitted patchwork of boards in the original roof? This is my kind of building method, based on probable necessity and certain thrift. Most of my little house was built, from the studs to the roof, with previously-used lumber. Perhaps it was salvaged from the original farmhouse; I've always thought so.


The original roof boards were almost all in excellent shape; little replacement was needed. The light spot in the center of the image above is a new patch, where a large branch from a white pine had come straight down like a spear during a huge ice storm in...2008? 2010? Hang on, I'll find a snap.

Right through a one-inch-thick board.
That was quite a night.
The hole had been "temporarily" patched with metal the day after the storm, but it didn't leak so it stayed that way. I knew I'd be redoing the whole roof sooner or later.

Well, eventually.

Part I, current status: the house is 100% reroofed.

~~~

Now here comes an example of a "small job" related to the roof: the relocation of the Poultry Palace, built onto the southeast corner of the house a couple of decades ago by professional carpenters. I had hoped to be remove it either intact or in wall sections, and add it to one of the goat barns. The chickens spend most of their time in the goat barn anyway, and it would be a little easier for chores.

By the way, if you want to see how small your house really is,
put a couple of humans on the roof.

This was one of those "no problem" jobs that turned into a rather large-scale undertaking with four people and a tractor all working hard.
Mostly the tractor and operator. 



It turned out differently than expected, but the result is good. Or will be when it's done. Because now that is another "small" job. I'll try to get to it soon, but it's not a priority compared to the Big Three.
~~~



PART II


Part Two of the construction project is an extension of the roofing. Literally. I asked the builder to extend the roof so it continues 12 feet past the east end of the house, supported on a post at each outer corner. No walls, no floor. (I think this may be called a "portico," but if you have another word for it, please share.) Here, a Winter's-worth of firewood can be stored conveniently close to the back door. Piper, Moxie, Della, and I will have an option for getting fresh air at any time, night or day, without getting soaked in rain or swimming through deep snow.


Part II, current status: structural ~80%, roof 100%.

Piper loves it already!

This Winter, I may put up a clothesline.
If I can find one to reclaim, there may be a porch swing.
There may be a potting bench and...
an outdoor sink with freezeproof taps.

Which brings us to Part Three...and the end of this progress report.

Part III will begin when the carpenter returns next week.

And oh my gosh.
Part III is going to be a doozy.
~~~~~


*Gallia est omnis divisa in partes tres, quarum unam incolunt Belgae, aliam Aquitani, tertiam qui ipsorum lingua Celtae, nostra Galli appellantur.
"All Gaul is divided into three parts, one of which the Belgae inhabit, the Aquitani another, those who in their own language are called Celts, in ours Gauls, the third." 
- Julius Caesar, Commentarii de Bello Gallico (Commentaries on the Gallic War)

11 comments:

  1. Oh, that overhang. I can imagine the possibilities.

    Projects look great so far!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks! And there are certainly possibilities, but bear in mind: for much of the year, there will be mosquitoes, deer flies, blackflies, horse flies. Just sayin'.

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  2. That overhang for sitting in summer when it rains, reading, dry.. I like that. How old is the house?

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    Replies
    1. Yes, and also for the kind of cooking I don't want to do in the house. Frying, for example. A nice hotplate and a extension cord...

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    2. Oops, missed your second question. The tax record says 1890, but I'm not sure. I believe the front room was added when the chimney was built, which was 1939, I think.

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  3. Part three is a doozy? I'm pretty sure parts one and two fit under that criteria already, so I can't wait to see what on earth is coming next. I know!.....a new doghouse for Piper!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ha! I told Piper what you said, She said HA! also. ;)

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  4. Metal roofs are great - we have one and it's supposed to last some ridiculously long time. But, let me whisper this - we have had ice damming issues... but perhaps because our roof pitches are not very steep.

    I love the portico! We have one, which we had a short wood fence built around a couple of years ago so that we could all sit out there without worrying about whatever wildlife might wander by, luring the dogs into a chase.

    I can't wait to hear about #3!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm kind of glad to hear that about the ice damming. Not that you've had trouble with it, of course, but just that it is possible. I hate surprises like that. Do you have ice blocks installed as well? I'm going to wait a winter and then decide if I want to add them over the doors.
      I may end up with a little fence or even a low wall on a couple of sides in the future, but at this point I'm just hoping I can scrape through Part 3 without resigning myself to a life of baked beans and toast. Fingers crossed...

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