Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Siding Finished!

I'll let the pictures do the talking. :)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A lesson on the proper use of Spackers

At this point you are probably wondering “What on earth is a spacker?” I can’t say I blame you. Four short months ago I had no idea myself. Well allow me to enlighten you.

A spacker is a short piece of 1 x 4 strapping that you use to measure the correct distance between each row when putting on strapping for the roof or siding. You cut the spacker so that you can put it against the previous row of strapping, and put the next row of strapping on top of the spacker, so that the two rows of strapping are 16” on centre. On a two man (or woman) team, you each have a spacker, and before you nail in the next row of strapping, you each take your spacker and put it on an end of the piece of strapping to get the distance right across the whole length of the row.
The crew that we’ve hired to do the siding clearly has no understanding of the proper use of spackers. Using our spackers, Erick and I strapped the west side of the house, and as you can see from the photo above, the strapping is perfectly parallel and straight, and each row is the same distance apart. When we look at the strapping put on by our crew, it’s evident they didn’t use spackers as the strapping doesn’t look straight, and the distance between successive rows is variable. However, since the strapping is going to be covered by the siding, it really makes no difference from a structural point of view.
One more note about spackers. Since when you’re putting on strapping, you’re constantly making cuts, there will be all kinds of pieces of strapping of various lengths lying around looking just like a spacker, it just makes good sense to label your spacker for what it is, by writing SPACKER on it. And of course since you each have a spacker, you’ll want to differentiate between your spacker and your partner’s spacker. At this point you may be tempted to write SPACKER on one and SPACER on the other.

Our introduction to spacers occurred when Wayne and Jarret were strapping our roof in preparation for the metal. They had made two spacers to use, and had labeled on SPACER and the other one SPACKER. I’m assuming they did it so they’d know whose was whose, (not that it matters from a practical perspective, but it would certainly prevent your partner from stealing your spacer and claiming it as his own). Either that or they’re terrible spellers. Either way, the name stuck and at the Burley compound spacers were thereafter known as ‘spackers’. Which of course, when combined with the handy length of a spacer, led to all sorts of jokes about being “spacked”. We like to keep things mature on the Burley compound.
On a side note, here is what the kitchen looked like after we framed it in. We had to do this so that we could hang the kitchen cabinets off the studs. Soon this will be covered in drywall and you won't be able to see the pine at all. I'd like to note that no pine was injured in the framing of the kitchen. Although some of the beams were, slightly.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Siding at Last!

Well would you look at that? Cedar siding at last! Doesn't it look great? :) Actually they're a little further along now than these pictures show. They're up to the top of the lower level windows on the south side, and the north and west sides are done. When you walk up to the front door all you can smell is cedar. You can actually smell it walking up the driveway, 100 feet or more away from the house. Although I know the lovely cedar smell won't stick around, I can't help but hope that it does. :)

Monday, October 18, 2010

work continues...

I finally took some new pictures last night. I'm hoping I'll be able to post them soon. But we're working away. We've been taking care of the little details inside that we hadn't yet had time for, like putting 2 x 6 ledgers under the floorboards in places where they were previously unsupported, but that weren't safety critical (like at the very edge of the lean-to section upstairs), getting ready for drywall, arranging siding, etc.

Our electrician came on Saturday and started the wiring. What a lot of wires it takes to supply a house! And because we can't run any wires through exterior walls, there's only one path the wires can take from the west wall (where the service comes into the house) to the east side, and that is over the bathroom door. There were so many holes drilled there that the supporting 2 x 4s splintered and broke in two. It's not a load bearing wall, but still it needs to be fixed.

Also our siding is being put on this week. They started it last week and it looks great! I can't wait to see it finished.

Oh, and the photo is of one of our sunflowers in the 'garden'.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Our kitchen countertop

That's it in the back of my car. Isn't it lovely? I know that most of the people who read my blog have already seen my countertop tile (whether they wanted to or not!), but I thought I'd post it anyway, since these are the only pictures I have that you guys haven't seen.

In real life it's really got more of a green/gold tinge. I love it!