The Workshop and Remodelling Project (Seems to never end!)


I know most of you would care less about this page, but I have friends who I talk to and this way they can see the progress. For those of you who are wondering here is the quick and dirty story. When my wife and I married we both had children, when you join two households you find space is a premium, especially if you have children. We have five between us. We have been trying to decide what would be the best solution to our space problems. One thought was just to find a bigger house that would hold us all and give the needed space. There were a couple of problems with that. First, we both feel that the real estate market around where we live is rather bloated for the industry located here to support it. Second, with the oldest child being 16 it won't be long before they start leaving the nest and leaving us with a house much to large to maintain. Our solution then was to focus on what we had and see what we could do to make it better. The house we live in is a modest 2800 square feet if you count the entire basement. Or another way to look at it would be 1400 Square feet per level. Half of the basement is finished and the other half is the existing garage. (I guess it is called that because it has two garage doors. I don't think a car has been parked inside it since I moved in with Melissa.) >SIGH< Our decision then was to finish the rest of the basement out, adding two bedrooms and another bathroom as well as finishing out the laundry room. That led to another problem, what to do with all the stuff in the garage. I mean, that is where my tools and projects live and all the junk we store out there. The solution we decided was to build an outbuilding to use as a workshop and storage.

Now, this seems like a good idea to us and we decide that this is the direction we are going to go. Baby steps, in the words of Bill Murray in "What about BOB?", we decide would be the best way to approach it. Small chunks that we can digest and afford. See that is the other catch, we believe being in debt is not healthy for the maintaining of a good healthy marriage and lifestyle. You never know when work runs out, or payday does not come because whoever employees you is no longer in business. Then how do you pay for all that debt? Can you say bankrupt, or even worse can you say divorce. It is ashamed that so many families are broken apart because of the lack of money which boils down to the lack of managing it or at least not sharing the responsibility of it. (Anyway, that is a different soapbox, and I should get off it. Sorry, it is a pet peeve with me.)

Now to get back on subject. This is a multi-part plan, and a plan that I will do from payday, to payday without taking any debt to do it. So, even if you think I am nuts, wish me luck. For God's sake, wish me luck, we have five kids man and sanity runs low by about Wednesday. :-)

The first step of the plan is to dig out and get the basement of the outbuilding done. I will put a floor in and seal it. Then I will cover it with tar paper to keep it dry. I will use this new basement to store the stuff in our garage so that the remodelling can be done down there. When that stuff is done, I will finish the building.

Monday, 26 March 2007 - I decided that I should move each phase of the project to it's own page. There are a LOT of images and as a result, if you have limited or low bandwidth available to you, or you would not care to see all of the images, I can save you the hassle. When I feel like I am done with phase one of the project, I will put a finish date and start phase two, etc. Thanks for you interest and support. I appreciate it! :-D


Doing The Basement And Part Of The Out Building


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Landscaping and getting ready for the house remodelling.


With the basement finished and doors in, a lot of stuff has been moved down there. The extra space is wonderful and now have a way to make room for the interior remodeling that has to be done on the house. Before that can happen though, I need to make this drive usable, get a retaining wall in, get some landscaping done, move my Chevy Corvair down there and remove a concrete pad that is in the way. All of this work is to make ready for phase three.

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Doing the outside of the house.


Now that the pad was gone work to the outside of the house could begin. This included, removing and framing in both garage doors and the single entry door as well as cutting the exterior wall to put in some new double entry French doors. A close look at the framed in garage door openings will reveal that they were done twice. The first time was in hopes to get matching brick and brick the holes in. Well, we discovered that the company that made our brick has been out of business for quite some time, and matching was impossible. So my wife and I took another approach, we decided if we could not make it match we would make it look completely different. My wife picked this stone out and I think it looks pretty good. The drawback was that the openings had to be re-framed to within a quarter inch of the brick. But anyway, what follows are some pictures of all that. Remember you can click on an image to get a slightly larger one to look at if you want.

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Building the bedrooms.


Now that a lot of the outside work on the house has been finished, we can concentrate on the inside and the bedrooms. The first thing we had to do was level up the floor. The difference between the finished and garage floors was 1 and 1/2 inch. To build this up furring strips were glued down, insulation put between and 3/4 inch ply screwed to that. Once that was done framing and stuff could begin on the two added bedrooms.

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Building the Workshop.


Now that the bedrooms are near completion, I can concentrate on finishing my workshop. I miss casting and tinkering with my projects so this phase is a welcome site. I will work on the shop during the daylight hours and finish the last of the bedrooms of an evening. Again, you can click on the pictures for a slightly larger version of the picture. The four walls excluding the top plates went up over two days. I am on hold not until July 1st. That is when the trusses are supposed to be delivered. I guess in the meantime, I will work on the rooms and help my youngest with his Amphora boat project.

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