Thursday, April 29, 2010

guest room windows, day4

More progress updates from the guest room window restoration. As you can see above, the sills needed work. This is actually a 1" strip of concrete that meets the slight incline of the sill and joins it to the wooden sill just above. I'm not sure if they meant to do it this way or they miscalculated the angles of the concrete sill when they were building the house, and fixed it with the concrete strip. Either way, these areas are definitely showing their age. I happily ignored this issue when I did the first set of windows on the rear of the house 2-3 years ago. But we obviously need a permanent solution here.

My contractor suggested yanking the ones that were falling apart and replacing with a piece of quarter round. We filled the cavity with some expanding foam to minimize drafts, caulked & painted. You can see one in progress in the below pic. Don't worry -- we're on the home stretch here. Note stain on interior sill.. :)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

guest room windows, day3

Once the sash was ready to go, they were ready to be mounted back in their rightful places. They were strung back up with some new sash cord and we were finally able to have a house that didn't look like it was under construction again. With the windows in place, it was time to mill some lumber into exact reproductions of the window casing. Finally this room was starting to look like a 100 year old room again. And from the outside, the exterior framing was able to be caulked and painted. The glass needs a good cleaning from glaze residue, but they are really looking good.

guest room windows, day2

Unfortunately I dropped the ball for a day or two when the windows were laying around in various stages. The glazing had to dry over a few days, then the primer, then final paint. Since these were going to be fully operational, the exterior framing and sash had to be painted and dried independently. The only photographic evidence I have is from the exterior. The paint from the office windows was very brittle and super easy to get off. It's funny we're going for the angle of the house no one really sees, but this is really where the most damage was. We're also hosting a party in a few weeks and it was a priority to get the back view looking good. That includes, yes, my landscaping. More on that later. :)

Friday, April 23, 2010

guest room windows, day1

The good thing about having misc projects done for you is they get done in a very short period of time. Something that would have taken you 6 months is scratched off the list in a week. For a while I kind of forgot we have this extra bedroom because we almost never go in there. It was nice seeing the dramatic transformation. It doesn't seem like much, but it totally changes the room.

The crappy white moldings were the first things to go. We could finally see what we were dealing with. I immediately homed in on the wallpaper -- that must have looked interesting. In all we were missing three 8 pound weights. Luckily a PO had the foresight to save these in the basement. Each sash was carefully removed and was thoroughly scraped and sanded down. A head to toe restoration of an old window is a multi-stage task, so we had to grow accustomed to having two giant holes in the side of our house for a while. I was surprised a pigeon didn't set up shop in there, as we only had tarps covering the windows.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

guest room window madness

Holy schnikes!

What kind of craziness is going on upstairs? Could it be that I decided to give the middle finger to restoration purity and chucked my old sash for some good ol' vinyl? Nah. As much as I wish I could go for the resto glory, I'm having these done for me. My reasoning is simple. I want these done sometime in my lifetime. So here's what we got going on. The guest room is undergoing some long overdue maintenance which includes restoring the interior casing on both windows. I'll finally be able to put the lumber I bought a year ago to good use. This will be stained and poly'd. Since I am adamant about scratching out the last bit of white paint from the interior side of the sash, that part will stay unfinished. Hopefully I will make sure to complete the job later this year.

Both sashes will be scraped, sanded, reglazed, and painted. They will also be rehung with some new sash cord I picked up. The exterior framing will be caulked and painted as well. You might notice the monster windows are looking a little bare as well (hint, hint). This is going to look so awesome -- I'll try to ignore the patchwork quilt of completed windows. Stay tuned for more updates..

Sunday, April 18, 2010

vacant wonder

This house has been vacant since before we bought the house. Judging by its look, it's been that way for a while. It seems to be a late victorian design set amongst a street full of bungalows and foursquares. The columns and spindle railing of the porch are still mostly there. It appears like there may have been a bay window where the wood siding projects out on the left. The red brick has also been painted. Nothing a little TLC couldn't cure. Unfortunately we may wait a while.

This house is located across the alley directly behind my house. About four months ago we had a strong windstorm that blew the back door wide open. I've been trying to get the city to secure the building since then. That is, until this past weekend. A crew came out to clean up the back yard (which they do periodically) and put up some plywood over the rear door and the garage (which also happened to be unsecured). My fear was some homeless people would discover the free digs and accidentally burn the place down trying to keep warm. Luckily that didn't happen.