Thursday, December 15, 2005

Oh sweet heaven, there is a salvage yard!

Posted by Peter at Thursday, December 15, 2005 2 comments Links to this post
Today I started looking online for a salvage yard in my area. I had read on other house bloggers sites that they got some goodies at their local salvage yard, but I was unaware of one in my area. I posted a message on my local historics website to see if anyone knew of a salvage in town, but no one knew of any. So I started searching and found a site for a wrecking company. On one of their pages they wrote that while wrecking homes and buildings they would come across a piece of architecture that seemed worth saving. So they put all this "junk" into a yard and let people come rummage and buy what they find. So after work Lita and I drove to the salvage yard. We were amazed at all the things we found. They had clawfoot tubs, sinks, toilets, doors, windows and even urinals, also they had this elephant too (kind of weird), but it was great like a kid in a candy store, better yet a kid at Willie Wonka's Chocolate Factory. It was great, the only downfall that they closed at 5 PM, which is about the time we got there. Good thing they were nice and let us look around for a little. But this place must be a hidden treasure that no one knows about, well know one in my historic area at least (I bet all the antique stores know about it though). Anyways the bad part is that they only open from Monday through Friday 8 - 5, which is working hours for me. So it looks like I will have to take a short day or a day off. I never understand why some business' open and close while we are at work. Just like a bank, they close at 5, right when I get off of work. When they hell do you think I can cash my check! Anyways I'm happy that I found this place and I know I will be visiting them a lot more. Looks like I can get my sinks for the bathrooms and kitchen there. Sweeeeeeeeet!

Sunday, December 11, 2005

Lita's treasures

Posted by Peter at Sunday, December 11, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
Well, every now and then on a weekend, we will both go out to all the antique stores around the city to see if we can find anything useful in the house. Afew weeks ago we went into one store and Lita was enamored by this pinkish wingback chair. The owner said it was made in the 1930's or 40's, I don't remember exactly what he said, but it was sold right after she saw it.
Also yesterday we went back to the store and saw 2 more, one that had the same color but was much older and a white patterned one. Those two she bought as well, she said she wanted to put a chair in each room we have. Well at least the cats love it.

Also when we were there we bought an old round table with a leaf insert, made in the 1930's, for pretty cheap. It still needs to be refinished, but that should be nice for a dining table.

And then last but not least a console table with a tv, radio and phonograph in it. This table is pretty neat and everything works on it. The store owner said it was made in the 70's by RCA. I doubt the tv will be used much, but it looks like a great conversation piece and should fit in the dining room nicely.

These are very nice interesting things, but every antique store I go to never have the little things I'm looking for like, pocket door locks and handles, or clawfoot feet, or just glass door knobs. I'm guessing ebay will be the best way to go.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Rust stains galore!

Posted by Peter at Wednesday, December 07, 2005 2 comments Links to this post
Apart from the millions of projects I have started, one that I am seriously trying to finish is the exterior of the house. The bad part is that I have rust stains from the nails in the clapboard. I'll give you the backstory of my problem. Back long ago when when this house wasn't owned by asians a man and a woman owned this house. They tried to buy, fix and sell the house quickly to make a profit. Oh what a grand plan that was, except for the fact that they wanted to fix the house the cheapest way possible. So what do they do to the exterior you ask? Well they decided to rip off the original siding and replace it with a new one. They only did part of the house, but they part they did do they nailed the boards with ungalvanized nails. Now fast forward to now and I have rust stains on my siding. Instead of taking the route of applying to my historic council and waiting and waiting to replace all the nails. I was wondering if there was something I could do, like maybe countersink the nails and apply something to the nail heads then prime over it? Is there such a product out there that can eliminate the rust stains? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Another thing the the PO did to PO me!

Another clawfoot tub

Posted by Peter at Wednesday, December 07, 2005 5 comments Links to this post
Well yesterday was a great day for us, we got another clawfoot tub (well with out the claw feet, basically just the tub I guess). Anyways this is how it went: we met a neighbor that lived a few streets down from us. He was a nice guy and basically just introduced himself and wanted to take a look around. So we showed him all the work we haven't down and all the work I have tried to start. It was kind of embarrassing with all the mess everywhere, especially the one cat poop on the ground, RIGHT NEXT TO THE CAT LITTER! Anyways I told him how I needed to go to H Depot to get some wood, so he asked if it was alright to tag along and get some wood for him self as well. I had no problem with this so we went and bought it and took it to his house. Now this guy a huge house and it was actually one of the houses I saw before we bought our itty bitty house, but the problem with that house was that it was too much work for us. I'm glad that someone had the giblets to tackle this house. On to the story... after we got the wood to his house he showed us all the work he had done to it. I'll tell you, he has done a lot more than us. But after that he offered us the clawfoot tub that he had. I guess he didn't need it anymore after some hoodlums broke into his house and stole the feet. That is also a funny story, he told us that one day someone broke in and only took the feet to the tub, nothing else, just the feet. Is there some kind of premium to these feet? They must have been made of gold or something. Anyways we hauled that monster of a tub and brought it back home. Now we have 2 tubs that aren't in use and now I need to find feet for the second one. But oh well, I don't have to worry about looking for a second bathtub anymore. I was wondering how much it costs to refinish a clawfoot tub? Or if it's possible to do it oneself? Anyways I'm happy. I'm glad I have a big black dog in the house, keeps people from stealing my feet.

Saturday, December 03, 2005

Hodge podge of house work

Posted by Peter at Saturday, December 03, 2005 2 comments Links to this post
Today I did some random work on the house. In my earlier posts I pulled up the living room carpet and the old linoleum underneath as well. But I was still left with the tar like substance still in the floor.

After much scraping and sweating I finally cleaned off a good 3 foot square area.

I swear I will never ever ever use linoleum in any house I ever buy again.

Another project I started was using Peel Away on my staircase. Peel Away seemed to work real well here. Of course it was only 2 layers of paint.

This was the Peel Away on my window case. The before is the white paint above and the after is the yellow paint below. For some reason every single paint stripper I have used can not penetrate through this layer of paint. I'm not sure if this is milk paint or something else, but it doesn't react to any paint stripper I know. All I know is that the only way I have gotten it off is by scraping it by hand and it just flakes off little by little. If anyone thinks they know what this is, please leave me a message. Even better, if you know how to take this off message me NOW!

Tomorrow it looks like I will be doing more of the same. I can never concentrate on doing one thing.

Oh just in case anyone is a big college football fan, this is where I am going tomorrow.
Go Noles!!!!!

Friday, December 02, 2005

Laundry updates

Posted by Peter at Friday, December 02, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
Well this week we decided to do something about the future laundry room we don't have. After the kitchen demolition, we were left with a big empty space and a water heater on the left side of the wall just sitting there. For some reason the PO thought it would be great to put the water heater next to the cabinets in the kitchen, WRONG!!! it was in the way and a total waste of space. So after the destruction of the kitchen we needed a new home for the water heater. After much contemplating, we thought it would fit in nicely right under the stairs where the PO , with their bright thinking, had put a toilet. Since the pipes were already there we got Lee ,next door neighbor, to install the water heater. But with the space under the stairs being a relatively decent sized space, we had a great idea to put a washer and dryer hookup in there as well. The space is about 3 - 4 feet wide and maybe 6 feet deep, since the stairs are about the ceiling is angled from the floor up. So with the water heater taking up a little part of the space, we can actually stick a stackable washer and dryer in there as well, killing 2 birds with one stone. So as we speak today the hookups are in, but I still need to finish the walls since there are huge gaping holes in the walls, but other than that we can now buy a washer and dryer and not have to pay $10 every week to wash clothes. Now I just need to find a washer and dryer.

Sunday, November 27, 2005

Back from the Biltmore

Posted by Peter at Sunday, November 27, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
Well we went to North Carolina this past weekend. And the 8 hour drive from Florida to North Carolina was very refreshing, especially after the hard week we had before. We went to go visit the Biltmore and get some inspiration for our house. Needless to say all it did was get me depressed. My house, nor anyones house can compare to the Biltmore. I swear, they had one room where it was about 4 times the size of our house. I couldn't believe the size and detail that this house had. Was a very good visual of what houses were like back in the 1800's. Well I wanted to take pictures of the inside, but was told that I could not do that, so we only have pictures of the outside. But I did find some on the internet, so I will post those, even though that is not what it looked like when we went. Anyways the house seemed like it had 300 rooms. They had a room for everything, sleeping, bathroom, kitchen, canned food room, bottling room, planting room... you name it they had a room for it. This is one house I will put a bid on when I see it on the Asheville listing. Anyways here are our pictures:

Mrs. Vanderbilt's Room: Yes folks that is gold on the walls.

The Chandelier: This thing is 3 stories high!

The Dining Room

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Yoda 1995 - 2005

Posted by Peter at Thursday, November 17, 2005 3 comments Links to this post
Our dog Yoda died yesterday after going to the vet because of injuries. I just wanted to let everyone know and hope that everyone will pray for our dog. He was a good dog. We saved him from an animal shelter in Georgia after hearing that he was used in a puppy mill to produce puppies. The owner was caught with 50 dogs in her house, all in cages and all were used to make puppies. We were told of this and drove to Georgia to help any dog we could. When we got there, Yoda was the only one left. He was very old at about 10 years of age, but we adopted him anyway. In his 10 years at the puppy mill, he never ever saw grass and was never let out of his cage. He had many ailments, but was in decent shape. For the last 4 months we gave him the best life he could have. From playing in the parks in Springfield to taking walks down the street, he loved his last days. I know he was very thankful to us for giving him such a great life and I know that the last 4 months made up for the 10 years that he was couped up in a cage. Yoda is now in a better place and we will always miss him, but I know he is always with us.

We will always love you Yoda.

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Yoda the dog

Posted by Peter at Wednesday, November 16, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
If you don't know we have 5 dogs - 4 chihuahua's and 1 lab-chow mix. Their names are Peanut, Yoda, Charlie, Tinkerbell and Chewy. Well today was a sad day, when I went home to walk my dogs I saw blood all over the ground. I was panicking and walked into the room to find Yoda witha cut on his stomach and his intestines hanging out. I was in shock and called Lita. We rushed him to the vet and they took him in. Lita cried and cried, and I just couldn't believe what had happened. He was ok in the morning and I took him out with everyone else and he was fine. We paid the $400 fee for surgery and the vet said that as long as nothing internal was damaged that he would sew him up and give him antibiotics and he should be ok.....

Well 2 hours past and the vet called me saying that there was no damage internally!!!! He had closed up his wounds and was asleep. Me and Lita were so happy, now we just have to watch over him and make sure that his wounds don't get infected. What a week we were having! Yesterday the dogs got poisoned when we fed them macadamia nuts and today Yoda almost got split open like a watermelon. I just can't wait for this week to end, I don't think I can take anymore dog related problems. Thank God he has gotten through his first test.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Down comes the kitchen

Posted by Peter at Sunday, November 13, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
Yesterday we had some friends (Pete, Travis and his wife, Afrie) came over to help demolish our kitchen. This was our first time every knocking down a wall, or taking shelves out. I must say it was pretty fun! Well we didn't do too much knocking since our friends were enjoying themselves, but it was great watching the wall go down.

Here's what part of our kitchen looked like, because of FCC rules I won't show the rest.

Pic of the sink area while getting its beatdown.

This is the counter, well what's left of it. Actually it's sitting outside by the curb.

Travis ripping down a wall with his bare hands

Looky what we found behind our kitchen wall... Exterior siding. Looks like the PO didn't feel like tearing it down. That's good for us because now we can reuse the siding for some of our damaged boards outside.

Here I am acting like I'm doing work.

Here is the wall half way down

You can now see the next room from the kitchen. Joy!!!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Who ya gonna call... Linoleum Busters!

Posted by Peter at Saturday, November 12, 2005 2 comments Links to this post
Here are more pics of me and Lee busting up linoleum:

Heres Lee using his 'Proto Gun' to blast the bugger away.

Here I am, not using a proton gun. I guess I haven't earned that yet.

Here's Lee again hard at work.

Here is the aftermath, only a little in the middle to do, but basically all done.

Here is what is left on some areas. Gummy black tar like substance, I hope it sands off easy.

Tomorrow: Demolition of our kitchen! And moving a wall back so that our kitchen will be way way bigger.... MUAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!

The PO's POed me!

Posted by Peter at Saturday, November 12, 2005 3 comments Links to this post
I guess you can tell that I am mad at what the previous owners did to the house. I decided to finally rip the pee soaked carpet in our living room yesterday. As I was in my Incredible Hulk stage, ripping at the carpet and foam pad, I was greeted by some mysterious padding.

It looks like it is some super linoleum.
It was very hard to get off, so I used my trusty new weapon... Lee, my next door neighbor.

Lee was a pro at attacking these new enemies of mine. We started at around 8 and worked our way all the way to 3 in the morning. It was a long and hard process of carefully prying them up but the end result was worth it. Hopefully I can rent the drum sander again and sand my way through the last bit of glue/tar like substance. If anyone has any idea what these are it would be great to know. One weird thing was that it wasn't one whole piece you had to strip.

It was actually individual square pieces with smaller square pieces in the middle. It must have been a back breaking experience putting this thing together. Too bad it was worse trying to take it off. The good thing is that we basically got all of it off, bad news is that I still have a dining room to go through as well. Oh and another bad thing I found, some of the floor was damaged by termites. So it looks like I will have to replace some pieces through out the floor. Guess I will have to salvage pieces from the back room .

This is what the floor looked like in the living room, nasty ole carpet with stains and all.

This was my first attempt at breaking through the piece of sh*t linoleum.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Giving the floors a shellacking!

Posted by Peter at Tuesday, November 08, 2005 1 comments Links to this post
I hope no one read the title and thought I was giving my floors a beating. Instead I am thinking about shellacking my floors. I have read a whole lot on this and have met some people that have actually used shellac on their floors. The advantages of shellac is: 1. it is faster drying, so you don't have to wait days for poly to dry and then turn around to see that their are dust particle or footprints in them, 2. it's easier to fix and I have 5 dogs and 3 cats, so I know I will be fixing a lot (don't want to sand my floors every yr), 3. it is non-toxic, so I don't have to worry about the zoo eating something off the floor or licking it.

Now the disadvantages: 1. It will mess up if alcohol is put on it, also if water is sitting on it (but from what I have read, water will not mess up the dewaxed version), 2. It easily damages (but of course it is easily fixed as well).

So from looking at these, I think that I can handle the disadvantages and I will try out the shellac. I will go with the garnet because I want dark floors. Hopefully I can get some from in the near future, but I am told that they are out of garnet as of right now. If anyone has used shellac on their floors please comment on how you liked it. I would love to read more on this.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Peel Away part deaux

Posted by Peter at Monday, November 07, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
After using Peel Away on the siding and having sub-par results, I decided to use it on one of my upstairs windows sills and on the top of my columns (still don't know what it is called). This time though, I let it sit there for days, I had to make sure that none of it dried and after a few days I jump in and began to scrape. Well my observation was that it worked a lot better this time. The paper still didn't bring any paint up, but the paint was all gooey looking and came off pretty easily. You should see the amount and different color paints the previous PO's used. So now I am happy with my Peel Away (at first I thought I waste 30 some dollars on crap). So now I have used Peel Away, Soy Gel and common stripper from Home Depot. From my experience, Soy Gel seemed to work better and faster, plus it didn't nuke my hand like the other 2. I may have to try Peel Away 7, because that is non burning. So I guess that will be in another update later on. Something I did find, was that I hear that Peel Away 1 casuses the would to turn a darker color, but I didn't experience that at all. Maybe because you have to wait a couple days or something, but so far same colored wood. Anyways I will have to update pictures later. Now off to project #64373734224562 finishing the sanding of my floors, so that I can finally shellac the thing and not worry about it. You know people always say to do one project at a time, but I can't seem to stop jumping around. Hope I actually finish something soon. Well I did get the A/C and Heat done... of course I didn't do and still have to pay for that. Oh well, the house is calling.

Saturday, November 05, 2005

More pictures of the sanded floor (and may the force be with you)

Posted by Peter at Saturday, November 05, 2005 2 comments Links to this post
Here are some other pictures of the floors, for some reason they would not upload when I posted the first message. Anyways, I thought I had a before picture, but now I can't find it. Oh well, but it was a drastic change. Well here are the pictures:

Here is the master bedroom floors after all the hard work of sanding. As you can see there are some areas that the sander would not get to. Guess that's where the ole sweat work comes in handy.

The hallways leading to the master bedroom. I officially hate paint and gray painted substances.

Here I am inhaling massive amounts of lead paint and wood fibers. Kids: Say No To Lead!

Here is a little preview of what the floors looked like before. I had a better one but can't seem to find it anymore.

Here is what happened to me after inhaling all of the lead paint and wood fibers. For some reason I turned into Darth Vader and my pals turned into a bee, giraffe, and catwoman, I think.

Got bored, so I sanded my floors!

Posted by Peter at Saturday, November 05, 2005 0 comments Links to this post
Well this past weekend I sanded the floors in the master bedroom and the ahllway upstairs. Lita had been bugging me for about 2 weeks to sand the hallway floors, because she didn't want the dogs eating anything off the floor. So on Saturday I decided to trek over to the local Home Depot and rent me a drum sander. Mind you I have never used a drum sander before and was very scared of it, but I did get to watch a neighbor of mine (Derek) use one and it didn't seem to hard. What I wanted to do is not take off too much because I wanted to keep it dark looking and old. So anyways, I went to drive to the Home Depot only to be greeted with massive traffic, with my luck I had forgotten it was the week of Florida-Georgia, the biggest outdoor cocktail party. But I still drudged forward and got there. First of all the drum sander is the heaviest thing I have ever lifted. I thought my 30-some inch tv was heavy, but this thing was like a friggin building. Well I got it home dragged it upstairs and started the bad boy up, I did my Our Fathers and set it down the first time. It went right to work and took off the paint and grime right off. I was happy! So after about 10 hours I had pretty much sanded the floors in the room and the hallway. The only bad thing was that the floors must not be too level, because there were areas where the sander didn't even touch it. I guess I will have to go over that with a hand sander and try to smooth it out. I'm not to worried though I want to give it that old home look, so if it's a little unlevel then oh well. Also I have decided to shellac the floor and see how that turns out, heard that it is easier to fix than poly (I have 5 dogs and 3 cats, I'm sure I will be fixing a lot). Well anyways here are the pictures over the weekend and maybe some other things as well:

Here is the hallway after the first pass

Here is the hallway after quite a few more.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Experiment with Peel Away

Posted by Peter at Thursday, October 27, 2005 4 comments Links to this post
Well in the recent post, I wrote about buying a product called Peel Away. I wanted to try this out, because so many people raved about how well it worked. So yesterday I put a pretty thick coat on part of my siding and on the top part of my columns to see how well it would work. Just for everyone's knowledge, I bought Peal Away 1, it was much cheaper.

Anyways, after giving it 24 hrs to "cure" I decided to give it the big pull. Regardless of it's name you don't actually peal away the paint. When I tried pealing the paper, only the paper came off, so I had to help the paint off with the included scraper. The paint did come off, but not all the layers. I was left with a green paint layer that was real hard and did not wat to come off. I don't know if this if some kind of super hard paint or what, but it was near impossible trying to take it off. I had to hammer at it just to chip off the paint. So I decided to leave it there and take pictures instead.

This is what is left over after "peeling" off the paper, I don't know what it is, but it's hard to get off.

Here is the top part of my columns. I just hope the paint comes off on this one.

Oh I just added these pictures to show you our new heating system in our house. Sad isn't it? Good thing that we are getting our new system in tomorrow. Yippee!!!!

Restoration on 7th