Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Today we finished removing rotten boards in the east wall, especially behind the chimney, and I started cutting and nailing in new ones. The big adventure of the day was when Mark slipped off a joist and fell through the ceiling into the northeast room. He grabbed the joist on the way down, so he landed on his feet. No harm done. I told him that made us even, because I did the same thing a few years ago when I was replacing the roof on the west porch. With a good chance of rain in the forecast, I started putting up the tarps about three this afternoon and when I finally finished it was almost five. The rain danger continues through tomorrow afternoon, then clear weather is supposed to arrive Friday and last into next week.


Thursday, September 2, 2010

With a worrying chance of rain in the forecast for this evening, I decided to leave the tarps in place and take a day for maintenance. I started with cutting off some small trees coming up in the lawn and dosing the stumps with poison. I checked the battery on the stalled WD and found it weak, so I put a charger on it. Next I took a walk along the west field picking up trash so I could mow along the road. While I was at that I pulled a few tall weeds that were in the way, intending to come back with the truck to pick them up. After sitting for weeks with no use the old truck didn't want to start, but shooting some ether down the intake a few times got it going. I picked up the weeds, put the truck away, and started mowing. I mowed until about three, then checked the battery on the WD. After five hours on the charger it was still dead, so I took it to town and got a replacement, which was free because the dead battery was less than a year old. When I got home and put the new battery on the tractor it still wouldn't start. It turned out that the battery wasn't the only thing that went bad. I replaced the battery cutoff switch, and the tractor started right up. So I put the WD back in the shed and returned to mowing. By a few minutes before five most of the mowing was done. That's how I spent my day.


Friday, September 3, 2010

This morning I built a scaffold to set on top of the back porch so I can work on the north end of the upper roof. Mark will come over Monday morning to help me get it up there. I spent the afternoon getting started on rewiring the back porch light. Currently it's powered by a line that comes from a conduit nailed to the outside of the house. I'm replacing that with a line that will come up inside the porch from the cellar. After all this work is finished the house will look better without that pipe on it, and while I'm doing the work I want that line out of the way when we put up the scaffold. This evening I put together a video showing some of the recent roof work: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jSWJnXGe3BY.


Saturday, September 4, 2010

After a trip to town to buy lumber, I spent the day on rewiring the back porch light. In the cellar I disconnected the old outside line from the breaker box. Outside I cut the conduit coming from the cellar and pulled it out. In the back porch I removed the old wiring and installed much of the new wiring, but didn't nail it down because I'll have to move some of it when I rebuild the porch roof. Remaining to do: put in the cellar portion of the new wiring and connect it to the breaker box, and remove the rest of the conduit and old wiring from the outside of the house. Then I can get back to carpentry on the upper roof.


Sunday, September 5, 2010

So today I put in the cellar portion of the new wiring and connected it to the breaker box, and removed the rest of the conduit and old wiring from the outside of the house. Then I got back to carpentry on the upper roof, cutting and nailing in some new studs in the east wall. There are a couple more of those to do, then I can put in some new rafters.


Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day was the last day of my vacation, and I used it for a job requiring extra hands. My friends Mark and Tonya helped me raise the scaffold and put it on top of the back porch. It took over three hours to get the job done, but it's a good, solid piece of work. Here's the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AywsKhUFaEM.


Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Back to work means less time for the roof project, but I did manage to mostly finish installing new rafters this afternoon. I still have to nail on a few braces, but I'm almost ready for the next part, installing new eaves. That's likely to take several days. The most time-consuming part of that job will probably be taking down and putting up the tarps to keep the rain out. It would be nice to have several days of dry weather, but the forecast includes a 100% chance of rain this week.


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

With remnants of a tropical storm soaking Tejas and Okieland, the forecast here calls for a 100% chance of rain overnight. So today I bought a couple more 9' x 12' tarps for the roof and put them up when I got home this afternoon. I'm keeping my fingers crossed and hoping I've got all the potential leaks covered.


Thursday, September 9, 2010

Well, the extra tarps did the job, mostly. They stopped all the leaks from the upper roof, but there was some dripping into containers in the living room. I'll really be glad to get a working roof on the whole place. Today, while things dried out, I did some catching up on paperwork and filed receipts. I hope to get back to the roof tomorrow.


Friday, September 10, 2010

The forecast for this evening includes a 60% chance of rain, so I didn't untarp this afternoon. Taking them down and putting them up takes so long that I wouldn't have got much work done. Tomorrow looks better.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

After doing laundry I checked out an auction which had nothing that interested me, so I came home and spent the day working on the roof. I stopped early, at 3:30, and drove to Wichita to see a movie. One of my gripes about our local theater is that a lot of movies for grown-ups, about something real, don't play here. That's why sometimes I go to Wichita. In this case, Winter's Bone was definitely worth the trip. No stars, no chases, no explosions, just a good story well told. I've never heard of anybody who was in this picture, and the cast is excellent. A rural Missouri girl raising her little brother and sister and caring for her mentally ill mother is faced with the loss of their home. Director Debra Granik keeps the story moving and doesn't hit a false note. This is Oscar material.


Sunday, September 12, 2010

I spent another day on the roof. Today I finished the eaves and got most of the boards nailed on them. Here's the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=incTPlflU5o.


Monday, September 13, 2010

This afternoon I spent an hour arranging tarps because there's a 40% chance of rain in the forecast. Why worry about such a small chance? Because that's what produced a good soaking recently.


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

When it rained this morning I wondered what I'd find when I got home. I was delighted to find that the new tarp arrangement had worked, and there was no leaking inside. This afternoon I cut and installed a board covering spaces between the eaves. I think the next step will be installing new roof boards.


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

After work I went grocery shopping and gassed up the car. When I got home there wasn't a cloud in the sky, but the weather forecast showed a 100% chance of rain tonight. So I left the tarps up and spent the rest of the afternoon checking email and answering messages, and checking my regular websites. I'm just hoping the rain won't be too heavy. The inside stayed dry during the last storm, but I don't want to find out what may happen in a real gullywasher.


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Well, it was a big storm in Wichita and Winfield, with heavy rain and wind damage, but not a drop here. I intended to get some roof work done this afternoon, but then I looked at the forecast and found a 70% chance of rain at four and a 90% chance at five. The radar showed a big storm one county west and moving this way. So I left all the tarps in place. And of course it all passed by without a drop of rain here. At least Saturday looks good.


Friday, September 17, 2010

The main course this evening was a can of pork & beans with chopped onions, unheated. It's been a couple of months since I did any cooking, but with summer coming to an end and the weather cooling down a little maybe I'll get back to my Friday night tamales before long.


Saturday, September 18, 2010
I spent the day working on the roof. It got pretty toasty up there, so I had to take a couple of heat breaks, but I got a lot done.


Sunday, September 19, 2010

The trouble with doing one section at a time is that sometimes the sections are interconnected so that you have to tear one apart to work on the other one. I spent a little bit of time on that east edge of the roof this morning, but I soon figured out that I need to also work on the north edge along with it. So I spent most of the day taking off the top rows of shingles on the north wall and the old roofing on top along the north side. There's a lot to take off, and on a 90º day I had to stop every so often to get a drink and cool down. On the plus side, all those bags of old roofing scraps will make great weights to hold the tarps in place when I cover up. Here's the video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ix1xzDhQIdA.


Monday, September 20, 2010

More roofing removal this afternoon. I've got it off almost half the upper roof now.


Tuesday, September 21, 2010

The forecast changed overnight, showing a 55% chance of rain by 9:00 AM. So before work I was up on the roof getting tarps in place. That chased the rain away, and we never got a drop. I planned to take off more old roofing this afternoon, but it was so windy that I decided to leave the tarps in place. Trying to put them back on when the wind is blowing is a losing proposition.


Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Several nights recently I've slept under a blanket, but on the last full night of summer I was uncovered all night. When I went to bed at 9:30 it was 80º, and this morning at five it was 75º. The forecast for next week shows average temperatures about ten degrees cooler. Meanwhile, the grass has been growing. With the lawn on its way to getting out of control I need to mow. I was going to take all the empty gas cans and fill them, but couldn't get the truck started. So I put a charger on it and I'll try again tomorrow. Fortunately there was plenty of fuel in the tractor, so I got a good start on the mowing. I hope I can get it done tomorrow and Friday.


Thursday, September 23, 2010

One out of two. I got the truck running and took five cans down to the filling station at the casino. As I was filling the last can the rain was just starting, so more mowing will have to wait a day. I did find out that the truck needs new wiper blades.


Friday, September 24, 2010

Nothing came up to interfere, so I got most of the mowing done this afternoon. The cut was pretty uneven, so I replaced the left side blade with a new one. That improved the results considerably. That makes two new blades out of three. I guess I should change the middle one too, and make the cut really even. I've been putting off the change of blades because I wanted to get maximum use out of the old ones, but I think I've reached that point now.


Saturday, September 25, 2010

After doing laundry I looked at a couple of auctions. Neither had anything to keep me there, so I came home and spent the whole day working on the roof. This evening I went to a movie, then had an adventure. When I came out of the theater to leave, my car wouldn't start. So I started walking home. I had covered about four miles when the Kendricks saw me and stopped, so I got a ride the rest of the way. I'll go back tomorrow and check out that dead car by daylight.


Sunday, September 26, 2010

I took the battery out of the Camry and had it tested, and it was fine. Too bad. Replacing a dead battery would have been the easy outcome. I'll have to wait until there's a garage open tomorrow before I can get anything fixed, so I spent the rest of the day working on the roof.


Monday, September 27, 2010

Stupid, stupid, stupid! I had the Camry towed to a garage this morning, then stopped by on my way home from work this afternoon to find out what was wrong with it. Nothing. It turns out that the car wouldn't start because I had it in reverse, not park. So I spent $75 on towing to find out that the only thing wrong, as the old saying goes, was the nut behind the wheel. With that aggravating bit of business settled, I spent the rest of the afternoon working on the roof.


Tuesday, September 28, 2010

It was another afternoon of roof work. I'm taking old boards off the upper roof and putting on new ones. I've got about a fourth of the east half done. It's slow going, but I hope to have all the new boards on the upper roof within a week.


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

More new boards nailed on. A lot of the eighty-year-old nails I've been pulling are good enough that I can hammer them straight and use them over. But some aren't good enough, and I have to use new ones. I finished the afternoon just about out of nails, so that will be a shopping item for tomorrow.


Thursday, September 30, 2010

Guess what I did this afternoon. Yep, took old boards off the roof and nailed on new ones. The adventure continues. Almost half done on the east side. I should get that done this weekend and start on the west side.