October 29, 2010

All up on our roof

Run down of putting up the metal roof so far....

1. Pull roof panels out of pile in garage and scatter about lawn

2. I measure and mark out the locations where Pete is going to be putting the screws

3. Grab panel and walk over to garage, Pete climbs ladder and puts top of panel on the roof.

4. I tell Pete to be careful as he starts to climb onto the roof purlins

5. Using my massive muscles I push the panel up as high as I can get it on the roof while Pete climbs up to get it.

6. Pete grabs panel and holds it while I'll let go to climb the ladder.

7. Once on ladder I push the panel up one handed until we get it up to the peak.

8. Line panel up.

9. From the top of the ladder I hold the panel lined up and keep it from sliding down off the roof.

10. Have extreme concerns about the panel slipping and beheading me as it slides down

11. Pete places first screw it at the top. I can let go and hop off the ladder now.

12. Pete continues going down the panel screwing it down into place

13. I mark out next panel on the lawn, as heights make my palms sweat in an extremely unattractive fashion. I barely am ok with the ladder.

You can see why there are no pictures of us putting the panels up, cause we need our hands! The panels aren't super heavy, but you can definitely start to notice some fatigue setting in by the fifth oneof the day. It is a lot of upper body strength used in bursts when putting them up. I love how they cover such a large area, so you see results as soon as you get a panel up. Very gratifying to have something that shows results almost instantly, even if it is overall slow work.

West Bumble New Jersey

I like living in the middle of nowhereville New Jersey...Not a house in sight and not one other car drove by the whole time Pete snapped these field sunsets shots on the back roads as we drove home from a hard day of work on the Wee house.

October 28, 2010

Garage Roof Situation

The last few weekends we've just been slogging through getting the garage roof done. It is definitely one of those slow but steady processes as we just can't seem to find a way to work any faster. As it is now, it takes us about 40 mins per metal panel of roof from the ground to finished installation. There are 30 panels total.

Why a metal roof? Mainly cause we thought it was cool. Isn't that always a reason to make a major decision that will be around for 40 years- for the Cool Factor. Metal roofs are pretty uncommon in the state of NJ, with the exception of broke down rusted sheds in back yards and random commercial properties. We've found that metal roofs are all rage outside of NJ. In fact, during our road trips we always end up pointing out all the cool metal roofs we see along the way.

Random factoid- Sookie Stackhouse ( of True Blood, my current obsession) has a metal roof. It is mentioned in books a few times and shown on the show.

One of the biggest benefits of choosing to do the metal roof was the fact that we didn't have to lay plywood/osb all over the roof the way you have to with asphalt shingles. You just have to put a series of 2x4's (purlins) up and the roof gets screwed into those. 2x4's -while not cheap when you have buy things in large quantities-are buckets of money cheaper than osb, which runs about $13 a board here for the cheapest stuff.

Then came the fact that I've helped dispose of two asphalt roofs in my time and they were hell to get rid of. I clearly remember shoveling the shingles off the trailer and into the dump and thought/wishing I would pass out because it was just that hard. The shingles are heavy, they break apart, are rotted, it smells like shit, and all sorts of gross bugs have made their home in the mess. Anything to avoid doing that again.

Along with looking cool, I love the fact that the metal roof can be recycled when its time is up. No trip to the dump for this roof! There are a lot of other major benefits to having mental roof and they are all available via a quick "metal roof benefits" search on Google. So far I'd recommend anyone in need of a new roof for a shed, garage or house to check it out. I'm iffy on recommending the DIY installation for a large structure, cause it is a wicked pain in the rear and we fubared a little part of it already.

I just realized that I've been lacking on the pictures during October. Perhaps I need to institute my "No post without a picture this month" policy again for November...

October 25, 2010

Garage Door Quest P.2

After a lovely drive on the back roads through the state of Maryland, of during which I only had one hunger induced meltdown about the way Pete printed out the Google Map, we arrived in the City of Frederick. Found our way to seller house and pretty much instantly upon arrival we were amped up.

The house was awesome, a large old historic home set on an idyllic lot in the middle of dream hamlet of stately old homes. The kind of neighborhood you walk around and just drool at when you're a historic home junky. Out of respect for the seller B* I'm going to gloss over a lot of the location details and story that led to him getting new garage doors. But I will talk about this house and B* cause he and his house were really just that cool.

Being super awesome and because Pete and I do not look like (nor are we) crazy weirdos, B* took us on a tour of his home and gave us the run down of the history behind it. We were enthralled as he showed us the original leaded windows, down into the basement and up to the third floor. It was really great to talk to another old home enthusiast and to see how he and his family have made living in such a historic home work for their modern needs without taking away from the original charm of the place.

After about an hour of talking and loading the garage doors on the trailer Pete and I really wanted to take a walk around the city. B* gives us directions on how to get to the downtown, offers us the use of his bikes and then tells us to pull the trailer into his driveway so we don't have to worry about someone messing with the doors. Nicest guy ever. And I don't even offer the people I meet for CL drop offs a glass of water.

We took a walk around the city, soaking in some more of the awesome historical homes and beautiful architecture. We grabbed a quick bite and ice cream for the nice walk back to the car. It was all in all, a great way to end our CL adventure.

Plus, we really do love the garage doors! Win all around!

October 21, 2010

Garage Door Quest P.1

Budget left for garage: pennies
How much garage doors cost: lots of pennies.

You can see our conundrum here. Garage doors are like woah expensive, which might explain why they are really something people don't replace often. Or ever get rid of gorgeous, drool worthy carriage garage doors for super cheap.

We shopped the big box stores, finding that the in stock options didn't really jive with the look of the barn garage. Briefly we thought about creating rolling barn doors for the front of the garage, close to what we have here on the current garage. Except that we don't really like the functionality of the sliding door for a garage. It can be a bit of pain when it comes to getting light in the garage or getting a car in and out because you can only open one side at a time.

Then for like a half a second we entertained the thought of getting gorgeous carriage doors made. But when a comma and a few zeros were attached on that price tag we slowly backed away from that idea.

Frustrated we turned to craigslist and searched all the areas around us to see what was available. When it comes to a big purchase like this we usually search everywhere within a 5-ish hour driving radius. No point in letting driving limit the potential to find something that could be perfect for us.

And in western Maryland- we found them. Potentially awesome garage doors for a great price! Pete started up a line of communication with the seller to find out more information and from there we started to get really excited about these doors...

Up next- the all day road trip and how freaking awesome the seller ended up being...

Anyone else willing to make the drive to find that *perfect* item for a great price? Or are we the only nuts who think nothing of hopping into the car and driving far far away to save some money?

October 20, 2010


State of the Fourth Door:

- We have just returned from a seven state 1,600 mile road trip in a Mini Cooper.
- I LOVE Savannah!!
- The barn garage has about 65% of its roof.
- I crossed off alligator from my "seen in real life" wild animal check list.
- It is effing cold in the house again. No using heat until November is in full effect.
- My commute takes too damn long
- People in the south make the worlds greatest fried chicken.

Things that are not good:

-I'm about 85% sure that I've broken my nose. It makes funny squeeks and noises when I sneeze. When the weather patterns shift I can tell because it feels funny, like its swollen.

The end.

October 11, 2010

Thanks for the paint help!

Thank you so much to everyone who chimed in about the exterior paint confusion. It is good to hear about all the options that have worked so well for different people in the past. Especially hearing good things about Sherwin Williams, right now we're thinking they are going to end up being our go-to option when it comes time to buy the paint.

The solvent free linseed oil paint seemed so cool! There are so many aspects to the paint that I really love, however I just can't seem to find myself willing make the barn the guinea pig for it. Especially given the high price of $124 per .85 of a gallon for a product we've never used. Despite my normal willingness to try new products like the paint I am a little gun shy on this one. Who knows why. Maybe I'll give it a whirl on a smaller project in the future.

Next up on the decision front- Picking a color for the barn.

Thank you!!! :)

October 7, 2010

Paint Brand Help Needed!

Please talk paint with me.

I need help narrowing down all the options for exterior paints. There are just so many to choose from that it is hard to stop from feeling a bit overwhelmed. Our go to interior paint is usually Kilz because we loved the coverage on our plaster walls and the great containers ( which they don't use anymore). The fact that it is very affordable for a gallon is also a nice little bonus.

With the garage/barn we want whatever paint that will provide the best durability for a long time. Something that will stand up to the elements without looking like a POS in a few years. Our only experience with exterior paint is with Finneran and Haley a few years ago and we weren't overly thrilled. Besides they aren't even in business anymore.

We're leaning towards Sherwin Williams, but would LOVE some input and real life experiences with exterior paint. Is paying top dollar necessary? Or is there a cheaper gem option?

Many many many thanks!

October 6, 2010


This might be the first time that I've ever flashed a window where a picture of me doing so has ended up on the Internet. Though its a picture of the boring version of flashing, nothing to do with booze, beads or Mardi Gras. Everything to do with installing a window. Yawn.

I've never really installed a window before. When Pete was replacing the windows in our current house I helped him in the form of holding the window still and bitching about the glass splinter I got. Being as this was new construction where everything was built square by us and to the exact measurements of the windows we purchased- I was up for the task. Trying to fit a replacement window into a existing space is much harder.

Installing the windows was one of the easier DIY things I've ever done. I'd put it a few notches below "taking a nap on the wood pile while Pete works". It took a little know how, which I got from Pete taking the lead and reading the instructions that came with the windows . And it involved caulk, nails and not dropping the window.

Like a lot of the construction I do around here, I don't feel comfortable giving you an extensive "How-To" guide or real in depth pictorial. But I can comfortably say- Give it a shot.

After the sills were flashed by moi, the entire wall got wrapped by the house wrap. Right on top of the window and door openings. Once the wrap is on completely you staple it down like crazy and then cut an "I" shaped slip to use as the opening for installing the windows.

The Pete magically transported back to the 1960's while nailing down the siding. Or I got bored and played around with the Picnik options while posting this...

Through the magic of the time warp internet- here is the finished sided wall! Three walls done, One and a half to do before winter!

*Looking for some helpful hints to window installation? DIY Network has some great info on their site here.