Saturday, May 4, 2013

Oh, What A Day! A Saturday No Less

8:15 AM. Three pickup trucks. A cargo van. Two trailers. And a crew of four. 3283 was bustling with activity from early morning to right after the noon hour. Mervin came to finish the retaining wall -- today he was a one-man-crew. And Jeff Sparks with John and Bill made up the carpentry crew. They were here to install windows and a door and to start the siding on the addition. Jeff and the guys quickly dove into the supplies that were delivered this week.  Three of the four new windows that were delivered last Monday are no longer in the garage. They are installed in the addition.

Jeff and Bill are lifting the largest window into place in the addition's west wall.
Meanwhile, on the east end of the addition Mervin is working to put the last few timbers in place on the top two rows of the retaining wall. He did a great job shaping the ends of the end timbers to give the wall a finished look.

Mervin is shaping the end of a timber that will be used at the end of a top row.

It looks different from above the wall and below.
Back on the west side of 3283 Jeff, John and Bill dug into the pile of siding. And they quickly had row upon row of siding nailed in place up the wall.  It was very satisfying watching a crew who work very well together proceed through a task. Each had a role, knew it well and complimented each other perfectly. At times it seemed that they were reading each other's minds.

Near the bottom. Jeff is manning the nail gun,
Bill is fitting the siding tongue and grove together.
John is out of the picture operating the saw.
On this wall it worked out that an even number of siding rows fit under the window.
Before long they had the siding up both sides of the window and over its top.
Here's how the addition looks from the front porch.
The west wall was done before about 9:30 or 10:00 AM. And the crew simply turned the corner and began working on the north wall. In this wall there were two small windows to be installed. The siding needed to be cut around them as well as the electric service entrance and meter box. This slowed the progress somewhat, but the crew again proved they are true professionals and expertly fit the siding around the interferences.

After the first few rows of siding on the north wall the first of the small
windows  is being  nailed into the roughed in opening
Jeff and Bill are preparing the opening for the second window.
Notice how well the siding has been fit around the meter box and the conduit  to the house.
Almost done with the north wall.
Details under the eves will be dealt with another day.

As the carpenters were working on the north wall, Mervin was completing the work on the retaining wall. It was good that both contractors could work at 3283 today without stepping on each others toes. It was especially important since both groups were trying to get their work done in a half day.

Mervin worked on the east side of the addition.
Most of the carpenters, work was on the north and west walls.
Only the west and north walls were sided today. But that sure made the place look like part of the home. Jeff and Bill did do some work on the east wall. The small window in the bathroom was installed making the upper wall ready for siding. And, after a couple week delay, Jeff and Bill filled that big opening in the concrete block wall with a real door.

The basement door is being set into the rough opening.
Jeff is checking the door frame, shimming it to the studs, and screwing it in place.
Here's Mervin checking out the completed retaining wall.
The complete door (less hardware) is at the bottom of the steps.
As I mentioned, both contractors gave 120% by coming to 3283 on a Saturday and made great progress on the project. They committed a morning to the effort and almost were able to pull out by Noon. Almost. We guess it was about 1:00 when Jeff and Mervin pulled their trailers down the driveway. I said "we" because about 10:30 Bobbie joined me in my supervisor/observer role. It was great having her here. And especially good that she saw "action" not just the results of past work as she had in the past.
Bobbie is sitting on part of the regaining wall near the bottom.
The terrace behind her will eventually be planted.
One of the nice things about having Bobbie here is letting me get in the pictures.
So, it's a nice spring Saturday. The contractors have left the site. Bobbie is here with me. What to do? Lunch first. Ottawa Beach Inn for OBI Burgers and beers. Then a trip to Lowes. There is a lot of bare wood now covering much of the addition and parts of the cottage. It is calling out to be painted. The weather forecast is good for the next few days. We picked up two gallons of exterior bare wood primer, a couple new brushes, and some nail hole filler. And we headed back to the lake shore. And I began to prepare the siding to be primed. This afternoon I filled most of the nail head holes so tomorrow they can be sanded and the primer applied.

Lowes had a great product. It was a tube of nail hole filler with a foam applicator tip
that  made filling  each nail head dimple easy.

There are a lot of nails. I filled all but about the top 2 or 3 rows....for which I'll need  taller ladder.
It was a great day at 3283. I'm hoping that this is harbinger of a good week ahead. It definitely means that tomorrow, Sunday, won't be a day of rest. It will be a day of paint. Or, more correctly a day of white primer. Below are a couple pictures of the cottage/ addition with the siding in place. Try to picture it painted white. We'll start making it that way in the morning.

Real wood siding is part of the tradition of 3283.
I could never never put vinyl  on the addition.

The west wall late in the day.
Late enough that tree shadows are crawling up the wall.
One more front side picture. This one with Bobbie.


  1. Looks like you two were having fun!
    - Damon

  2. WOW ! The place looks amazing !