Saturday, April 10, 2010

The Weekend Before the Weekend

Tom and I took yesterday (Friday) off, and spent the day at the Cheney Cottage.

Next week, Eric Angress and his crew come to make the cut between the first and second floors, in preparation for the move (which happens in 8 days). So Tom and I are prepping the house for the cut. We're removing the fire escape, taking off all the trim that crosses the line of the cut, and stripping off all the second floor baseboards. We're also taking out all the plumbing (useless) and wiring (all surface mounted in conduit - awful looking).

So now, there's a growing pile of debris in the front of the house. Conduit and plumbing pipes, mingled with pieces of old indoor/outdoor carpet, vinyl tiles and acoustic ceiling tiles.

Tom had to go meet with Building Officials with the City of Berkeley twice yesterday, so I was left alone in the Cheney Cottage. Despite clonking myself in the head with a falling florescent light, it was a good day. One of the things we both like about working on old houses is getting to know every part of the house. As I crawl along floors, unbolting the conduit, or climb the ladder to the ceiling, I get to know every part of the house.

As I pulled the conduit off the baseboards in the dining room, some of it took the paint with it, and I could see the original shellaced redwood trim. So the heat gun will again be getting a lot of use, and we'll be using the dental tools again to strip yet another two rooms (the living room has nice trim too).

Today, we're finishing the trim and fire escape, and starting work on the baseboards. We also want to take out the wall that was added between the living room and stairs, which will have the effect of lightening the load and making us happy. And we're bracing the porch roof so we can take out the porch steps, deck and posts.

We also found that, near the house, there is an electrical outlet - so we can plug in our sawzall and our chop saw. So today's work will go a lot faster than yesterdays.

Stay tuned for today's injury report.

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