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Progress in building the house

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Previous work
Winter 2010: second floor, windows
Spring 2010: sencond floor walls, slating little roof, solar windows
Summer 2010: fill in foundation, internal walls
Winter 2010: siding, slating roof
Spring 2011: siding 
Summer 2011: wiring, drywall
Autumn 2011: drywall, wiring 

Winter 2009-10

Bits of the upper story are being built - the frame for the solar water heater and a girder to support the little quarter roof.  When it is too cold to use glue, windows are fitted. solar girder window window

frame for solar heater webs ready for girder first window in

The weather has been so cold with snow and rain that nothing except small things has been done by mid Feb.
door At this point we had a severe storm that damaged the house. The half roof on the east was only properly fastened on two sides. The wind moved it and warped the top of the walls. It took a lot of thought to figure out how to correct it.
got a bargain on some second hand scaffold girder assembled
windows done and front door in Feb 26
shed lifted off its anchorsmoved roof on north wallnorthwest cornersouth walleverything straight and true again
solar panelupper framingThe walls of the upstairs room are being framed on the upstairs floor and then raised into place. I am not climbing up to take pictures, so they will be taken through the stairwell or from the outside. wallwall
frame for solar panel in placeframe of an upstairs wall on floor
Harry putting prop under wall to start liftingsteel tube supporting pully breaks; had to change to new pully
wallwallwallwallThe eastern wall was framed but not sheathed and raised as a trail fit. One piece of sheathing was fastened while it was up so that the fit would not changed with the rest of the sheathing.
wall at about 45 degreeswall within a small angle to verticalHarry putting up temporary tieswest upstairs wall in place - perfect fit!Mar 23
Spring 2010

frame on floor ready to raiselever & weight attached to counter balanceHarry lifting the frame up and upand up
trialtrialWe then had rain for quite a few days. Harry managed to get the wall sheathed in odd dry periods. Ciara & co arrived. It still rained alot but on one day they raised the wall.west  wallwest wall
nearly verticalafter putting back downRyan, Jamie & Harry lift & Ciara helps.no counterwieght this time. Up...Up...
west wallwest wallwest wallAfter raising the wall, Ryan and Jamie lifted the girder up to the upper floor and wrapped it to keep it dry. They brought all the stuff not needed down. GREAT HELPMore rain. In the first good weather, the girder was finished with its bottom cord and varnished. Window frames put in solar frame.

in place

girderHarry got the girder up part way and then asked friend Paul Henri to help get it up the rest of the way. GREAT HELPgirdernorth wallrafters
girder half way upApr 11girder in placenorth wall framed & up with ropes and counterweights Apr 13bottom of roof rafters put up
raftersrafterstilesAll the rest of the roof will be tiled from the outside as normal (hopefully by a roofer). This bit of roof is being done from the inside by Harry.tiling
first 2 upper roof rafters up Apr 19rafters completedfirst lot of slate tiles purchased Apr 25first slate and a half up
tilingtilingpillarThere was a couple of weeks of cold, windy and very wet weather. Harry did no slating during that period, but made, varnished and put up a pillar under the girder.tiling
start of third row

inside of slates & pillar under girderMay 8back to slating
More rain so work was done under the floor putting a post under the pillar.tilingWhen the slates reached the top of the girder, Part of the ceiling of the upper room was put in so that Harry could stand on it to tie the two roofs together and finish the slating. ceilingtiling

half done
part of ceiling from underneath.fastening the two sides together
on toptilingtilingtilingroof
Harry from the road - top of the world
the sheathing finished on the road sidealmost to the top - but now it rains  May 25finished May 28 ready for chimney & ridge
roofHarry covered the top of the north roof with Tyvex from the outside. There are no pictures because I could not watch but just stayed in ear shot. One of the battens fell so Harry came down to get replacementroofsolar windows solar windows
finishing top of north roof
Harry crawling up roof with last batten first 2 windows in the solar panelstrip fits in groves in windows & holds them
solar windowssolar windowssolar windowsolar windows
6 in and 2 to gowindow held on suction cups to lift into placeheld by top & moved to side onto T stripall in and now raining
Summer 2010

We had a visit from Sasha (Jun 19-24) and he helped with some lifting, putting in a window and chopping down some dead trees. Photos on visits page. windowwoodNext task is to finish the outside of the foundations and backfill around the house. The crawl space is insulated from the outside with foam sheets. Work slow because either storming or baking hot.foundation insulation

upper floor windowfire wood from chopped down trees
starting along the west side  Jun 28
It is very hot and only cools down when it rains. Afternoons are not reasonable for Harry outside in the sun. 
fill protectiondigger
the east side nextworking along the north side  Jul 14
protection over insulationlearning controls on hired digger Aug 4
We had a bobcat rental arranged next but the machine broke and there was a delay.
starting utility trenchmoving pile of back fillfinishing utility trench
Harry working bobcat
Disappointing -  bobcat could not lift and move at the same time. Mechanic came & fixed. Nextday the bucket didn't move at all. Gave up on it & will try again later.internal wallsinternal wallsinternal wallsinternal walls

framing rest of internal walls - my roombathroom - bedroom frame before raising after raisinghall - bedroom frame almost vertical
internal wallsHired Babcat again and it was not fixed - no earth moved.
Internal framing done except for putting in the top plates between the top of the walls and the roof trusses.

Electricity code requires a tower from floor to ceiling to bring in wires to circuit breakers and distribute them.
hall - bedroom in place

back of tower
start of closing eaves
flashing where wall meets foundation
flashing under windows
siding delivered
the 'douglas'
starting the siding

Winter 2010

siding siding siding During the visits and bad weather very little got done. Bob helped change the scaffold arrangement, and helped with a heavy load of supplies from Bourges on the trailer. A roofer was found and price negotiated, slates delivered & shower purchased. siding
after some work on the siding, a lot of rain
friend & neighbour helped add a stage to scaffold measure, climb down, cut, climb up, nail, measure...
starting again with the first nice day  - Dec 12

Bad weather again. Harry got as much as he could done before the roofer came. A little bit at the top was left on the west wall. Dec 19 scaffold moved and roofer started. He will work week-ends until done.

Roofer's first morning's work & weather not bad
the first day's work - great  - break for Christmas
after the second day's work Dec 28
Weather continued very cold and wet. Only small things done done these days

after the third day
front finished at lunch time on fourth day
Dec 31 - ran out of slates  - back in a week to finish
Jan 8 - last bit of back done in morning

While scaffold there putting siding on high bit
Jan 25
ready for the zinc edge

Feb 8 in great weather starting siding on east side

Some rain and broken nailer put a hitch in siding. So inside jobs for a while.
back door
Scaffolding up first stage - back to siding

new back door put in - outside
and inside
painting the barge board for the roof
nailer fixed so back to siding
Mar 1

more time & effort putting up scaffold than siding

Friend asked 'why nailer': easier stance & reach, no bent nails with less skill, less damage to wood, tighter nails, less effort, only takes one hand, quicker

Spring 2011

The last bit is tricky. Harry made a way up, a bit higher scaffold, a preassembled triangle, a bar to harress himself to  and then the last bit was done.   Or -how to keep an 81 year old in shape.
siding siding siding siding

this is a man who finds heigths uncomfortable! as high as possible before higher plank put up standing on plank and connecting to bar putting in triangle
siding siding siding Back to the west wall where the siding was unfinished when the scaffolding was taken down to be used by the roofers. siding
fastening zinc almost done - just very point to do east wall finished and the scaffolding almost down
putting up scaffold
siding siding
starting putting up zinc scaffolding higher and ...
to the top with a rod to clip a harness to
top triangle put in
just the zinc left to do up high
just one peice of zinc left

putting the zinc in place - two planks above platform
west wall done -grass has grown so mowing, Apr 14
Some work was done on the north side (no picture) and mowing etc. before visit by Ciara and Ryan. They came determined to get a lot of siding done.
First into town to get more siding
first day worked on north side
did some on south and then put up scaffold
more on south side
back to the north to finish as high as possible without scaffold
electrical meter
The men who are putting in the underground electricity gave us a price for deepening the trench, running the conduit from the road to the house for power, water and phone, and closing the trench in. Date for 30th. Great. trench
permanent electrical meter put in but not hooked up
end of help - what a lot got done! Apr 26
snow barrier in eave and last board ready in SE corner

getting conduits through foundation
The one red is for electric supply; the other red is spare in case we want a light or intercom at gate; green is for telephone cable; blue is for water supply; and the coloured nets are so future diggers will know there is conduit (and types) underneath. All according to spec!
snow barrier
snow barrier
filling trench

All done except making the foundation hole waterproof
snow barrier on south eave from inside
start of snow barrier on north eave from outside
Paul Henri
We have a friend, Paul Henri, who is fixing a very old house. He and Harry  each have scaffolding but borrow back and forth when they need more than they have. He has came to get a peice he needs back.
Harry & Paul Henri

House end of the trench filled in
The exact amount of siding to finish the walls
sliding in top piece along the tongue & grove
barge board

Even though Ryan didn't like the black metal corners, we did.
It turned out that we needed a few more boards.
barge board corners sw corner
first bit of barge board goes up

north side with barge board and corners up
corner and start of barge board in SW
south trim
Harry having a rest on hot day moving scaffolding
ready to start last bit of siding
just a few bits left on the south

eavetroughing just started
A good deal of time has been spent studying the electric code and plumbing regs.

Jun 15 - water company arrives
temporary tap in the house, useful
the little patch of utilities is almost done

Summer 2011

drywall mover
light box
north eave
Harry built a wheeler for moving drywall sheets
and bought a drywall lifter
the first light boxes - ready for ceiling drywall
more eavestroughing
north eavestroughing done
The electrical work does not make good photos but the current state is that what needs to be done before ceiling drywall goes up - is done.
More electrics done and the main cable pushed and pulled through the conduit from house to road. Harry pushed and I pulled - it took a few day all together.
the elect. men did some  more earth moving and left some stone
more wiring going in

first sheet of drywall goes up on the lifter - Aug 11
drywall drywall drywall machine
This rig will take a sheet of drywall and move it to a vertical wall, lift it up & has a platform for Harry to stand on when screwing it up. Also will bring sheets up to where they can be put on the lifter for ceiling. All re-cycled bits from other rigs.

moved into place against rafters putting in the screws to hold the sheet up building a vertical drywall lifter
sheets are heavy - about 35kg or about 80 lbs

Autumn 2011

light fixture
Next is a series especially for Don showing how Harry puts up a sheet of drywall alone with his rigs.
Harry can lift one end at a time on and off beams and ledges.
finished machine
5th sheet going up
ditto - and after next one
light fittings put in while both sides can be reached

sheet moved in a beam with a wheel at one end and a lifting handle at the other
lifted off beam next to lifter. Lifter at bottom of travel so ledge is on floor
sheet on lifter and Harry is about to put a clamp on the top of the sheet
this sheet has to go around a corner and so a piece is cut out
the sheet on the vertical lifter put beside the other lifter
the sheet is raised with the winch so level with the other lifter and moved over
the horizontal lifted to put into the horizontal position
the sheet is steered into postion and then lifted

dry wall
some of the screws are put in and then the lifter moved away and final screws
At this corner the first drywall was put on the wall
before the cover was on and the space hard to see, Harry documented the wiring
ceiling drywall & light fittings in second bedroom
drywall between kitchen & second bedroom with wiring
drywall tower
insulation drywall
back of that wall with wiring that will be inside
the tower box is starting to fill up
Harry made a rig to cut the fiber glass on
he is insulating the ceiling as the drywall goes up
more or less last piece of kitchen ceiling drywall

A little break to do some other work like mowing.
wiring for light & computer in 'Janet's room'

Kitchen wall on living room side
also bottom of wall in living room gets wired

finishing the bottom living room drywall
start of bedroom ceiling and light
bedroom wall with switch
wall between bedroom and bathroom
raising sheet for bathroom ceiling - water proof type
Ceiling drywall goes up before walls with no screws near edge. Then the top half of the wall is put up to press against the ceiling and hold it up. Then the house can move slightly without cracking at the joint.
Janet's room internal walls, wring, ceiling done
ceiling in bathroom done except for a corner
bedroom wiring done & ceiling, interal walls almost
start of walls in bathroom - green drywall is waterproof
new since last update