08/14/2010, still stuck in Aurora
And so goes the trim. Rip off the old(carefully), scrape off the old caulk from the siding, measure the old board, cut the new. Then Tracy puts the first and many times the second coat of paint(rotten paint-don't buy Valspar paint) on it(easier that way). Then hold the board in place and fit it--recut--fit it again and nail it up and move on to the next board. Once we have a few windows done, and Mother Nature starts thinking of raining, we start to clean up the back deck(where we work) and I start applying caulk to the edges and seams of the boards. I got lucky and found a caulk from GE that matches the color Tracy picked out for the trim boards so that makes the last touch up paint job easier or not necessary. I like this caulk much better as it doesn't leave a big mess and wipes off my hands easily. It dries to rainproof in three hours so the rain threat is lessened. The last thing we do is remove all the nails from the old trim so we can stack the boards so the trash man will take them away. I have to cut them into three foot lengths so he will take them(not that Waste Management is picky mind you) plus bundle them with twine into easily manageable piles.
The worst job was doing under the sliding glass door on the back deck. We'd built the deck back in 1997 and luckily had used stainless steel screws so they came right out(most of them). I had to custom fit the new trim board as it had to be jammed between the bottom of the door and the ledger board that fastens the deck to the house. As with most boards, it was 2.25" on one edge and 2.75 on the other end of the board. No saw(not circular nor band saw) I had could cut the board lengthwise(this is a HARD board) so I had to use a hand saw to do the job. Being a rough cut( I couldn't cut a straight line if my life depended on it with a hand saw-line or no line on the board), I had to use a belt sander to smooth it out so it would fit properly. Then on goes lots of caulk into the area and in goes the board with lots of nails and it was done. Re screw the deck boards and on to the next window. The nice thing about this stuff is that it will never absorb water so there will be no more split boards around out house where water is prevalent(North side).
We're about 70% done with a few more windows to do and a few edge boards needing attention but we have lots of trim left so we will probably change out some boards that while they don't look that bad, could use replacement. Why not if we have the boards just sitting there. Better us that to sell them to the neighbor and then find we need them in a year or two when we return home again.
I think we may take today off as the past week has been tough on both of us(it sucks once you are past 50). We were both pretty well wiped out yesterday by the time we stopped working and got the back cleaned up and tools put away.
Oh, to be back on Zephyr enjoying a nice quiet deserted cove some where along the Baja coast. Yeah, I know it's hot and humid there but the jobs are easier.
The picture at the top is of one of our local friends that goes in and out of our yard. We've had them for years so I keep them well fed when we are home. Tracy took out an ear of corn a week or so ago and one(a mother squirrel) came right up to her and urged her to get that ear of corn out for her to nosh on. She was less than a foot away from her. No fear!
08/13/2010, Still stuck in Aurora
Out came the saw and nailer and up went the trim. Window by window we went. On Wednesday, we had planned an early start and got everything ready. Suddenly the front door bell rang. It was the window company here to replace the kitchen window that had gotten damaged in a hail storm(we get them big here in Colorado)that had come by last year. They had finally gotten the window in and since we had just gotten in the trim, the timing worked out just fine.
Off came the old trim(we had planned to replace it any way) and out came the window. These windows are nailed to the frame of the house when it was built so the guys just cut through the vinyl trim that surrounds the perimeter of the frame and out it came. There was lots of caulk around the edge so it was put in very snugly and had never leaked a drop. They cut the trim off the new window and slid it into place and put screws through frame and she was attached. I grabbed our saw and the old boards that made up the trim and was going to make the new boards the same but decided to measure(measure twice-cut once). Well, the measurements of the new window were different that the original, so we measured the new window and cut the trim to fit. We pulled out the nailer(loaned by our neighbor) and the guys put the boards in place and nailed them in. Out came the caulk and the job was done. All in all, three hours from start to finish.
By now it was lunch time so we broke for lunch and started up about 1300. Off came the first trim and with the saw on the back porch deck, we measured and cut the boards. We "dry"fit(no nails yet) each set of boards to make sure they fit. Tracy pulled out our saw horses and painted the boards while I pulled off more boards. Once the paint was dry(new paint-top of the line Valspar)--it still took two coats, I nailed the boards into place. On to the big sliding glass door. More boards and more sawing and painting and nailing and it was done. Mother nature decided to try to rain so we stopped there and stowed all the gear. No rain of course.
Yesterday, we started off again. On to the next window and on and on. Again, Mother Nature looked like she was going to rain so we stopped about 1500 getting several more windows done. I spent the rest of the afternoon putting caulk around the new window trim to make sure it was water tight. Late in the afternoon, after Aaron(our great neighbor) returned home, I borrowed his drill and removed the deck boards that have to come out so we can replace the trim under the sliding glass door. I'd put the deck in back in 1997 and yet there was no rust on any of the screws. I'd used expensive stainless steel screws and it paid off since they(for the most part) came right out.
Today, off with the deck boards and I'll have to cut a new board to replace the existing one under the door and get on with the other windows. The fun never stops here in Aurora.
08/10/2010, still stuck in Aurora
Time marches forward as do the jobs.
The trim finally showed up this morning, only six days later than the last promised date of delivery and only 50 days from the day we ordered it. Not bad since they had told us it would be here within three weeks(21 days) but if you have been following our blog you know the story so I won't go into it again. Tomorrow starts the installation as you can't buy 16 gauge finish nails in a 2.5 inch length. They only sell those for nail guns. Aaron, our next door neighbor is going to loan us his Dewalt nail gun so we will be in business. I'll measure and cut while Tracy paints the boards and up they will go. Of course, the fun is going to be ripping off the existing boards and getting the old caulk off the siding without ruining it. With luck, we should have it done in a week or less depending on the weather. It's been clouding up and pouring over the last few days.
I took care of another project while we waited for the trim. When we are out sailing, as Zephyr tilts or heels when the wind hits the sails, things in the galley tend to side across the counter(making a mess). So we went to Sam's (just joined) and found a plastic cutting board. I bought some dowels and a drill bit and we were in business. If you looked at the picture at the top of the post, you will see what I made. A board with holes drilled in it for short lengths of dowels that will hold plates and cups as well as cans and keep them from sliding around on the counter. Many boats have these installed inside their cabinets to hold all their dishes in place. With my drill press and a ruler, it didn't take long to do the job.
Meanwhile, more coats of epoxy have been layered on our rudder for Sloop to Nuts(our local boat). It's now time to varnish the top half to finish sealing the wood so it won't be affected by weather. Once this is done, bottom paint(stops marine growth) will be painted on the lower section and it will be ready to go. We're getting closer to being ready to put Sloop to Nuts in the water. I have to get the outboard up and running first.
To answer your question in comments(Karen), no we don't get much time to put our feet up.
I did some computer surfing and found a site on Craigs list in Washington state selling folding mast steps. I need 24 to get to the top and they had 22. A deal was struck and they arrived yesterday in a very heavy box. They even came with the screws to install them and that made what we paid for them that much better. While used, they look just about new and much better than the ones I already have installed on our mast. Corrosion has already taken a toll on them.
Tomorrow, one way or another, the trim job starts.
I've added another blog for you to read about. We ran into Cetus way back when we were traveling around near Friday Harbor well over a year ago. They were at anchor when we passed them and were flying an SSCA(Seven Seas Cruising Association) flag. We looked them up on the internet and made contact though we didn't get to meet them till we were much farther down the coast(Port San Luis, CA). We've bumped into each other every now and then ever since. Their blog is well worth reading as these folks have traveled all over the Pacific and even written a book as well as several articles for different sailing magazines.
While they had planned to Summer over in the Sea of Cortez, like us, plans are written in sand(or Jello) and they ended up just going home for a few months.
Give it a read. I'm sure you will enjoy it. We do.
08/07/2010, Still stuck in Aurora
As so it goes. I took a drive up to my local Lowe's to see my new trim. I'd been assured that it would be in, at latest, Thursday afternoon for delivery on Friday(did anyone see the Easter Bunny?) As expected, it wasn't there. Gee, what a surprise. How gullible did they think I was. Reorder it on Wednesday and actually expect to have it at the store the next day? Come on folks. I may not be the sharpest tool in the shed, but I can still cut butter. As expected, Jim(God bless him) was upset that he had to give the the bad news. The folks at Boise Cascade had fallen down and not shipped it. Not on Thursday and it wouldn't ship today either. No clear reason other than they had "sat" on the order. BUT, I was assured that they would have it at my local Lowe's on Monday(there goes that silly rabbit again). The folks at James Hardie(they make the trim) had sent Boise Cascade two faxes to make sure that it got sent out on Thursday but I guess they either "lost" the faxes of it just didn't fit into their shipping schedule. Either way, still no trim. So on to other projects.
I put another coat of epoxy on the rudder(for Sloop to Nuts) to seal it against the lake water to keep it from getting cracks in the mahogany. I timed it so that I got a coat on each side. One in the early morning and the second later in the afternoon. This stuff cures quick so you can't wait around. As I was smoothing it on the wood, I looked at the small cup that I mix it in and there was smoke coming from the cup!! Before I got it half poured out, it had started to harden and cure and the next time I looked in the cup, it was hard enough that I couldn't work with it any more and just dumped what was left in the trash can.
The front door of our house needed a new door sweep(rubber piece that goes on the bottom of the door). Our was pretty well shot. I checked on the internet and the company that made ours(Stanley) had been bought out(by Masonite) a few years ago. I placed some calls to local door companies and went in search of a new one(old on in hand). One of the first places I called thought they had one that would fit but they don't sell to the public so I had to go to one of the retail places and see if they had one. The map that the parent company has on their website(for the retail store) was only off by a few miles so after driving around for an hour or so(no cell phone), I stopped at a hotel(Hilton) and they were nice enough to get me good directions. Once there, the part they had wouldn't fit the door so after returning home(lunch time), I took off for the place that wouldn't sell to the public. I had nothing to loose at that time. They turned out to be a nice bunch of people and while they couldn't sell me one, they would GIVE me one!!!!! There are still nice people out there. Once home and with the door off the hinges, it fit perfectly!! Another job off the list. Now I get to go back to Lowe's and return the after market door sweep I bought earlier today. Tomorrow, more coats of epoxy on the rudder. I want to make sure it is well sealed so I don't have to worry about it again.
Tomorrow is another day.
08/05/2010, Still stuck in Aurora
I got a call from Lowe's yesterday morning. Here's the current update. Yes, the trim company screwed up the order. They are giving us 10% off. Lowe's, while not directly at fault, is giving us an additional $50.00 off and giving us free delivery.
As of now, somehow, they are telling us that they expect to have it at our Lowe's by TODAY--Thursday!!! Now the first order took a minimum of two-three weeks before we were expect it. Suddenly, we will be getting it within two days. I'll believe it when I see it!
So, we had to back out everything we have done(paperwork) and recharge it and start over. Fax the order to the trim company and then call to verify. I ended up with a good discount and a gift card for an additional $75.00 that I am still not sure where it came from. Not sure what I will spent the money on, but we still have several months to go before we head back to Zephyr.
I spent the rest of the day behind a computer getting some things straightened out watching rain fall. I did a rotisserie chicken for dinner since one of the local markets had them on sale for just .58 cents a pound. After a bit of basting and rotating on the spit, it came out just fine for a first attempt.
So today is another day. With luck, I'll get more epoxy on the rudder and get it done. At least one side of it.
More excitement to come.