An ongoing blog following a young married couple as they renovate their railroad apartment in Brooklyn, New York and a crazy falling down farmhouse up in the Catskills. Both husband and wife work full-time jobs each day, so almost all of their projects will be squeezed into any free second each night and every weekend. Hence the name: After-Dinner Design, though come to think of it, maybe we should change it to "So Tired Design"...)
Tuesday, February 7, 2012
Back to work at Fox Ridge!
Bathroom Floor: BEFORE
This past weekend, John and his dad Michael were tackling PART I of a three-part bathroom renovation project up at Fox Ridge. The downside to working on the house upstate is that we really only have 48 hours for each project before we have to head back into the city for another week of work, so when we're working on something big, like we are for the next couple of weekends, it unfortunately has to be broken up into several phases of implementation. Then, take into account that we end up devoting the better part of Saturday to running errands to pick up supplies and materials, and you're really looking at about 10 hours to get anything done. At that rate, it could turn into a four part venture.
The plan is to install a new 1" glossy white hexagonal tile floor into the bathroom in the country, but of course, there are A LOT of steps to doing that right.
Bathroom Floor: Sans Molding
First, John and Michael popped out the existing floor moldings and the toilet, so they could be reinstalled above the new tile once its in. I'm not sure anything has ever been "popped out" in an old house like ours, but after a couple of hours, the moldings and toilet were no longer in the bathroom, and neither fella wanted to talk details, so I decided to leave it at that. Then they have to install a 1/4" Hardi-backer board on top of the existing not-so-level pine flooring, which they install with a layer of thin-set to level out the hardi-backer board over those uneven floor boards. This entails a lot of precise measuring, a good deal of cutting, and then some more measuring and cutting. The good thing about the hardi-board is that at 1/4" thick, it's really easy to cut. The bad thing about our bathroom is that is was evidently built by a one-handed, one-eyed carpenter, and there isn't a right angle to be found in there, so it required a lot of measuring and cutting.
Things might be moving slowly, but they're are moving along great!
***Right about now is when I walked through the kitchen and heard a "DRIP!" land in a bucket sitting on the floor. Keep in mind, this bucket was coincidently sitting on the floor, and was definitely not there to catch anything, since nothing was meant to be "DRIPPING". I walked over, curious about the source of the drip sound, and said in my least irritating-wife-who-isn't-helping voice, "Hey guys! Is something meant to be dripping? Because something is definitely dripping." There was about an inch of water already sitting in this perfectly positioned bucket. "Hmmmm....", I heard from the bathroom above. A few seconds later, I heard some even less reassuring sounds. Michael swearing. Something along the lines of "Sh--t, sh---t, sh---t." : )
Surprise hole in our kitchen ceiling...
It turns out that when John and Michael were removing the toilet, the old pipe that connected the water source to the valve broke right off, probably due to years and years of corrosion. Unfortunately, it broke right off IN THE FLOOR, which meant that we had to cut a hole in the kitchen ceiling to access the pipe. Oy. After some debate, it was determined that a professional plumber was the man best suited to fix this problem, so we turned off the water, called the plumber, and now we're patiently waiting until next weekend to get our precisely cut hardi-backer board installed in the bathroom.
I think I spoke too soon when I said this was going to be a 4-Part Project. Oy.
*When looking at the before-and-after photos of our bathroom floor, you might be wondering why I was so insistent on tiling the floor at all. I know it was a pretty color and everybody's a fan of a painted wood floor, but it was misleading... If anyone was taking a shower or bath, they had to be ultra-vigilant not to splash or let water escape from the shower because it would seep right through the wood floor boards and through to the kitchen ceiling. I know because this happened on more than one occasion. The thought of a life-time of hysterical bath mat placement just seemed daunting, and now seemed like as good of a time as any to put an end to that prospect.