Wednesday 22 February 2012

Making A Window

For the wet room job I've got on at the moment I've got to make small window to replace the current one.
Today I had the day at home to make this and did some "alfresco" joinery between showers. I dimensioned the timber the other day using my little planner thickness so this morning I set about rebating all the stock. This isn't as easy as normal as I have no spindle moulder nor router table so in the end I routed it out using the router handheld, moving the clamps on each pass, and adjusting the depth of cut on each one also - a slow job!
Then using an old kitchen table I found in one of the sheds as a workbench, I set about marking out each joint before fighting my way inside the container to use the mortiser and bandsaw. It was worth the fight though as it saved no end of time, the joints are quite simple mortise and tenon, just with the tenon stepped to account for the rebate. Clamping up on the floor of the container was a little awkward but its made the two frames rock solid. I haven't got enough space to do them both at the same time so they took it in turns!
I had to finish the final mouldings round the outside of the frames by halogen site lights (in light rain) so I could get them finished tonight. The neighbours must wonder who lives next door!
The window is now sat on the dinning room table with the paint drying - I'm not sure who misses my workshop more - me or my wife!
More on this window when I order the glass and get it fitted.

Sunday 19 February 2012

Tree Work On The Smallholding

I'm not sure this is how everyone spends their Sunday but I enjoyed it!

I managed to rope my poor old Brother into helping me yet again this weekend. I have a few trees on our smallholding that want some work doing to them. The first hadn't got its roots on our land but it was overhanging the footpath, it was blocking out a lot of light and was going to make access difficult when I get a tractor up here, so using my brothers special set of skills we managed to get the tree looking a little better.

I love watching him climb and he always makes it look easy, leaving the tree exactly how I wanted it.

The top gate is now a bit lighter and the views even better for Daves hard work.

The second bit of work I got him to do was to drop a poorly growing oak tree that had been strangled by ivy. It was under the canopy of a much grander oak so would never really do any good and i wanted it removed before I put my pig pen down in that corner!

Dave dropped it no problem and helped to dismantle it, now I've just got a lot of clearing up to do and firewood to cut in the evenings. I've planted 17 other trees this last week so I'm not feeling too guilty about getting rid of this one.

(Dave cut the tree high as it was full of wire - someone in the past had used it as a fence post) This lot should help keep us warm next winter (and no doubt I'll get pretty warm cutting and splitting it) and there's no doubt that the neigbours know I've moved in now!

Cheers for your help Bro

Wednesday 15 February 2012

New Work Area

Today I had to plane some timber to the correct size for a little project I'm making.

In the old days that would involve going up the garden to my old workshop, cranking up the radio (and heater) and planning away. Now it involves fighting my way to the back of the container, pulling the planner to the front, rolling out an extension cable and doing all the work in the door way so I can see what I'm doing! I'm not complaining, but it does make me want to start to build my new workshop even sooner!Really glad all my machines are on rolling stands, with the smooth wooden floor of the container it makes them easy to drag to the front and then drag back again when I'm finished with them.

I'm also looking forward to building a chicken coop soon so I can get some chickens again - I've already got their first lot of bedding!

Saturday 11 February 2012

Wet room Part 1

I started my wet room job properly this week. Its surprising how much work there is in such a little room. First off I had to strip out the old toilet and shower then remove all the tiles and plasterboard.

Not only had the root damaged the bottom of the boards and broke through the grout, this then allowed the water to travel up the plasterboard making it very weak. The picture above shows how bad its gotten. All the waste got skipped off site giving me a (unlevel) blank canvas to start afresh.

I removed the roots then repointed the wall where it had done any damage. I then started the slow process of battening the walls out to take the plywood. Slow because I want it to be perfectly level to enable easier tiling and so it looks right, the battens before were just fixed straight to the out of level walls and tiles cut to suit which doesn't always look the best.

I did cheat and use plastic spacers which save loads of time (although it's sometimes easier to use folding wooden wedges if you've got the saw set up to make a batch). The plastic ones are useful though as you can increase or decrease the spacing by 1mm just by changing the packer rather than knocking wedges all over the place.

With the external walls insulated its ready to have ply fitted next week and then I can tank it out to make sure its waterproof before I lay a single tile. I've also got to make a new little window for the room so that should be a nice job for a sunny day next week.

Saturday 4 February 2012

Snow Stops Play

Well mine anyway! A list of jobs to be getting on with but its snowing quite heavily and making the place look like a postcard - but one I can't do any work in!

The container is a great place to store my tools but its not as inviting as my old workshop when the weathers bad outside, that said I'm starting to draw up plans for my new workshop/store and where it will go so pretty excited about that - it will be bigger than the last one.

Work this week was varied again and on Wednesday/Thursday I had to expose and inspect some footing on a job I've got on for the next few weeks. When I dug down I found the most beautiful example of masonry footings I've ever seen and the bricks didn't even have a blemish on them. The old boys who built the house I'm working on knew their stuff.

As well as this I've got to completely gut a wet room and then board it out, tank it and tile it. Looking forward to seeing the whole job from start to finish as its been a while since I've done any tiling and it can be quite an enjoyable job.

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