Tuesday, May 25, 2010

house renovation - interior work

I've been putting in more time because in June my friend is supposed to move in for a few weeks. I promised him a summer sublet. So I better have one with walls ready.

After the electricians came and finally upgraded the wiring in the room (ie make it not likely to explode into flames at any second) my task was to insulate. I bought R13 insulation, which is the thickest you can do with 2x3 studs, and took a few days to cover the exterior wall. Since I took down the ceiling and there are only studs spanning the ceiling, which is shared between all the houses on the row, it would be necessary to insulate the top part of my room as well.

Here are pictures of the room after complete gutting and cleaning. It looks quite spacious. This was progress as of May 4.

The cleaned up room with old electric wiring still hanging down.

The studs left across the ceilings after everything - slathes, plaster, junk, was removed.

Entryway to the room. Chimney has some water damage.

This past weekend, Alicia, Christine, Jose, and CWilli have come over to help me out with some of the work. Together we put up a lot of drywall, and designed and built the closet partition. The hardest part of drywalling is cutting everything to fit correctly when the house is crooked and not exact. Also, after a few hours of drywalling, we went a little crazy and stopped functioning and measuring correctly.

Insulated ceiling and recessed light fixture. It's a pain to cut drywall to fit the fixture but will look really good.

Jose measuring dimensions for drywall. He doesn't really need the ladder to reach the top.

Alicia measuring and cutting drywall. Her specialty was the measurement, at least until we became too tired.

Building a closet partition is pretty simple. I just decided to take the whole space where the old room extended into an irregular shape, tear out the old tiny closet, and wall it off to make a huge walk in closet. There was a lot of tearing down - removing posts, walls, flooring, shelves, but once it was done, and there was just open plywood floor and walls, the job seemed much easier. Basically, we build a frame for the whole wall, then an interior frame for the door, and make sure that there are studs holding up the door. Luckily it fits into the space.

Christine and CWilli installing drywall in the closet ceiling.

Christine, with a closeup of the hole cut for the closet light.

The closet partition in place, with doors unattached.

As of may 24, I have almost the whole place drywalled (with the exception of the ceiling). Apparently I will need two layers of drywall on either side of the house to provide fire proofing protection as well as sound insulation. Which is good because we patched the sides alot. For the future, it is best to fit as large of a piece of drywall as possible. This could mean not actually using the whole 4x8 piece, because the remaining piece, less than 8' long, could be left with no stud at one end. There are a lot of other problems that will have to be fixed cosmetically.

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