Disclaimer: we aren't professionals

Thanks for reading our silly little blog! As the disclaimer says, we aren't professionals in either blogging or house stuff, but we try. This is mostly to let our friends and family know what we've destroyed so far in the house. We post irregularly and usually forget to take pictures, so thanks for your patience, and please feel free to comment with your thoughts and suggestions!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Master Bath Renovation Part 2

Part two of the master bath renovation covers some of the joist repair and details on cast iron plumbing removal.

Dad is standing on a pair of the joists after repair. We cut back the rotted sections much like the repair work we did in the bedroom corner. After cutting the rotted sections out, we installed a new section of band (the 2x8s perpendicular to the joists) and then scabbed 2x8s onto the replacement 2x8 joists.

I think this was a photo of how we braced the joists under the house prior to cutting off the rotted ends. We didn't have to support the trusses like we did in the corner repair because of better wall support along the side as opposed to the corner.

Here is a better shot of the joist repair work. Notice that we still have to cut out the rotted joist section being supported by that dinky red jack support.

Here is a closer shot of the band replacement. We still haven't put the stud plate back down yet. You have to be pretty skillful with the saws-all in order to cut the old band out without bending the blade on the brick. Dad is getting lots of practice with that.

Here is a shot of the 4" cast iron vent pipe as we were breaking it down to the connection with primary drain line. We started by breaking out a section near the ceiling and I pulled that section out via the roof.

Here is a shot of the cast iron breaker. It is basically a large set of scissor jaws that collapse using a jack screw. You wrap the chain around the pipe and hook it into the other side of the jaws. The chain has little discs in each link that contact the pipe with a very narrow pressure concentration. When you winch the jack screw with the large leverage handle, it collapses the jaws and breaks the chain in a surprisingly clean break. Easy to use after you get the hang of it. Just don't tighten the scissors jaws passed the limit, otherwise you have to take the entire thing apart...

I didn't get many shots of further joist repair, so the this shot jumps ahead to the point where dad installed the replacement window stud framework with the wall stud plate at the base. There is also a new piece of the vapor barrier board replacing the damaged one.

I've always found this to be a cool way of making large notches. All you need is a circular saw and a hammer.

This notch was made to allow for the tub drain which happened to be centered over the joist.

Master Bath Renovation Part 1

This first part of a series of master bath renovation posts is mostly concerned with demolition. We started out by tearing out the vanity and wall on the other side of the wall seen on the left, as shown in an earlier post. Dad and I started out this demo by getting an idea of what we needed so that he would be prepared when he returned in November. He smashed the faucet wall with a sledge hammer.

We took turns with the sledge hammer to break the cast iron tub in half. I think it weighed 350~400 lbs, so separation into two pieces was definitely a necessity for carrying the tub out.

Here is a picture of the other side of the wall for a reminder of the drain and electrical layout. These two separate spaces had originally consisted of two individual rooms, a small bathroom like my second bath and a laundry room. They blocked off the laundry room door to the hallway and added a doorway to the "master bedroom". The also knocked out some of the wall to make the bathroom larger. The layout was still horrible. It was the 70s/80s... I'll forgive them.

Here is a shot of the toilet wax ring, cast flange and an example of the fact that they poured an inch or more thick of cement to set the tile. Oh yeah, they also bound it to a wire mesh. It was a pain in the *&@ to remove. Sorry for the less than desirable image.

Here is a better shot of how they did tile during that time period. They did a beautiful job with the tile, it just wasn't quite my style...
Well, that wasn't the only reason that I removed it. Some brilliant person decided it would be a good idea to put a window in the shower... Well, years of silicone caulk neglect and water damage down the wall, you tend to reap some consequences. Observe.
Another shot of the ruined floor, the elaborate cast work (cast iron must have been a really bad word to plumbers back then) and the fact the pulling the tile was a lot of work.
Jumping ahead to a week or two later (and a bucket of sweat), I started to remove the window, rotted wall studs and window framing that was damaged. I ordered a standard window size (3/0 x 3/0, picture frame, obscured, vinyl, etc.) with the specification that it was new construction. The nailing fin will be secured to the new window framing studs when we put those up. Oh yeah, I found out that it is important to make sure the window has tempered glass. If someone slips and face-plants through the window, you don't want nasty shards to pay tribute to French execution practices. Also, I *heart* my shop vacuum. It has been awesome!

Out side view with the window and brick mold removed. That black edge that you see is the vapor barrier. The studs lined up behind that. I will have to add more studs to the window frame, meaning that the brick molding/trim will have to be larger to make the transition from the window to the brick.

The next shot is after the damaged studs and molded vapor barrier were removed.

Annie was doing her part by removing those cursed drywall nails. Again, I am glad we have become more civilized and use sheet rock screws.

After removing the window, rotted studs and drywall, the next step was to move on to the damaged flooring. We were going to have to do some joist repair. It didn't take me long to find out the extent of the damage. My dad and I are becoming pros at this joist repair business.

More of the floor being removed. Notice the red jack holding up one of the rotted-through joists.

Here is a close up of the damaged plate, band and stud plate. More Sawz-all magic!
First pass with the Sawz-all claimed the stud plate.

Part two will be uploaded soon with more demolition and the beginning of the new bathroom! Sorry for not posting lately. I hope everyone is doing well. Stay warm =)