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Flooring Update…Almost there..

…almost there…almost there…

..picking the stain..1 was 2 dark..the other was darker..but 1 was juuuust right. the bedroom is stained…finally! it has been a long road and I want to thank everyone involved: A*, Me, my patience and beer. OK, now that is out of the way…I did not want to leave it until the last minute as I always forget. SO, since the last update we picked a new stain, nailed the boards into the joists and stained the it seems like we did nothing when I simplify things like that..I started to nail in the pieces and made it to the second row when I split a piece of wood..after that I used a drill to pre-drill my holes at the butt problems after that. To make sure I had the lines straight I had run thread from nail/stud location to nail/stud location and it was really helpful, I did not miss a stud once when nailing the boards down..I was really impressed! When nailing down the floors I worked from the outside-in and after the second row of nails there was a big difference in the amount of movement and noise on the boards when walking on the time all 6 joists were nailed into there was no noise and the floor seemed really stable. Once the nails were all in I countersunk the nails to elimnate the potential for ripping socks/feet on the floor. As I posted before we are going for a rustic look on the floor so the nails will remain exposed..and it looks really nice in my opinion!..after the stain went on A* noted that all of the little imperfections and nail holes are not even noticable with all that is going on with the actual boards..I am really impressed with our it is:

 ..and the final product:
and for the sealing and protection!

..and the good news is that we only used 1/4 of the wood we purchased the do this we should be able to do the other bedroom and most of the living room..the bad news is that the wood has to go through the labor intensive milling process…here we go again..but NOT right away! ;)


Posted by on December 1, 2010 in Construction


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Pak-Lite Update and a Propane FRIDGE

..OK, so we are up to  216 hours now with the pak-lite..not too bad since powering it up on the 20th of November. Still another 10-12 days before it does dark..theoretically!

the other exciting news for the day..we now have a propane fridge. Its a Consul and after 2 years and 2 months in this place we finally opted for a fridge. Winter time was never really a problem..if you wanted something frozen put it outside..if you want something near frozen, put it in the cooler. In summer our fridge usually consisted of melted ice..and occasionally ice. If people were over we would get ice for drinks and beer but otherwise we just ate fresh and brought any leftovers to work..or fed it to Jango. When we were over to our friends we would look at the fridges and thier contents..and usually it was 80% condiments and things of that sort and 20% things that actually belonged in there or needed to be kept cold..leftovers, anything frozen, drinks..and we did not really miss it…but there was a good deal on the local classified ads and I had an alert for when it got posted..I was the first to call and I told him I would take it after a converstion..especially when he did not want a deposit…the fridge was at his cottage so he would not have it until this weekend..So A* went over saturday and picked it up from him.

NOw, we have to get it installed..but we have too much flooring on the go for now, not to mention the fact that we are going to have to reconfigure the kitchen area before we install it..but we have been talking about doing somethign in there for a month we will see….its been 2 years, what is a couple of more weeks/months? I am not going to lie to will be really nice to have cold beer and drinks..I have been without a fridge for so long I am having trouble thinking of what esle a fridge is good for!! Oh yes, vodka in the freezer…jello shots? I have a one track mind when it comes to fridges.

..nice..something to keep my beer cold!

..with a freezer..for ice and Grey Goose..or peas..or chickens I guess..

propane fridges look different...I can't wait to fire this up to make things cool..seems like an odd concept


Posted by on November 29, 2010 in heat, Purchases


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flooring update..3. Need to nail this one!

OK, so Friday night got home and got setup for a busy weekend. A* still had 6-7 more boards to sand so I got started attempting to fing the studs so I could properly attach the flooring. As I mentioned on some other posts, we have 2 inches of board insulation between plywood then attached to the I need 4 inch nails instead of 2 inch nails..but to find the studs I took a 6 inch nail and began guestimating the locations of the studs..the first stud I found on the second attempt, the 2nd stud I found on my 20th attempt..I eventually found out that most of the studs were 1.5 inches apart..the 2nd stud I would was 33 inches from my first..I missed the 2nd stud and was onto the 3rd..I knew that there was no way that the studs were spaced 32 inchs apart otherwise I would be falling through the I went 1/2 way between the 2 and voila..16.5..from that point on I only missed 2 more times when finding the stauds at the top and bottom of the studs..then it was a matter of running strings between the exposed nails and I knew where the studs were..and from there I could make my cuts to have the food all fit with end pieces meeting at different parts of the floor.

Then Saturday we got up early and went over and picked up our new fridge..or at least new to us..then it was back to work!

Once we go t back and I had the studs identified things went fairly quickly when comparded to the planer work..I was able to get the room done in around 5  hours..that is the cuts. So the floor only needs 3 things now:

– nails on studs
– stain ( x foo )
– polyurethane to protect

..the nailing should only take an hour or 2..then A* really takes over..I don’t have the patience for staining so A* takes care of it..we picked out 4-5 samples that we liked and brought it home and applied it to a test piece..not suprizingly we did not really like the stain that we originally liked best and opted for a really light brown ( golden oak ). I hope to get it all nailed Monday night.

On another note..these chickens are driving me bananas. the roosters are constantly crowing and onces 1 of them starts the rest of them join in..I now think I have 5 roosters in the I need to get on the butchering train..I read how to do it now its just a matter of doing it..I promise to do some and post about it once the floor is done in the bedroom! My sister and her kids were out on the weekend too..they loved the chickens. My sister did not believe that I actually had chickens..before she saw them and as she walked up the driveway she was laughing..the kids loved them..I think all kids do..especially ones who have never really seen a chicken before up close..they are fun..when they are not crowing. The rest of Sunday was spent picking away at things and better edges on the butt-ends of the boards.

Oh, also. In looking at stains and finishing  I was hearing/reading many articles where people were talking about ‘distressing’ and ‘hand scraping’ thier wood. Both of these techniques involves making the boards look older through making them scraped and tarnished..taking away a perfect piece of wood and scraping it and stuff so that scrapes are not as big of an issue so that it looks old and used..well the bad news is that ‘hand scraping’ is a long ,labor intesive task..the good news is the just the way we did our wood qualifies the wood as ‘hand scraped’ it is uneven when people ask what we did to the floor I am going to say, ” Oh, that? We had it hand scraped. We thought that distressing the wood would keep with the spirit of our place better..and would you like a cold beer from my fridge?”

after planing

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Posted by on November 28, 2010 in Construction, power


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Bought a pak-lite..

.the pak-lite..avert your eyes..AHHHHH! 2 settings..high for 60 hours, low for eternity setting


I read some blogs and a couple of times I read someone mentioning them..they are basically a little light that snaps onto a 9v battery..and supposedly with a 9v battery it will stay on for 600 hours. So I turned mine on at November 21 at 5:11PM. My a base estimate it should last at least 3 weeks. I pointed it at the crescent window we have in the us some light when we get home in the dark thanks to daylight savings time, plus from outside it looks like the glow of a TV reflected on the window..a slight theft deterrent.


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Posted by on November 26, 2010 in Construction, fun


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Flooring Pics ( from sawmill to flooring..ish )

think rustic….out of sync with the writeups..busy doing the stuff in these pictures..think I need to do another one too. We still have lots more to do..tomorrow I finish determining stud location and begin attaching the floor..I bought screws but I think its going to look screwy.

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Posted by on November 26, 2010 in Construction


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I need to raise rabbits!

..did not do any work last night..stayed at my sisters place again and took a night off in the city.

A* and I went out to dinner at a local restaurant 100m from my sisters place. It is a nice lace that has a seasonal menu and a couple of things caught my eye..the first was an appetizer, Beef Cheeks. The second was a rabbit dish. I had both.

The beef cheeks were like roast beef only basically falling apart because it was so tender. tasty. The rabbit was really good too, lean and tasted like chicken..I have had rabbit 4-5 times before but it was usually served in a  pie. both were good, a nice server and a couple good bottles of wine…we did not have to drive for a change.

Over dinner A* and I talked about the city and country and the differences..I told her that I was having trouble sleeping with all the noise in the city. We can hear some traffic at night from our house..but the road is 1KM away so its not really loud, just seems it because its so quiet out there. We do stay in the city sometimes..but its usually when we have had some drinks and opt to stay rather than drive..and its usually planned anyway since we do not leave Jango home overnight, but when we have drinks I sleep like a rock so its not usually an issue. Anyway, we finished our pleasant dinner with a glass of port and went back to my sisters place to make and drink cappicino and sit in the hot tub..quite a difference from our place..especially a year and a half ago when we had no hot the early days we would have to boil water on the stove when we wanted hot water..and a bath was a 2 hour affair..where A* would get it going and I would continually replenish the heat with water on the stove. Anyway, its been a great 2-3 day vacation from our reality of being off-grid but I would not trade what we have to move back to city-life.

Oh, I need to raise rabbits so I can eat is supposed to be easier then raising chickens…but then again I have enough projects on the go as it is. Plus I am not sure I could kill a bunny. Back to work tonight..hopefully get the wood all done for the bedroom.

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Posted by on November 25, 2010 in Construction


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Flooring Update – sanding and waiting

..OK, so we came out tonight to do the sanding and remaining planering..or planing…to do the rest of the work on the planer…OK. So, after I posted last the other night A* came home..she got home from dinner with my mom and J* in the city while I stayed home for the day and did the planering..WHATEVER..worked on the planer. SO, I write the post and publish it and am relaxing on the couch while the advil kick in when A* gets home. She is an a tizzy because we need snow tires on the car and she wants it done ‘tonight’.

Me: “Tonight? I just spent the day bent over a planer..there is no way I am doing it back is killing me. When is it supposed to snow?”
A*: “What? When were you outside last?”
Me: “An hour ago or back is killing me”
A*” there is 3-4cm down on the ground now”
Me: “Blurg”

Yes, so the snow fell minutes after I came was cold but not really cold all day but we got the first snow on MOnday..We took the truck into the city and stayed at my sisters place since she is away..we had planned to do this anyway since there is woodchips all over the place from me and the dogs going in and out…the only difference was using the truck instead of the car.

Anyway, so we go out and the plan is for A* to sand while I plane the remainder of the wood for the we get out there, I get a fire going and change the water in the coop which has frozen up..we spend time getting the planer set up and go over the belt sander instructions ( we just bought it and I usually insist upon reading all of the instructions) and are ready to go..then we go outside and it has started to pour. blurg. the plan changes immediately..A* does the sanding and I sulk..then go investigate under the house for the girder distances so we can attach the flooring to the joists. Our floor is a little was built like a regular floor then they put down a sheet of 1.5 inch styrofoam for extra insulation..makes finding the joists nearly impossible. So I clean the house and do odd odd chore was to try to sing like a winter bat outside after I had climbed a maple tree. mmm..odd. I could not really start using the planer for 2 reasons..there was no space to plane and sand at the same time and the potential flooring is stored under tarps in the front yard..and I don’t like exposing the wood when it can get wet.

So, A* starts sanding..starting with the 80 and moving to 120 grit. After 2 hours she is done. As she finishes the boards up I take them inside and try to find the best configuration..all of the boards are different widths so the randomness looks nice. When it was all said and done we got all of the rough spots out and the boards have a more uniform look to them…but as I mentioned I still need to plane more wood to finish…then sand. Then comes the actual fastening of the wood to the existing floor…then the oil..then the coating..blurg…2 steps forward, 1 floor back.

Once again, no pictures..I will post up a bunch tonight/tomorrow and post in tomorrow with the work in progess..I am sure I am keeping the 2 people who read this in suspense!

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Posted by on November 24, 2010 in Construction


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