Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Lisa's creative use of 'reclaimed wood"

Lisa has used reclaimed wood in many areas of our house. It is all cedar which came from broken parts of our fence.

You can see here it is used to make a hook-rack above the sofa:

As well as a headboard for our bed:

In a somewhat unrelated point, here is the light Lisa picked out and I installed for our 5th wedding anniversary:

Summer of 2014: swamp Cooler

I installed this swamp cooler this summer, with the help of dear old Dad.

Getting it up to the roof was not as bad as one might think. I recommend using your school bus to get the heavy bits up there... you can see that we used a couple ladders to get it up to the roof of the bus, and then a small wooden "bridge" to get it across to the roof. It was mostly disassembled at the time, but still weighed a good 80 pounds or so.

Use several ladders to get your swamp cooler up to the hood of your bus, then up to the roof of the bus.

Construct a small wooden bridge to get the swamp cooler (and your father) from school bus roof to house roof.

One other difficult part of this process was that, due to vent pipes all in the middle of our roof, I had to mount the cooler way on the end of the house. We didn't want the cooler to suck in the toilet fumes, for obvious reasons.  The duct provided with the kit was only about 10 feet, and I couldn't get an extension without purchasing a whole second kit, and I wanted the internal register to be close to the center of the house. To solve this problem, I constructed a large 18" x 4 foot duct from some smaller duct parts which are readily available at home depot. After covering all the seems with aluminum duct tape, it worked great.

This large duct is made from attaching two smaller ones together and using sheet metal screws to hold them at the seems. Also some thin wood is added on the inside to help it maintain its round shape. It works great as an extension to the the 10 foot duct provided with the cooler. Plenty of aluminum tape all around the seams made it air tight.

Of course there was a bunch of electrical and plumbing work that went along with this installation, but I really wasn't in the mood to take pictures while sweating away in the 120 degree attic, or when crawling around in the muddy crawl space attaching a new hose bib.
Here is the finished product!

Summer of 2014: Vegatable Garden, Fire PIT, Compost Bin, Play House!

The summer of 2014 saw many improvements to our back yard. Among them were this vegetable garden Lisa designed and created, surrounding it with the free mulch we got from our tree man. She directed me on where to build several flower beds and a cedar compost bin.

Vegetable Garden

Compost bin

She also improved on the fire pit, making it square and larger.

Finally, we constructed and painted this playhouse for the girls, complete with slide, from some leftover lumber: