The past two weekends, we’ve turned our attention to putting up the tongue and groove walls on the first floor of the cabin. It’s been great fun to see the rooms finally take shape! Max even joined us on Father’s Day and pitched in…what better time for such a father/son activity as Dave passing on his vast knowledge of construction and the use of power tools to his son?!
the entrance way
first order of business… it’s hot and humid in here so we throw together a make-shift air conditioner with a bag of ice and a fan
up goes the entrance way wall
entrance wall up- the door on the left is the half bath and the one on the right is the laundry room
Dave trims out the corner outside of the half bath
first corner done!
entrance way walls both up, but we still need to come back and do the trim work
the living room
from the entrance way, we move on to the wall in front of the basement stairs
next, we build the wall to the left of the fireplace
monkey Dave gets creative as he moves up along the wall
and, we have our first two story wall
another view of the completed living room wall as viewed from the loft area
this wall also serves to close in the master bedroom as well as the guest room above
next, we put up the wall over the breakfast room
this wall also begins to close in the kid’s room
the master bedroom and bath
in which Max comes along to lend us a hand…
Max and Dave start the day by carrying more tongue and groove into the cabin
only a few more stacks and we can get started
we start with the wall between the living room and master bedroom
first section of the wall done
we’ve decided to put little treasures in the walls as we close them up, for future generations to find, should they ever open up the walls…in this wall, a little note and a couple of coins dated 2013 (the year construction began)
Safe and Sound insulation goes in between the studs before we put up the tongue and groove
our message is now hidden under the insulation
the wall now complete, our first little treasure is sealed in for who knows how long!
not wanting Dave to have all the fun, I take over while he heads outside to work on the security lights
working my way up the wall between the bedroom and master bathroom, I use the staple gun to attach the t&g to the studs
second wall, done, closing in the master bathroom on the left and the closet on the right
meanwhile, Dave puts up security lights on the front porch
he places one on each corner of the front porch
back inside, Dave shows Max how to use the miter saw
measuring the first board
Max successful cuts his first
piece of t&g
Max and Dave work together to built the wall between the master bath and closet
Max pauses to put his John Hancock inside the wall
another fun find for future generations!
next lesson, Dave teaches Max how to measure and cut out a hole in the tongue & groove for the wall outlet
after drawing out the rectangle, with Dave’s help, Max drills holes in each corner
next he uses the jig saw to cut out the rectangle
Dave guides Max along the first cut
Max then takes over and finishes on his own
having successfully cut an opening for the outlet, Max then slides the section of t&g in place
using the rubber mallet, he taps the board in place
switching to the staple gun, he attaches the t&g to the studs behind
one more wall complete
looking back into the bathroom you can just see the completed wall…our vanity and sink will eventually go against this wall
back inside the bathroom, we begin lining the shower stall with Durock
Max steps in to place a few screws into the Durock
having tired of construction work, Max takes over my camera while I step in to help Dave with the shower stall
shower stall is now ready for tile or slate or whatever we finally decide upon!
commode walls finished as well
apparently having screen time withdrawal, Max returns to his spot to the kitchen where his phone and iPad have been waiting
yes Max, I am taking pictures of you texting your girlfriend…and, I’m also putting them on the blog…bwahahahaha
first couple of boards in place
we place more Safe and Sound between the back wall of the shower stall and the stairwell wall
the steps all have to be removed and cut smaller in order to allow room for the tongue and groove to fit between the stairs and the existing studs
Dave removes the log screws that hold in the steps
we decide to just pull up two steps at a time as we work our way up the stairwell
as we place the t&g along the wall, I reattach the newly shortened steps
and, we have stairwell walls!
we still have to come back and trim out the corners, but the walls are done
looking up the stairs at the completed walls
the laundry room
we start with the far wall, between the kitchen and the laundry room, where the washer and dryer will go
ready for the switch plate covers!
moving on to the wall between the laundry room and half bath… the ventpipe for the bathroom fan runs down through this wall
my turn to sign the wall!
second wall up
now for the task of closing in the HVAC box
we place more Safe and Sound to try to lesson the noise of the bathroom pipes that run from the upstairs bathroom and down into the basement
a little time consuming, but we successfully close it all in!
and, once again, except for the corner trim, another room is comlete!
As a child growing up in Africa, my family and I spent many a vacation roughing it, while out on safari, with no bathroom facilities aside from the great out doors. If not camping, we were traveling to other destinations in the third world where toilets were not quite the modern facilities we were accustomed to at home. As a result, I can pretty much use anything available to me when necessary, but I gotta tell you, I am completely thrilled to finally have a working, indoor toilet at the cabin!
our restroom facilities for the first six months coudln’t get any more primitive!
moving up in the world…Max helps put up the potty tent
after having had the potty tent for a few weeks, Dave, ever the idea man, fashions a toilet out of a bottomless drywall bucket to which he has glued a toilet seat
me, checking out our awesome new toilet
with construction about to start, we are required to have a Port-a-John delivered
Dave steps in to help level the Port-a-John
much tired of putting up and taking down the potty tent every time we visit, I’m super excited about this step up in our toilet facilities!
with the outside construction complete, we move to the inside of the cabin…first on the agenda is to put in a working bathroom
tongue and groove walls begin to go up
two walls done!
both inner and outer walls are up, with a layer of Safe and Sound insulation between
Dave begins constructing a vanity top for the sink
legs are fashioned out of logs from our property
next, the faucet is put in place
for the sink, Dave drills a hole in the bottom of a galvanized bucket and applies a bead of caulk to the underside for added waterproofing
the completed sink and vanity are ready to be installed
next, Dave puts in the overhead light
toilet and sink are connected to the existing plumbing
we have running water!!!!
our new deer antler light and working toilet and sink!
and for privacy, a temporary ply wood door
And for your viewing pleasure, so that you can get the full effect…
With the outside staining finally complete, we have now moved our attention to the inside of the cabin. First on the agenda was to have insulation sprayed on all the outer walls of the second floor and any other areas that may be in need of protection against drafts. After getting a few quotes, Dave ended up choosing to go with the team from Creative Conservation as they were reasonably priced and were completely upfront about what they thought we would need without over selling. We were very happy with the choice and would definitely use them again should we ever need to.
The crew arrived to find the work sight covered in a giant bed of sticky red mud. It had been raining the evening before and on into the morning so, in an effort to prevent tracking the mud into the cabin, they laid down a path of plastic from the truck to the front door. A hose was then lain on top of the plastic path, and on into the cabin. Tanks inside the truck contained two different chemical solutions that were mixed together and then transported through the hose and into guns that the men used to shoot the liquid insulation onto the walls. The solution, once it has left the gun, immediatly expands and begins to harden, creating a solid layer of insulation as well as an air tight seal.
the team from Creative Conservation arrives
a path of plastic is lain from the truck to the cabin in an effort to keep the red mud from being tracked into the cabin
the inside is covered in plastic
everything is covered…
plastic on the stairs….
plastic on the stair-rails and guest bath
even the ceiling gets a sheet of plastic
and now the spraying begins
okay, this just looks fun…I want this job!
Max’s bedroom, done
it looks so much lighter in here with insulation on the walls
we are now ready for the tongue and groove walls!
Our two pallets of tongue and groove arrived the same day and, thankfully, Todd Hawkes was on hand to pull them off the truck for us. The task of figuring out how much we will need to finish off all the walls in the cabin had been left to me…I’m a little nervous about that and really hope my calculations were correct because that’s alot of tongue and groove!
Outer first floor logs, dormers and deck rails all stained, we could no longer put off staining the upper portions of the cabin. After giving it much thought, Dave finally decided that the best way to tackle this daunting task was to rent a Skyjack lift with an articulating arm that would enable him to reach the higher areas of the cabin. We arranged for one to be delivered by Reliable Rentals in Dinwiddie over Memorial Day weekend and drove down early that Saturday to get started. Dave’s goal was to have the outside work done by the end of the weekend so that as the weather begins to get hotter, we can move our attentions to the inside. When we arrived Saturday morning, we found the lift had been delivered as promised and Dave went about trying to figure out how to use it. It all started out fairly well but, unfortunately, the day did not quite go as planned…
looks like a fun toy, right?
hmmmm….there are ALOT of buttons on this panel
okay, so far so good, but what’s with all the crazy beeping?!
Because of the position of the septic tank, the Skyjack had to be driven farther out away from the house (so as not to crush the tanks), where the side of the property slopes downward. The newly regraded soil is still relatively soft here and as a result, as soon as the arm swung out far enough to reach the house, the right front wheel sunk into the loose dirt, throwing the vehicle off balance and left rear wheel began to raise off the ground, tipping the Skyjack to the right. (Ah-ha, that’s what all that extra beeping was about!) Once it’s off balance, Dave discovered, the wheels won’t move forward or backward and it took some effort to figure out how to rebalance the basket inorder to release the wheels so that he could drive it back up onto flat ground. After much frustration, Dave realized that there was no way he could get the vehicle base on a flat area close enough to the cabin that would enable him to lift the basket into a position that would allow him to stain that side of the cabin. Much discouraged, he gave up, thinking we’d just thrown $900 down the drain and would have to hire someone else to finish the staining after all.
Unable to do the staining as planned, but not wanting the day to be a total waste, we moved inside and began to put up wall in the kitchen.
putting up the tongue and groove wall between the kitchen and laundry room
Dave cuts out and area in the t & g for the electrical outlet
Dave taps the end board to set it inplace before hitting it with the nail gun
moving right along…
it’s starting to look like a cozy room here!
stripping down a narrow piece of t & g to fill the gap between the ceiling and wall
Dave uses a chisel to remove the upper grooves so the narrow board will slip in place
in goes the last strip of board
After finishing the kitchen wall, we called it a day and drove back home.
We returned Sunday morning, and, as Dave had reconsidered his decision to call someone else to finish the staining, he went ahead and gave the Skyjack another shot. I had suggested, the previous day, that he try driving it around to the other side of the cabin, via Colemans Lake Rd, and up the old road where the ground would be harder and more level. Apparently he had mulled the idea over the evening before and decided to give it a try.
okay, let’s try this again….
okay, forward…that’s a good start
after a brief stall in the middle of the road, Dave is back in business
now to avoid ending up in the lake
so far, so good
I think he’s getting the hang of it
now to avoid hitting the cabin…
yes, he made it!
It took awhile, and other than a brief stall in the middle of Colemans Lake Road where he caused a slight traffic hold up, he was able to successfully make it around to the back of the cabin and on to firmer ground. (Yay, Dave, we believed in you all along!!!) And, thanks to the video feature on my new camera, I have it all on video. I’ve tried to cut it down to a reasonable viewing length…
Successfully making around to the other side of the property, Dave dons his Amish hat and goes about staining the cabin. Nice look Jebediah, but at least your neck and face won’t get burned I guess. 😛
all done except for the deck posts
surely Charlotte is happy with her newly stained web
c’est finis (except for the stone which will eventually cover the foundation, but that will be waaaay down the road)
and last but not least, the front stairs
staining finally done, it’s time to drive back around to the front
the daylight is just starting to fade as we drive the Skyjack back around to the front of the cabin
successfully making it past the lake and dam, Dave hands over the controls …yep it IS kinda fun!
the drive around to the front was a breeze since Dave is now a Skyjack pro 😉
awesome view of the cabin from up here!
a little grubby after the long day but hugely relieved to FINALLY have the staining done!