Category Archives: trim

Talk and walk the week

9 a.m. Monday morning to talk and walk the week ahead.

Ron Dahlke from Ranserve, left, and Mauricio from Gilsa, right, recovering from his heart attack, meet Steven to plan the concrete pour for the garage foundation. We're aiming for Thursday, depending on city inspections of forms and steelwork. In front of the house, we plan the pavers that will replace part of the walk to the patio, and the landing in front of the porch. The cardboard on the ground approximates the location and size of the landing. The pavers will extend around the front of the house to the site of the former kitchen deck, which Gilsa has removed via Bobcat. Gilsa will now regrade the ex-deck to ensure water flows away from the side door off the kitchen. And ... Gilsa will also regrade behind the garage and enlarge the concrete slab to be used for the HVAC condenser. All this will be consequential toward finishing the house.
Ron Dahlke from Ranserve, left, and Mauricio from Gilsa, right, recovering from his heart attack, meet Steven to plan the concrete pour for the garage foundation. We’re aiming for Thursday, depending on city inspections of forms and steelwork. In front of the house, we plan the pavers that will replace part of the walk to the patio, and the landing in front of the porch. The cardboard on the ground approximates the location and size of the landing. The pavers will extend around the front of the house to the site of the former kitchen deck, which Gilsa has removed via Bobcat. Gilsa will now regrade the ex-deck to ensure water flows away from the side door off the kitchen. And … Gilsa will also regrade behind the garage and enlarge the concrete slab to be used for the HVAC condenser. All this will be consequential toward finishing the house.

Above, an army of 10 painters is sanding down the walls and trim, and taping more protective paper over the stairs and floors, preparing the interior of the house for final painting.

Over the weekend, Aaron from Central Texas Custom Cabinets installed the final box -- the small cabinet at the top of the pantry at left of the side kitchen door.
Over the weekend, Aaron from Central Texas Custom Cabinets installed the final box — the small cabinet at the top of the pantry at left of the side kitchen door.
Chris from Central Texas Custom Cabinets scribes the "skiin" panel that will finish off the end of this run of cabinets at the oven and microwave wall.
Chris from Central Texas Custom Cabinets scribes the “skin” panel that will finish off the end of this run of cabinets at the oven and microwave wall.
The skin that finishes the run of cabinets on the refrigerator wall.
The skin that finishes the run of cabinets on the refrigerator wall.
Upstairs in bath 3, Cris from Ranserve is rebuilding the drain line to ensure that the emergency cleanout is 8 inches off the floor. That elevation ensures we don't have to cut up the vanity to get access to the cleanout. Cris will repeat this surgery in the master bath, upstairs, and in bath 2, downstairs. After which, he will patch the drywall, then turn the wall over to the painters for sanding, priming, painting -- at which point he will finally be able to install the vanities.
Upstairs in bath 3, Cris from Ranserve, supervised by his shadow, is rebuilding the drain line to ensure that the emergency cleanout is 8 inches off the floor. That elevation ensures we don’t have to cut up the vanity to get access to the cleanout. Cris will repeat this surgery in the master bath, upstairs, and in bath 2, downstairs. After which, he will patch the drywall, then turn the wall over to the painters for sanding, priming, painting — at which point he will finally be able to install the vanities.
Share. Link. Like.

Notes, 12 Nov. 2015

Above, Peter installs the casing around a passage that does not get a door — at the passage from the entry hall into the dining room/library. Beyond, in the entry, Shane installs window trim and baseboard. 

  • Ranserve submitted Draw #5 for payment.
  • Brett Grinkmeyer, architect, visited Emerald Hill today with his copy of Draw #5, to review progress and completion to date. His first visit in several weeks. “I’ve been following the web site to keep up,” he reports.
  • Ron Dahlke and Steven took advantage of Brett’s visit to ask for ideas on how to solve the grout lines that do not align in the master shower. Brett suggests a smaller tile — one, two or three inches, maybe four or five, laid as a mosaic, in a concrete black that matches the black tile floor that will be chipped out, or a complement to the gray wall tile that we hope to retain because taking it out is a much-larger removal project. Steven put a call in to Renee at ProSource to begin researching tile options.
Surveying and setting out string lines for the foundation beams at the back of the new third bay of the garage.
Surveying and setting out string lines for the foundation beams at the back of the new third bay of the garage.
  • Brett and Steven also pulled out a tape measure to doublecheck the dimensions of the garage extension as the beams are dug for the foundation. It is spot on.
  • Brett asks to photograph Emerald Hill for his portfolio. “Of course,” Steven replies.
  • Ron reports that the hickory flooring may be delivered as early as next week.
The electricians have been back, installing outlets upstairs. And the final LED light directly above the kitchen sink -- the smaller 4-inch fixture closest to the window, not the 6-inch fixture closer to the camera lens.
The electricians have been back, installing outlets upstairs. And the final LED light directly above the kitchen sink — the smaller 4-inch fixture closest to the window, not the 6-inch fixture closer to the camera lens. The angle of the photograph makes it appear as if the LED is not centered. It is.
Share. Link. Like.

Notes, 10 Nov. 2015

Above, the plumbers are back to correct the fittings behind the vanities — so that we don’t have to carve the vanities into pieces with power tools.

Shane is carpenting in the hallway to "Jadinland" -- bedrooms 1 and 2 and bath 3 -- installing door casing.
Shane is carpenting in the hallway to “Jadinland” — bedrooms 1 and 2 and bath 3 — installing door casing.
Here is Shane prepping the lumber that will become the vertical casing inside bedroom 2.
Here is Shane prepping the lumber that will become the vertical casing inside bedroom 2.
Peering down the upstairs hall, Shane and Peter have stacked lumber in place to build the door casings for the hallway closet, bedroom 4, on the left, and bath 3 and the utility room on the right.
Peering down the upstairs hall, Shane and Peter have stacked lumber in place to build the door casings for the hallway closet, bedroom 4, on the left, and bath 3 and the utility room on the right.
Peter nails trim into place near the front door, wrapping intricate cut around cut at the windows and stairs.
Peter nails trim into place near the still-temporary front door, wrapping intricate cut around cut at the windows and stairs.
Chris from the cabinet shop was just leaving as Steven arrived. He's been busy, installing the upper shelves and base cabinets in the pantry hallway ...
Chris from the cabinet shop was just leaving as Steven arrived. He’s been busy, installing the upper shelves and base cabinets in the pantry hallway …
The drawers into the cabinet where we will store cutlery and plates and glasses ...
The drawers into the cabinet where we will store cutlery and plates and glasses …
... and assembling the bank of utility cabinets to the right of where the refrigerator will slide against the wall.
… and assembling the bank of utility cabinets to the right of where the refrigerator will slide against the wall.
The construction team that will pour the garage foundation today trucked out a pile of dirt and rubble at what was the kitchen deck.
The construction team that will pour the garage foundation today trucked out a pile of dirt and rubble at what was the kitchen deck.
And they began trenching for the garage-slab footings.
And they began trenching for the garage-slab footings.
Share. Link. Like.

Electricians, painters, cabinetmakers, tilers, carpenters

48 hours since Steven last visited Emerald Hill, the electricians, painters, cabinetmakers, tilers and carpenters are transforming the house.

Let’s catch up.

Above, the electricians are starting to install light switches. Here’s a bank of switches in the master suite. Can’t. Wait. To. Turn. On. Lights!

Look up at the ceiling. Many of the 6-inch and 4-inch LED recessed lights are installed throughout Emerald Hill. Here's the ceiling over the kitchen island and into the family room. Look down. Randy has installed four of the five island cabinets -- and he's working at left on the pantry storage that will be next to the refrigerator. Look at the lumber rack near the back of the photo. It's empty, because ...
Look up at the ceiling. Many of the 6-inch and 4-inch LED recessed lights are installed throughout Emerald Hill. Here’s the ceiling over the kitchen island and into the family room. Look down. Randy has installed four of the five island cabinets — and he’s working at left on the pantry storage that will be next to the refrigerator. Look at the lumber rack near the back of the photo. It’s empty, because …
The painters have turned the back yard into a spray booth, priming all the trim wood before installation by the carpenters.
The painters have turned the back yard into a spray booth, priming all the trim wood before installation by the carpenters.
Ron and Cris from Ranserve waterproofed the walls of what will be Jadin's shower in bath 2.
Ron and Cris from Ranserve waterproofed the walls of what will be Jadin’s shower in bath 2.
The tilers are sealing the floor in the master shower and bath. By end of day, the floors in bath 2, bath 3 and the utility room will also be sealed.
The tilers are grouting the floor in the master shower and bath. By end of day, the floors in bath 2, bath 3 and the utility room will also be grouted.
Here's the master shower, tiled and sealed, with the gray quartz shelf cemented into place and the linear drain protected with blue painter's tape.
Here’s the master shower, tiled and grouted, with the gray quartz shelf cemented into place and the linear drain protected with blue painter’s tape.
This is a smoke alarm or CO2 detector -- won't know until the electricians take off the protective tape -- in the hallway of the master suite.
This is a smoke alarm or CO2 detector — won’t know until the electricians take off the protective tape — in the hallway of the master suite.
Back downstairs in the kitchen, Aaron, left, and Randy, right, talk through installation of the shelf cabinet at the far end of the kitchen island. The cabinet is square to the other island cabinets -- but we discover that the tile floor is about 1/2-inch out of square because the house is not perfectly linear. Ron Dahlke asks Julian to trim the tiles with a special saw. In turn, that will allow the flooring company to come in in about a month to properly lay the hickory flooring square to the cabinets.
Back downstairs in the kitchen, Aaron, left, and Randy, right, talk through installation of the shelf cabinet at the far end of the kitchen island. The cabinet is square to the other island cabinets — but we discover that the tile floor is about 1/2-inch out of square because the house is not perfectly linear. Ron Dahlke asks Julian to trim the tiles with a special saw. In turn, that will allow the flooring company to come in in about a month to properly lay the hickory flooring square to the cabinets.
Aaron test fits one of the Ikea handles on a cabinet drawer. Yes, it fits and will do the job we ask of it. Minimal. Linear. Functional.
Aaron test fits one of the Ikea handles on a cabinet drawer. Yes, it fits and will do the job we ask of it. Minimal. Linear. Functional.
In the entry hall, Aaron and Ron plot how the stairs will meet the low bench at the stair landing. The bench will include storage for shoes, bags, books and other items -- an arrangement suggested by homes in Japan that Jacquela, Jadin and Steven visited.
In the entry hall, Aaron and Ron plot how the stairs will meet the low bench at the stair landing. The bench will include storage for shoes, bags, books and other items — an arrangement suggested by homes in Japan that Jacquela, Jadin and Steven visited.

Not photographed …

  • Ron, Michelle and Steven talked through the garage project and budget. We’re getting there. More to come.
  • BMC delivered the attic ladder.
  • Austin Stone is scheduled to measure Thursday, 29 October, for kitchen countertops.
  • Harway reports delivery of the induction cooktop to the warehouse. It will arrive Wednesday, 28 October, at Emerald Hill.
  • Jacquela and Steven selected the red grout to go with the red glass tiles at the kitchen backsplash — Stainmaster Red.
Share. Link. Like.

Moving stuff in — doors and trim

“We have reached that point in this renovation where we are moving stuff in, instead of taking stuff out,” said Ron Dahlke, talking with Steven today about what comes next.

Deliveries today from BMC West include the first interior doors and the baseboard, casing and other trim materials that the carpenters will soon install.

Above, about half the interior doors have arrived, stacked in the kitchen.

BMC built this neat rack to store baseboard, casing and other trim lumber.
BMC built this neat rack to store baseboard, casing and other trim lumber.
Ron supervises while Cris navigates a closet door through the hallway to bedroom 1.
Ron supervises while Cris navigates a closet door through the hallway to bedroom 1.
One door jamb arrived splintered and will need to be replaced.
One door jamb arrived splintered and will need to be replaced.
Share. Link. Like.

Teach, learn, caulk, measure

Above … Ron Dahlke guides Kevin Rehberg through how to properly toenail studs. Apprentice Kevin is building a new section of wall where Aaron Pratt needs structure for the cabinets he will design, build and install — and for the electric and plumbing lines that will weave through the new lumber. At the back door, Cris works out the door trim he will nail into place — brickmold PVC that will never rot, trimmed into flat stock on the table saw, flipped to put the cut side up against the flashing, leaving the finished side exposed for paint.

From outside, Cris nails the PVC trim into place around the back door off the kitchen and family room.
From outside, Cris nails the PVC trim into place around the back door off the kitchen and family room.
This is the back wall of the kitchen -- or the side of the house, depending on perspective. The cooktop and hood will be installed at left. The sink will be centered under the window, with the dishwasher to the right of the sink. The hole at the bottom of the wall is where the original cooktop vented outside. Cris from Ranserve shimmed the studs with long wedges of lumber, because it leans out about 1/2-inch at the top. The electricians marked the wall to track the wire runs and switches they will install -- and, at right, below the window, the plumbers tacked into place a metal plate that prevents nails from penetrating water lines. This is a busy, hard-working wall.
This is the back wall of the kitchen — or the side of the house, depending on perspective. The cooktop and hood will be installed at left. The sink will be centered under the window, with the dishwasher to the right of the sink. The hole at the bottom of the wall is where the original cooktop vented outside. Cris from Ranserve shimmed the studs with long wedges of lumber, because it leans out about 1/2-inch at the top. The electricians marked the wall to track the wire runs and switches they will install — and, at right, below the window, the plumbers tacked into place a metal plate that prevents nails from penetrating water lines. This is a busy, hard-working wall.
This is the trench carved into the slab by Cris and Kevin -- which the electricians will use to run wire in conduit to outlets mounted in the island.
This is the trench carved into the slab by Cris and Kevin — which the electricians will use to run wire in conduit to outlets mounted in the island.
The painters are caulking the windows, sealing up the house with silicon in preparation for expanding foam insulation. Only the lower portion of each window is caulked. Ron explains that the top and sides will be sealed with foam.
The painters are caulking the windows, sealing up the house with silicon in preparation for expanding foam insulation. Only the lower portion of each window is caulked. Ron explains that the top and sides will be sealed with foam.
The electrical walk continues in the master bath. Steve from Capstone, left, and Ron, doublecheck everything that Steven measured out, ensuring that the center of the sink will properly align with the center of the medicine cabinets -- and where to mount electrical outlets at each side of the shelf above the vanity. This is the second time we've marked these measures, applying the basic rule of building anything -- "measure twice, cut once."
The electrical walk continues in the master bath. Steve from Capstone, left, and Ron, doublecheck everything that Steven measured out, ensuring that the center of the sink will properly align with the center of the medicine cabinets — and where to mount electrical outlets at each side of the shelf above the vanity. This is the second time we’ve marked these measures, applying the basic rule of building anything — “measure twice, cut once.”
Architect Brett Grinkmeyer visited at Steven's request to consult on potential paint colors for the exterior of Emerald Hill. Ron walked Brett and Steven up to the master bedroom, asking for guidance on how to adjust and center all the ceiling lights and air-conditioning vents -- organizing what would otherwise appear to be haphazard, unplanned holes that staggered drunkenly across the ceiling.
Architect Brett Grinkmeyer visited at Steven’s request to consult on potential paint colors for the exterior of Emerald Hill. Ron walked Brett and Steven up to the master bedroom, asking for guidance on how to adjust and center all the ceiling lights and air-conditioning vents — organizing what would otherwise appear to be haphazard, unplanned holes that staggered drunkenly across the ceiling.

Notes from the day:

  • Ross Britton walked Emerald Hill with Ron, auditing the installation of the HVAC ducts.
  • Ron and Steven talked about the staircase demo and rebuild that is planned for later this week — and removal of the oak flooring, in hopes it can be donated to Habitat for re-use.
  • Cris found the wires to the sprinkler system at the back of the garage — this will be important when it’s time to rebuild the sprinkler system.
  • And a series of inspections might start Wednesday this week.
Share. Link. Like.

Multitasking day

Ron Dahlke took the day off. He missed “Multitasking Day.” Patrick Welsome from Ranserve stepped in to provide “adult supervision” and keep Steven operating within the lines.

Above … electricians, plumbers, cabinet makers at work.

Outside, the masons are rebuilding the brick wall in front of bedroom 2 -- removed to put in the new window.
Outside, the masons are rebuilding the brick wall in front of bedroom 2 — removed to put in the new window.
Cris from Ranserve shows Steven one of the metal pans to be installed under each exterior door. The pan is another layer of defense against water entering the house from under the door -- just in case.
Cris from Ranserve shows Steven one of the metal sill pans to be installed under each exterior door. The pan is another layer of defense against water entering the house from under the door — just in case.
Here is one of the metal pans installed under the back door -- the aluminum sheet folded down over the concrete slab, with the metal threshold of the door above it.
Here is one of the sill pans installed under the back door — the aluminum sheet folded down over the concrete slab, with the metal threshold of the door above it.
Cris from Ranserve demonstrates how the windows are flashed -- heavyweight peel-and-stick Straightflash VF taped over the window and door flanges, helping to make the window and door watertight.
Cris from Ranserve demonstrates how the windows are flashed — heavyweight peel-and-stick Straightflash VF taped over the window and door flanges, helping to make the window and door watertight.
Kevin Oliver from Custom Plumbing demonstrates how to connect PEX tubing to a copper fitting that will be connected to the tankless water heater in the upstairs utility room.
Kevin Oliver from Custom Plumbing demonstrates how to connect PEX tubing to a copper fitting that will be connected to the tankless water heater in the upstairs utility room.
The PEX array at the master bathroom -- red for hot, blue for cold, white for water supplies to toilets. This array will feed two sinks, two shower heads, and a toilet.
The PEX array at the master bathroom — red for hot, blue for cold, white for water supplies to toilets. This array will feed two sinks, two shower heads, and a toilet.
Capstone Electric hung the service panel in the upstairs closet, with a road map hung nearby identifying which "home run" is to be connected to which breaker inside the box.
Capstone Electric hung the service panel in the upstairs closet, with a road map hung nearby identifying which “home run” is to be connected to which breaker inside the box.
Aaron Pratt from Central Texas Custom Cabinets sketches designs for the kitchen cabinets.
Aaron Pratt from Central Texas Custom Cabinets sketches designs for the kitchen cabinets.
With adult supervision from Patrick Welsome at Ransom, standing in for Ron Dahlke, who took the day off, Aaron and Steve plotted out the kitchen cabinets. After which Patrick computed with the electricians how to run electric power to the kitchen island. Cris and Kevin from Ranserve next pulled out the power tools and sliced into the slab for the cable run.
With adult supervision from Patrick Welsome at Ransom, standing in for Ron Dahlke, who took the day off, Aaron and Steve plotted out the kitchen cabinets. After which Patrick computed with the electricians how to run electric power to the kitchen island. Cris and Kevin from Ranserve next pulled out the power tools and sliced into the slab for the cable run.
Outside, the mason -- Edgar in stripes and his father, Felipe, work with Cris from Ranserve to figure out how to set bricks between the narrow front windows -- or to frame the windows with side casing, head casing, apron and stool. The decision for the day is to discuss with Ron, because Ron, Cris and Steve earlier talked about using PVC trim over the window flashing,  instead of running brick up to the window, making it impossible to remove the window if needed without first taking down brick.
Outside, the mason — Edgar in stripes and his father, Felipe, right, work with Cris from Ranserve to figure out how to set bricks between the narrow front windows — or to frame the windows with side casing, head casing, apron and stool, with Hardie Planks in between each window. The decision for the day is to discuss with Ron, because Ron, Cris and Steve earlier talked about using PVC trim over the window flashing, instead of running brick up to the window, which would make it impossible to remove the window if needed without first taking down brick.
Share. Link. Like.

Notes, 6 July 2015; 20 minutes into the future

Ron Dahlke, site supervisor, Ranserve, is wranglng five framers at Emerald Hill. Steven is staying out of the way.

Brett Grinkmeyer, architect, called to research a question asked by Ron. How do you want to finish the passages — one between the entry and library, one between the library and family room, and one between the entry and family room?

The options are: 1. Drywall, or, 2. Trim material over drywall.

This gets complicated at the first passage between the entry and library. That wall is home to the plumbing stack. Ron is going to frame it wider to give the plumber more room to connect pipes. This also requires reframing the ceiling above the library to create chases in which to run the pipes — chases that do not compromise the structural integrity of the house by slicing through lumber the way previous remodels have done damage to the house. See “this is wrong” posts. Ron has to frame around the stack. If he covers the framing with drywall, this narrows the passageway to 32 inches, down from 36.

Brett and Steve test a different idea — replicate the trim around the doors — replace the drywall on the interior surfaces of the passageway with 3/4-inch trim, run the drywall on the walls behind the trim up to that trim, then cover that joint by running 2×2 poplar up the walls at the joint between the drywall and the 3/4-inch trim.

Here’s the detail drawing from the plans:

The door trim detail drawings from the plans.
The door trim detail drawings from the plans.

The ensures consistent trimwork throughout the house. The wood used for the trim will be less prone to damage than exposed drywall in high-traffic passageways. Labor and material costs should be a wash, Steven hopes.

Brett will discuss with Ron.

That took 20 minutes … but it’s an important leap into the future. Framing may be underway, but planning for everything after must proceed without pause.

Share. Link. Like.