Showing posts from 2012

those in glass showers shouldn't throw soap stones

Chicago Glass & Mirror installed shower glass, mirror, and 'light passage' glass today.

not home rehab, food related..

My cousin's girlfriend also blogs, but on vegan/vegetarian food

sink valve install on Black Friday

OK, I couldn't find any decent 'how to' for installing shutoff valve to copper pipe online, so I'm making my own here for others.  Most online how-to's do not have much detail or photos, or have more advertising than content!

Here are the tools needed:
- hand held torch. I used the 'Benz-o-matic' trigger start torch with MAPP gas for the 3000+ degree flame temp
- lead-free solder
- lead-free solder flux
- LED flashlight
- 1/2" 'sweat connection' to 3/8" compression valves (Brasscraft)
- Rigid pipe cutter
- Brasscraft mini pipe cutter (not shown in photo)
- Brasscraft pipe reamer
- 150 grit sandpaper
- two 5 gallon buckets (or smaller if you're feeling lucky)

Before cutting any pipe, you have to shutoff the water supply. Do NOT forget to turnoff the shutoff to the hot water heater.  When I cut pipe last time for the toilet, i had a small flood when my hot water heater started draining out, full force.  Luckily I was able to shut it off …

Coming out of the haze

Grout of the bathroom was finished yesterday.  It just needs some cleanup.  You have to clean the tile at least 3 times in the 48 hours after the grout has been set to clean off the haze.  Eric pointed out its best to let the grout joint setup for about 30 minutes before initial cleanup so the sponge doesn't lift the grout out the joint.

Reduced Tile Lippage

Tile is almost done in the master bath.  Eric has been using the Raimondi 'clips' (from Italy) to keep everything in place and tile lippage to a minimum.  I have some bright accent lighting in the shower, and I don't want to accent bad tile work!  According to everything I read about tile install, the bigger the tile, the more difficult it is to prevent lippage.  I think only the most skilled tile setters can avoid it without special tools.

Test Bed (of flowers)

Matt (friend, coworker, tenant, nanny's husband) has enough energy to tackle some serious yardwork this spring.  He put in raised beds along the garage and fence.  The lumber used for the fence raised flower bed came from the home demolition.  Those are the center wall posts and beams from the basement!  2012 minus 1896 = 116 year old lumber.  Almost petrified.

Being the mechanical engineer he is, the construction of the framing is excellent.  Rebar was used to stake the 'railroad ties' to the ground, and each corner has blocking for additional reinforcement of the butt joint.

roofing (contract) settled

After some back and forth with the roofer, I was able to get a credit for the roof board.  I also gave him some extra $$ for the new clay coping tiles for the parapet wall.  Everything was worked out in the end.  Lesson learned is to go through the contract line by line before the work starts so there's no confusion.

Almost white as snow

The TPO membrane roof was completed this past week.  Overall, its a 100% improvement over the old roof, and I hope it will last until our daughter gets through college (with some maintenance).

I paid close attention to the install method out of curiosity, since it seems like there are at least 3 choices out there.
1.  'fully-adhered' - the TPO membrane is glued to the substrate
2. 'mechanically-fastened' - the membrane is fastened to the roof with circular metal plates with screws through them (like huge washer)
3. 'RhinoBond system' - relatively new idea where an electro-magentic induction 'welder' heats up the metal fastener plate *through* the membrane, and the membrane sticks to the plate with the aid of a weighted magnet to help the weld set (magnet top - TPO middle - hot fastener bottom).  The advantage of this is you can put the fasteners anywhere under the TPO, use less fasteners, and you don't need to create a hole in the membrane.

I thoug…

Up on the Roof, Down goes the old

Our 2nd floor tenants here mentioned the ceiling in the kitchen was showing some water damage again after the last big snowstorm. I figured I had already patched that area above the kitchen with lots of tar last year, but apparently to no avail.
I've know since I bought the building that the roof needed to be completely replaced, since much of it was rippled and many of the joints with the parapet walls were tearing.  I made the mistake of hiring some fly by night contractors to put a layer of paint-able rubber membrane on over 5 years ago, and I thought that would hold it for awhile, but the membrane already had started coming off in the same year.  At that same time, I did get some estimates for a 'modified bitumen roof' for about $10K.  Once of the estimators took a sample of my existing roof, and said there were 7 layers of roof, and what looked to be the original gravel roof!
So, obviously, this roof needed to be completely torn off.

I contacted a number roofing contr…

Krazy Konnections

After a failed attempt to get the permit plumber to redo the tub valve install, I did it myself today.
Not pretty, my first attempt at joining copper pipe, but no leaks! I used a dry towel under the pipes to check for any dripping after 2 hours.  Thanks to Ed (again) for letting me borrow his MAPP torch.  *HOT*

tiling FINALLY underway