Monday, August 16th, 2010

image of door

This is what I get for trying to save money by doing it myself instead of paying a contractor a couple thousand dollars to do it for me. Not that I think a contractor wouldn’t have done exactly what I did. He totally would have, if he’d wound up stuck in the position I was in yesterday afternoon after I framed the new windows with brick molding, then built up the frame around the back door with lumber I had to rip from larger pine planks for a custom fit, then whacking it all into place with thirty gojillion nails half again as big as railroad spikes.

With all that at stake, I had to be really careful about putting it all together so it would all to fit in a very finite amount of space. I measured the opening twice, just like every shop teacher in America tells you to do. I measured the door’s width, re-checked my math and carefully marked the lumber. I rehearsed all the assembly steps in my head each time I was about to make a cut. Only after I was sure it would all fit together did I crank up the table saw, cut the lumber to size and nail it all in place with the aforementioned thirty gojillion monster nails. Then, after the door was hung, I swung it shut and … the damned thing wouldn’t close.

Shit.

I had to cut a creative divot out of the door jamb in order to make room for the latch. The alternative was to yank the door off, yank the lumber off, pull all the nails, re-attach all the furring strips I would have pulled out when I yanked off the lumber, take the lumber down to the work shop to rip a quarter-inch off the width … or cut a divot out of the door jamb. It was four-thirty in the afternoon, half a hour past the time I was hoping to knock off for the day. I got to work with a chisel and a hammer.

It’s not like you can tell from looking at it. Even if you knew what you were looking for, it’s neat and clean that it looks like maybe it was supposed to be that way. I certainly wouldn’t point and say anything if I saw it. And from the outside you can’t see anything’s wrong at all, so I’m okay with it like this for now. Still gotta caulk up the cracks so I can clap some paint on this side of the building. The house is looking closer to done every day.

Cockeyed | 8:34 am CDT
Category: daily drivel | Tags:
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