This is where the 600mm wide oven is supposed to go, yeah, it’s 595mm.
I thought we were screwed! Luckily we’ve got some brains between us and we managed to move this cupboard over by cutting down the filler piece on the right hand side and cutting a hole in the plaster and sliding the benchtop into the wall (so we didn’t have to get it cut down). It was all fixed in half an hour, big “phew”!!
Painters, electricians and chippies workin hard.
The stone retaining wall has been finished and work has started on the hard landscaping. They had an excavator in to remove a lot of clay and now they’re preparing the areas that will be paved with Castlemaine slate and digging foundations for the retaining walls.
In the photo below (looking out the kitchen door) the area that the excavator is sitting on will have a retaining wall in front of it, along the back fence there will be olive trees and we’ll have vegie beds in the middle. Can’t wait to be able to potter around in the vegie garden again!
You can see the excavator through the window down the end there, that’s the east side of the house, on the left is the north side and you can see the lovely sun coming in and warming the concrete for passive solar heating. That northern area you can see will be paved also with a narrow garden bed running along the fence.
The privacy screen on the western side has been completed too. This side faces the street and the westerly afternoon sun which would blast through here in summer so we needed something to block it. The screen is galvanised steel clad on the outside with 65mm silvertop ash and retracts into a cavity in the wall when not in use.
And most excitingly, the floor is being ground back today! The floor was not adequately troweled smooth when it was laid, never fully sealed and not adequately protected during construction so it was rough, not level and badly stained from paint, plaster, grease etc and it looked crap. But today all that should be remedied with a great big sander! They’ll take off 1 or 2mm to level out the high and low spots and to get it smooth but hopefully without exposing the aggregate. I can’t wait to see it!
And here’s a photo I took the other day from across the street. Hopefully the curved sections will be finished next week so you won’t have the bright blue bits in the next photos :) (I also can’t wait to get rid of that damn bright yellow site toilet)
The new roof for the lower level is going on today. The old one had been crushed in dozens of places by all the people traipsing over it while trying to sort out the cladding issues.
(sorry about the ass view in this photo)
These are the new downpipes, we’ve changed them from square to round and there’s a bracket to hold it away from the wall so we can paint behind it when the cladding needs to be stained again.
The retaining wall is nearly half done now. The stonemason has had to take a couple of weeks off but will be back next Tuesday and he’ll bring a mate to help him so the rest should go quite quickly.
I love the rusty orange patches in the stone, it matches the colour of the house now that it’s had more coats of stain.
And here’s a current picture of the house. The curved corner is still not done as we’ve had some issues with it. It turns out that Silvertop Ash does not like to be steam bent, the tongue cracked, there were longitudinal splits along the board and the surface was delaminating, it was very bad news!
Finally we have a solution which is to use Yellow Stringybark instead, it looks almost exactly the same but it’s denser and seems to take the steam bending well. Minor problem now is that the supplier only has 110mm boards and we need 90mm so they have to cut them down for us and just when they’ll be ready at the end of next week, the timber bender is taking two weeks holiday, arrrgh! But I am getting very used to setbacks so I’m not fussed, at least we have a solution now. For a while we thought we might have to use something other than timber and it would’ve looked shite (IMHO)!