Pouring the Cement

I guess this goes under framing. Not sure.
the cement truck came today to pour the concrete for the footings of the two new walls of the new bathroom. Very cool to watch. I do have video, but the file size is too large to post. Maybe when I find a good mpeg converter, I will post them. Meanwhile, there are pictures.
The cement pourer and the foreman are friends of about 15 years. They were telling me some crazy stories. Let’s just say I’m glad my car was parked a long way away!

The Inspectors are Coming!

Yesterday, the engineer came to inspect the rebar. I was impressed with him. Very serious. He loooked like an architect. Fancy glasses. All business, asking lots of questions of the foreman. Referring to the plans. I look at these engineering plans and am totally baffled. It’s like the message in the movie “Contact”.
When he made his appointment, he said we “should have the anchor bolts and holdown bolts (if any) in place also.” Sounds good to me.
So I guess that is what all of this is:

So he signed off on the form he needed to before the foreman could call the city. The city came today and he signed off too. Foreman asked me to copy the signed documents. I have to use my ancient scanner for that, so it took a little long and the city inspector said he couldn’t wait. So he left without them and said he would pick them up on his next visit. It was only a few minutes.
Foreman joked with me later: “There’s something I need you to do for me.” I nod. “Get a new scanner!”
At least we don’t have to pay for a phone line and a fax machine like in the old days.

Foundation for the new Bathroom part 2

After the trenched were dug, rebar was put in and epoxyed into the existing foundation and the slab for the sunroom. the bathroom is half over slab and half over foundation. So that is why it is getting so much support. All of the slab under the bathroom footprint is going to be removed so that there is room for pipes and plumbing, etc. A deputy inspector has to sign off on the rebar and epoxy and then our structural engineer has to sign off on everything before the city can come and look at it. Only after that can the city come and give an okay for the cement to be poured.

Trench under the bedroom.

Foundation for the new Bathroom

So this is where things get a little tricky. Some framing is starting and the framing is dovetailing with the demo. Adding foundations, beams, before other walls, specifically the old wall between the living room and the sun room can come out. It’s a tough job taking out some kind of load bearing walls and replacing parts of some load bearing walls.
Again, here is the floor plans and how they are changing:
click here.
These are some pix of the new foundations they are putting in for the new walls for the new bathroom. The first three are of the south trench which was dug through the sunroom slab. The others are under the bedroom which had a crawl space, so it was just dirt.

The south trench in the old sunroom

Another view.

Another view.

The next 5 pix are of the north trench that is under the bedroom. Somehow they did this without moving the floor. Seems kind of claustrophobic to me. Also they had a problem getting the earth to stay. It kept on crumbling and filling the hole as they dug. Which is one reason the hole is so big. It’s going to be a big foundation!

Trench under the bedroom.

Trench under the bedroom.

Trench under the bedroom.

Trench under the bedroom.

House Plans

This is before and after of the house plans for the remodel. Once you open the window, click on the image to go back and forth between the new and the old plans of the house.
The main things we are doing:
Combining the Sunroom and the Living Room into a front to back larger living room.
Making the old master bath into the hall bath.
Creating a new master bathroom by taking some of the sun room and some of the master bedroom.
Expanding the master closet.
Adding a tray ceiling to the master bedroom.
Creating a laundry room from the old hall bath.
New fireplace facade.
Replacing brick patio and trellis with bricks to match pool deck and a more archtectural trellis.

The Big Lull

Well, it has been a while since I have made an entry. Well, that’s because nothing has been going on. The contractor has called a few times saying they intended to come over that day, and then they don’t show up. Whatever. Our architect told him that things should be moving faster, and he promised that people would come today. They did. Not sure what they are doing. He called this morning with some damage control — telling me that I really was important.
But the foreman was here. And he gave me the number to the refinisher for the bathtub. Also he asked me to get the rough plumbing ASAP for the bathrooms. And we need to get the stuff away from the garage wall this week so that wall can be worked on.
Part of the problem was that I was out of town for a few days. I guess that since I wasn’t around, they would work on other projects or something. They promise me the work is starting in earnest again this week.

Hidden Treasures

From the beginning, we have fantasized about finding something long lost and worth a million bucks! Maybe some old jewelry, old letters, a treasure map. Well we haven’t found anything like that yet, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t surprises to be found in old houses…

I always thought that smell was Roxy.

There’s Going to Be Nothing Left!!

Today was so loud, I am glad we sent the neighbors the chocolates. So Loud! Jackhammers went for 4 hours as they dug a trench for the new bathroom wall. I need to post the house plans so you can see the new floor plan. But the new master bath is a third will come from the sun room a third from the master bedroom and a third from the old hall bath. So there is a little wall rearranging going on.

And here you can see the wall came down between the bedroom and the sunroom. I know it wasn’t load bearing, but it still makes me nervous. Last night I woke up from a nightmare where the roof fell in.

Bathroom Tiles

We met with our bathroom designer today to figure out the bathrooms.

Our designer with all of her brochures and samples.

We are going with walker zanger in the master bath. A basket weave with brick walls and lined with mercer molding.
And the vanity is going to be a carrera marble slab on legs that look like this waterworks page but we are having it made by a different vendor for cheaper. The mirrors will be different as well, medicine cabinets.
Then for the hall bath, we are doing carrera marble floors some hex tile, and then a carrera slab vanity. We are using the same tub that was there before. (Reminder — we need to get that reglazed.)

floors out of this

The two inch hex at top. Still trying to decide shiny or matte.

Visiting the Stone Yard

Today we went to the stone yard to pick out stone for our fireplace. We are going for this look in the pic below. A dry stack that is kind of squared but not exact, with different sizes and a slight variation in color. Also a few “shiners” which are pieces that are bigger than the rest. Below the photo is a sketch of our layout included. The section above and to the left of the fireplace will extend 6 inches in front of the rest of the wall. To give it kind of a floating look. A little asymmetrical Frank Lloyd Wright influence our architect came up with.

Our foreman told us about this place, West Los Angeles Building Materials. It is reasonably priced. And they had tons — literally! — to choose from.
We settled on Utah Blonde and Moonlight. These are two different kinds of limestone. And they both come in blocks so the extended corners look authentic.


Utah Blonde

Moonlight blocks

And here are general pix of the stone yard.

Still More Demo

We are really getting down the the bare bones of this place. Wow. Pretty soon, walls are going to come down to make the new master bath. Yikes!!
I thought the demo would take 3 days, just a lot of smashing and crashing, right? But they have been working hard on this for 21 man days. It’s a lot of hard dusty work.
The sunroom ceiling came out.

Looking up into the attic is bizarre. We didn’t know the air conditioning unit was hanging from the roof instead of resting on the ceiling beams. I guess that is a good thing.

From the master:

Another view of the sunroom and the master. The sliding glass door in the background is coming out and will be moved over to be centered over the brick stoop.

They also did a little more demo in Bedroom 2/den.


I left the house yesterday after the No Show entry because I was so flustered and wound up. In the car, I called our architect and gave him a status update. He said that I shouldn’t be mad at this. If they are on schedule, then I have no control over when they show up for work. Most people don’t live throught a remodel of this scale, so they don’t know all of these details. He told me to calm down or I would drive myself crazy.
I went to Lowe’s to get a 3 pole fader for the bedroom. So that when the electician showed, it would be there. Then I got a burger before returning home.
And guess what? There they were! Demoing away! So I need to learn to ignore it when anyone gives me specific times. Should I ask the foreman to not give them? I should also not spaz when they don’t show up one day. I’m sure there is a whole personnel management facet to this business that I am unaware of.
So anyway, this is what they accomplished yesterday:
They took out the wall between the master closet and the master bedroom.

ceiling removal

And they took out the ceiling in the master bedroom

ceiling removal
the first whack!

ceiling removal

ceiling removal

ceiling removal

ceiling removal

ceiling removal

The electrician was here to take care of everything we needed on our side of the house.
And the plumber made his first on site appearance. He pulled up the floor in the old hall bath to get a start on the old piping. There are still some galvanized pipes that have never been replaced. The house is mostly copper, but some of the galvanized survived.
Here, you can see the crawl space under the house for the first time.

ceiling removal

ceiling removal

They guys are here again today. Pix to come.