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Author Topic: not quite a timber frame  (Read 104483 times)

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Offline ljmathias

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #420 on: December 18, 2011, 07:25:02 am »
Sorry, didn't mean to mislead anyone- yes, her "present" is taken care of but we do an exchange each year with a drawing at Thanksgiving.  I got the daughter-in-law but the wife has already bought that gift- she loves to shop and I let her.  Probably wouldn't have found anything she wanted at Lowes anyway   :D  and there and Autozone are the only two places I spend money anymore (except online for shells).

So, here's my almost-done update: we stained and put finish on stair treads yesterday and now they're ready to be glued and nailed down.  Bought a big box of cut nails I used on my son's stairs- they turned out neat with the heads showing against the bright yellow pine.  Daughter's stairs are stained dark walnut so the heads my not sure as well, but at least they'll be down solid.  After the stairs are down, just some odds and ends of trim work to finish, a little outside trim work plus a final clear-coat on the siding, the loft and stairs railing (cut four 11/2X3" oak boards for those out of lightning killed red oak) and we'll be done- probably get her finished this week but definitely by Christmas.  Of course, we have to be done by Christmas as we always have Christmas eve present opening at her place, and this will be the first year at the new house.

Yesterday, while stain and finish was drying on the treads we started the clean up process.  Packed tools and left over supplies onto the truck and hauled stuff over to the big barn for storage till next building project.  Seems strange to pick up saws and nail guns, knowing they are no longer needed on this house- a sense of finality that has an element of sadness about it: I love the whole process of building, and the final product is just icing on the cake.  Daughter has been focused on being done and moved in, which is as it should be, but that perspective is different than mine.  Oh, well, there's always a barn and workshop in the plans, so I'll focus on those next, plus wife has been talking about an addition on the son's house- their four kids are growing fast and will need separate bedrooms in the not-so-distant future...  :)  Without goals and plans, life would seem somewhat pointless.   ::)

Lj
LT40, Long tractor with FEL and backhoe, lots of TF tools, beautiful wife of 50 years plus 4 kids, 5 grandsons AND TWO GRANDDAUGHTERS all healthy plus too many ideas and plans and not enough time and energy

Offline ljmathias

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #421 on: January 04, 2012, 07:08:01 am »
Quick update and today I get pictures- house was finished enough for daughter and grandson to move in just before Christmas eve.  We celebrated there that night with the wood burning stove going and gift opening plus an excellent potluck dinner (this is our Christmas eve tradition and it was important for them to have it at the new place this year for lots of reasons, mostly personal ones).

Since then, we've finished the floor trim so that's done; got the railing tops on the stair and loft rails; and did a few more detail things like caulking.  Today we plan to finish the railing inside and hopefully the railing on the front porch (facing south where the sun is visible from dawn till dusk over the field down the hill).  After that, a little touch up paint here and there (no matter how careful you are, something always gets nicked or stained) and we'll switch back to the outside: driveway to smooth and re-pack and put a layer of gravel on plus a small shed over the outside unit for the minisplits to protect it from the elements.

It's incredible to be at the end of such a long and back-breaking (well, not really) chain of construction tasks, and the satisfaction in having done a reasonably good job is enormous.  Turns out we built this house at just the right time to provide my daughter and her son with a secure, paid-for place to live for as long as they need.  For various reasons, they would have been left "out in the cold" otherwise, and now they have a place to be that is functional and fun: what more can we ask?   :)

Lj
LT40, Long tractor with FEL and backhoe, lots of TF tools, beautiful wife of 50 years plus 4 kids, 5 grandsons AND TWO GRANDDAUGHTERS all healthy plus too many ideas and plans and not enough time and energy

Offline WDH

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #422 on: January 04, 2012, 08:03:25 am »
LJ,

I am as proud of you as you are of this outcome! 
Woodmizer LT40HDD35, John Deere 2155, Kubota M5640SU, Nyle L53 Dehumidification Kiln, and a passion for all things with leafs, twigs, and bark.  hamsleyhardwood.com

Offline Raider Bill

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #423 on: January 04, 2012, 08:06:42 am »
Congratulations!
Kubota L-4200, Ford 8N, S-10 4WD Beater truck, Chainsaw, Bush Hog, couple ATV's and 141 acres of trees I'm not sure what to do with but I sure do have fun and enjoy being in the woods!
The First 50 years of childhood is always the hardest.

Offline beenthere

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #424 on: January 04, 2012, 10:16:37 am »
Good on you Lj. That is a huge accomplishment, to say the least.
And many thanks for the pics and detailed rolling commentary. 
What a great father for a daughter and grandson to have.
south central Wisconsin
 It may be that my sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others

Offline Larry

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #425 on: January 04, 2012, 12:49:58 pm »
bt couldn't have said it better.  Great job lj. 8) 8) 8)

BTW, if you have any extra time I could use a hand to finish up my house.  Year four or so and counting. :-[ :-[
Larry

Nine out of ten trees recommend wood for your building project.

Offline Bill Gaiche

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #426 on: January 04, 2012, 08:38:19 pm »
Thanks for all that you have put into building this house, photos and details. You have done an awsume job. What you have done will never be forgotten by your daughter and grandbaby. You should be really proud for what you have provided. bg

Offline schakey

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #427 on: January 05, 2012, 04:46:02 am »
Great job lj.  smiley_clapping I agree with beenthere.
Taking care of family is what it is all about.
Thank you for taking the time for your post and
pictures.I watch this post every day and we can't
wait to start our home from our own trees on top
of our hill 8)
Think-Dream-Plan-Do

Offline ljmathias

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #428 on: January 05, 2012, 08:49:20 am »
Thanks for all the comments: it's incredible how supportive the forum is of its members.  I want to thank Jeff (again) for keeping the site up and keeping it clean and friendly.  This forum is one of the best things that I've found to find information, develop new skills and make new friends: long live the Forestry Forum!   8)

Ok, so here are some pictures of the finished product.  Problem is, daughter and grandson are already moved in and I didn't give them time to clean up for the pictures, so these are real "lived in" versions of what the place looks like.  First picture below is of the kitchen area and the second of the living room that merges with the kitchen under the loft and into the cathedral ceiling.

 

 

 

 

Next are the master bath and bedroom- I warned you, these are lived in rooms now.   :D

 

  



 

Now a view up the stairs at the loft area showing the post and beam bent that supports the roof here and the loft itself.  Checked it yesterday and there is no distortion in the frame so far, so floor upstairs is flat and solid and the roof hasn't caved in yet.   ;D  I did calculate load on these and then increased the size of the beams by 50% just to be safe.  They are almost too big now, but I guess it's alright for a first effort like this, and the bent sure adds dimension and framing to the interior- I like it! 8)

 

 

Above are the stairs and railing going up.  I used manufactured steps and risers from Lowes just so we could get 'er done fast- stained with dark walnut minwax.  The railing "beams" that the balistrades attach to are red oak from the lightning killed tree I harvested a month or so ago- not enough time to air dry (no kiln here) so I'm hoping the 'dried in place' finished product keeps its shape and color.  The top of the banister on the stairs and loft are parts of small pine trees.  One is from Katrina blow down, the other was cut off the knoll to make room for the house; both air dried.  The Katrina tree was under roof and the other not, and there was a huge difference in density and color with the under-roof dried one being much lighter in weight and color.  Both took stain alright though.  The posts for the stair rail are more of the red oak recently harvested- very stiff and strong.  One thing that amazed me was that even with the T-shape of the top rail (pine on top of oak), the railing was pretty wiggly.  Just to try something, we put two blocks of wood between the rail top and bottom against the bent post next to it: stiffened the rail up considerably even though it was located at the top quarter point.  Loft rail is too wiggly for my taste but at least it protects from falls.  Oh, and the balustrades are metal- daughter picked these out for a different look.  I would have used more of the red oak, but I have to admit the metal ones make for a more open and less weighty look to the two rails.

Below is a closer view of the stairs and railing assembly followed by a view from the front porch- very nice to sit out there and enjoy a cup of coffee and the quiet of country living.

 

 

 

 

Now that I have some time freed up, I've been catching up on other winter activities.  Wife and I have both been in a clean up and throw away frenzy- I did the "equipment room" which is a small room next to the front door that had become a catch-all for "stuff," and boy there was a lot of stuff in it.   ::)  Then I cleaned out the computer room- extra bedroom converted into a place for the eldest grandson to house his growing collection of vintage computers.  After cleaning and stacking everything on shelves and in the closet, I was totally surprised by how much room there was- his desk is to one side, and there was room for a second desk, which I need (as explained below) for my own computer-based activities.  Had an oak bench that was my first attempt at any kind of mortise and tenon construction- rough sawn oak beams and planks.  It had been a place to collect junk in the big barn while I waited to find a use for it: bingo!  I cleared off the top, and partially disassembled it, sanded all surfaces with a belt grinder (planed the top planks flat and the same thickness: they were originally 2+" and got them down to 4 cm).  Finished sanding with an orbital then put several coats of latex polyurethane on- they shined up real nice as shown in the pictures below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The oak had beautiful "character" to it, and I really like the way it finished out, but if you look close, you can tell I don't have a jointer (yet) and desperately need one.  I left the top planks unattached- with their "heft," they aren't going anywhere and maybe I'll be able to convince the finance officer to invest in a jointer real soon, especially since I'll have some time to use one productively.  After showing the family the finished desk, the universal observation was: "When can you make me one?"

Got to finish the interior railing today, cut a door into the attic on the north side so I can frame up the bathtub and install ventless vents, and I'll get pictures of the upstairs rooms then.  Meanwhile, I'll get back to work on moving my education website off-campus as full retirement looms before me in June: scary to not have a "real job" in the prospects after that, so I'm compensating by tackling major website updating and publishing efforts.  More about that later: I've started a book on sawhorses that might be of interest to forum members...  ;)

Lj
LT40, Long tractor with FEL and backhoe, lots of TF tools, beautiful wife of 50 years plus 4 kids, 5 grandsons AND TWO GRANDDAUGHTERS all healthy plus too many ideas and plans and not enough time and energy

Offline Jim_Rogers

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #429 on: January 05, 2012, 09:45:58 am »
As far as the wiggly raining goes, you probably could/should have put in a center support post up to it. But not all the way up to the roof, just up to the rail.
I don't know if it's something you can add now. But that would stiffen up the rail for sure.

Great job, and thanks for sharing.

Jim Rogers
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Offline frwinks

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #430 on: January 05, 2012, 11:32:24 am »
The place looks great LJ,  that bench would make a great rustic dining room table 8)

Offline carykong

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #431 on: January 05, 2012, 11:42:09 am »
Nice thread.  I started my hybrid timber frame/stick home in 2006.  Lots of the wood came off my LT 25. Home is 95% complete. Just some trim work and paint on the inside to. I can relate to your challenges. Continued success.

Offline Magicman

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #432 on: January 06, 2012, 09:18:36 am »
LJ, Your Daughter and Grandson's new home is magnificant.  It being a family accomplishment adds to the treasure.

I am proud of you and your dedication and also proud to call you a friend.   :)
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Offline ljmathias

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #433 on: January 06, 2012, 09:58:06 am »
Thanks, Jim, I was thinking the same thing.  At this point, though, I won't be able to anchor it like I would have had I made plans for a center post before the carpet went down- adjacent to a floor truss and screwed into it top and bottom to stabilize. Well, just have to see what shapes up...

Thanks, carykong, and glad to hear you're almost done- what a feeling, to see the finish line just ahead (but be totally out of breath   :D  ).

Appreciate it, MM- friend is good, and we all need those as we see kids leaving the next: who else can we make sit there and listen to us ramble?

Lj
LT40, Long tractor with FEL and backhoe, lots of TF tools, beautiful wife of 50 years plus 4 kids, 5 grandsons AND TWO GRANDDAUGHTERS all healthy plus too many ideas and plans and not enough time and energy

Offline ljmathias

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #434 on: January 10, 2012, 09:42:38 am »
Seems strange to come to the end of this thread- this will be the second to last post with a few pictures of the finished interior.  Last post will be Friday or next week sometime after we finish the exterior clear coat and final clean up.

Let me start with a mia culpa (hope I spelled that right): when I laid out the downstairs interior walls, I just followed the plans we'd purchased, not thinking about where the floor joists for the upstairs would fall.  As luck would have it (and it's usually bad luck when you don't plan ahead), the truss next to the stairs fell just to the east of the master bedroom wall.  Result was a ledge roughly 4" wide right next to the stairway.  I'd thought about firring it in to bring the upper part flush with the wall downstairs but then got to thinking- better late than never!   :D  Why not build a bookshelve on top of the ledge, similar to what I'd done on my son's house?  We'd ended up with a ledge there also, but for a totally different reason: we re-purposed the house and added a stairway that was not in the plans and the only way to do that left a 6" ledge next to it.

Pictures below show the bookshelf and stairway from different angles or views.  I really like how it turned out, and if knew how to lie, would probably claim that it was in the plans all along.   ;D  First view is from the loft, west end, showing the railing, stairs and bookshelf.  Second is from living room looking up stairwell.

 

 

 

 

Next picture below is looking up at the loft, the "bent" holding up the loft and the cathedral ceiling and the stairs.  I think it turned out great... :)  Second picture is of the finished stairs and railing.  You'll notice knots and imperfections on the railings plus "live edge" on the bookshelves.  I realized recently why I like this look so much: it reminds anyone who looks at them that these came from trees, not just from a lumber store. 
 


  



 

Off to try to finish clear coat on the east gable end- rain predicted today so I may not get it all done.  Need to finish the upper part anyway so I can take down the scaffolding on that end.  Insurance man is coming today to take pictures for their records- time to convert from a builder's risk to a homeowners policy.  Also time to deed the house over so it drops off our tax roll- that's going to be a bear of undertaking since we'll need to survey and break up the land like we want it for the kids when we move on... hope that happens for a long time, but still and all, better to be prepared so there's no in-fighting among the offspring.

Lj
LT40, Long tractor with FEL and backhoe, lots of TF tools, beautiful wife of 50 years plus 4 kids, 5 grandsons AND TWO GRANDDAUGHTERS all healthy plus too many ideas and plans and not enough time and energy

Offline clww

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #435 on: January 10, 2012, 12:01:02 pm »
Fantastic job on your daughter's house. LJ! 8)
I look forward to starting ours this Spring.
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Offline Magicman

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Re: not quite a timber frame
« Reply #436 on: January 10, 2012, 03:08:10 pm »
I like those different shots showing other angles of the upstairs.  Absolutely everything that I have seen looks very professionally done. 
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