Sunday, January 25, 2009

Roof Progress, Fireplace Fit-Check

Well, we are still struggling to get a roof on this thing. So far the roofing company hasn't been very impressive - slow start, slow progress, and there's a few sloppy things they need to fix. Hopefully they will pull it together and finish sometime before next Christmas. We STILL have blue tarps covering big portions of the house and annoying the neighbors with all the flapping when the wind blows. Those really need to go. Soon.

The flat roofs are looking pretty good. They are made up of about 100 separate pieces, all sealed together, so that's taking some time. The waterproofing layer is actually white in color, as you can see below.

This is to create a "cool roof" that has high solar reflectivity - which should help keep the house cool in the summer when the sun is at its most intense/high angle.

The other two standing-seam shed roofs are coming along - the main runs look really good, but the detailing around the edges needs some work, but they clearly aren't finished, so maybe some of that stuff gets cleaned up at the end.

Here are some additional roof pix:

The electrician (Ken Woodams) started on Friday last week - believe it or not, he's a one man show. Apparently he is really good, and super efficient. He's been placing boxes per the lighting plan and cleaning up the wreckage of the old wiring. I'd say that only about 5% of the original wiring is still in place - basically at the two bathrooms we saved. The rest of the wiring will be completely new.

I ran some more low voltage stuff this weekend, but I spent most of my time placing additional outlet boxes in strategic, non-traditional locations. There's a variety of AV gear going in closets, under the stairs, etc. I'm also pre-wring for a flat panel TV and in-wall speakers in the master bedroom and another TV in the adjacent exercise room. The closet in the master bedroom will be the main connection point for a bunch of that gear, which explains this junction box:

I also wanted to run AC to our cool fireplace in the living room. It's a wall-hanging gas fireplace, but the valving is operated by an on-board battery pack. I don't want to be continually hassled with replacing batteries all the time, so my plan is to run AC power to it and install a wall brick/power supply to feed the control system instead.

Since the fireplace isn't designed for this, I had to figure out where to put the outlet box. This gave me a good chance to actually assemble the fireplace and check the location as well. Here it is, hanging in the right place - something of a preview of how it will look when it's finally installed:

It's a very unusual unit - it hangs on the wall like a plasma TV and vents directly out the back. The surround is made of polished stainless steel and is pretty stunning.

Once I hung it on the wall, I then figured out where the outlet box could go. There's a steel mounting plate that bolts to the wall, so I had to mill out the proper hole. Fortunately, I've got the right tool for the job in the garage - a Bridgeport milling machine.

Judging by how much I've used my lathe and milling machine on this house project so far, I'm not sure how people do construction projects without a machine shop handy... ;-)


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