Thursday, 19 April 2012

Finished the carpet, begin the painting!

It has been a couple weeks since I've done an entry.  Mainly this is because I haven't done a stitch of work on the hall in that time.

There's a couple reasons for this.   First, we have been debating on what to do with the ceiling.   As you may have noticed from the photos, there is some paper hanging from the area above the bottom of the stairs.  This is from a leak we had a while back after a particularly heavy rainstorm.  The problem is, this leak seems to have originated AGES ago even before Paul purchased the house.   We've had a look above the ceiling in the garage (where it's been leaking as well) and there seems to be a few attempts at fixing this.  Failed attempts apparently.    So, the debate is do we attempt to fix the leak again, which means repairing the bad plasterboard in the hallway ceiling, thereby destroying the (textured) paper on the ceiling leaving a bald patch, which means we will have to remove all of the ceiling paper, thereby incurring extra costs, time and mess....


Do we just get the glue out, paste the paper back into place and paint over it.... hopefully rectifying the leak at a later date.   "Later date" meaning "when we have more money."

The second reason for not working on the hallway is trying to find time and the courage to remove the old doorbell and light fixture from the wall to plug the holes and get a new light installed.

Courage because as with the plumbing.... electrical things are mostly a mystery to me and quite a bit scarier than plumbing.  With a plumbing fail, shit gets wet, you clean it up, it'll dry eventually.  With an electrical fail,  your house burns down.   I am convinced that will be the outcome every single time I do anything with lights, switches or anything else like that.

If that isn't enough to boggle the mind... here's where it gets interesting.  I didn't want to take the light out until we decided whether we were going for a new wall sconce or have a ceiling light installed.  Couldn't make the ceiling light decision until we made a decision about the leak.   And the leak decision would be made easier once we decided on whether we were going for wall light or ceiling light!  (only because we wouldn't want rainwater leaking into a ceiling light fixture)  AUGH!!!   Deadlock.

So I decided to paint.

Got most of the wall done up the stairs and did a first coat on the wood wall of the stairs.  Now there's another blog!  Don't get me started here!

I did actually remove the light fixture and old doorbell today anyway.  We'll make decisions later.  I just want to get these damn walls done!!

pictures will follow when it's daylight.

Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Guns like Hulk Hogan OR Am I Finished Yet?

Due to a little rejigging of my schedule, I was left with a full day free to do DIY!  Yay!

I started with sanding the polyfilla on ALL the walls.   Add 2 lbs of arm and shoulder muscle....

Wipe down ALL the walls.  Add a further 2 lbs of arm and shoulder muscle....

At this point, I got tired.  I had the choice of starting to sand the spindles on the stair railing or do a little painting.   I chose painting but I still have to remove the light fixture and tape off everything.  ugh.   I opted to do the thinner bits of wall around the door rather than dive into all that prep work.   Like I've said before I have no patience and slight OCD.  Hate prep work but want perfectly clean lines.

  Doomed, I know.

So got my brush and started painting.   About an hour later, I got tired of that so decided to lift the carpet.

Here's the progress.

It must be noted I couldn't remove the carpet and underlay completely because I have a two and a half year old.  Not only is she two and a half, but also is the type who would find every nail, spike and staple in the floor with her feet, knees, butt, hands and probably, face at least once. )

Luckily we have a really good subfloor so, thankfully, I won't need to do any work there.  

I think I must have put on about 10lbs of arm and shoulder muscle doing this! 
Carpet is bloody heavy!


What's involved in tearing up carpet...

1.  Pull carpet out from the spiky trim bits at the doorways and around the walls. 
2.  Pull up the underlay which is stapled to the floor
3.  Pull out the staples and hammer down any broken ends
4.  Pick a place to start prying up those horrendous carpet gripper things.   They are so fricking hard to get up!!  I mean, really... do you HAVE to use nails that have threads on them?  It looked like a mob of angry Liliputians carrying little tiny hammers went mental with unicorn horns and nailed down these bits of inferior wood product to my floor with the express purpose of making it REALLY F**KING DIFFICULT TO PRY THEM UP!!!   If I had caught them, I would have stomped on them. 
That said,  I'm sure that pro carpet layers have some secret trade tool they use to make it easier.   A tool you likely can't buy in B&Q either.  Bastards.

So I soldiered on with two hammers (one small hammer to use as a pry bar whilst banging it soundly with the other hammer.... no I don't have a crowbar but wish I did....  easier to smush those angry Lilliputians!)  


2 Hours later with lots of swearing, smashed fingers and a couple scraped knuckles later and this is as far as I got before crying uncle.

By the way....  I don't have a pair of pliers either so I had to pull the staples out with my bare fingers!!


(maybe I should start asking for tool donations.  I'm such a DIY charity case!)

Next issue:  Finish ripping out the carpet.