Let’s begin at the beginning and finish at the end shall we?
Welcome fans of Middle Earth to another addition of the Hobbit Hollow Construction Blog. Glad you could make it, and yes it isn’t easy starting at the beginning and finishing at the end either. Is anything easy these days? My focus will be to give things in chronological order.
Just a quick briefing to set the stage. Georgia interned at Mass Moca Museum this summer. She worked on an artist’s (Lee Boronson) display at the museum so this weekend we were going up there to see the piece she worked on and to see her apartment. (Which I haven’t seen yet.)
Back to the beginning……and it was dark and the Lord said let there be light and the light was good….. Wait a minute that’s way too far back. Gotta move a bit forward Jim.
Saturday morning. 5:30 AM Let’s get this party started. Headed over to the house to start “Rough Plumbing Day 2”. Well….a half a day anyway. I worked from 6:30 till 10. I got a lot done, too. I was able to finish the roughing for the first bathroom and the kitchen. I was really on a roll. It was okay though the next step was to rough in the floor drain for the mechanical room and I needed a 3x2x3 tee-wye to come off the main drainage line and nobody seemed to have it. I checked 3 Home Depot’s for this. Gonna have to go to the plumbing supply house for this one.
So it was cold out Saturday morning. 27 degrees out by my car thermometer. You’re not technically supposed to use the PVC glue and primer under these conditions (Below 40 degrees) according to the label. Outside of this range you’re supposed to take precautions. So I kept the glue and primer in my truck until I had a few pieces ready to install. (Of course I had the heater on in the truck to keep it warm.) Then I would go to the truck turn it off, glue up a connection or two and then bring the glue and primer back to the truck and turn the truck back on again. Not the most efficient way of doing things but I think it’s safe to say everything went together well. The glue had the right consistency when I used it. (It didn’t get jelly like….which is what they cautioned against on the label.) So let’s go to a couple of pictures to show you the progress of our mornings work.
This is actually what I did last Sunday. The first toilet roughing. I don’t know if you can make it out but on the concrete wall at the ends of the 2×4 you can just make out two horizontal lines. Those two lines indicate the depth of slab. So I set up all the roughing to be below this level. I’ll box out the concrete before the pour around the area we need to do our finish connections. Once the slab is in I’ll finalize exactly where I want my hookups and then we’ll pour in and around those hookups. (More or less anyway.) I know the plumbers of the world know there is more to it than that but we don’t want to get too bogged down here. (Not right now anyway.)
So it’s a bit of a mess right? I ran out of time Sunday so that was the first order of business Saturday. Check this whole lot out and make sure it’s secure and where it’s supposed to be. This didn’t take too long though. I moved right into the balance of this bathroom setting up the sink and the shower stall fairly quickly.
Just a couple of things. The other way to get the right pitch on plumbing pipe. (1/4 inch per foot if you remember)….. Half a bubble. In certain areas I’m not able to use my four foot level with the pitch block. Where I had to use my two foot level I used the old half a bubble rule. Check it out.
So if you look close you can see that the bubble is splitting the spirit levels vertical line in half. When the bubble is sitting in that position with the level on the pipe you have exactly a 1/4 inch per foot pitch on your pipe. Put that in your tip book people. Oh yeah, here’s another one. Buy low and sell high. Got that from a financial adviser once. Hmmm…Jim’s starting to turn into a bit of a wise guy.
Here’s how I secured some of the pipe as well. Just some plywood cleats one with a small notch in it. This helped to keep everything where I wanted it and within the wall framing.
Here’s the first bath roughed in.
Frank said it…..and he’s right. You get a Bobcat (aka a skid steer machine) and you go in there and you level the place out. Skid steers cost money though and the delivery fee is $250. So then began my rock wrestling phase. Which actually was going really well. I had my pick and shovel and was really going to town on these rocks. (Trying to clear a path for the kitchen sink line) I was like a rock eating machine. There was like way more rocks than I thought there would be too. I mean check out this pile.
This is just from one little old shallow trench I had to clear. But these were just the baby rocks. Remember when Sigourney Weaver met the Alien Mother in the second Aliens movie? Remember the fear? At the very end of the line where I had to elbow the 2 inch line up was the Mother of all these rocks. It was one of those rocks that took 15 minutes just to figure out where it started and ended. There was pain in my body where I didn’t know you could get pain by the time I got this thing out of the way. Good thing I had my Con Edison pry bar my Father in-Law gave me. It definitely gave me the upper hand. Check this momber out.
By the time I got to this phase of getting this rock out I was sweating bullets. My heart was racing like I had just run a mile. My running days are definitely over people. It was satisfying to get it out and finish the kitchen plumbing though. …and I saved $650 dollars on a skid steer rental! My camera ran out of juice so I couldn’t take a picture of the kitchen roughing. We’ll get that in here next week I suppose.
So that’s the extent of my work this weekend and if you’re not into the balance of the blog I’ll see you next week.
….and off we go!
The plan was to go up to North Adams, Mass and see Georgia’s apartment, go to the art exhibit, dinner and then head home. (Something came up that I had to go to on Sunday so we couldn’t stay overnight.) Anyway it was myself, the Editor in Chief, Terence, and my Mother-in-Law. A back seat driver if you ever wanted to know one. So we pull up to my Mother in law’s house to pick her up and who comes out with her but Bob. Nervous senses go into high gear. As she’s coming down the steps to the car she’s saying, “We just have to drop him off in Pittsfield!” First of all, why are you shouting and second who’s we? Aggravation senses are in super high gear now. Anyone have any great ideas on what I should have done in this situation? I look at my wife and make my grouchy face.
I thought my Mother in Law was a back seat driver but the two of them together was like forgetaboutit! I wish I would have just gotten pulled over and been arrested. By the time we got to Pittsfield I was on suicide watch. I mean just look at these two!
Nothing like a surprise on a Saturday afternoon!
We finally got to North Adams and Georgia’s apartment is really nice. It’s so big. I think the same sized apartment in Manhattan would easily be over $2500 a month. We hung out there for a bit and relaxed after our drive. I needed a drink after the whole Bob episode but Georgia’s cupboards were bare of what I needed. So we headed over to the museum.
So there were a bunch of exhibits there that were really quite interesting. In two hours or so you could see just about everything and if you’re into art it’s definitely worth the trip. Georgia worked on the Lee Boroson work called “Uplift”. It’s a series of connected balloons that look like trees or smokestacks. So there was a whole bunch of people helping to build this project and Georgia was one of them. She was one of many who were sewing each individual balloon together and then connecting them together. Once they are all connected they are inflated as one balloon. Pretty cool actually…and a lot of work.Check it out.
There were 18 of these trees in the room so it was really pretty cool when you walked around.
Modern art is different people….and Georgia said Boroson was never there helping either. Very strange.
I took a few more pictures because I thought some of this stuff was so cool. Here are a few.
This display was a series of rocks glued to the wall. The actual room was a lot bigger than shown here so it was a pretty awesome sight when you first viewed it. Very different. Compelling in its own way.
This guy does these large paintings that he somehow writes directions on how to build/paint. Then a bunch of students or interns do the work. There was a video of them doing one of the paintings that was really cool. (Sort of why I’m doing this blog. So people can see what’s really involved.) Some of the stuff was wild. There was quite a bit of his work here.
These next two go together. The first one shows you a shot of the picture itself and the next is a close up of the same.
Looks like shading right? Check out the close up.
So it’s just scribbles. Petty cool how they made it look like the Great Eye. (Lord of the Rings nerd in me coming out as ususal.)
There were a bunch of other exhibits and displays that were really cool as well. Like I said if you get some time it’s worth taking a look.
Went to “The Hub” restaurant and had a nice meal and drink along with Georgia’s boyfriend Will. We all had a nice time.
Then we headed home. The Editor took the wheel. But keep in mind her mother’s in the back. Well it’s dark and it has been a long day and now we all wanted to get home ….in a hurry. So of course we get stuck behind the slowest moving tractor trailer traveling on route 22 in New York. Behind him are two other vehicles who didn’t seem to mind that we are behind the slowest moving tractor trailer in New York. I mean the guy is going 35 in a 55 zone. What’s up with that? We kept thinking the cars in front of us were going to pass him but they didn’t. It was weird. Nobody’s on the road. Nobody’s coming in the other direction…..there’s only like three things that get the Editor angry. Fools, spelling mistakes, and getting stuck behind someone going 35 mph in a 55 mph zone. I knew it was getting to her. It was getting to all of us. So she takes off and I hear this siren…..THAT’S A DOUBLE YELLOW LINE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That was no siren! That was my mother in law screaming at my wife! I think she blew my ear drum out. (As far as passing when there’s a double yellow line: Bob Dylan once sang “In Jersey everything’s legal as long as you don’t get caught.”)
Needless to say we got around that truck and the two cars behind it with no problem and made it home safe and sound. I have to admit it was a little exciting going around that caravan in one shot though. Double yellow line or no double yellow line. Hmmm…. and we’re not in Jersey either.
I know this was kind of long and all but I hope you enjoyed it. Looking forward to finishing the plumbing next week if the temperature holds. Till then thanks for stopping by and I’ll see you next week!