Category Archives: Electric

Sink holes and light fixtures…

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Gathering the nerve to cut into Flemming’s irreplaceable counter tops took a lot of thought. A lot of thought, a lot of measuring, and a lot of ‘you can do this’ talks with myself. But all went well, and I also drilled holes for the faucet behind. Somehow everything just barely fit in the tight space.

The faucet was presumably designed for a thinner counter, so I had to chisel down about 3/4″ between the knobs on the underside to make it work. I know the router would have been faster, but I didn’t want to risk it going all skully wompus on me and, in memory of Flemming’s approval of hand tools, I spent the time and did it the old fashioned way.

I ended up with a lovely stainless steel sink (16″ outer rim to rim) from Opella. The plan to use an old brass jelly pot fell by the wayside as it turned out to be just a little too small, so I bit the bullet and bought a proper one. Probably for the best though, because it came with a seriously nifty cutout template.

I’ve been slowly compiling my light fixtures for the last few months (the wonders of ebay), and it’s so exciting to see them all up! I have 6 lights on the inside; 1 from the ceiling, 1 over the window seat, 1 in the kitchen, 1 for the pink room, 1 for the bathroom, and 1 in my sleeping loft. I found the cheapest source of well made, solid brass fixtures (I adore brass) to be little, clear glass lantern types intended to be used outdoors. It cost $54 for all 4, and they make me think of fairies 😀

They are meant to be turned on and off by switch, but since I only have switches for the ceiling and window seat lights, my neighbour put in little pull chains through a hole drilled in the back and they now operate brilliantly at the source.

The main ceiling light/chandelier from hell was the hard one. The amount of space available at the ceiling peak is pretty narrow, and it was clear upon looking there was no chance the 5″ wide ceiling connect-y bit that is supposed to cover the workings was going to cut the mustard. The solution came in some kind of copper cup thing from the plumbing section at Home Depot that happens to match the fixture perfectly. My awesome neighbour rigged it so that it’s securely attached to the ridge beam and contains all the crazy wiring up there.

It certainly wasn’t easy though. I had idealistic plans of removing it every time the house goes down the road, but I can assure you that after the time and trouble that little shit gave us, I’ll just be taking out the light bulbs and wishing it luck. Guess I could bubble wrap it or something.

What a beautiful change to have all the lights up! It looks more and more like the space I want to live in with every day. And really, you pull a cord or flip a switch and the things just turn on. I like to think it’s magic 😀

Siding started and gable closures to the rescue…

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Saturday we picked up some redwood 2×4’s for the outside corners and spent most of our time trying get the hitch end ready for siding. Much of this involved sorting out the (more confusing than it probably ought to be) task of putting up lath. Each piece of 1/4″ lath is intended to be placed over one of the 2×4 studs in the wall framing, leaving a little space between the siding and the housewrap for water to escape.

It sounds simple enough, but by the time we got up the window borders and the redwood 2×4’s on the corners, the number of studs that hadn’t just been covered amounted to all of 2. And naturally these happened to be the two surrounding the window, which become no longer useful a few feet up when the borders start.

We ended up screwing some boards on the inside wall of the house along the windows and at each side to which we eventually attached the lath. This is accomplished by a nifty little tool called a stud sensor which, in theory, beeps to inform you when a 2×4 is present under the plywood. In reality, our sensor seems to be a bit confused and/or broken and either beeps all the time or refuses to do so, and the process was extended by a good while and several bouts of cussing. It was nearly dark by the end of the lath labyrinth, but we put up a few of the cedar siding boards to improve the aesthetic.

Sunday was a glorious sort of day. Not only did the gable closures I ordered for the roof finally arrive, but they happen to cover my uneven plywood issue so brilliantly that we have dodged the feared act of house sawing, and that will do wonders for making any day glorious.

We got all but the last one on, and they look so very nice over the redwood facias. My neighbor also came over to put the shiny electric plug thingy on through the siding. Technical term, you know.

Today marks the first where I have worked entirely on my own. Last night, my dad gave me a severe lecture on the use of the big circular saw and several other implements of construction, so I set off this morning with determination and a healthy fear of power tools.

I managed to problem solve my way through the little issues that came up and got the siding on all the way to the top of the window. It’s really amazing what you can learn when it’s important you do so! That said, some parts look slightly funky up close, but that’s why you start at the end least likely to have viewers 🙂

We got electric…

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As much as I love Little Yellow and bumbling my way through things with an ‘I’m sure it will be fine’ outlook, there are a few parts of house building that I am terrified of, have no interest in doing myself, and would rather be several miles away in a deep hole while the entire process goes down.

These parts (electric, plumbing and propane; in no particular order) have literally kept me up til unnatural hours of the morning thinking about electrocution and my whole house blowing up. Pretty much anything with pipes or wires…

Anyway, I am extremely grateful to have avoided direct involvement with the expensive wires and outlets thus far. My neighbor (who built his entire, not so tiny house by himself) is quite knowledgeable in all of the frightening, above-mentioned procedures, and has been so kind as to help me out.

Yesterday evening he got just about everything in order, so we set up a test bulb where the main light will be and flipped the switch. Light! Power! Woohoo! I’m so pleased 🙂 At the entrance of 2012 last night, my sister and I were sat on a cold workbench in the window bump out watching my one, beautiful light bulb.

As a result of my self induced exclusion, I don’t have much to report on the electrical workings, but I can tell you that it involves hole drilling, bright yellow wires and blue outlet boxes. And a very small circut breaker that is rather cute, as far as circut breakers go.