Like May 14th, May 21st came and went. Winds howling at upwards of 80 km/h threw off the air-tightness test results with such wild variations that the audit was rescheduled for the beginning of June. That means we just bought ourselves a few more days. It also means we can't take the pace we've been working at down a notch.
Eric managed to creatively fix the rotten beam. Here's the before:
Another more detailed photo of the damage prior to cleaning:
Here's the during:
And here's the after:
Pretty crafty, huh? Job well done, Eric. I never cease to be amazed.
Don't worry about the rot on the outside wall - when we get around to changing the siding of the house (not next year, please!), we'll replace the wood. There was no easy way to repair it from the inside of the house, and it won't get much worse. It's probably taken 80 years for it to get that bad anyhow. A year or two more won't make much difference.
I cannot believe how quickly this repair went - we really gave it a go and worked non-stop for 2 days. The audit on the 21st gave us the motivation we needed to get this job done as soon as we could.
Here Eric is using the circular saw to start the pocket that will accommodate the partly-rotten beam. I had removed the rot from the existing beam with a reciprocating saw, and Eric took precise measurements of the new beam (that weighed about 100 pounds and took 3 guys to manoeuvre upstairs, (thanks JL and Frank for letting us abuse you once again). Eric made a template on a 2x6 that he temporarily screwed onto the formerly rotten beam, and then transferred these measurements to the beam above. I think if something would have screwed up here, we both would have had to leave the house for a few days to help repair our mental states.
It's 9:00 at night - Eric has managed to chisel out the pocket. Now all we have to do is lift it in place...screw it on...and call it a night. The extra work of the template proved to be beneficial, because the beam went up without a hitch.
Today we put up the insulation and finally closed the wall. Here's the before:
Everything is insulated with 2 layers of Roxul rock wool as well, but I have spared you the sordid photos of yet more insulation. You're probably getting the jist of it by now anyhow.
Yet another before:
And another after:
Tomorrow we are going to finish the reflective vapour barrier here and seal everything well, and then tackle the last exterior section in the stair well. We will have to jury-rig a scaffolding of sorts so we can work safely, and then we'll be on the home stretch.
Eric was going to sub the drywall installation out, but the person who will be doing this work will also be doing structural work on our barn, and honestly, the structure of the barn takes priority over the drywall in the house. It'll give me more time to chose paint colours and figure out what we are going to put on the floor, all those lovely interior details that take hours of shopping trips and leg-work. One more trip to Home Depot and this girl might become unhinged!
Today was an unseasonably hot day - about 28C or 84F - but already we felt more comfortable upstairs. As long as the structural aspects are complete, the insulation and vapour barrier up and sealed, we should be a lot more comfortable during summer hot spells than in the last few years. So bring on the warm weather, we're waiting!