Lumber Rack in Place

I can’t tell you how happy I am to have my lumber rack in place in my new workshop.  I made the lumber rack for my old shop in May of 2010.  I blogged about how to make it HERE.

I had to shorten it to fit in the ceilings, so I cut some off the top of each section.  I then found the studs behind the wall.  This was a bit tricky because there is a layer of drywall and under that some horizontal slats that the drywall was attached to.  Then under those slats is a plaster wall, so a layer of plaster and slats for that.  But because the wall backs up to the basement stairs, I could find the studs by seeing where the drywall beside the stairs was attached to the studs.  I bought 5″ long lag screws so that I could get through all the layers and pre-drilled to make sure I hit wood.

I took off the piece of baseboard I had recently put on so that I could sit the uprights on the floor.  Then I cut the baseboard into pieces to fit between.

I had boards all over the place, so it was good to get them on to this rack and out of my way. I still have some wood to go on here, but it’s behind other things, so I haven’t reached it yet!

This is how the rack looked in my old workshop after being loaded with a new purchase of pine:

 On another note, today is the second birthday of my little Chihuahua, Denver.  Officially known as “Knockout Colorado Kid,” Denver is a little bundle of joy!

Floors Down in Retail Area

I have had so many people ask me if my store is ready.  Alas, it is taking much longer than I had hoped.  I am working everyday and, although it’s progressing, there is still so much to do.  I will need to take stock and price my items and display them.  I have boxes and boxes of items I made in my last workshop and moved here.  I will need to organize all of that before I can even think of opening the store part of this building.
On to what I’ve been doing.  The walls (see how I made them here) were painted with Benjamin Moore’s Simply White, in eggshell.  Getting paint between the boards I put up was quite the exercise.  I used a very small artists paint brush along with the regular paint brush I used to hand brush all the walls.  I tried using a roller, but too much of it got into the “cracks,” so I switched to the brush.  It took many hours to paint, using the fine brush to get any blobs from between the boards. I did a second thin coat with the roller.  If I had to do it again, I would not just prime the boards but also paint the two finish coats of eggshell and paint the walls behind first.  (My walls were a light yellow that showed through the cracks, although I didn’t think it would matter… it did!)
After painting, I started putting down the floors. They are a faux maple laminate that lock together, board by board.

It’s not that difficult to do, but when you are alone and running back and forth to the mitre saw in the next room, well… all the up and down on my knees made me further realize that I am not young any more.

I had very little wastage with this flooring. The room was about 9′ wide and each piece of board was 4′ wide, so I started with two side-by-side (Pieces ONE and TWO) and then the next piece (THREE) was cut to fit. The remaining part of piece three then started the next row, piece FOUR was a full piece and then again I cut piece FIVE to fit.  When you work through a room this way, there are no extra pieces left over.

The main part of the room was very basic, as I said above, around the stairs and the angled wall was a little more tricky, but not so bad.  I enjoy work like this, most likely due to my mathematical mind.

After finishing the floor, I had to put in baseboards.  I had both the old baseboards from this area and some extra pieces from another room that were torn out when I took down some walls.  I primed them and used two coats of Simply White in semi-gloss and then cut to fit.  I also painted the window and door trim with the same paint, as well as the door to the workshop area.  It all looks clean and fresh, but I still have to touch up the pin-nail heads and do a little bit of caulking.

I had not shown this wall below before, this is to the left when you walk in the front door (the door you see in the photo goes to the workshop).  I am going to have a chalkboard here to be able to write some information about the store as well as greetings, sales, etc.  (More to come on this part.)

Retail Space Walls Planked (or is it Tiled?)

I have been working on the walls of my retail space, which is a former bedroom and front hallway in the new house that I’m turning into my workshop.  Although I purchased the flooring a few months ago, I felt it best to do the walls first so that I wouldn’t drip paint on the new floors. As any of you DIYers know, it’s better to do things in the correct order.

At first I thought I would just paint my walls in the space that will house my products, but for two reasons I decided against that.  Firstly, the walls were not in good condition due to the fact that I removed a wall, closet and door in order to make the two areas into one.  (…and anyone reading this blog for a time will know that I don’t really enjoy patching and mudding drywall).  Secondly, I will need to put a lot of nails or screws (and maybe even shelving) in this room, in order to display my signs and other things I make.  I felt that hanging something off of drywall would not be as good (solid) as having some type of thicker material to “grab” the fasteners.  Initially I thought of horizontal boards spaced about a foot apart to help with that problem. Then, I started seeing quite a few bloggers who “planked” walls in their houses, and I liked the look, so decided to try that!

So, for a recap, this is the area I’m working on and this is how it looked when we bought the place:
(standing in the front hallway, the door goes into the bedroom)

This is after I removed the wall and door:

And, here is after I took out the flooring:

Okay, so what I did was get ten sheets of 1/4″ plywood underlayment at the lumber store.  It comes in 4′ x 8′ sheets which I had the store cut to 4′ x 4′.  This is much easier for me to handle and I did not want to put up any 8′ lengths of boards anyway, so the maximum length of my boards will be 4′. I primed all twenty sheets, which was made easier by having a basically empty workshop, and then cut the 4′ sections into strips of just over 5 7/8″ wide on my tablesaw.  This gave me 8 strips per 4′ length, or 16 strips from each 4′ x 8′ sheet. For anyone not doing the math, this is 160 strips!!

I proceeded to find the studs on all the walls (I use a strong magnet) and had all strips end and begin on studs. The studs were not at the usual 16″ apart, but this is a very old home, and this front section was added on at some point, so it didn’t surprise me. The ceiling is not at all level, so that was also something I had to deal with (and also wasn’t surprising!)

I started on the end wall, using my nailing gun to put nails wherever I found studs.  I used pennies to horizontally space out the strips (do not ask me how many times I had to pick up pennies that fell out of the slots, I lost count after 427) and I also staggered the boards from end to end, like tiling, with a space between the end of one board and the beginning of the next. (Most people butt them up together, but I wanted the visual look of the spaces both horizontally and vertically)

Here are some progress photos (this took quite a few days of work):

Now it’s time to paint the walls!

Goodbye Chestnut

We had two large trees in the front yard of the new workshop house.  The one on the left was a chestnut tree and was dying.  You can see from this photo taken in the summer when we bought the place that the tree on the left had dead branches.  The tree on the right, we’ve been told, is a dwarf maple, planted by the town after it had to widen the street and take out some nice trees many, many years ago.

Well, a neighbour said he could use the wood from the chestnut, so he came and cut it down.

I am working in the new place everyday and even though it was only a few months ago that I started this renovation, it’s hard to believe that it once looked like this in the new workshop room:

This is how it looks today:

I’m working on my retail space right now, and it’s turning out really well.  I will post about that soon…

How to Cope Trim Tutorial

Have you ever coped trim?  Some of the trim in my new workshop needed to be cut to length due to my rearranging of some of the walls.  In the corners trim should be coped and not just cut at 45 degrees.

One side of your baseboard trim is cut straight, as I did here on the right side, going into the corner:

The left piece needs to be cut at a 45 degree angle with a mitre saw or a handsaw in a mitre box… I’m not sure how to explain this, but the trim edge that is cut leaves the bare unpainted mdf showing and is cut longer at the back:

Here is what the left piece looks like after being cut:

As you can see, the baseboard trim on the left will not fit against the right piece:

The next step is to cope the trim, which means to cut away the back edge, but not into the front.

I use a utility knife because this is mdf and not real wood.  If you have solid wood, you need to use a small coping saw and it’s a bit trickier to cut, but still doable.  With the mdf you can chip away at it.

The object is to take away all the side edging (that isn’t painted) so in effect you are taking away the back part of the trim and leaving the shaped front intact.

When you lay it flat you will see what still has to come off of the side and back edge:

This is what it will look like when the coping is finished and the piece is laying flat.  You will not see any of the bare edges:

As you slide it into place:

It will fit without any gaps:

I hope this helps some of you that may have thought that coping was too hard to do… you CAN do it!

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Painting Trim and a Man on a Truck

I’ve been painting trim, miles and miles of trim.  Some of it still at the bottom of the walls, some of it around windows and doors and some in pieces. I’m using semi-gloss in Benjamin Moore’s Simply White (the 2016 “colour” of the year):

On Friday I went outside my back door to do something and saw this truck at the business being renovated nearby.  Between that auto parts business and mine is a garden.

That’s my husband on top of the truck.  There is a little seat up there where he operates the crane that takes supplies off the delivery truck that he drives.  Kind of fun to see that! Here’s a closeup:

Small town, eh?

Painting the Workshop Walls

I picked a colour for the walls in my workshop.  It is Benjamin Moore Sea Foam and is a very, very light turquoise.

 In fact it is almost white, it’s so light, but that’s what I wanted, something to just stand out a little bit over my Simply White trim (that is not painted yet).

I really don’t think this photo shows the colour at all, it looks white on my monitor!  This is the first coat (on the right) over a white primer that is over a grey/brown wall that was here when I bought the place.

Tomorrow I’ll do the second coat and then get started on the trim.