Foaming at the Mouth

Much of the house is freshly insulated. On Friday Nate sprayed expanding foam into all the walls upstairs, a few of them downstairs, and half the roof. The dormer roof has to wait because the sheathing is rotten, and we’ll replace it when we redo the roof. (The gable side needs new sheathing as well, but we can lay it over the original.)

Today Nate worked hard to saw back extraneous foam that pokes in front of the studs, so there’s nothing in the way of drywall later. The foam smells pretty bad, but it’s not nearly as nauseating as the Bondo wood-filler Bob used to patch a rotten portion of a timber floor joist near the stairs. Good day to wear a respirator, not that any of us actually did.

Bondo. Hold your breath.

Bondo. Hold your breath.

Once the Bondo was dry to the touch, Hans and I proceeded with ripping up the old floor and installing ¾-inch plywood around the stairs. Making the new floor level is an ongoing challenge. We aim to match the existing subfloor and so the new hardwood flooring may run continuously with the old, but the existing subfloor varies. One piece of plywood has a ¼-inch shim under one side and a ½-inch shim under the other side, with nothing in the middle. Fortunately this piece will wind up mostly under the stair landing, so once we finish nobody can step on it.

Hans applies a bead of glue to keep the new subfloor from squeaking.

Hans applies a bead of glue to keep the new subfloor from squeaking.

D.D. ripped out some more walls and salvaged an accordion closet door along with some nice 2×4 studs. Mark measured and installed some nailers for the perimeter of the new subfloor where it meets the old. I helped figure the riser and tread lengths of our steep new basement stairs, for which Hans intends to cut stringers as soon as Bob acquires the lumber.

D.D. pries apart a closet door frame.

D.D. pries apart a closet door frame.

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