Saturday, July 28, 2018

Continuing to dig in the front yard

Back in April, we started digging up the front yard.  We started with a trench along the property line with the neighbor.  We have continued to dig out that trench.

First we extended the trench almost to the street.  We stopped when we should be near the gas line.  The gas line comes in from the street, goes about 8 to 10 feet and then splits into ours (which runs down in our yard) and the neighbors (which goes over to her yard and then runs down in her yard).

Then we went back towards the house, expanding the trench as we went, so that it was on the property line on one side, and the gas line on the other.

We took out a couple of big rocks as we went, as well as part of the sprinkler lines.

But we kept digging, removing all the dirt (which we put in a pile for later) and separating out the rock (which we got rid of).

This only gets us down to the rock.  We want to have at least 24 inches of dirt, but in the back, near the house, we only have 2 to 4 inches.  So we need to use the jack hammer to break up the rock.

Then we remove that rock.

That still only gets us down about 8 to 10 inches.  So we need to continue this -- jack hammer the rock to break it up, and then haul it out, until we get our desired depth.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

New Front Door

We replaced all the door knobs in the house with levers.  Except the front door.  The front door has a upscale door fixture -- a Baldwin mortise lock, and I cannot simply switch out the handle.  And I can't just switch out the locking mechanism completely, because it is a large metal piece inset into a chiseled out hole in the door; nothing else takes up (fills up) that much space.  And it is getting progressively more difficult to open, as the locking mechanism ages.

So we decided to just replace the entire door.  We went to a place called "The Front Door Company".  Linda picked out a sort of Craftsman style door with leaded glass and a matching side panel.  We ordered that the first part of April, 2018.  I measured everything first so we would know what size we needed and then once we signed the order, they sent someone out to measure everything again to make sure it was right.

On July 19, the door was ready and they came out to install it.  Actually "they" was just one guy, Josh Sollars.  He did all the work of first removing the old door.

This was on a day when the temperature outside was predicted to be 102.  Partly for that, and partly to keep the dog away from the opening, I sealed over the entrance from the living room to the entry way with brown paper and masking tape, and then we closed the door to the library, so only the library and entry way were exposed to the outside.

Once the old door, and side light, were removed, the new frame was installed.

Then the new door was hung.

and the new side light installed.

Then all the trim was installed,  both inside

and out,

and the new door hardware installed. 

We have an Emtek Model 4816 Orion with Luzern Lever Handleset.

The door itself is Mahogany with a Chestnut finish.

Total cost $4606.02.  Total time about 4 months, with about 10 hours of work to actually do the installation.