Full House Refurb log - Work in Progress - Dark to Light

Full House Refurb log - Work in Progress - Dark to Light

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RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Saturday 9th March
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dav123a said:
Nice progress , interesting to see the media cupboard finished. Is that a fire alarm in the utility room ?
Yes, the previous owners installed this monstrosity of a commercial fire alarm system. Horrible alarm sensors through the house. I can only assume that they rented it out at some point. I can't see any other reasons to install something like this.



RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Saturday 9th March
quotequote all
So, while I still had some prep work to complete in the kitchen and living room walls the plasterer continued patching and prepping walls upstairs and down. The biggest issues we were having was the layered paint coats on top of backing paper on top of bare plasterboard. The steamer wasn't even going to touch it so I had to chip 2-3 walls worth of paint + paper off with a scraper. Thankfully the backing paper came off after being damped with a soapy sponge. But that's 4 days of my life i'm not getting back. Plasterer started getting on with the downstairs hall as the biggest single room to be done. All of the paper we had taken off the walls showed that they had hidden a lot beneath.















Decided to tidy up all the edges round the alcove for the new built in wardrobes. There's loads of boring pictures of plaster drying which I won't bore you with. Areas where we had electrician access, cable runs, old lighting removed etc etc.



So, on to the kitchen ceiling. After a pretty short discussion we decided that we were going to get a better finish for the ceiling if we just overboarded. We would lose a bit of height but as they were 2400mm tall ceilings we figured we would be ok. Joiner got a load of board and batons and him and myself fired into getting it up as quick as possible so the plasterer could get it completed as soon as possible. Of course, this was after the electrician had run wiring and made all the access for the new downlighters. Made a quick map of locations to ensure that he could drill them out without any problems.











Plasterer cracked on with the porch, then kitchen ceiling then blended in all the radiator positions and walls in living room that needed tidying up.











Joiner carried on with doors, skirtings and facings. One of the original "quirks" of the house was that none of the doorframes seemed the same size. Rough dimensions, yes, standard size. Nope. Original plan had us trimming down the doors to fit the frames. This meant ordered 18mm oak lipped doors without finish. However once the joiner saw the frames without the facings on he decided it would be better to replace the inner faces of the frames to fit the standard door sizes.







I decided I was just going to use Danish Oil on the doors as I'd used that in the previous house. Very happy with the finish. Still need to give them a second and possibly third coat. In between doors I started filling round all the walls. Such a bad state after removing all the dado rails, skirting. Loads of picture holes etc etc.









Skirting in living room going down with a gap to allow us to slide plywood underneath when we come to do the flooring in there. Just going to have to take joiners word on that being the correct way to do it.












Crumpet

1,612 posts

119 months

Saturday 9th March
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Looks like a cracking plot of land, especially with that garage! Looking forward to seeing the finished job.

RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Saturday 9th March
quotequote all
Looking forward to seeing it finished as well. The two of us have spent the last year and a half getting our respective properties up to speed, on the market, selling, moving to rented place, and working on this place. I cannot wait for the time that I can just potter about with my own projects.

I also never realised how much I would grow to hate filler and decorators caulk.

Antony Moxey

4,401 posts

158 months

Saturday 9th March
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RichTT said:
Skirting in living room going down with a gap to allow us to slide plywood underneath when we come to do the flooring in there. Just going to have to take joiners word on that being the correct way to do it.
When we had our kitchen done we went from lino to tiles, and when we did the lounge we went from carpet to wood flooring. In both cases we were advised to remove the skirting boards and reinstall them once the floors were finished. Worked out fine smile
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Crumpet

1,612 posts

119 months

Saturday 9th March
quotequote all
RichTT said:
I also never realised how much I would grow to hate filler and decorators caulk.
I reckon my place is now about 50% caulk! If you get good with the caulk and a detail sander you can get away with even the most abysmal joinery! biggrin

RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Saturday 9th March
quotequote all
Antony Moxey said:
When we had our kitchen done we went from lino to tiles, and when we did the lounge we went from carpet to wood flooring. In both cases we were advised to remove the skirting boards and reinstall them once the floors were finished. Worked out fine smile
It's going to be Karndean in the living room, just had a double check on their website. It's 9mm ply that goes down below, so will slide that under the skirting, then the flooring just gets laid straight up against it.



RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Saturday 9th March
quotequote all
Crumpet said:
I reckon my place is now about 50% caulk! If you get good with the caulk and a detail sander you can get away with even the most abysmal joinery! biggrin
Aye, it makes such a difference though. Running a bead along the skirtings and the door facings and frames has brought everything together. Hides a hell of a lot of imperfections on the skirting level. Then of course the decorator has done a lot of filling and sanding prep.

RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Saturday 9th March
quotequote all
Missus and I took a break from the house for a long weekend in Barcelona for Valentines and my birthday gift of seeing Mastodon. Great weekend and nice to take a break from the house.





Once we returned it was straight back into it. 19th Feb the decorator arrives and our first Joiner, now back again, is carrying on with some other jobs. Primarily to lay some lovely hardwood ply on all the bare floorboards as a nice base for the carpets. This time screwed down and unlikely to give us the squeaking floors that were there before.

Decorator piled straight into prepping the bare plaster and using his awesome dustless sander to prep the walls and ceilings in the rest of the house.













The best bit about having an empty house is the time savings that can be had from employing people with spray gun applicators for the big rooms. Finish ended up really smooth and so so glad we decided to put in the extra plasterboard to cover up the disaster that was originally there. If we'd had the time I would have taken it all down and put it up fresh but as we're on a deadline we had to make a quick decision.











My partner had painted and prepped the small utility room and since we'd booked the joiner for an additional day beyond what we actually needed we got him on to finishing off the floor and skirtings etc in here. The access hatch for the boiler / radiator lines is in here so got him to trim that off and neaten it up a bit compared to how it was before which was just loose laminate boards. Though I don't seem to have a picture for that.







Finished off all the plywood upstairs. We've left portions of it loose so that once the fitted wardrobes are in, and the staircase refurbishment complete, we will rip and lay the last bits prior to fitting carpets. Decorator cracking on, but due to the fact that the house is unheated at the moment we're struggling to get the paint to dry quick enough for him to be efficient. Having to run portable blow heaters as best we can to keep the decorating moving on.











Lots and lots and lots of prepping, filling, sanding, caulking, undercoating, coating, coating blah blah. Quite happily never paint skirtings and frames again. Ever.





Must admit, from here on out it's just a case of rooms and walls getting progressive coats of paint. And isn't particularly exciting. Bathroom downstairs had a lot of time sanding and stripping back before painting. Decorator did a really good job in here.









My dad spent about a million man hours around the property edging grass, weeding between paving and then powerwashing everything. Made a really big difference.





I got to start sorting out the TV wall and the media cabinet. It was mostly made from 18mm MDF so pretty solid. But horrible stuff to work with. Like really horrible. I've also decided that I don't particularly like the doors I've designed so will likely make some new ones at some point. Everything was filled, sanded and undercoated. Pulled the shelves out of the unit for painting. The wall at the back of the unit is pretty rough so will end up just giving it a rough fill and paint.

When the lads put it together they forgot to put in the cable access on the wall side of the top. I decided would be handier to just have 2 x cable runs with one on each side. Wifi unit and phone handset will sit up here. Possibly charging station for gadgets as well.













Alucidnation

9,933 posts

109 months

Saturday 9th March
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You didn't need to batten off the ceilings to fit new the plasterboard.

You could have fixed it directly to the existing.

Coming on nicely though.

RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Saturday 9th March
quotequote all
Alucidnation said:
You didn't need to batten off the ceilings to fit new the plasterboard.

You could have fixed it directly to the existing.

Coming on nicely though.
The pictures don't give true picture of how bad it actually was. In places was single skin, double skin, and triple skinned already (god knows how). It was also off 50mm both north south and east west. So we've levelled it out. I think we would have struggled to make a further skin sit as nicely as it does with the battens.

RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Monday 11th March
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Still just decorating going on at this moment. Decorator unfortunately taking longer to finish due to the time it's taking for the top coats to dry. He's having to split his time between another job during the day, and ours in the evening. Thankfully he only lives a couple of miles away so not too far to travel. But poor lad must be working 15 hours a day. Doing a good job though.



Whilst painting was ongoing I decided to tackle the last big job that I'd been putting off. Mainly because this room won't be getting done for a while until funds are available. And we were using it as a storage room for all the random tools and things. It was a shame to lift up this floor. Solid wood flooring, but it will be carpeted in here and while I had a skip on site I decided now was the time to rip it all up. Joiner had already completed the facings inside (despite me asking him not too).

All the boards were nailed together and to the floor as well, which was incredibly frustrating. But an hour or so cleared the room. Folks must have had some built in units at some point, was probably a bedroom.













Back to the living room now and the decorator managed to get a couple of top coats on the walls and it's really starting to take shape. Fireplace now really stands out as a feature piece against the walls instead of being lost in a sea of colour and patterns. I also took a bit of time to fill and patch the inside of the media cabinet.

TV wall all painted and ready for the electrician to come back and finish up the wiring.










RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Tuesday 12th March
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So decorator mostly finished up stairs. Everything is ready for the fitted wardrobes to go in. Only bugbear with the master bedroom is the horrible cable from the security sensor that's in the hallway. This was previously running from under the floorboards in the hall, under the carpet / door, and then up the side of the facings on the door. It's old and horrible, caked in paint. I'm assuming that I could possibly splice and replace the cable? Will have to look into it. Only problem is that I'm going to be away when the carpets get laid and won't have time to sort it before.











So on to the next big item on the list. Getting rid of the front doors. I must admit that I had wanted something with a bit more glass on the doors + side panels, but got overwritten on that one. Typical modern anthracite door though. But very happy with the patterned glass.

Lads phone whilst we were still at the rental house asking when we would be there. Of course we'd left a key with their office so they could let themselves in if needed but this was left off the paperwork. No problem he says, we'll just break in. Never got to see the old door coming out, but they were well into preparation by the time we arrived.







Electrician back as well. Had to re-bore the holes in the kitchen ceiling for the downlights since we'd over boarded the ceiling, thankfully all but one of my measurements were correct, and one I had just forgotten to write down. So we moved it slightly which actually worked out better and more in line with the rest of them.





Aaaand before I knew it the lads were done with the front door. Bit of sealant and patching to do. They also got the new side garage door installed as well.










RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Thursday 14th March
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So moving on with the electrical work. Finally got the downlighters going in to the completed rooms. Upstairs master bedroom just regular LED on dimmer. For all the rooms downstairs we're using Philips Hue white ambience to tie into the whole house system.











Sharps dropped off all the installation stuff for the wardrobes and basically just cluttered up the place due to being 2 days early.





Sparkie got on with important things like getting the TV unit finished and with a help from his mate, TV on the wall.







Sofa's arrived as well.



Fast forward a week or so, Sharps back round to start working on the wardrobes. Sparky ran out of time allotted so is off to another job in the meantime. Middle bedroom first and then started on the master bedroom.













And that pretty much takes us up to date as of the middle of March.


smithyithy

4,226 posts

57 months

Thursday 14th March
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Some great progress, really enjoying reading this.

How has your experience been with Sharps, in general? We've been thinking about custom built-in wardrobes / storage and they're typically the one that comes to mind first..

RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Thursday 14th March
quotequote all
smithyithy said:
Some great progress, really enjoying reading this.

How has your experience been with Sharps, in general? We've been thinking about custom built-in wardrobes / storage and they're typically the one that comes to mind first..
Hit and miss. The sales experience was fine, we let the designer have a pretty free reign on most of the interior design as they tend to know best. Good suggestions. Some had to change slightly when the surveyor came out to do the full measure up. Not much discount to be haggled for. Think we got about 6% off the original quoted price, which like all these other companies already comes with a built in discount most of the time. Being able to customise your design is a nice option. Very flexible on how you want each unit to look, combinations of materials and finishes on the sliding doors for example.

Communication was a bit hit or miss with their office. Mostly our mistake as original contact details were for me, but travelling for work and no mobile phone access meant missed calls. Despite forwarding on contact details for my partner again and again.

The prep work they require for the installation is quite extensive as they typically don't install backs, and sometimes sides, to their wardrobes. So all the walls must be pre-prepped. In our case not so much an issue as we were plastering and painting everything anyway.

Delivery was fine, 1 week before installation date. Install seems to be going ok, partner seems happy with what's gone in but wont have a chance to see it myself until early April.

Edit: however, all that being said, the spaces that we're putting the wardrobes into are bloody awkward. Lots of angles, lots of the panels needing scribed to wonky old walls etc etc. In that sense it was a no-brainer to get a proper fitted system in place rather than a standalone.


Edited by RichTT on Thursday 14th March 09:22

smithyithy

4,226 posts

57 months

Thursday 14th March
quotequote all
RichTT said:
Hit and miss. The sales experience was fine, we let the designer have a pretty free reign on most of the interior design as they tend to know best. Good suggestions. Some had to change slightly when the surveyor came out to do the full measure up. Not much discount to be haggled for. Think we got about 6% off the original quoted price, which like all these other companies already comes with a built in discount most of the time. Being able to customise your design is a nice option. Very flexible on how you want each unit to look, combinations of materials and finishes on the sliding doors for example.

Communication was a bit hit or miss with their office. Mostly our mistake as original contact details were for me, but travelling for work and no mobile phone access meant missed calls. Despite forwarding on contact details for my partner again and again.

The prep work they require for the installation is quite extensive as they typically don't install backs, and sometimes sides, to their wardrobes. So all the walls must be pre-prepped. In our case not so much an issue as we were plastering and painting everything anyway.

Delivery was fine, 1 week before installation date. Install seems to be going ok, partner seems happy with what's gone in but wont have a chance to see it myself until early April.
Cheers for the info, doesn't sound too bad. We have a loft room that would require a fair bit of designing around (which is their bread and butter I'd assume) but it's all painted plaster currently so by the sound of things we've need to do a fair bit to get it 'install ready'..

I'll keep an eye on your progress and how it turns out :thumbsup:

RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Thursday 14th March
quotequote all
smithyithy said:
Cheers for the info, doesn't sound too bad. We have a loft room that would require a fair bit of designing around (which is their bread and butter I'd assume) but it's all painted plaster currently so by the sound of things we've need to do a fair bit to get it 'install ready'..

I'll keep an eye on your progress and how it turns out :thumbsup:
No, having had free standing units before it was definitely the best use of space for our situation. They can work around wonky walls and the like, but anything that you would consider building up against needs to be 'finished' as that's what you will see in the back of the cupboard.

AC43

6,706 posts

147 months

Thursday 14th March
quotequote all
RichTT said:
I got to start sorting out the TV wall and the media cabinet. It was mostly made from 18mm MDF so pretty solid. But horrible stuff to work with. Like really horrible. I've also decided that I don't particularly like the doors I've designed so will likely make some new ones at some point. Everything was filled, sanded and undercoated. Pulled the shelves out of the unit for painting. The wall at the back of the unit is pretty rough so will end up just giving it a rough fill and paint.

That really appeals to my inner OCD.

I was sort of trying to achieve something similar with a comms cupboard in the hall to hide the RCD's, alarm, CCTV, phone, TV & sat interconnects, wifi & base stations etc.

I managed to get everything tucked away out of site but the randomness of how everything has been placed irritates me every time I see it.


Edited by AC43 on Thursday 14th March 11:37

RichTT

Original Poster:

731 posts

110 months

Thursday 14th March
quotequote all
AC43 said:
That really appeals to my inner OCD.

I was sort of trying to achieve something similar with a comms cupboard in the hall to hide the RCD's, alarm, CCTV, phone, TV & sat interconnects, wifi & base stations etc.

I managed to get everything tucked away out of site but the randomness of how everything has been placed irritates me every time I see it.


Edited by AC43 on Thursday 14th March 11:37
This is it all wired up. Obviously without the shelves and kit in place. Plan on running a soft cable tidy top to bottom to keep everything organised. Some of it is not ideal. Will have to run a phone cable from the master socket up to the base station. Will obviously be HDMI coming from the 2nd and 3rd shelves down to the underfloor cable conduit as well. Will post up some pics once it's all installed. I also have a bit of OCD when it comes to planning this sort of stuff. The guys did a really good job in getting it pretty much as I designed it.







In other news it appears that despite two visits from the Sharps surveyor to draw it up, and then reconfirm once we'd plastered. Still couldn't measure correctly.






Edited by RichTT on Thursday 14th March 11:53