Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Window Rot - Or How I learned to stop worrying and love the heat gun...


windowrot_2
Originally uploaded by merideth.
This weekend kicked off "rotpick-fest 2005"; meaning we started pulling out our windows and picking out the rotted areas on them and their corresponding window sills. Was it fun? Sorta. I mean, there's something entertaining about giving your windows what amounts to a big chemical peel.

And dear lord, the satisfaction of watching the paint bubble up into big soft blisters under the glare of the heatgun...dude that's just cool. (P.S. no matter how hard you try to avoid touching the hot part of the gun...no matter how many times you run the mantra "it's hot" through your head while working...you WILL burn yourself at least minorly, at least once...it does not reflect on your intelligence.)


We got 2 windows (of 14) started this weekend. We started with the push-out casement windows and will work our way around the house to the double-hungs. We're gouging, sealing, epoxy sculpting, painting, rehanging, weather-stripping, and hardware repairing. It will not be a small task but i'm so anxious to have house openings that actually open as the hot weather approaches.

I'm also psyched to have the wood stripped so it can be repainted sans annoying, sloppy glops. (Are we kidding with the drippy paint? Did 3rd graders paint our trim? and our windows shut for that matter?) That's right. We're stripping and REPAINTING. We like the white trim. blah blah gorgeous wood...i dont want to hear about it. It brightens the place up. And turns out, frequenly little budget bungalows werent done up in fine mahoganies and oaks but in mere paint grades. Our house is one of these. If the next h.o. wants to strip it off though, they owe us a box of krispy kremes for leaving them with substantially fewer layers of paint to slog through.

Cant wait to play more with that heat gun. You can bend PVC with it!!!!

14 Comments:

At 5/24/2005 04:49:00 PM, Blogger beckibee said...

As a witness to part of this window situation this weekend, I have to say that these girls are IMPRESSIVE.

I did my own little ethnography of the housemade girls as I sat on the couch in work clothes and a cute work bandana(clearly for show only, as I quickly realized I was out of my element and retreated to familiar territory).

In my studies of their emic language use, I have written down some of their strange words to reasearch at a later date: Torque. Epoxy. PVC. Faux Bronze. And my favorite, Orange Stripper. Such a strange and wonderful experience to watch them in their natural habitats.

And if the windows weren't enough, Merideth made a fabulous BBQ dinner too. Is there anything they can't do?!?

 
At 5/24/2005 05:12:00 PM, Blogger Greg said...

Forget Playboy. A picture of an attractive woman stripping paint off a window now get's my pulse going.

 
At 5/24/2005 07:44:00 PM, Anonymous heather said...

I'm still healing from my own paint gun burn...received while stripping my own windows. I'd make a bet on who gets done first (you or me) but it's a sucker bet. You'll win, I'll be lucky to get done by winter! :)

 
At 5/24/2005 08:29:00 PM, Blogger jm@houseinprogress said...

Oh yes! I know this one! I showed up for the Chicago HouseBloggers Happy Hour with bandaged knuckles thanks to the friendly heat gun. Even if you don't touch the gun, a piece of hot melty paint is sure to land on your hand and sear itself to your skin. OUCH! Also hear you on the paint grade wood. We stripped two built-ins that were built to be painted, not stained. Although the wood windows upstairs were probably stain-grade at some point, the wood is so messed up now after 90 years of moisture and neglect, that we may have to (sigh) repaint them. But white trim is nice when your wood isn't in good shape and stain grade...

Congrats on the windows!

 
At 5/25/2005 10:14:00 AM, Blogger derek said...

wearing gloves when using the heat gun usually cuts down on the burns. I didn't know wood rotted in California, I guess there's more moisture in S.F.

 
At 5/25/2005 10:16:00 AM, Blogger Jess said...

I hear ya on the white paint. We've got it and I like it (though it's starting to chip). At some point, I'm going to do what you gals are doing... Unless you freelance? When's the next time you're in Southern Illinois? ;-)

 
At 5/25/2005 02:30:00 PM, Blogger Brit said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

 
At 5/25/2005 02:49:00 PM, Blogger Brit said...

hmm bend pvc huh? I could make a few quilting frames that way. I'm so much better at the DE struction part of home owning, but we also suffer from elementary school painters as previous owners who painted all the windows shut as well. Which is totally awesome in a house with no air conditioning and only one window that opens on the third floor and two that open on the main floor.

Last year the baby and I hung out in the grody basement watching movies (he moved less then) because it was too hot everywhere else.

PS...nice pic ya poser!

 
At 5/25/2005 04:26:00 PM, Blogger Kendra said...

I was going to do a post about how I painted my living room and all of the trim on the first floor of my house but I realized that Meribeth would quickly put my little home improvement project to shame. I didn't take pics of the event because unlike Meri, I did not make painting look effortless. I would have been the girl covered in paint, tripping on the drop clothes and cursing the dog for having the balls to shed while I was painting. ***Note: I just felt bad about writing balls because I still feel guilty about getting Barley fixed.***

 
At 5/26/2005 12:45:00 PM, Blogger merideth said...

wow...look how everyone sooo knowwws about the stripping and the paint gun...

grex i think that flattering comment shows that you're officially consumed by a love of restoration :)

jeannie ouch! 2 built ins? that's a loooot of strippin'!

oh derek dont you know, we dont need no stinking gloves! also there is plenty of rot (both dry and regular) in the bay area...it rains consistently and heavily from november to april and during the summer we have the fog...we're all about the moisture!

Brit dude! i didnt pose! i didnt even know she took the photo! and plus grex liked it :) ps. you had a duplicate post so i pulled one down

the rest of you are nutty, nutty girls

 
At 5/30/2005 10:03:00 AM, Blogger Scott in Washington said...

One of the really cool things about doing dumb, dumb things is that there is no expiration date or statute of limitations on realizing your dumb move. Two summers ago I chipped and pressure washed however many years of paint off the exterior of our place. The little nav gas bottle got used quite a bit but now I realize a heat gun would have been much more appropriate.

 
At 5/31/2005 02:43:00 PM, Blogger Niely Morgan said...

ooooh! Now I have heat gun envy! I stripped all the wainscotting in my dining room with the nasty, gooey stripper chemicals that kill brain cells. I swear I lost the ability to do all higher math funtions for at least 6 months. We are currently up to our necks in a new stripping/painting project and I must ask; what is that beautiful paint effect in your livingroom? Can we steal it?
Niely & Vivian Morgan- Owners of a 1910 victorian in Richmond VA

 
At 6/02/2005 11:53:00 AM, Blogger Kristin said...

I love that pic, too. Verrry sexy. :) I've raved about the heat gun on my blog, too; watching the paint bubble up and then peel off in great big hunks. Ahhhh, it's wonderful!

 
At 11/24/2006 02:53:00 PM, Blogger Thomas Rockwood said...

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