Sunday, May 28, 2006

Revisiting Remodeling



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I have been working on the stair remodeling lately...between graduation shindigs and end of the school year hubub. The stairway history is this. 17 years ago, (a blink of the eye new parents!) when the house was new, the stairway was carpeted with the same carpet that ran through the entire second floor. Being carpeted, the treads were put in with rough white board like you might buy for shelving. Out of sight, out of mind.
Of course, all carpet is gone now, so the stairs will be seen and must stand on their own .


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Last summer, I bought 14 bullnosed pine treads and stained them while I was staining trim and other bits. They have sat in the living room, stacked behind the couch, where they made a convenient shelf for bills, books, CD's, stray socks, magazines, etc. (Sound familiar Laura?)

A couple of weekends ago, I pried off all the old tread boards. After work, when I could stand it, I measured and custom cut each new tread to fit. I'm going to make a little jig to pre drill and countersink screw holes in each tread, then glue in a little wood plug to hide the screw. I was able to use the existing risers, after some cleaning and a fresh stain, ... that was a labor and time saver.

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Of course matching stain colors to ensure consistency is important in a project like this. I use the Flounder method and find it to be quite satisfactory.

Yup, that'll do.

22 comments:

pablo said...

Always good when the dogs can help with the household chores. Good Flounder!

You should hinge one of the treads so that there is a secret compartment beneath it. Then you can hide all of your secret plans in it. Also, I think little novelties like that increase the resale value of a house just be being unique.

I had a friend in high school who had a built-in bookcase in his room. It turned out that this book case swung out and revealed the stairs to the spacious attic. Very cool!

Floridacracker said...

Pablo,
We are of like mind on stuff like that. I absolutely love built ins and hidden dohiggy thingies in a house.
Hmmmm, I haven't laid the new treads yet....still time...

robin andrea said...

Glad to see Flounder is helping out and earning his keep. Did you give him a green treat for his labors?

Nice job on the stairs.

Wayne said...

Heh - FC, when it comes to light and color you know what you like.

But beyond that, the ambition to take apart the stairs and remodel is something I take would take my hat off to if I wore one. I'm expecting and hoping for a manual I can buy somewhere.

I'm ok with people who want carpet on their stairs, but really get an eternal lift from looking at bare wood, myself. And Flounder, despite his canineness, looks remarkably to be the shade and color I'd like too.

As for the hidden doothingies and so forth - I've had in my mind to begin to bash out holes in the walls and replace the holes with alcoves for putting cat-proof things in. Of course I do want a secret passage or two, just like I'm sure you and Pablo do.

Abandoned in Pasadena said...

Flounder sure does come in handy, after all, doesn't he?

Looks like a mighty nice stair case and a job well done...Pat yourself on the back!

Nilbo said...

Nothing quite like the character that comes from real hardwood on stairs. Properly stained and protected, they'll give you a lil rush of pleasure and satisfaction for years to come. Great job - and excellent idea for matching the stain! Doesn't work so well with my dog - she's black and white.

Laura said...

Stacks of pine treads behind the couch? Makes perfect sense to me. Having used the stacked boxes of ceramic tile in our bedroom for a makeshift side table for several years, I can certainly attest to the practical nature of such a thing.
(I was also extremely relieved to get the tiles OUT of the bedroom at long last! I'm sure your wife feels the same way about the pine treads.) ;)

Had to laugh about matching Flounder up with the stain. It's actually very practical, because then the dog hair won't show so much. We plan to replace the carpet in our bedroom, maybe I ought to match it up to Buddy's coat. HMMMM... I get the best ideas over here!

Laura said...

And I forgot to add that the staircase is gorgeous.Great job there! I just had my hub over to the computer to show him your rattlesnake pictures as well. He was all ready to dig into our photo albums and find his snake pictures too, but I sent him back to the kitchen to get to work. I have THREE feet of working counter space in there and I want it DONE! Lol..the snake can wait!
i've got to get back to work because i'm getting the evil eye, too. such is life...

Likes2mtnbike said...

The Flounder Method.
*snort*
...Pepsi out my nose, lol.

Woodie said...

This means that Flounder can now lie on the stairs incognito, with only his nose visible....you'll now need to buy a thermal imager so you won't step on him...

Woodie

Floridacracker said...

To all, I will post an after shot once I actually install the new treads...these photos show the old ones.

Robin,
I think it was green...a bit of male color blindness myself...or is it just my inner canine?

Wayne,
Our house looks so much like a cabin from the outside that we are going with that theme (in a Florida kind of way) and really pumping up the wood volume inside. I told the queen about that robot cleaner thingie you have. I'm all for autonomous cleaning devices.

Abandoned,
He is very handy and is an especially good foot warmer.

Nilbo,
You could go with African Veldt zebra theme. Thanks for commenting and welcome aboard Pure Florida.

Laura,
I thought you could appreciate such practicality. I'd probably be finished with the remodeling around here if I weren't on the blog so often. Tell Rick when he finds his snake shots we are interested...well, not sweet Hick, but the rest of us are!

Likes2mtnbike,
OOPs, hope ya missed the keyboard!

Woodie,
Hey, you're right! Maybe I should paint the computer chair and desk the same color as my skin so I could sit here without being bothered by...my roomies.

Mrs. S said...

Two puppy pictures in two days! Hurrah!!

And 17 years = the blink of an eye?... I'm not sure my puny pregnant brain can process that information right now. I can't imagine 17 years feeling like half a second.

Out of your whole post, that sentence caught me the most lol.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

Ho ho. Good dog. You're just the right color.

Deb said...

Wow, it takes some ambition to finish a project like that. I'm envisioning living in an unfinished house for, well, the rest of my life.

And the Flounder method--great!! I'll be be using the Sally method. :)

Tjilpi said...

My mate Bruce who is *really* into snakes wants to know if you are a dabbler or a real herpetologist?

How about keeping an hinged step which hides a Diamond Back Rattler in it, for the inquisitve?

Bruce says he is going to allow me to scan some photos of him, when younger, handling some *real* snakes.

He reckons that Oxyuranus microlepdotus - will get you going.

Here is an introduction

http://www.venomdoc.com/downloads/2005_BGF_Oxyuranus_natriuretic_toxin.pdf

threecollie said...

How practical to use the dog matching method! I should replace the red carpeting with that zebra striped stuff you suggested.

Floridacracker said...

Tjilpi,
Just a "dabbler" I suppose, I've loved them and the rest of the herps since I was a kid and have had and handled a bunch of 'em. I'll check out that address today. I tried to leave a comment on your site, but IE keeps shutting down after a few seconds on your site. I did get to hear the bird before it happened the first time.

ThreeCollie,
Dogs...they're not just for herding cattle anymore.

Zanne said...

Gosh, what an ambitious project. You're doing a great job and it's so much fun just to watch you work. HA HA.

Got any secrets on proper staining methods? My son talked me into refinishing the existing vanity in the master bath, a.k.a. the "ghetto spa", instead of buying new.

NOTE: In search of what he thought was a leaky pipe my husband literally ripped apart the bath. Everyone knows he never follows up on these projects so years later I'm still living with the "ghetto spa" theme.

Floridacracker said...

Zanne,
The big danger in remodeling is "getting used to unfinishedness". Pretty soon, you don't notice the bathroom with no door, the missing last piece of trim, the stack of boards in the hall...

Of course our guests do.

Hick said...

I like the color scheme matching any dog hair bunnies that may be floating around the staircase. I should probably do that because I could knit a new dog with all the dog hair Jazz loses around here.

Remodeling...tis the season. We are about ready to start ripping out a wall in my kitchen. I'm not looking forward to the dust.

Leslie said...

We've lived in a state of "remodeling" through two houses and 10 years of marriage. I don't know what I'd do without boards and boxes and hardware everywhere.

Your Flounder is such a patient sweetheart.

Floridacracker said...

Hick,
You'd think our dogs would be bald by now.

Leslie,
Stories like that recharge me and reassure me that we are not psychos. Thank you.