Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Tons of progress (literally)

Don't know where to start. Have been very busy in the basement which has not been fun. Removed between 18" & 24" of dirt from the basement floor (that's a lot). To make sure this did not undermine the granite foundations, the structural engineer and I came up with a detail that enabled me to dig down without fear of lateral movement in the basement walls. The result is a 24" curb around the perimeter of the basement and around the main chimney. Simple enough. Just lots of manual labor and a few concrete pours.

Now this is where is gets confusing: There were 2 chimneys: The main one, and a smaller (18" sq.) one that vented the old boiler. The latter has been consciously phased out with the new boiler being direct vented out the side wall. This chimney being demolished was quite a job. I wish the renovations gods could have landed on my lap and asked, "Are you sure you want to demo a 160 year old chimney that is unlined/ has been venting oil / coal burning furnaces for it's entire life; while you're living there with your wife & 2 year old?" It wasn't removed for only the venting reason, but more importantly for future 2nd floor layout reasons. (You see, we're long on 2nd floor bedrooms, and short on hallways). And since I knew it was a goner at some point, I wanted to do it now so I wouldn't have a scar in the future in my newly poured concrete basement floor.

So, the structural curb is in, the chimney is now on the back patio (yes, our neighbors hate me), and the majority of the excavation is done and off site. Should wrap up the dig out this week and god willing, pour the final slab next week. At which point, I WILL host a party in my basement (think man cave). I just checked earlier in the blog, and realized that this coming March will be the 1 year anniversary of my yet to be unpacked, table saw. Who knows, maybe I'll get her spinning by year's end.

Probably failed to mention in prior posts, but the new boiler & new oil tank (pics soon) are running as smooth as a whistle.

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