Wednesday, 26 December 2007
Thursday, 20 December 2007
Friday, 14 December 2007
Friday, 7 December 2007
Friday, 30 November 2007
Friday, 23 November 2007
Sunday, 18 November 2007
The toilet and sink are from a cheap set, which I improved with better taps from a different sink. Plus I cut down the old-fashioned cistern and mounted it directly on the back of the toilet for a more modern look.
Originally I had planned to put the toilet in the closet, which is why the closet interior is all finished, but when I tried the toilet in there with a doll in position (use your imagination), I discovered that any would-be toilet user would have to be a contortionist. I had wanted to leave room for a tub, but my husband says that a tub would look silly in a shop bathroom anyway. I was kind of thinking that it was a period house with its original bathroom, converted to a shop. But by losing the tub, I had room to move the toilet out of the cupboard. I've also got room to put a comfy chair for the customers in the corner.
Tuesday, 13 November 2007
I'm still gluing in cornice. Going around the inside of the bay window was challenging. I cut a cardboard template that fit the bay ceiling, then folded that to get an approximate angle for each corner, which I then drew onto the cornice moulding in pencil, then cut with a razor saw. There were still some small gaps but I was able to fill them and the end result isn't too bad. Probably if you had paid attention in Geometry at school you could calculate what these angles are but I'm not sure it would help you if your mitre box only cuts 45 degrees.
I proudly displayed my house to a visiting dh friend, and rather dishearteningly she looked at my painstaking interior paint job and told me encouragingly how nice the house would look once it was all wallpapered! I resisted the urge to say anything.
Sunday, 4 November 2007
Preliminary step: you need to sand flush any protruding tabs on your corners or where you will be gluing the fascia strips, so that the trim will lie flat. Do this before you try to glue the strip on and get glue everywhere (ask me how I know this...)
Step Q.a - Main Roof Fascia - I haven't put this on yet because I'm not sure if I want it to go on top of the shingles, or have the shingles butt up to it.
Step Q.b - Mansard Roof Fascia. Straightforward, apart from all four short pieces being significantly wider than the long side pieces, so I had to trim off a good 1/8th inch off their width. The two back wall pieces were also a bit too long, and had to be trimmed down.
Step Q.c - Corner Boards sub-assembly. I did not pre-glue these into an L-shape off the house (which is what the instructions say) because that just seemed highly unlikely to be successful. It doesn't give you any wiggle room if your wall isn't quite flat, or straight, or not 90 degrees at the corner. Instead I glued these directly on the house, one corner at a time. Where I had electric wires in the way, I used my Dremel tool to make a slight groove for the wire to pass under. Two sets were a bit too short, one board on another corner was slightly too long and had to be trimmed. Clamping these required a fair bit of creativity. Obviously lots of masking tape, and then some clamps hooked into nearby windows etc.
Step Q.d - Kitchen and Living Room Bay Fascia. Kitchen was straightforward - both side short pieces needed trimming in length. The Living Room Bay was a bit trickier. I bevelled with the Dremel tool again, but there were gaps that had to be filled afterwards.
Step Q.e - Kitchen Bay Corner Boards - straightforward, miniature versions of the main house corner boards.
Base - I decided (as I pivoted the house 360 degrees for the nth time) that the house needed a base to protect the foundation paperclay and give me an easier way to turn the house/move the house. I don't have a lot of room, so I kept the base fairly small, just slightly wider than the house on three sides and allowing for the porch steps at the front. My base measures 2 feet wide by 20 inches deep. It is 15mm MDF (multidensity fibreboard). I still want to be able to lift the house off, so I hot-glued some blocks onto the base (after tracing around the house with pencil) in strategic places to hold the house in place. These required a certain amount of fine-tuning, but luckily you can pry the hot glue off again if you get it wrong. Once I was happy with them, I put two chipboard screws into each block.
Wednesday, 31 October 2007
I jumped ahead to Step Q.h which is applying the foundation trim, and then applied a paper-clay masonry effect around the foundation. I used my Dremel tool to bevel the joins of the wood strips around the bay, so they looked more like mitered joins. I found one of the pieces on the right wall was about 1/4 inch short, so I filled the gap with a bit of scrap wood from another sheet. A bit of filler smeared along the top edge, and in the joins, makes these trim strips look pretty good.
This is the first time I've used paperclay - it is actually Das modelling clay because that is all they stocked at Hobbycraft - but found it quite easy to use.
I used a plastic trowel to mark out horizontal courses 3/4 inch apart, and vertical 'stones' one inch wide. Some of the stones I split into two horizontal stones. I pounced all over with a stencilling brush to give texture. Then I applied a thin film of wood glue to the foundation, and pressed on the clay, using the stencilling brush to prod the clay onto the wood. The cellar windows were cut out of the clay after it was applied, while it was still wet. I also pressed the cellar sill and window frame into the clay to create depressions where I can glue them into later.
Friday, 26 October 2007
Wednesday, 24 October 2007
I've finished installing the lights now, and I thought it might be worth outlining briefly what (and how) I have installed. The choice of lights depended somewhat on what I had in my stash, because I only bought new lights for the attic.
Attic Level: I installed four matching ceiling lights whose wires go up through the foamcore ceiling and are brought together in the front right quadrant by drilling holes through the roof supports and feeding the wires through. The wire from a fifth light hanging inside the front dormer feeds up through the gap in the ceiling of the front dormer, and comes back to join the other attic wires. All of these wires were soldered into a makeshift connector strip from a couple of pieces of copper tape. The tape is soldered to a wire which feeds down through the barrel roof, through the roof cornice, to connect to copper tape on the right hand outside wall.
Upper Stair: a hanging 3-light fixture is positioned over the stairwell, so that its wire can feed up into the empty roof space outside the attic wall, and from there come down the same gap as the attic wire and connects to the copper tape.
Bathroom: an out-of-sight bulb inside the toilet cupboard has its wire feeding across the floor (which will have a tile covering) and out a hole drilled above the kitchen bay. A one-light ceiling fixture in the bathroom has its wire hidden inside a routed out path in the ceiling (which I will fill) which feeds out a hole drilled in the right wall. All these wires connect to the copper tape on right hand wall. The copper tape runs down the side of the house and in through the cellar window where it connects up to the terminal block (to which the transformer can be connected).
2nd floor main room: a ceiling fixture near the front of the room has its wire feeding up into the attic (where a piece of furniture will be hiding it) and out the front attic wall and out the front wall. There it is glued along underneath the cornice to meet with copper tape on the left-hand external wall. A table lamp at the open end of this room feeds through into the toilet cupboard and across the bathroom floor and out the same hole as the other bathroom wires. A table lamp on the external (left) wall of this room feeds out a hole to join the copper tape on the left wall.
Kitchen/office: two ceiling fixtures come up into the bathroom, wires feed out as above. A wall sconce on the very back wall, near the bay, feeds out and down the external wall, and into the foundation where it joins the copper tape inside the foundation.
Main ground floor: a five-light hanging fixture feeds its wire up into the 1st floor near the archway entrance, where it will have to be hidden by a carpet, then runs out the front wall, along the porch roof, and meets the copper tape on the right wall. A wall sconce on the left wall feeds out a hole to meet the copper tape on the left wall. A wall sconce on the back wall feeds out, down the outside, and back into the foundation space.
Porch/display windows: Two 'fluorescent' tubes are positioned, one above each side, and connected to copper tape running along the underneath of the porch roof. This runs along until it meets the right wall and splices into the copper tape run there.
Now that the lights are in, I can go back to Step M and finish installing the roof.
Step M.J.4 (Mansard Roof /Left etc.): I installed the first piece of mansard roof according to the directions, and the mess in the picture is the result. I discovered that it is VERY important to run a knife along the scores on the back of these pieces, connecting the cuts right to the edge of the piece and deepening them. Otherwise they will not bend (despite what the directions say) and will just splinter and snap unevenly so that you don't get a smooth curve. I made the cuts on the other three roof pieces and they went in no problem at all. I found a small hammer very useful, because once the roof piece is snapped into position it may still be bulging above the roof supports and not curving properly. If you lightly tap along the piece with a hammer, it will encourage the wood to break a little more along the score lines on the back of the wood, and it will hug in and curve to meet the supports. Use lots of glue.
Step M.L (top main roof): this was straightforward. I had to trim my left piece so it would go around my chimney (since I forgot to put it on earlier). I also had to trim the corners of my front and rear pieces to get them to fit in. Notice that the front piece fits under the little 'fingers' projecting from the barrel roof supports.
Step M.M. (Front dormer gable roof): these didn't fit all that well. I had to deepen the notch considerably on one piece, and the result is a bit wonky, but I think once it is all shingled, you won't notice it.