Friday, 7 December 2007

Still painting trim, porch, starting to install windows

I've put in several hours now on painting and installing trim / windows, but there is still so much more to do. I keep thinking something is done, then when I look at it from a slightly different angle, or with better lighting, I see more spots that need a touch-up, or a fill, or sanding down.

Step S - (install porch assembly) - the instructions say to lay the house on its back but I didn't do this - I found it easy enough to just slightly lift the roof piece and slide the porch trim assembly into place. I had previously checked that a) the slots in the roof were wide enough to accommodate the tabs on the porch assembly, and b) that the tabs going into the wall from the porch assembly were going to fit into their slots. I also trimmed down the wall tabs so they just went into the house wall, and wouldn't protrude too much on the other side (particularly in the stairwell where it is practically impossible to get at them. I applied glue all around the top of the assembly but was worried about the base adhering to the porch floor, as the tabs are quite loose in their holes. So while the assembly was clamped to dry, I also fitted the Porch Base Trim (step S.3) making sure to glue it to both the porch post and the porch floor, for some extra adhesion. I let it dry all night, then took the clamps off, holding my breath in case the whole assembly popped back up off the floor, but it didn't. Whew. I then added some additional trim to the post bases with coffee stirrers, giving a panelled effect that also covers up the raw edges.

Step S.2 (Porch Roof Trim) - I dry-fitted this and drew a pencil line around the inside then removed the trim. I used the pencil line as a guide when spreading diluted glue and sprinkling with bird sand. Once this was dry, I removed the excess and painted it black for a 'flat roof' effect. Then I glued on the painted Porch Roof Trim. I made sure to trim the tabs so they wouldn't protrude too much into the house.

Step V (brackets)- the majority of my brackets disintegrated when I punched them from the plywood sheet - the interior seemed to just crumble to brown dust, leaving me with two pieces of veneer skin. I may try to recreate some for the roof trim, but for the porch I decided to substitute some dentil trim that I had, which I think looks quite shoplike. Once painted, I think it gives a good profile.

Installing windows - looking at other pictures of Greenleaf houses, I can see that many people apply the painted windows on top of the house wall, leaving the house wall showing as a different coloured 'filling' in the sandwich of the exterior and interior window trim. I didn't think this looked very realistic, so I have been painting the inside of the window cutout to match the exterior trim. This sounds simple, but the reality is a lot of rough wood so sanding and filling. Also, most of the exterior window trim is not an exact match to the profile of the window cutout. I debated sanding the window cutout to match the exterior window trim, but was afraid of distorting the opening. So painting a little 'surround' around the window cutout, to match the exterior trim, disguises the fact that it is protruding a bit. On the front dormer window, I also painted a little 'surround' in the green body colour where the balcony was going to go, as it will be impossible to get in there to fit clapboard or paint after the balcony is glued on. So far I have glued on the two bathroom windows, the dormer windows and am working on the kitchen bay window.

Step M ( Front Dormer Gable Trim) - this assembly took an incredible amount of sanding - in fact it was more like sculpting at some points. The cut-outs have quite rough edges, but also, when you place the trim over a contrasting colour, you notice right away how irregular and unmatched they are. It took quite a bit of fiddling to get them to an approximately similar shape. I don't know what shape the cutout on the very peak is supposed to be, mine was just a rough opening. By the time I finished sanding and filling, it looked a bit shell-shaped so I left it at that. There was quite a bit of filling/sanding needed on the outside edges, and to cover up crevices where bits of ply had fallen out, etc. In the meantime, I decided to finish the sides of the barrel roof in clapboard, which I painted green. I found when I fitted my Gable Trim that it did not fit entirely flush against the front of the house on one side, so I was careful to leave my clapboard protruding slightly from the house on that side to fill in the gap. I also painted a ring of green where the cut-outs of the trim would show through to the layer below, and at the top where the Front Dormer Trim/Back would go, so that I would get a three-layer paint effect. The Trim/Back I painted in the dark blue trim colour. Clamping the Gable Trim turned out to be almost impossible as you can only get a clamp on at the very top, so I used Quick Grab glue and clamped with hand pressure for a few minutes.
Step T (Balcony) - I found that I had to trim down the 'tabs' on the balcony a little bit with my Dremel sander before it would fit into the opening, and also slightly adjust the back of the brackets so they would fit flush against the house. Then I glued it on, with lots of glue around the 'tab'. You can see how I clamped it on by using my clamps through window openings and some scrap wood.

1 comment:

Sandie said...

Painting around the windows to match the trim is a good answer to ill-fitting trim - I find this to be a real problem with some Greenleaf kits.