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Hi Everyone,

Here's the big intro:

The Saturday Morning Home Repair Blog (SMHRB) is where we gather to discuss the many and varied aspects of home repair.  Some here are trained professionals.  Some, talented DIYers. All are welcome.  Please feel encouraged to ask questions, share successes, lament sags, drips and cracks and, as always, share any advice that you have for the rest of us.

And I'm glad the intro is big, because it's going on 10:00pm on Friday and I just remembered that I'm up for the AM.  I really didn't have anything ground-breaking to share, either literally or figuratively, so please feel free to de-slack this morning's offering by sharing your own DIY gore and glory.

What's up at your place?

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Comment Preferences

  •  Please leave a comment here (22+ / 0-)

    on the tip jar if you would consider writing a diary for us.  We are in need of people to unlock the shop and boil the coffee of a crisp, fall Saturday mornin'...

    August 23: CJB
    August 30:

    Sept 6:
    Sept 13:
    Sept 20:exlrrp
    Sept 27:

    "Just because your voice reaches halfway around the world doesn't mean you are wiser than when it reached only to the end of the bar." ~ Edward R. Murrow

    by CJB on Fri Aug 22, 2014 at 09:56:44 PM PDT

  •  Working on small repairs and painting a small (12+ / 0-)

    covered porch.  A little bit each day in the heat and humidity will lead to a great looking porch.  I am not looking forward to doing the dental molding at the top.  Any experienced dental molding painters out there?  Helpful hints?

    If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever. &

    by weck on Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 06:05:40 AM PDT

    •  Ha plenty of patience (10+ / 0-)

      and don't load up the brush too much, is all I got.

      •  What LIcenter said. (10+ / 0-)

        And try to work in the shade.

        Good luck.  The payoff is the great look that'll reward you every time you see a job done right.

        "I speak the truth, not as much as I would, but as much as I dare, and I dare a little the more, as I grow older." --Montaigne

        by DrLori on Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 06:31:24 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Thank you for that. What would you think of (9+ / 0-)

        using a small roller?  (Foam or velvet)  I especially hate getting good primer on my hands, it takes forever to get unstuck from the skin and it's too hot for gloves.

        If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever. &

        by weck on Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 06:32:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  On the flat, foam brushes are nice (8+ / 0-)

          On the vertical, not so much. they will drip no matter how careful you are. I personally would buy a (good) brush and use it exclusively. But that's just me.

          •  Can't really roll dentil molding (11+ / 0-)

            I am with LIcenter, I always used a brush, don't load it, paint the indents of the dentil (yes, that is the correct spelling, BTW) molding, a bunch at a time, then go back to remove any drips or sags, and paint the faces. I worked maybe 3 feet at a time, which is long enough to keep the paint wet but easy to reach all of it, and time enough for drips to appear and get caught before they make a mess.

            Also, the trick to painting overhead with a brush is pretty simple - don't load it up! I always use a quality polyester brush, never a $1-$3 brush, they are crap. (My newest cutting brush, a 2 1/2" taper cut, cost $13). WET THE BRUSH before you use it, just slightly - we always just spit on the bristles on the job, it only needs a tiny amount of moisture, and it makes a big difference in how the bristles hold paint. Then, only immerse 1/3 of the bristles in the paint, never more. Never. Slap the loaded brush on the sides of the paint container (inside, obviously, LOL) to remove the excess and push the paint to the interior of the bristles - I rarely wipe a loaded brush on the can lip, it's messy and you lose a good portion of the paint, plus it'll make some of the wet paint dry on the brush, so this is worth practicing! One exception is painting overhead; since I use a tapered trim brush, I often wipe the heel end, just to keep the brush from dripping, since I tend to paint trim with the tip/tapered/toe of the bristles.

            Once you get the hang of properly loading a brush, DAB it into the inside part of your dentil molding, to reach the inside corners with the tip of the bristles (this is why cutting brushes are tapered), and pull down. Repeat as needed, go to the next, load the brush when you don't get the same amount of paint deposited, and just go back and wipe lightly to catch drips. Once your stretch of dentil is cut inside, simply go back and do the front and bottom faces of each "tooth", then do the adjacent trim pieces last, always working from wet onto dry, and in the direction opposite your handedness, that is, I'm a right handed painter so I work to my left.

            I approach all trim/detail painting the same way - do it from the inside pieces first and work to the outermost or face pieces, go back to catch drips and sags, and finish with smoothing strokes from an unloaded brush, that is, after you've used the load of paint you had on it. Paints are coatings that work best at optimum wet and dry thicknesses determined by the formulation of carriers and pigments, so there's no reward for trying to stretch paints, they need to be applied evenly and not get brushed to death. I worked in reactors where an inspector determined our film thickness in mils, both wet and dry, and we had to be schooled to apply the right amount of mils wet so the dry film would be a certain thickness, or we had to remove it and do it again.

            Anyway, that's my take on dentil molding painting. Hope it helps!

            As for me, today is wet but I've been working on the car, new brakes all around, and yesterday discovered a bad outer tie rod end, but my buddy is an ace mechanic and will have both done soon enough. Besides I'm so sore from sitting and bending to clean and paint the calipers and get all the rust off the rims from the old, non coated rotors, I just need a break, so YAY! rain!

            Have a good one, weck; I work like you too, an hour here, an hour there, no sense in pushing til we break, right?

            "When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny." Thomas Jefferson

            by CodeTalker on Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 08:07:36 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

  •  Just got delivered a load of BIG rocks (13+ / 0-)

    for a driveway retaining wall that I've been reworking.
    The original wall and driveway was built 75 years ago where the driveway went down then back up a hill. To level the road, they built a wall that was 8' high out of some rather heroic stones and backfilled with riprap and gravel. No one planned for the daily use of this road by 20 tons of truck and trailer hauling heavy equipment, huge logs, et cetera.
    The guys that built the wall were local farmers that my grandfather hired and they weren't masons.
    The wall held up well for 75 years but it eventually started to tip out and one section fell.
    So I'm widening the road by building a new wall 5 feet out from the old one, making the total thickness of the wall about 8'! And at it's highest point. it will be 12'. It's almost 100' long.
    And I'm using the largest stones my machines can handle. Even some that I can just barely budge.
    My big brother, who does site preparation for house builders here in the area, is bringing me massive stones to build with.
    I have been building walls here for 15 or 20 years but this is the biggest project so far. And the most fraught. It's right beneath my cousin's house at a choke point in the driveway. The section that came down narrowed the road and undercut it, making a very dangerous situation for all the cars, trucks and tractors that travel over it.
    Did I mention the stump?
    When they put the solar panels on the roof of my cousin's house, they cut down a huge black walnut tree that was right up against the low side of the wall. It's butt was easily 24" and the roots spread out a solid 6'. That meant about a third of the root was 2' into the wall at the bottom. I was afraid that if I simply yanked it out with the excavator that I'd collapse the wall. Blasting was right out (20' from the house). Lots of stone and dirt in the root meant that it would kill a chainsaw blade in mere minutes. So my plan was to get some thermite and burn a slot into it, parallel with the wall and leave the parts that were in there where they were.
    Well. Thermite is now a controlled substance. Even the components of thermite are controlled! You have to have a BATFE license to buy red iron oxide! That's RUST!
    And thermite doesn't explode, it just burns.
    I blame this stupid restriction on the 9?11 truthers that claimed that thermite was used to take down the WTC. It was a bogus claim and gave everyone, including BATFE, the wrong impression of what this stuff actually is and does.
    Anyway. I ended up using the excavator to remove it and sure as sh!t, the wall above it came down.
    So now, I'm under pressure to get that section up and filled, screwing up my plan which was to build the wall row by row the full length.
    Meanwhile, I have used up my stashes of large stone and have pilfered as many as I can get away with from the land around me (A lot of the land here was logged in the 60s and 70s, the logging haul roads were roughed out and many large stones were pushed to the sides. I figure they are fair game since they were put there by man, not nature. I leave the natural formations alone.)
    So that's my fun for today.
    I've tried to take pictures of this but they just look like a pile of rocks. Maybe once it's a wall, I'll have something to show.

    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

    by CwV on Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 07:10:21 AM PDT

  •  Still Having Way Too Much Fun Prototyping a Piece (10+ / 0-)

    of new concept for my artisan biz. Well since I have to hand-mass-produce in order to eat, it's 95% accounting [physical accounting of measuring and remeasuring tools, honing edges, stiffening jigs and fixtures, measuring and remeasuring all of that] and 5% relaxing and enjoying a finished item that is what it's supposed to be in all the little details people don't notice.

    --At first.

    I'm gonna see if I can sneak out in the next hour and finish that trellis mount I wrote about 2 weeks ago. I need to add 2 wood blocks onto the brick, then fit half a dozen attachment screws through oversized holes to allow the plastic trellis to breathe with sun and temperature swings without warping.

    Looks like about 15 minutes of work, so maybe 3 hours from now I'll have some views.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 07:32:04 AM PDT

  •  Driveway Asphalt Maintenance/Repair Questions. (8+ / 0-)

    We've never had asphalt driveways before so this kind of maintenance is new to us.

    So we have a lengthy driveway that hadn't been maintained for looks-like 5-10 years and it has the cracks. Also up near the street, since we're in the NE Ohio multiple-Great-Lakes snow belt and sitting on globally significant salt deposits, the asphalt is very scruffy near the road likely a complication of road salt exposure.

    Here's the entrance area with, naturally, a SMHRB-compatible roll of electrician's tape for scale:

    This is a limited area, under 10' in length down the street end of the driveway. My suspicion is that, since I can't afford to rip this out and repave the driveway this year, any repair of this needs to be more robust than the typical driveway sealer.

    The other issue scattered down the driveway and garage apron are big cracks, 1/4" to 3/8" wide in most cases.

    There must be some kind of process & products for staunching these gaps before putting a conventional sealer over the top of the surface.

    Any pointers and hints gratefully accepted.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 08:53:12 AM PDT

    •  I hesitated to answer this, but... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Aunt Pat, Unknown Quantity, LIcenter

      Since no one else jumped in, and I've had 3 driveways like that, here goes my best shot.

      You have to experiment. All my adult life has been spent in the CNY area, also bad winters and LOTS of road salt, lots of shifting and settling and cracking, and I've tried several approaches to correct those things, but the best was to hire a driveway sealing outfit, despite the cost. They can fill cracks and do different types of sealer, including leveling types that will give a pretty smooth surface.

      OTOH, since you aren't ready for a full topcoat/repave job, there are products that you can buy at building supply stores and big box to fill those cracks yourself, the downside being they will all be "cold patch" types, which won't hold up anywhere near as well as hot patching. But then, estimates are free... so I'd get a few first and then decide - even cold patch materials aren't cheap.

      And having done my driveways myself several times with 5 gallon pails of product, I'd say for the small additional cost comparing "5 year" rated or "airport grade" coatings vs having an outfit come in with hot tar to do it for you, it's no contest! I had the entire thing repaved properly, 2 layers, medium then fine, total 7 inches, about 10 years ago, but I'm kind of hard on driveways, heh. The last time I coated it I realized that, despite a thorough cleaning first, additional pails of expensive "airport grade" stuff to be sure it got a thick coat as instructed, and the hours it took to spread in the hot sun, it only looked great for a year (despite the 5 year claim), began to wear off in 2 years, was a LOT of work, and for an additional $100 or so I could have had hot tar AND hot crack patches while I sipped a lemonade in the shade - no way I'll do it myself again.

      Just my 2c.

      "When governments fear people, there is liberty. When the people fear the government, there is tyranny." Thomas Jefferson

      by CodeTalker on Sat Aug 23, 2014 at 02:49:35 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes John (0+ / 0-)

        Hot tar is what is called for before any sealing can be done. Water will get in those cracks, freeze and heave the driveway into little pieces. I agree, call a pro. It ain't worth the hassle.

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