Greengate Ranch Remodel
Remodeling a Daylight Ranch in Oregon

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Garden Shed #22 - Constructing the Sliding Door

I was able build the sliding shed door today. The weather in Oregon is outstanding right now, and working outside was great. We decided to go with a traditional barn door "X" pattern, as shown...

Most of what I have done on this shed is fairly simple construction. The door was a bit more technical, so I decided to post a "how to" on my photo blog with a number of pictures of the process. How to build this sliding door. If you have some level of experience with woodworking / construction, this should give you the needed additional info to build something like it.

I really like the transom / top row of windows that they are putting into garage doors these days, so I added them here. The back sides are built to hold standard size picture glass.

- 1/4" Luann plywood (Home Depot) - 2 pieces at $11 each - $22
- 10' long economy 1x4's (Home Depot) - 11 pieces at $2.80 - $31
- 8.5 x 11 glass (Dollar Tree Picture Frame) - 6 pieces at $1 each - $6
- Total: $60.

The rail and roller assembly cost about $100 for everything. So with paint and latch hardware, I will be in to this for just about $200.

Here is the opening and rail for the door:

Garden Shed #21 - Pergola

I built the pergola and mounted it over the window yesterday. I am really happy with the scale and form - it definitely adds to the "cottage" look. Here are a couple of pictures of it in place...

The window is 4' wide and the pergola is 8'.

I fabricated the pergola from five 8' long pressure-treated 2x6's - total cost of about $40. After cutting, I painted each piece before assembly. In the past I have tried to paint these once assembled, which is not a easy. The rest of the shed trim will be painted this same dark brown. Once we reside the house (hoping early next year), I will mount similar structures over the windows on the west-end of the house to help filter the evening sun.

I also mounted the box-rail for the sliding door on the other gable-end. Once I build and mount the door, I will decide if I want some sort of pergola or structure over it.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Garden Shed #20 - More Painting

After church this morning the sun came out, and it looked to be a good day to finish spraying the shed. As soon as I got the second coat on, the clouds came over and it started to pour. Luckily, there was no wind, and the rain came straight down. The eves of the shed pretty much protected the siding, and everything turned out OK.

I really like the way the two-tone scheme came out. We have dark brown for the trim which will go on in a few days. I have feeling with the humidity in the air, the paint will take at least 3 days to fully set.

Next activity is to get the windows and doors built, then the steps and ramp. Once all that is in place, I will build the pergolas that go on the gable ends.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Garden Shed #19 - Priming and Painting

After traveling and then being sick for the past week, I finally got the chance to start painting the shed. The rain will of course be coming to Oregon, so I had to get motivated.

I decided to prime the shed first, since the cedar lap siding we reused is over 20 years old, and it would likely absorb a lot of paint. Rather than buy more primer, I took the greener approach and used paint I had left over from other projects...

After mixing all the small containers together, I had a color that was surprisingly close to the one that we ended up choosing for the top part of the shed. As anticipated, the cedar quickly dried and looked as if it had been barely painted in a number of spots - so I mixed up the large containers to a light color and applied a second coat. It took almost 3 gallons of mixed paint to get a good base, and I was happy to use stuff I was going to recycle anyway (and save $60).

The sun came out and dried the shed enough to allow me to put to put the final coat on the top. I sprayed this on using a paint crew plus sprayer. It worked great: it sprayed as much paint as I could handle, and was fairly simple to clean up. It is definitely worth using a sprayer - the set-up and clean-up are well worth not having to roll the paint on. We chose Sherwin-Williams Super Paint, which is their best exterior product. At $40 a gallon on sale, it's not cheap, but it is supposed to basically last forever.

The pictures above and below show the sage-green color on the upper area. Tomorrow I will spray a similar color on the lower area that is a couple of shades darker. Later this week, once all this is really dry, by DW and I will do the trim in a dark brown. She is way better at cutting-in trim than I am.

Finally, since I had the sprayer out, I put a base / primer coat on this bench. I originally built this to hold kids video game equipment, and it's being reincarnated into a seat for our walk-in closet. I sanded off years of grime, routed all the edges, and distressed it a bit. I think my DW will end up painting it black.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Lighting the Stairs

After having a visiting family member slip on our dark stairs in the middle of the night, we immediately decided to install some sort of lighting. No one was seriously hurt, but it was a wake-up call. I decided to put louvered step lights at the bottom and mid-way up the stairs.

These units cost about $25 each, and are fairly easy to install. Running the wiring under the stairs is also a lot easier than breaking out sheetrock.

Here is a picture of it installed in the wall and turned on.

The picture below shows it without the cover on.

There are a number of options for these type of lights, including smaller ones. I decided to go with the larger 5" x 8" version that uses a standard 120V bulb. With a 7 watt CFL, they don't take much power - and they put out quite a bit of light (40W incandescent equivalent).

Instead of putting the lights on a manual switch, I found a sun-down to sun-up electronic timer to control them. This one is made by Intermatic and cost about $30 at Home Depot. There is a slightly cheaper one, but is specifically not for use with CFL bulbs.

After I put these in, we liked them so much, I extended the circuit. It now includes lighting from the kid's bedrooms downstairs, up the stairs, and into the kitchen. This creates a "light path" throughout the house, that everyone has appreciated.

PDX Street of Dreams - Rating it as "OK"

We finally got to tour the Portland Street of Dreams. We have got into the habit of going on at the very end of the show, where the crowds are small and ticket discounts are available. I would give the show an overall rating of "OK" - not fantastic, but not bad either.

If you are into modernism and sweeping views (both having their merits), I think you would give the show an A+. If you are strictly a cottage or rustic style person (our favorites), maybe a B - but still worth going.

Our favorite house was #2, which was a more rustic style. Incredibly, it had a small kitchen (we liked it), and nothing was pretentious. I think the best feature was the king trusses, used both inside and out.

We also liked the doors, which were done in a craftsman style:

One of these days when I don't have 20 other projects going, I am going build doors like this and replace all or our hollow-core, six panel, yes-they-were-cheap ones in our main living areas.

I saw this drop-leaf console table in two of the houses.

I am planning on copying this design for a coupe of display tables I will build over the winter.

This was the nicest looking outdoor kitchen...

Not a large area, but very well done.

My DW really liked the foot spa:

I consider this was the most "interesting" piece of art:

Bronze GI Joe men as a focal point. I like climbing, but I think this would be a bit much in the stairwell.

Some interesting points:

  • Every house, modern or rustic, had a 1x1 mosaic tile fireplace or wall. While I like mosaic, I think it will be one of the features that gets dated over time. I prefer it incorporated into other patterns.

  • Horizontally oriented houses with low pitched roofs are back in style. I did get some good ideas here, being we are remodeling a daylight ranch.

  • You can paint your house any color you like, as long as it's a shade of taupe.

  • Tray ceilings and soffits are definitely in. I was impressed by the amount of design that went into the various ceilings.

  • Built-in espresso makers are hot. Most of the houses had one. My DW really wants one (me too), but we will need to save up our pennies - they are $2,000 or more. We have spot picked out, and I am ready to cut the hole in the wall a soon as we get one.

    As I stated, the show was worth the trip.
  • See my article library on eHow...