December 2009

Continuing the restoration of window frames and hardware I talked about in my last post, this entry completes the restoration of the frame portion of the project bedroom windows with new cord on the sash weights and weatherstripping that will keep these 86-year-old windows comfortably draft-free and energy-efficient. Sash Cord and Weights There is just something […]


Old windows get a bad rap. To listen to the way replacement window marketers tell it, old windows are creaky, stubborn, lead-coated draft monsters possessing a single-minded intent to kill your monthly heating & cooling bills. The current U.S. federal tax rebates for energy efficiency are also helping push window replacement to homeowners who want […]


A Fully Stripped Radiator

by Josh on December 30, 2009 · 6 comments

in Bedroom,Projects

A few posts back, I talked about my disappointment with my progress onstripping the paint from the radiator for my bedroom project. With the radiator already partially stripped from a prior session of less-than-satisfying paint removal, I found the chemical strippers I tried either a) didn’t work well,  or b) softened paint but produced strong […]


Breathing Easier

by Josh on December 28, 2009 · 0 comments

in Journal

As a follow-up to my post about buying an air purifier to use in the house and my project space, here is a used filter comparison to show how well it is working. Obviously the filter on the right is new.  The filter on the left has been in continuous use for about a month, […]


From my history resarch, I know that there was a fire in my house a few years after it was built.  One fire is plenty for any house, so I have been making improvements recently to make sure fire safety here is up to snuff. Along with the new firelogs I have been trying, I […]


Every year when the weather turns cold I order a load of cord wood to burn in living room fireplace. But I have been slow to fill my firewood rack this year, so I decided to try some of the engineered logs widely available in hardware stores, grocery stores and home improvement centers.  I found […]


As I try to keep my bedroom project moving forward, I am working on an assortment of small projects to get the room ready for sheetrock. One of these had been stripping paint from the window frames and radiator in the room. But before I could start with the paint removal, I had some preparations […]


Window Frame Insulation

by Josh on December 21, 2009 · 3 comments

in Bedroom,Projects,Windows

In my long-running bedroom project, the next piece that I am tackling is the restoration of the two double-hung windows.  Recently I thought of a great way to insulate the weight pockets next to the window frame. And then I thought of a different idea that would actually work. But before I get to that, […]


Taking Precautions

by Josh on December 18, 2009 · 4 comments

in Journal

The latest issue of The Small House Gazette, the newsletter of the Twin Cities Bungalow Club, featured an alarming story about a club member who exposed himself and his family to lead in the course of his home renovation. A couple years ago I tested for lead paint in several places around the house and […]


A Perfect Match

by Josh on December 3, 2009 · 6 comments

in furniture,Projects

Just in time for snow flurries, the adirondack chair in my front yard has finally been united with its match. I kept the design the same from the prototype, though I needed to trace some parts directly from the first chair in order to match them. The only other change that I made was to […]