Alright, so I’m a bit behind on the updates. Unfortunately, between having to head back to work during the days, and having to take a slight detour, things have been moving a bit slow. We had to spend the better part of two weeks working on re-wiring all of the lighting on the second floor, since it was all knob-and-tube, and the lines passed through the bathroom wall and ceiling. Since it’s not a good idea to put insulation anywhere near knob-and-tube (not that it stopped a previous owner), we decided to go ahead and re-wire while we had the easy attic access. Now that it’s done, back to the main project…
After installing the subfloor, the next part of the project was framing in the niche for the vanity mirror. The preparation ended up being quite tricky; we had to cut out about 6 feet of two studs that form part of the bedroom wall, which is, of course, plaster and lath. Making the cuts in the studs was exceptionally easy. Separating the studs from the lath without destroying the plaster took about 3 hours each. Impressively, there’s only one small crack to the surface on the other side, which will be easy to patch.
Then it was a matter of adding in new framing for the niche itself. Since it’s similar in concept to a window, just with wall on one side, it gets framed exactly like a window. Although considering that the wall isn’t load-bearing, I think I may have gone a *bit* overboard…
Needless to say, doing that much work on the back side of a plaster wall sent a lot of plaster dust to the floor. But Brad vacuumed it up; some of it, anyway.
From there, we had to add some additional framing to get the niche down to its rough dimensions. This also gave us the chance to add in some of the accent lighting that we’ll be using.
Another ongoing part of the project has been plumbing the new drain stack. The original cast iron stack was badly cracked in several spots, and leaking in others, so it had to go. Since the drain vent penetration through the roof was still in great shape, and since I’m no fan of roofing, we kept that and tied the new stack into it. There’s still a little bit of work to do, tying in the tub and toilet, and making the final connection in the basement, but the big part is behind us.
Next up was installing the electrical fixtures in the ceiling, including two recessed lights and an exhaust fan. The old bathroom didn’t have a fan, so I’m particularly excited about that addition. And for the recessed lights, I opted to spend quite a bit more and get LED fixtures. They put out a ton of light, using only 14 watts, and should last about 50,000 hours. Even if I leave them on for 4 hours a day, it’ll be 35 years before they need replacement. And in my opinion, the light they produce is a lot more pleasant than CFLs.
Just tonight, we finished installing the last of the insulation required for the ceiling.
It took two evenings of sweaty, itchy work, but now that it’s done, we can install the drywall on the ceiling. That will be a big milestone, not just because it will help stop all of the disgusting hot attic air from pouring into the house. It will also mean we can get to work bringing the bathtub up into place.
Slowly but surely, it’s starting to come together.