Rough Services and Rough Inspections


Windowed, Decked and Sided

So with the house wrapped up just in time for tax season, I leveraged my tax returns to purchase my windows. I received several bids for the windows, but ended up going with a company in Tucker, GA. So after carefully measuring my window openings, I placed my order. Two weeks later I went to pick them up, and they were the wrong size.  Queue up week long, window induced headache.

Finally I figured out a fix and proceeded to install the windows.

With the windows in, I tossed up some soffit.

I spent some time thinking about my window and door trim. I mocked up some different styles, but in ended up going with something kind of traditional.

Finally after all the prep work, siding started to go up.

So far, so good.

How we are sitting so far:

Amount spent: I stopped keeping track a while ago, but I think i’m somewhere between $35,000 and $40,000.

Tool Acquired: Lots of fucking awesome ones!

Emotional breakdowns: *Pops Xanex* “None.”


Thanks for stopping by ya’ll.

Next up, rough electrical, plumbing, and Air conditioning.

A House Size Sweater, Rain Jacket, and Roof

So a couple of years ago I stumbled upon a group of building science nerds. These guys hangout at greenbuildingadvisor,com, and, they play with high efficient building systems.  Using simple building principles like high air tightness, high levels of insulation, and proper ventilation, you can cut the energy use of a home  50-70%.  So I decided to experiment with some of their design ideas on my house to see how they worked.

so I started off with improving the air tightness of the building envelope. so after I put up the OSB sheathing, I taped all the seems with 3M’s All Weather Flashing Tape. The point of this is to cut down all the drafts through the house.

After taping all the OSB joints. I put a “sweater” of recycled foam insulation, over the exterior of the house. this just helps improve the overall insulation R-value of the wall.

After the insulation was in place, I wrapped the foam with house wrap, then used pressure treated 1x3s to hold the assembly all together, the 1×3 strapping is screwed through the foam into the wall studs with 5 inch long screws. And if you think installing 5 inch screws in 30 degree weather is difficult, you’d be correct.

I used recycled polyiso foam that was removed from the roof of warehouses, the foam is in good enough shape for what i’m using it for, even though it was stained with some mildew. to be on the safe side, I sprayed both sides with fungicide, and let the foam dry out before installing it on the house.

My roof rafters were a bit too shallow to hold enough insulation to meet code. so I ended up building what is called an over-roof, where you add part of your insulation to the top of your roof deck, then add a layer of OSB and then your roofing material. It seemed to work well, though it makes the roof line look a bit fat.

My brother and brother-in-law came over and gave me a hand installing the metal roof panels.

So far so good.

Up next Windows, and Siding.

Framing Parte Tres: Return of The Framer!

So with the walls of the house sorted, It was time to work out the roof. The roof was made up of 3 layers of shingles plus the original cedar shakes. 

So the first order of business was to order a roll off dumpster, and take off the old.

My sister Lydia stopped by and sweated in the dirt for a couple hours.

As well as Wes.

With all the shingles off it was time to sort out the roof framing.

The roof was made up of 2x4s on 32ing centers, covered with skip sheathing (1×4 strips). To bring this up to code, We sistered 2×6 to each of the original 2x4s. Then add a new 2×6  in between the existing rafters. 

My friend John came over and helped me put in the ridge beam.

With the ridge beam in place, I started cutting rafters.

Once all the rafters were in place, we started to throw up sheating. And tar paper.

With the tar paper on, I took down the rest of the tung and groove on the interior. I was able to salvage a lot of this old heart pine. I stacked it up, and i hope to use it later for my flooring.

So clean.

With the roof frame sorted, I framed up the rest of my interior walls. And installed the front door, good feelings.

Framing Parte Dos: Revenge of the House!

So with the  “Side shed” framed up, I finally got around to the front of the house. the house is originally 850 sqft., so I was on the hunt for any extra square footage i could find. I talked to the county, and they okeyed me bumping out the front of the house to what was the front porch. this this bought me an extra 100 square feet. and let me fit the front office/bedroom into the house: so far so good.

The first thing that needed to happen to build onto the front was remove the porch roof, and siding. I rented a roll-off to put the old lumber in. After i finish with the front, I will start framing up my walls, so i went ahead and stripped all the old siding off the house to get access to the studs.


So the guys who built the foundations for the porch must have had an off day. The builders had the front porch angled off from the rest of the house, I made for some creative framing, but in the end I think I was able to get it lined up.

The county wanted me to add additional studs in the walls, so I took the opportunity to frame up my windows where i wanted them.  then sheathed the whole thing in OSB.


After the front was done I moved around and did the same on the back.

So now all the foundation, floors and walls are all in good shape and up to code, the only thing left is the roof.

Frameing Parte Uno: Some New Hope!

So the framing of the house is a cool mix of full 2×4 mill cut lumber, and 4x4s. There was a fair bit of bug damage to the some of the framing so it was necessary to shore up the wall and replace certain timbers piece-meal.

So with timbers coming out of the wall  and the need to put into place new door openings, I put up a temporary wall to support the roof while framing everything up.

This wall is one of the main load barring walls, so I added some OSB to give it a little more shear strength.

Before I finished off the sub-floor, I spray foamed the crawlspace walls all the way to the rim joist. Then laid down the rest of the plywood sub-floor.

Now with the floor in place, it was time to get cracking building the “side shed” back onto the house, this will hold both bathrooms and the utility closet.

My friend Wesley stopped by and helped me get the roof on.

Finally after having the side of my house open to wind, water, and predjudciual looks, I finally got it closed up.

Next up: Tackling the front bumpout.

“With the way clear, our heros continue. Unaware of their inpending doom.”

So with the foundation built, the engineer inspected the foundation one last time, then sent a letter to the county saying I was good to move on with the build.

I Stubbed up my plumbing, then started to seal off the crawlspace. 


I layed down a 6 mil plastic and taped the seams. On top of the plastic I layed down sheats of polyiso insulation.



The Idea behind the insulations is to keep heat loss into the cold soil durring winter, and from preventing condensation on the cold plastic durring the summer. It a bit work for limited gains, but Im hopeing this detail in addition to several other small details will add up to a significant  effect.

With the insulation down, i layed down a second sheath of plastic to cover the insulation, the started to my two main beams for my floor.



The beams were made from three 2x8s nailed together. Then i layed my floor joist between them.



Afterwards I framed the small area on the side of the house, and my extension to the front wall.






Now with the floor joist in I put in my plumbing drains and supply lines.

Now I’ve done a little plumbing before, but wasn’t sure on all the details, so I picked up a couple books on plumbing just to play it safe.

I after much reading and thinking I learned the I am not a plumber.  And plumbing is much more involved than I thought.

As insightful as this epiphany was, I still had the issue of plumbing my house. So I thought “What the hell.” And decided to give it a try.

After many day of getting high in PVC cement, and many hours spent meditating in the plumbing issle of lowes, I finally called the building inspector for my inspection.


He showed up and quietly started the inspection.

After 20 minof near silence broken only by an occasional question, he pulled out his pad, tand signed off on my work.