Dirty Hands

I fired my contractors.    After tearing out all of the paneling, ancient ceiling tile and old insulation in Monk’s basement retreat by myself, I had to call in the experts to cut a new, legally-to-code-for-emergency-egress window out of the foundation.


What a mess that was!  Concrete dust is mighty fine–and I don’t mean in a “Hey, check out that good-looking window installer” kind of way, either!  After they were finished, I insulated the ceiling (my neck still itches from being exposed to falling fiberglass) and prepped for the return of the contractors for the new drywall.   They did a nice job hanging it, but my first clue that they didn’t really want to do the finishing work was their initial plan to subcontract it.  My second clue was when they called me down to tell me that they thought I should just put moulding along all the corners because due to the [mumble, mumble, old stud wall, mumble] they would be impossible to get straight.  My third and decisive clue was the crappy job they did with the taping and first coat of mud.  Oh, yeah.  And the fact that they didn’t show up for four days in a row.



So I picked up Myron Ferguson’s DVD on hanging and taping drywall from the library, gathered my tools, and got to work.  When the guys finally showed up, I told them to pack their tool belts and move along.  (And they agreed to come and hang more drywall in the future for me if they didn’t have to do the finishing work!  A very agreeable firing, if I do say so myself!)    

It took me nearly six hours to cut down the first mudding to where it would be easy to manage.  I finally got to tape the inside vertical corners (not so bad) and hit the rest with coat number two.  I’ve done major drywall repair work in the past, but never an entire room virtually from scratch. 



I’ve always thought that drywall finishing had a very “sculptorly” quality.  You get in a groove and the feel of it takes over.  Sometimes I think I missed my calling.  I’ve always loved this kind of thing so much I could have been a girly remodeler or builder.

 The only thing I like better than mudding is laying wood floors.  I’ve already ordered some floating spurl maple for this room.  I won’t get the satisfaction of whacking them in with my 14 pound flooring hammer, but I hear that it’s pretty fun and satisfying to lay floating laminate, so I can’t wait! 



3 Responses to “Dirty Hands”

  1. alobsiger Says:

    Don’t you know that doing your own remodelling can be detrimental to your health? Plus also, no mighty fine contractors in and out of the house… Present company excepted…

  2. liz Says:

    Wow! I am so impressed! You are a good person to have around. And give the rest of us artistically/mechanically/home repair challenged folk some hope. R got me some home repair books for Christmas. Maybe it’s time to start reading them.

  3. Candy Schultz Says:

    Wow do you contract yourself out? That is quite a job.

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