house – day 126 – running water

Fiona didn’t come with me to the house today and it’s just as well as I detoured via Sittingbourne to go to Axminster and buy a few things. It’s not Fiona’s favourite pastime. I picked up a diamond drill bit, a drill guide another set of augers and bi-focal safety glasses (my eyesight seems to be getting worse).

At the house, the plumbers were getting on with installing more showers, toilets and basins. The new diamond bit (and water feed) made light work of the porcelain tiles they’d been struggling with yesterday. Paul had brought in an extra person to help him finish the decorating, which means we should have two rooms ready today.

I kept out of the way and started soaking and scraping the study ceiling. Messy work, that leaves a you covered in musty-smelling, grey-green crap. We need to get the ceiling ready so Mark can skim it ASAP and if I don’t get this muck off the ceiling, the plaster will be on the floor a short time after Mark puts it up there.

Calvin popped in to check on progress and discuss a couple of small issues. Whilst we were all talking in the bathroom, the trapdoor fell open, missing my head by a centimetre or two. The look of alarm on the guys’ faces was surprising to me, as I was completely unaware of it dropping. I had wondered why the hatch was open when I went into the bathroom earlier, it looks the like the catch isn’t very secure. I thought they’d been in the loft, but it appears when I’d re-cut the trapdoor to fit better (only down the long edge), I’d somehow tightened the door against the hinge side and it now didn’t latch very securely. It should be an easy fix, to pad the latch out with a shim or two.

I went out for lunch and called in B&Q to get a different kind of loft latch and more filler.

Back at the house, I set to work on the latch and lock for the bathroom door. This door is much thinner than some of the others and there’s very little room either side of the drill bit (about 2.5mm) so it has to be an accurate straight cut, 5 1/2inches deep. It was a little nerve-wracking drilling the hole and it worked OK, but some of the resin filler popped out on one side. Once the latch hole was in complete, it was clear that the hole I’d left in the door for the handle was in the wrong place. Out with the resin again, there’ll be more sanding and priming tomorrow.

I left around 19:30. At last we have running (cold) water in the house and nice working toilets (too nice to use whilst the house is still a building site). The plumbers didn’t get everything done today, but one more day’s work should see it finished However, we now have two rooms completely decorated. All we need to do to make them habitable, is to install blinds, lay carpets and fit the doorknobs and latches. Maybe we will be living here very soon.

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