Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Beat the outlet into submission.

Today was a nice day.  I even got out at an almost normal time, getting out at quarter after 5.  Fairly cool.  Fall is coming.  Even my leaves are beginning to change. 




The concrete is gone.


I also fixed the power and got my test apparatus up and running.  Turns out whacking the outlet a few times allowed me to reset the GFCI outlet down by the pole.


Now that I had power, I continued load testing the electric.  First I backfed the dining room circuit and tested all those.


I then backfed the utility room circuit and got the rest of the outlets.


The only circuits untested are the 240V circuits.  Those will be tested when I finish the generator outlet.

I also tested a bunch of the other stuff.  The bathroom fan worked.  It is quieter than I expected, though I think I should have chopped off more of the ducting though, I can hear the loose mylar flapping a little.


Thankfully I also still had the clip on lamp in my car, which is what I used as my tester last year when I looked at the panel.  This gave me a bulb to test the lights that I have installed.


The light down at the end is rather bright.  And I know, I need to clean up.


The outside light works too.


I started to get ready to install the lights on the trailer, but ran out of daylight.  I got the trailer registered yesterday, so I have the plate and everything for it. 


I still have some spare bulbs to bring up, and now the earlier nights are a lot less of an issue.

Monday, September 17, 2018

Premature end to electric load testing.

I went up with Barry at lunch today to start doing some load testing on the electric.  I wanted a second person there just in case.  It turned out that you seemingly can't backfeed through a GFCI outlet, so I ended up backfeeding through the dining room circuit.  I tested the fridge circuit and when I went to move on to the next circuit, and all my power died.  I determined that it was dead at the pole, putting a premature end to my plans for testing the circuits while I had Barry up there. 

I went up after work to try to diagnose the issue (bringing up a multimeter from work, mine was in the toolbox that was stolen), and started poking the power down at the meter.  Despite being the sketchiest part of the electrical setup, the outlets on the pole ended up being the culprit.  I didn't get a picture since I didn't have enough hands, but the box and the breakers all had 120V on them, but even with the breakers on, I only got 1.9V at the outlet.  Not enough to run anything.  The outlet is toast.


Barry seemed willing to help me install a new box on the outside, which I might take him up on.  Even though it still seems to work, I have my concerns about its ability to provide 100A through the corroded power plane.

I kinda need to fix this soon, since I now only have power via the generator.

Sunday, September 16, 2018

Hot miserable day.

Today was hot.  Very hot.It was only the 80s, but the dew point was in the 70s.  And no breeze to help.  I got a late start which didn't help either, missing all the cooler weather in the morning.

All the outlets are now installed.  It occurred to me after installing all the outlets that I might have installed the mud plate backwards.  Meaning the part I had to trim should be extruding out from the box.  Oops.  I will have to replace at least.


All the wires are tied in too now.

I also installed the cross bars.  These are the bounds for the shelves that I intend to build into the wall cavities.  I am not planning on any sound dampening, so I am intending to build shelves in the stud bays instead to make use of every square inch I can.

I was also informed that I put the wrong gender on the plug I installed for the generator.  I was just going to swap it out, but unfortunately the only male end they had would appear to be larger than the electric box...

I can take the lip off, but if I take the outer casing off, the terminals all fall right out.  I will make it work, but it is annoying, since this was the only male terminal that they had without buying a "generator box" which is just a terminal and an exterior box and costs nearly a hundred bucks.  

At that point, it was mid afternoon and I was pretty well cooked and had run out of liquid, so I mowed the yard before the remnants of Florence are supposed to come in tomorrow night.  I am hoping I will only have to mow once more for the season.  

I had hoped to have the generator wired up before tomorrow to make the testing of the electric easier, but I will either have to make a custom cord, or find a way to make it fit.  I think if I just cut off the outermost wall of the outer casing it will be fine, but then I have to find another way to secure it to the box.  I might just trim the sides to make it fit and then screw it into a backplate.  Not sure I like how secure that will be though, and there is a chance it might be too deep.  We shall see.  I am still planning on heading up with Barry tomorrow at lunch to start testing the electric, assuming it hasn't started raining yet.  I can just backfeed it with the exterior outlet and extension cord.

I also measured everything for the bathroom, I need 13/16" clearance above the floor for the drain, and one and a half inches clearance for the toilet flange.  I have started working on that design, and also on the new checklists.  

Two lazy days of updates.

I actually had yesterday off, another comp day, since I had 39 hours in by the end of Thursday. 

I was lazy about working though.  I did a little bit more on the electrical.  The laundry/utility room switch is in.


I even installed the clamp like you are supposed to.  Too bad the box doesn't fit with the clip in it.


I got the other switches in too.


Unfortunately since I "trimmed" the box to make it fit in a 2x3, one of the screws isn't holding.  This is unfortunate and I will have to come up with a way to fix it.


At that point I was feeling a little bit out of it, and went for a drive.  I scouted out another route in to work.  It is a bit longer, but has no major hills and since 9 is destroyed at the moment it avoids that.  It was a good day for a drive.

Today I went and picked up a trailer.  It is a 5x10 trailer so it is long enough for the tractor and snowblower.  I got a really good deal on it, I only paid 200 for it, when most of the time you can't fine 4x8 trailers at that price.

I was actually surprised that I managed to get it most of the way backed in.  Yes, the jackknife is intentional.  Not bad considering I hadn't backed a trailer in years.


It has one of those wheels.  It doesn't fit the trailer real well, but works well enough.


The areas that are normally rusted on the trailers have all been painted and well cared for.  The trailer also had its bearings repacked last fall. 


The decking is a little soft, but I was able to walk on it.  It will need replacing, but should be good for the rest of the year.


They weren't kidding when they said the wiring was sketchy.  It didn't reach the plug on my truck for starters, and one of the wires was broken so they literally just wrapped the post with the wire and called it good enough.


The lights are broken too.


I need to clean out some of the crap so I have a better place to put it. 


I considered pulling up and backing it in, but it wouldn't have worked since I can't turn the truck on the path, it is too narrow.


In its temporary home.


I then took a trip home and grabbed some breakfast and the like.  There might have been a slightly unintentional nap in there as well (oops) and then headed back up.  I started with making the switch fit.


I installed the last GFCI outlet for the kitchen as well.


I put in a few corner braces as well.  They were all toe-nailed in, but 2x3 doesn't toenail well, it normally splits.


Got the last electric box installed.


And the missing stud as well.  I have a 2x3 for some cross beams between the two center studs that I intend to build into shelving in the wall. 


At that point the drill had died so I went home.  I stopped on the way and picked up a few boxes from work though.  I had intended to bring them home Thursday but forgot.  Hopefully this will cover most of the boxes I need to move.  They are all (except for the top one) double walled so they are thick and heavy duty. 


I am actually running low on things to do.  I have a few more touches on the electrical side to finish up, and I can finish installing the light fixtures, but pretty soon I will need to start working on the bathroom flooring  I need to come up with another set of checklists too, what I need to move in, what I need before winter. 

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Finally got up there this week.

I finally got out early enough to head up and get at least a little bit of work done.  It wasn't much, but I got the two switches for the bathroom wired in.


Sadly that is it.  Sunset is coming early enough now that if I don't get out before 6 it isn't really light enough to do much inside.  Hopefully when the power is on that will change though.

Sunday, September 9, 2018

Not as much done as hoped, but still a decent day.

Today was a crisp brisk fall day.  I actually grabbed a flannel as I went out the door, and I actually wore it.  I started with getting the last pieces of ceiling in.


I made a small oops.  The wires need to go through the top plate.  The board next to the pipe is where the top plate will be.  Oops.


It isn't pretty but it works.


After that was installed, I installed the base plate for the other interior wall.  This was a real pain.


I seem to be a stud short, but everything is in place.  I can toenail it in later.



Interior wall in place.


I ran out of time, and didn't finish the electric.  Turns out I am an outlet short, though I would swear I had another two or three GFCI outlets (the box on the left is the kitchen outlet).


When working on the other wall, my chop saw had a minor failure.  It is just the laser line, which I rarely used anyways, but still annoying.


Tomorrow is supposed to be awful weather, and based on what I just saw about it hitting KY, I might not go up tomorrow.  That said, I am still making good progress. 

It has been a while since I updated my checklist, but a couple more items are checked off.  Pretty soon I might revamp the list, and make one for before occupancy, and one for before winter. 
  1. Fix ruts in driveway.
  2. Put lights on the plow.
  3. Get the oil changed in the tractor.
  4. Get the tire chains installed and a weight installed on the back.
  5. Get the plastic installed
  6. Get the truck oil undercoated.
  7. Fix leaky underbelly.
  8. Get skirting installed.
  9. Find a way to run power that won't be damaged by snow/plow/snowblower.
  10. Find a way to prevent the snow pushing on the shed.
  11. Finish clearing off the slab.
  12. Run the rough plumbing. (includes gas line for stove)
  13. Install wall insulation.
  14. *Install flooring.  *12
  15. Install light fixtures.
  16. Install ceiling and attic insulation. *19
  17. *Install paneling  *13, 14
  18. *Install interior wall *14
  19. *Complete electrical and plumbing.  *17, 18
  20. Install ceiling *19
  21. *Install final flooring (carpet/whatever).  *18, 19
  22. Install interior fixtures.  When I get here, I will likely create a new list for the interior work.

Finally a productive day.

Today was a beautiful fall day.  The high for the day didn't even hit the predicted 64.  Partly sunny.  Perfect for construction.

When I got up there, Mike (the septic guy) was already up there.  The entire old foundation is ripped out.


Apparently they braced the foundation with tires.  Unfortunately while he agreed to take the trash out, tires he can't just bring to the transfer station, so I will have to deal with them.  He did offer that I get roll off, he could load all the trash, including the big pile in the backyard.  It is a win-win for us both, he doesn't have to pay to get rid of the trash, and I don't have to deal with it.


While he was working on that, I finished the insulation.


After that, I started to assemble the interior wall.  All the studs are attached to the base plate.  I didn't attach the top plate, since that will have to be done inside.  I also installed the electric boxes while I still had access to them.  The dual gang box had to be "modified" since it was too deep for a 2x3 wall.  The chop saw did the job, though I did crack the box doing it.  This is roughly what the wall will look like.


After it was still early afternoon, so I dragged all the press board out, tossed it in the shed, and made a Home Depot run and got some underlay for the ceiling.  It worked out a lot better.


So much better in fact, that I got three pieces put up in the last couple hours of daylight left.  Considering the previous two took an entire day, it is definitely an improvement.






There is only one piece left, which I will do in the morning.  I am hoping that I can get the ceiling and interior wall in tomorrow.  That is a bit of a tall order, but if tomorrow is as productive as today was, it is definitely achievable.  I did notice today that the days are definitely getting shorter though.