Monday, March 23, 2009

Knox Hill Project: Another busy weekend.

Painting,Pruning,Sweeping, Scraping,Building Oh My. Thank god for our Hot Tub back in Indy as today I am sore and tired!

Work progresses on the facade of the Knox Hill project house. We completed more siding replacement and this week I will be making some of the trim panels that will adorn the Square Bay bump out on our house as will as build the flower box that will go under the front picture window. We have also decided the stairs to the front porch will be on the right side and we will create a curved brick path that will wind around of the straight main walkway to it since the side entrance will be our primary entrance.

Trim on these houses can be wood or metal. As evidenced by our front facade dormer! Shown here is the lower part of the Tin surround that adorns our second story dormer window. These Tin decorative elements were ordered and delivered to the site. This type of tin entablature is somewhat rare, usually seen only on Commercial Storefronts, anywhere in the country BUT Cincinnati! Cincinnati was home to dozens of tin smithing shops and one could purchase elaborate detail work that would have been very costly and time consuming to do in wood. Tin holds up well and the only damage to the entire window surround was at the lower edge where water had rusted the lower detail. Fortunately there is enough there and I made patterns so I will be able to cut and make repairs. When the repairs are done it will be good as new.

While on the "big ladder" , funny as how I get older things seem bigger and more heavy that they were 20 years ago? I was able to do a closeup inspection of the 140 yr old slate that adorns the front of our home. It is in truly remarkable condition! There is only 1 loose slate at the very top corner which I plan on getting to via our roof hatch and some minor paint spatter when they painted all the trim white on the dormer. I am researching the best sealer for this slate and any recomendations are appreciated!

Certainly the "backbreaking" part of the weekend was our decision to begin the removal of the "privacy fence on the west property line and clear out the "Forest" of scrub bushes and trees in preparation of our new wrought iron fence that will replace it. The new fence will be back two feet at the actual property line of the house where we found an old circa 1930 wire fence. Apparently when the privacy fence was added 10-12 years ago they just moved in front of the "Weed line" of overgrown brush. We did find
an old heirloom climbing rose which we dug up and transplanted. This project is going to take a few weekends to clear up. I am suddenly finding the need to buy a chainsaw!

Painting is progressing. We prepainted the hardi siding a couple of coats in advance. Once everything is installed I will fo over it with a final brush coat. We have tested the colors on the trim and are generally pleased with the color balance although we will be adding some more trimwork as well as the brackets under the box gutter so at least 2 colors will come into play soon. I had my doubts about using the "La Fonda Territory Copper" (pumpkin) color for the body of the house but once we add the porch and trim out the dormer, I think it will be a wise coice as I know this color will "mellow' somewhat as it ages.

The flowers are blooming along the walkways and we are finding flowers springing to life amid the tangles underbrush of what was once our formal gardens. There is "hope" that someday they will be restored, but it is certainly, given the size of the lot and all the other things we have to do, a
"daunting" prospect.


Bob said...

This looks awesome! I'm so jealous -- Hardie plank siding! Oh what I wouldn't give to replace the siding on the 4 (very high-up) gable ends of our Tudor Revival/English Cottage style home.

I think the pumpkin color is sweet -- make this little gem really pop. Can't wait to see what's next...

I know you're tired, but it's worth it -- so happy to see this house being restored.

Paul Wilham said...

Thanks Bob we are trying to save the siding higher up on the house where possible and using the siding at lower levels where possible, less going to landfills. We will use Hardi on the corner trims as well. You know they make a hardi "stucco" siding material for tudors?

We chose the colors not only for their historic value but to 'make a statement" that our neighborhood is on its way back!

Anonymous said...

The exact same thing happened to the metal work on the dormers at the house where I live. A roofer fixed them.

A lot of buildings in OTR have metal work on them. Both for the decorative top cornices and over the windows (these can fool you as they look just like the stone ones sometimes).

In fact all the trim on my house, the dormers, the cornice around the roof line with all the dental (is that the right word?) detailing is all metal. The porches are the only areas that are wood. The next door neighbors house is the same as is the one across the street. It is really not as rare as you claim. Look around, you will see.

Paul Wilham said...

Well its not rare in Cincinnati, but anywhere else in the country Tin work in residential is VERY RARE and only generally used on commercial buildings or blocks of row houses back east who ordered from companies like Mesker.

Thats what locals dont get. Just how RARE this really is and what an asset it is historically and architecurally.

Anonymous said...

What "locals" don't get? Sounds rather derogatory. The wording you used was awkward and unclear in your description. " somewhat rare, usually seen only on commercial store fronts, anywhere in the country BUT Cincinnati!". Thanks for clarifying. Tin work may be plentiful here and it may last longer than wood, but once it starts rusting, especially on shaped/curved surfaces it is very difficult to repair with out notice. The same goes for carved/shaped stone work that disintegrates over time.