Apple Pie!

As fall is making itself known, with cooler weather and trees starting to dress themselves in red and gold, it is the perfect time for pie making! A few weeks ago, we visited our local orchard to do some apple picking. Among the haul was a bag of Cortland apples. The level of flavor and acid in these apples makes them perfect for baking. And so, that’s what we did.

Pastry

I actually made up the pastry last night and neglected to take pictures. Nothing special, I just look up a recipe on the net (for this time this is it) and follow it. Haven’t followed the same one twice yet they always seem to work. What that says to me is that technique trumps over recipe here. For me that means keeping things cool, not cutting the lard (always lard, not shortening) too finely, and not overworking it once you add in your liquid.

Our counter top is soapstone. In my opinion it is the best counter material you could ever ask for and does a good job of keeping things cool. In any case, pastry was made and wrapped up in cling wrap over night.

Prepping Apples

Getting the apples ready is the main job in a good apple pie. You can never have too many so it is good to have tools to speed along the peeling and coring. We actually have two implements, one traditional metal one and one modern plastic Starfrit one. The Starfrit is an amazing peeling machine removing only a thin layer of apple. It does not do any additional functions however.

The  traditional metal peels, cuts, and cores the apples. The peeling action is less than efficient, however, often resulting in missed sections. Even when it does peel, it takes a thick layer of flesh with it so a lot of the apple is wasted.

The answer is to first peel the apples with the Starfrit and follow that up with cutting and coring on the traditional machine. With the help of two of the girls, it is a very efficient production line. They had all the apples ready long before I could get the pastry rolled out and placed into the pans.

To the apples, I added a couple of heaping tablespoons of flour, some sugar (3/4 cup?), salt, vanilla extract, and some spices (nutmeg, cinnamon, and cloves). I don’t really have any measurements as I just do it by eye. Every pie is a little different – it’s a nice surprise!

The End Result

Once the apples are ready and the pastry is rolled, it is just a matter of putting the pies together, brushing with egg wash, sprinkling a little sugar on, and popping them in the oven. Any left over pastry can be re-rolled, sprinkled with cinnamon and sugar, cut into pieces, and baked.

First, this gives a nice little treat that gives you a sense of how the pie is going to turn out. Second, and more important in my opinion, is that it reminds me of growing up where my mom would do the same thing when making a pie. My brother and I loved to eat the baked pastry.

So, after about an hour in the oven at 400 degrees F, the pies are ready.

Based on the look of the crust at the edge combined with the off-cuts we had earlier, I’d say that these will be delicious and very flaky!

For those of you that are wondering if I make all our pies, I don’t. Here is a picture of one of my pies sitting next to a giant pumpkin pie from Costco that we are saving for supper tomorrow. Yes, the pumpkin is bigger and I’m sure will be good but you gotta admit, my apple pie looks much more delicious.

For all my fellow Canadians – Happy Thanksgiving!

EDIT: For those of you that were wondering – the pies turned out great!

Building an ABS Pipe File Rack (Part 1)

Over the years I have amassed a number of files and rasps. Since storing these tools loosely together damages their cutting edges through contact, I had been storing them in old wine boxes. I used the separate compartments in the boxes to hold one file each. It achieved the desired outcome but was neither efficient nor elegant. I finally decided it was time to make a proper file rack for them.

After spending some time looking around at different options, I settled on something that looks like an over-sized spice rack that uses ABS pipe to compartmentalize the files. In hind sight, I could also have used PVC, which may have been a bit cheaper, but I already had some ABS in hand so went with it.

Here’s the build process I used.

Cutting the ABS

The first thing I did was to cut the ABS pipe into lengths. For this I used a large Rigid No 133 pipe cutter that I picked up off Kijiji a number of years ago. It is basically a giant version of the pipe cutters commonly used in plumbing for cutting copper pipe.

I think that I actually sourced it to do some plumbing but, once you have one of these and realize the number of things you can use ABS and PVC pipe for, the sky is the limit. Using a pipe cutter insures that your cuts are always square and finished looking – things that are not always true when cutting with a saw.

And so began the cutting to break down the 6′ lengths of 1 1/2″ ABS pipe I had.

Given the range of files and rasps I had to deal with, I planned on two layers of pipes. The back row is 10″ long and the front row is 8″. After some time spent on cutting I had 19 tubes ready to go.

Building the File Rack Frame

One of the reasons that I had put off building this file rack for so long is that, for some reason, I was obsessing about the type of lumber I would use for it. I was originally thinking about building it out of cherry or butternut, both of which I have some planks of sitting in waiting. Given the utilitarian nature of the project, I’d save these nicer woods for a project that will be more visible.

However, a few years ago we took down a number of Chinese Elms from the back yard that had come end of life and were constantly dropping branches, mostly onto our neighbor’s roof. I split a few lengths of trunk and set them aside to dry. The wood isn’t as nice as I’d hoped but will work for things like this so I grabbed a chunk to use in this project.

A bit of time with the band saw, jointer, planer, and table saw and I had wood for the sides prepared.

The ends of the long pieces have a bit of checking but because its utilitarian project and the joinery should help with any further splitting, I’m not going to worry about it. I still have to figure out what to use for the bottom of the file rack – haven’t decide whether to put in a piece of plywood or mill another chunk of the Chinese Elm.

In the next entry, I’ll cover cutting the joints and putting the file rack together.

Thanks for reading!

Part 2 of the build can be found here.

 

Storage Space from Nothing – the Medicine Cabinet (Part 2)

In the first part of this blog post, I covered the prep of the wood and cutting the rabbets and dados for the medicine cabinet build. This part will cover the adjustable storage shelves, assembly and installation.

Drilling Shelf Support Holes

To make the space a  usable as possible, I wanted to have adjustable shelves in the medicine cabinet. I considered a number of different mechanisms for this but, in the end, settled on using holes and brass pin supports. Making the holes for the support pins is pretty straight forward. The old trick of using peg board as a template works great.

Clamp it in place and start drilling with a 1/4″ bit. I can buy bags of the shelf pins from Lee Valley that are inexpensive and work well. For me, the holes in the peg board are actually too close together and so I only use every second one. Because the backside of the case will not be visible,  I was able to just drill through. If the back of your project is exposed and you are worried about breaking through, consider some sort of depth indicator for your drill bit.

Cutting the Shelves to Length

Making the shelves should be a straight forward as cutting to length and painting but, in reality, it was not so simple. One thing I neglected to mention earlier is that the closet opening that I am working to is not square.

This isn’t in any way unusual – just one of the everyday challenges that go with a century home. Most owners, including myself, prefer to call it character. In any case, the intention of the build was to make it look like it had always been there as part of the original house. As a result, I was forced to build the case out of square with the top being about 3/8″ wider than the bottom. As a consequence, to avoid having gaps at their ends, the shelves had to decrease in length from top to bottom.

Here are all the shelves laid out, before and after, for priming on my work bench.

After priming I marked the back of each shelf with Roman numerals from top to bottom. This ensured that I would be able to keep the shelves in the right order when they were installed.

Roman numerals were designed to allow a straight chisel to cut them so they are easy to execute. I also used the tang end of a triangular file to imprint an indicator of which side was up on each shelf. Not very pretty but are on the back which will not be visible when installed.

I gave them a couple coats of paint to finish them off.

Assembling the Case

With all the pieces ready, it was time to assemble the case. The case fit into the opening with a nice firm pressure fit. As I mentioned, the closet opening was not square. I first assembled the sides and shelves with nails and glue and pressed it into place while wet. I left the back off, however, to allow it to conform to the shape of the opening. The resulting frame was distorted exactly out of square in the same way that the opening was. Once removed from the opening, I fitted a piece of 1/4″ plywood into the rabbets at the back, taking into account adjustment for out of square.

I realized at this point that I had neglected to address the gap below the bottom shelf. A quick trip to the discards pile produced a piece of painted pine suitable for the job as a toe kick.

The whole thing then slide back in place with hardly a gap between the cabinet and the door stop of the closet opening.

Despite the slight out of square condition, the joints still looked pretty good.

Painting

Getting near the finish line, I just had to paint the case. A quick coat of primer followed by a couple finish coats did the trick. At this point, it looked pretty much like it had always been there. The only real give away was how clean and fresh the new paint looks – time will take care of that.

I should mention one of the minor, but painful hiccups in the process. As you can probably imagine, the multiple layers of paint affect the diameter of the shelf support holes. It was then impossible to insert any of the support pins into them. The back row of holes was also quite close to the back of the cabinet. This made it impossible to use a power drill to re-drill. I reamed out the holes using my hands and a 1/4″ bit. There are a lot of holes and drill bits have sharp edges. It is something I’ll have to rethink if I do this again. Perhaps paint the side panels ahead of time so I can ream them with a drill instead?

In the end, all is good and we’ve created usable storage space where none existed before.

Thanks for reading!

Part 1 of this build can be found here.

 

Storage Space from Nothing – the Medicine Cabinet (Part 1)

Older homes like ours (built in 1886) often present challenges around storage space as they often do not have the type or volume of storage space that are common in modern builds. Sometimes, even when space seems available, it can be an illusion. Take, for instance, one of the closets on our second floor in between the master bedroom and the girls room.

Looks great – access to storage just outside the door to two of the bedrooms! Unfortunately, when you open it up, you realize things aren’t quite what they seem.

It turns out that the space behind this door is only, at best, minimally useful. A previous owner had built a closet into the girls room by utilizing this space so it is not a complete loss from a storage point of view. The raw cedar that you can see in the pictures is the outside of the closet box from their room that cannibalizes the space from the original closet.

So, what to do? With only about 5 inches to play with from the surface of the cedar box to the front of the closet door stop, there weren’t a lot of options. Still, rather than write it off, I decided to utilize the space to make a large medicine cabinet. The shallow depth becomes a benefit as it makes it easy to see what is what when there are a lot of small bottles and boxes being stored there.

Prepping Stock

The first step was to prep some lumber for the job. I have a lot of pine boards laying around as the result of some significant work that I had to do in replacing balcony decking that the previous owner had installed inappropriately. I’m a huge fan of using reclaimed lumber so, rather than throw stuff out during demolition, I hang onto anything that may be useful.

While their condition certainly made it challenging to re-use them for anything stain grade, they were a fine option for the medicine cabinet, which would be painted. After a couple of hours of jointing, planing, and cutting to size, I had the stock ready to go.

If you wondering about the clamps, when I know that I won’t be assembling things right away, I like to clamp the stock to limit any warping. I’m not sure that it actually makes a difference but, in my mind at least, I feel better about it. To round things out, I did need to pick up a sheet of 1/4″ plywood at the box store. Again, no need for anything fancy as it would ultimately be painted.

Cutting Rabbets

The structure of the case is pretty simple. The top sits on rabbets with midpoint and bottom shelves sitting in dadoes in the side panels. The back would then fit into a 1/4″ rabbet cut into the back of the sides and top.

I start with cutting the sides to length.

A Tale of Two Rabbet Planes

The next step was to clamp the sides down and run the rabbet into their back edge. To do this, I pulled out my handy dandy Stanley 78. This is a straight blade rabbeting plane that just works. Worker examples like mine can be had for not much money from antique dealers or ebay. You can read more about them on Patrick Leach’s excellent website.

So it would seem that I have my game together – using reclaimed wood and reconditioned Stanley planes to keep costs down. However, I’ve not always been this conscientious and, in my past, have fallen prey to the siren song of the new, shinier offerings in this space. As a result, I also have a left and right pair of the excellent, though not cheap, Veritas skewed rabbet planes. With the 78 around, they have actually seen almost no use since I got them. However, running long rabbets in pine seemed like a perfect time to pull them out and get them into service.

As I said earlier, the Stanley 78 just works – full stop. The Veritas planes also just work, but even better than the 78, which is very high praise coming from me. Part of it is the better two post fence mechanism that keeps the plane square to the cut and part of it is the skew blade that pulls the plane into the fence as you cut. Of course, because we are talking about skew blades, this temporary infatuation will evaporate come sharpening time. The straight blade on the 78 is dead easy to put an edge on and not too fussy about being exactly square – I doubt it will be as painless with the Veritas.

Cutting Rabbets With the Grain

With the positive feeling still firmly in place, I started cutting my rabbets. The skew angle of the blade results in the most lovely spiral shavings that run the length of the board.

For those of you who are reading all this and thinking “why didn’t I just run the rabbet on my router table?”, you have clearly not used a good rabbet plane before. Setup takes only moments and with only a subtle noise, similar to the tearing of paper (no earplugs needed), the job is done. In the end, you have a perfect rabbet and only a pile of springy shavings to collect. No dust, no fuss, all good. The sense of satisfaction is palatable.

Cutting Rabbets Across the Grain

Cutting rabbets with the grain was so much fun, I thought I’d keep it up with the cross grain rabbet for the top. Turns out that while this works, it is not nearly as neat and clean. You need to use the nicker to sever the fibers as you are forming the rabbet. On hardwood, this works pretty well. Unfortunately, likely due to my particular technique, there seems to be just enough spring in softwood to make this not work nearly as well in pine.

With pine I find myself constantly re-cutting the cross grain edge by hand and so alternate between plane and knife (or chisel), which just slows things down. Hind site is 20/20. I should have done the cross grain rabbet with a saw and router plane as I did with the dadoes below.

Cutting the Dadoes

I like cutting dadoes. Not sure why but there is something satisfying in the outcome. Not sure my technique is the best but it work for me so here goes. First step is to cut the edges of the dado with my marking knife. I do this directly from the piece that will be fitted to the dado, the shelf in this case.

Next is to cut just inside the knife lines to depth with my giant back saw.

For those of you wondering why the back saw is so long, it is from a vintage Stanley miter box. Initially I found it hard to keep the saw square. I’ve got that in hand now and find the length of stroke I can take really speeds things up. It also makes judging the registration of the blade to the intended cut easier.

The next step is to hog the waste out with a sharp paring chisel.

Finally, I clean the dado up to finished depth using a router plane.

I use the Veritas version of the router plane. The vintage Stanley 71s work without question, but the depth adjustment is somewhat more of a pain than what is offered with the Veritas. Given that a new Veritas is not significantly different than what a good worker Stanley is going for, I erred on the side of ease. My opinion only, of course.

If everything is done correctly, the shelf should slip right in. Luckily that was the case here.

Next step, assembling the case and dealing with the shelves.

Part 2 of this build can be found here.

Zero Clearance Insert For My Table Saw

I decided, somewhat on the spur of the moment, that I would finally make the zero clearance insert for my table saw that I have been meaning to make for years. It is something I should have done long ago, not so much for the reduced tear out when cutting sheet goods as for the increased safety of preventing thin off-cuts from falling in along the blade.

It turned out to be pretty straight forward though there were a few gotchas. For those that are interested, here is the process that I followed:

Sizing the blank

The first step was to cut the blank. I used 1/2″ Baltic birch plywood as it is straight, stable, smooth, and slightly less thick than the metal insert that came with the saw. FYI, the saw I have is a Rigid job site saw. Its a great saw with a lock for blade depth which is something that I was unable to find in any other job site saw. That may have changed over the last number of years however.

I set the fence to cut the blank to width by registering off the original metal insert.

And checked the width of resulting blank.

I then used the original insert to mark the curved ends at the end of the blank. The cuts on the end of the blank were made on the band saw followed by a disk sander and file to smooth and finish the edges.

I then test fit the new insert into the saw. It looks like it doesn’t fit but that is just because, on this specific saw, the blade doesn’t actually go down far enough to allow the new insert to sit fully in place.

Cutting the slot and additional features

In order to fully check the insert fit, I had to fire up the saw and have the cut driven up into the new insert.  The result fit so well that I couldn’t easily remove it again so I also added a finger hole to pull it up and out if needed. Another requirement was cutting a keyhole at one end to accommodate the screw that holds the insert in place in the table top.

Leveling the insert

Its not really clear in the pictures above but, even though the insert is actually thinner than the original plate, it was still sitting proud of the table top. It turns out the that the trunnion assembly actually sits slightly closer to the top of the table than the rests for the insert that are molded into the table top. With the original insert, this wasn’t an issue as it was full thickness only at the edges. As the new insert is a constant thickness, it made contact with the trunnion assembly (seen to the left of the blade in the picture below) before it made contact with the insert supports.

The answer, while not elegant or pretty, was to use a chisel to remove a layer of the insert on the bottom side to provide the necessary clearance. If I make another insert in future, I may use a router to do a cleaner job of it. For now, it is on the bottom of the insert so not visible when installed.

As a result, the insert now sat level but below the level of the table. In order to correct this, I used the same strategy as in the original insert. I drilled 4 holes, one in each corner of the insert, and threaded them to accept grub screws.

With the screws in place, I am now able to adjust the insert to bring it up flush with the table. I also rounded over the edges just slightly to avoid any interference as stock moves over the insert during sawing.

Finished Product

That’s it – the insert is now installed and working great. I actually made a second one as well in case I need to either do dado stack or angled work with the saw, either of which would destroy my straight insert.

If I do this again (which I might now that I have the bugs worked out), I think I may use stock that has a composite surface to reduce friction and improve the finished look. But, for now, things work great so there is no rush on a replacement.

Thanks for reading!

Bathroom Renovation Final Photos

Well, after much too long a hiatus, I am finally posting the finished pictures of the bathroom renovation. I should say almost finished as Heidi is still looking for the perfect grey towel set to go with the room. All the important stuff is in place though so I feel confident sharing the pictures.

One thing to note is that unlike the earlier photos that were taken with my phone, these pictures were taken by a bonafide photographer as a result of an article that is being published in the our contractors magazine.

People interested in seeing the full renovation process as tracked in this blog should start here.

The Before…

After the Renovation…

The room is bright – very bright – and clean looking but still in keeping with the an aesthetic that is appropriate to an 1886 Victorian home. It has quite clean lines but still some more fanciful accents such as the towel hooks that are placed in various strategic positions around the room.

Liberty acrylic faucets hooks from Home Depot

I’d like to say that I have a favorite thing about the finished renovation but, in truth, there are many.

Fixtures

The fixtures are a mixture of Grohe and Sign of the Crab. Although they are from different manufacturers, the styles and the chrome finishes are extremely compatible. I’m not sure that you’d be able to tell they are not from the same suite unless they were sitting right side by side.

Sign of the Crab model P1049N – thermostatic faucet
Sign of the Crab model P1049N – shower head and hand shower
Grohe Seabury 8″ wide spread faucet in Starlight Chrome

Tiling

The Tiling is a combination of 3″x6″ subway on the walls and 1″ hexagonal on the floor. The grout is Mapei Pearl Grey on both the walls and floor. While the floor is all standard tile, the walls incorporate specialty tiles such as chair rail at the top and baseboard at the bottom.

Subway and chair rail in Arctic White by Daltile
Subway and baseboard in Arctic White by Daltile
1″ white hexagonal tile by Urban Zebra

We used curved edge tiles on edges and corners as metal border edging would not be in keeping with the age of the house.

Vanity

The vanity and the matching mirror are custom builds from Olympia cabinets utilizing traditional line maple doors with “Cigar” stain.

Finally, the counter top is a cultured marble top by Caesarstone. Not real marble but, as a result, will be much lower maintenance given it is being used by 3 soon to be teenage girls.

Lighting

The lighting in the bathroom is handled by fixtures by Seagull Lighting with schoolhouse style shades.

4 fixture “Academy” vanity light by Seagull lighting
“Academy” medium semi-flush fixture by Seagull Lighting

Well, I think that is about it for the new and improved bathroom. Now on to the 50+ other things that need to be done with the house. 🙂

Thanks for reading!

Shower Curtain

It has been a while since I’ve updated. We took a week to go to a cottage up in the Kawarthas (north of Peterborough Ontario). It is a wonderful area full of lakes, forests, and generally beautiful scenery. The vacation time was much needed but now it’s back to the real world and telling you about the new shower curtain.

In terms of the bathroom, we are up and running now. I finally installed the shower curtain rod and, with the help of the girls, we’ve decided on a curtain to hang on it. The pattern is quite whimsical. It goes well with the room and pays homage to Ralphie and Canada all at the same time.

The toques are a nice touch too!

As for the bar, we decided that, although it is not strictly traditional, curved was the way to go. The extra space that it provides is too much of a benefit to ignore. The bar is a Moen. While very sturdy, it does seem to have a slightly different chrome finish than the other fixtures in the room. Not a big deal and likely something only we notice as we’re looking at everything so critically.

Now all we need to do is put up the extra hooks that we picked up, settle on the towels, and find a suitable waste basket. Who would have thought that finding the accessories would be such a challenge? In any case, for the towels, we have something in the “perfect” shade of grey that we think will work. They match the grout and are just slightly darker than the bath mat in the pictures.

The contractor that did the work for us is sending a professional photographer over to take pictures of the finished product to use in their marketing. The up side is that, in exchange, they have agreed to give us access to the photos as well. I’ll be able to post some professional shots of the room rather than the cell phone photos I’ve been using so far. The shoot is scheduled for next week so stay tuned for the final before and after pictures at that point.

People interested in seeing the full renovation process as tracked in this blog should start here.

The next entry for the renovation can be found here.

Window trim or “Be careful what you start…” (Part 3)

The paint went on the window today and it looks pretty good. The semi-gloss sheen does a good job of fitting with the traditional look but in a cleaner way since there is no underlying heavy build-up of paint layers.

There is no question that the work in preparation made the painting very easy. The hardest part of the process was cutting along the wall on the right hand side which was still relatively simple.

The stool is clean and smooth now. The only parts that look at all off are the corners where the window stops come together. You can see a gap there which could be easily filled with some caulking but, since I have to take them off again to refinish the sashes at a later date, I’ll leave them as is for the moment.

Finally, I put the blinds back in place, which is important because it makes the bathroom actually usable for the first time since the renovation began. The girls are thrilled with the new digs. Just a bit of tile work, the shower rod and curtain, and some final accessories before we can call it complete.

Why not buy new windows?

So now that the window is finally complete, some people may be wondering why I would spend this much time working on an “old” window. While there is the aesthetic consideration of having proper wooden double hung windows in a Victorian house, the real reason is as follows.

These are original windows. That means that they have survived, in a functional state, for 130 years and, with some relatively simple work, can reasonably be expected to survive another 100 years. Every part of the window – casing, sashes, and trim – can be repaired or replaced by someone with reasonable wood working skills. The same cannot be said for aluminium or vinyl windows that people, unfortunately, all too often turn to as substitutes. Once a conversion has been made, not only do you impact the visual appeal of the house, but it really becomes cost prohibitive to convert back to proper double hung wooden windows in future.

It is true that working on these windows is a bit of a dying art. Most contractors default to replacements when faced with window challenges. It is a quicker path to a short term improvement in the look of the windows. But even the best of the replacement windows have service lifetimes that are a fraction of the life of a wooden window – and that is only considering the extended lifespan of a restored window. If you include the original 100+ years of service these windows have typically already provided and you dwarf the service life of a replacement even more.

Some books on windows…

On the other hand, it may be difficult to find someone to do the work for you at a price you can afford and you may end up doing it yourself (as is the case with me). Luckily, there are lots of resources available to help out. My favorite so far is “Working Windows – A Guide to the Repair and Restoration of Wood Windows” by Terry Meany. Terry is a font of information and writes in a very enjoyable and, in fact, funny way.

Working Windows: A Guide to the Repair and Restoration of Wood Windows by [Meany, Terry]

Another good source of info is “Repairing Old and Historic Windows” by the New York Landmarks Conservancy. It is full of useful information but much drier and not what I would call an entertaining read. Useful as an adjunct resource but, for the average homeowner, I’d say Terry’s book is the preferred source.

Repairing Old and Historic Windows: A Manual for Architects and Homeowners by [New York Landmarks Conservancy]

So if you are lucky enough to have some original wood windows in your house, I strongly urge you to consider restoration over replacement when the time comes.

People interested in seeing the full renovation process as tracked in this blog should start here.

Window trim or “Be careful what you start…” (Part 1)

Window trim or “Be careful what you start…” (Part 2)

Bathroom Accessories

Just a quick post here to show a couple of the bathroom accessories that have now gone in. The towel bars and toilet paper holder were actually installed a couple of days ago but I didn’t get around to posting any pictures. The laundry basket we just picked up today but are not 100% sure we are going to hang onto it. Still going to be some additional hooks going up on the wall above the laundry basket.

The accessories so far are all from the Modona Viola series. Not the most expensive stuff but seems to be good quality and really matches well with the light fixtures and such.

Now if we can just find the right shade of grey towels, we’ll be all set.

People interested in seeing the full renovation process as tracked in this blog should start here.

The next entry for the renovation can be found here.

Window trim or “Be careful what you start…” (Part 2)

As I predicted in part 1 of this blog entry, completing the stripping of the paint required another 5 or so hours. I finally finished up around 1 AM exhausted but happy to be done.

I had decided to not use stripper for this window and, instead, rely on the radiant heater and scrapers. While this works well, no matter how careful you are, there is still some gouging that occurs.

As a result of this, and the significant existing damage to the window stool, I had to pull out the polyester resin to skin coat the casing and rebuild the edge of the stool.

It also provides a great way to smooth the transition between the existing casing and the pine extension that was added.

Once everything was set, it was just a matter of some sanding to smooth everything out. A bit of caulk at the joints and things are ready for painting. Of course, this was hours of work but, as with most things you do in renovations, the preparation is everything. The level of effort put in at this stage is directly proportional to the ease of painting and the quality of the final outcome.

I know it is hard to see in this picture but everything is wonderfully smooth and the painted results should be amazing. This also gave me a chance to free the window stops (the stick like pieces you can see in the earlier pictures) which will make things much simpler when I get around to reworking the sashes. For the time being though, I’ll leave them as is in the interest of getting the bathroom in working order sooner rather than later. I can always come back to the sashes but until I get the casing done, I can’t get the blinds re-installed.

Tomorrow is paint and everything should come together.

People interested in seeing the full renovation process as tracked in this blog should start here.

Window trim or “Be careful what you start…” (Part 1)

Window trim or “Be careful what you start…” (Part 3)