I posted this blog on LumberJocks about seven months ago. I had to edit it to restore photos (I have changed my photo host) so while I was at it, I thought I would post it here for my first HomeReburbers blog.
The first major problem (project) started when I walked out the front door of my house one day and my foot went right through the slate porch. It shocked me more than anything because I thought the slate was bedded with a solid concrete pad. We have lived here for 25 years. I have always thought this. That is how sturdy it was. Was.
Well, I excavated a little and found crumbled mortar, atop rotted plywood, atop rotted 2×8” joists. Geez, the porch is a little over 300 square feet and I am starting to calculate what some contractor is going to charge me to rip out the old, either reframe it or pour a pad, buy new slate or a reasonable substitute and finish it back so it blends with the rest of the house. I figured a conservative estimate at $10.00 per sq. ft., and there went my repair of my hurricane tilted workshop.
I couldn’t do anything then and there, I had to work 36 hours in the next 3 days, so I covered up our shameful little mess with plastic and surrounded the area with crime scene tape, lest some meaningful zealot come knocking on doors and fall through and sue my britches off.
The next chance I had, I did some more excavation (demolition), expecting the worst. Lo and behold, (Murphy must be elsewheres) the rotting only continued a few more feet. Eureka! The rest of the plywood and joists were solid. What a relief I felt. I felt confident enough with my meager skills to tackle this 34 sq. ft. So off we went to the BigBox store and got supplies enough to start with. Luckily, we were able to find natural slate that almost matched. Plus, I also justified an $89.00 chinese wet saw, which will come in handy when we redo the baths.
So, it took a few weeks, working on my days off from the mill, about $600.00, and a lot of elbow grease. It hurt my shop repair fund, but didn’t wipe it out.
And then the upstairs floors….