February 7, 2009 – Paint Color Review

 

Coffered Ceiling

Coffered Ceiling

Gregg’s guys have been building out one of the key features of the house.  The kitchen and dining areas have coffered ceilings.  Kitchen turned out beautifully. Dining area just getting started. John Kim and I came up for the day while Kate participated in a fencing meet.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Light Well

Light Well

 

Everyone has a different name for this feature. Light Tower. Light Well.  Wise guys would call it “home of all the heat in the house”.  Think I posted this already but it is hard to visit and not take a picture.  This light just fills the lower level and also brings a lot of light to the second floor landing which otherwise would be much darker.  We have specified glass doors for the parlor room and computer room upstairs which will bring light into that second floor landing. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kate's Blue?

Kate's Blue?

 

Well, this is why you drive 2 hours to check paint color.  It had been 4 years since the big home renovation so we had forgotten the subtleties of picking paint color.  The main one is that picking a color from a paint card is tough to do.  In this case, the blue that Katie had picked was much too vibrant.  Same with the Lavender Mist color for Katie’s bath.  The remainder of colors in the house are Ben Moore Historical colors so this made Katie’s colors look very bold.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Saybrook Sage

Saybrook Sage Laundry

 

Laundry uses Ben Moore Saybrook Sage. Colors are hard to capture on film though.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Going Up!

Going Up!

 

John checking out the elevator.  The mechanical system is all in with the remainder of the cab walls to be installed. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Metal Roof Buckling

Metal Roof Buckling

 

Tough winter for one section of the roof.  This roof is over the screened porch outside of John’s room.  Because the light tower drywall could not be finished in one shot we lost a lot of heat over the winter to the upper roof.  This caused a lot of snow melt.  This snow ended up on this roof in the flat area outside John’s window.  This melted, froze and pushed outward. When the sidewall was pushed it popped off the top metal panel.  Jeff Smith is in Florida but when he is back he will make this repair.  Now that the light well is done we hope to avoid this problem next winter.

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January 24, 2009 – Drywall Installed and Taping is Finishing

 

Winter Wonderland

Winter Wonderland

 

 

What  a spectacular winter day in Richmond.  Area has gotten a lot of snow this winter after a slow start.  The road up the hill was very icy.  I stopped to say hello to a neighbor and the car would not move forward on the ice.  So I had to back down to a level area and then gather speed to get up the hill.  Driveway was no problem due to plowing after every storm.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Quiet Woods

Quiet Woods

In the winter the site feels so much larger since you can look through all the trees.  For about 140 degrees you can see a continuous ridge in the distance.  This view is up the hill.  In the summer the trees shield the northern area of the site.  In the winter the suns streams in on the north side. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Building Out Coffer Ceiling

Building Out Coffer Ceiling

All right, back to construction.  Mark and his guys are starting to assemble the coffered ceilings.  Beadboard went in awhile ago.  Now the 2×4 grid.  Then a lot of molding will be layered on.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Drywall Taping Full Court Press

Drywall Taping Full Court Press

It is all about the drywall. 99% of drywall is up and several layers of compound is up.  Gregg is pushing for paint colors so they must be close to finishing.   On this trip I went by Caligari’s Paint and Tim matched by Superior Cabinet Winter White in Ben Moore Aura Satin finish.  Aura is low VOC paint.  Keeps paint vapors out of the house and is a very green product.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Light Well

Light Well

Frank Nelson and his crew have all the drywall up except one section in the light tower which still has a platform set to finish the top of the tower.  The light well is too high to work on with ladders.  So a temp floor was build and right now creates a little room.  The drywall work to create the recesses for the windows is perfect.  Guys will paint this “room” and then take down the temp floor, then fill in the band of drywall mid light well, tape, compound, sand and paint.  Then let the light stream down and fill the lower level.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Porch Fitout

Porch Fitout

Lot of thought went into the screen retention.  Originally, the screen was to be closer to the outside.  Another Green River project for the Cohens used this design.  The supports on the back of the house are 12×12 fiberglass.  The two mid supports are also in the middle of the posts (ie set 6 inches in from the edge).  The screen will attach in the front 1/3 of these mid supports and the cablerail stainless steel cabling will go on the outside.  The cable serves as the protection from falling out of the porch.  The cablerail is used as the railing system across the whole back of the house.  It is very expensive but it dissappears visually. And what you do see is stainless steel and looks very very sharp.  This was one of those wince at the line item but really need to use products.  Wait until you see it installed.

 

 

 

 

Mass State Line

Mass State Line

There is very little budget for art or furniture for that matter! Bring your own! Anyway, I plan to print a number of black and white photos of local features and frame in black frames with white mats.  This state line marker is about 1.5 miles from our house.  Next to the railway line.  Every now and then we hear a slow speed freight train go by.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Animal Tracks

Animal Tracks

Plenty of animal tracks crisscrossing the property.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Icicle

Icicle

Now that is an icicle.  This roof sloughs off a ton of snow especially where there are no gutters and hence no snow guards. Here, on the end of the master bath, a gigantic icicle has formed.  19 degrees at 1PM plus breeze so not sure of wind chill.  A typical cold Berkshires day.   Before leaving, I assembled two work benches in the back of the garage.  Each is 2′ x 4′ and has extended rails on the back that take a 3′ x 4′ piece of pegboard.  Each bench is on wheels.  Beginning of a workshop.

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January 10, 2009 – Post of Movies from December 7th

I finally figured out some of imovie and generated film clips from video that I filmed on December 7th and uploaded to YouTube. Outside does not look any different today since the exterior construction is done and we have had a bit of snow in Richmond.

With the snow on the ground it is a bit difficult so get a sense of scale.  The house almost looks like a model with the monochromatic scene.

Pan of Rear of House – Since this filming the porch deck rim board has been covered in Azek so it’s all white now.  

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January 2, 2009 – Drywall in Process

Newt Ruffing in a sea of drywall     Newt Ruffing in a sea of drywall

TR ended up taking Friday off  to ferry TR, KR, KLR, JR and Newt and Alice to Richmond.  A wintry scene with snow on the ground and about 20 degrees. The insulation was pretty much finished before Christmas and then Frank Nelson and his crew started hanging the drywall.  Even before they start, loading the drywall sheets into the house is a Herculean task.  Everywhere we turned there were stacks of 16′ wallboard.  Here Newt winds his way through.  We had not been to the site since December 7th.  I had planned to inspect after the insulation was done but part of the install was to apply the vapor barrier.  As a result I could not look into the joist and stud bays to check for voids.  Gregg says that this Springfield, Mass based subcontractor is very thorough about his work.  On the first and second level a clear poly is used.  In the basement it was required that we insulate the basement walls by adding a stud wall all around the perimeter and insulating to give an R-15 wall.  However, bare wood would not pass fire inspection.  So Gregg applied a fireproof vapor barrier which is opaque white in color.  So because I could not practically inspect, I skipped the 5AM drive to Mass on Dec 20th in advance of the Dutchess and Westchester Ruffing’s Christmas get together.  Instead, I packed for our week in Florida which now seems a long time ago. 

 

 

Elevator Shaft

Elevator Shaft

The drywall guys started in the elevator shaft.  This and the central light well required the rockers to work their way from top to bottom with temp staging.  They would put joists across the opening, hang sheetrock and tape the seams.  When done they go down a floor and repeat the step.  This picture is from the basement and looks up to the hatchway ceiling.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

John's Room Already "Rocking"

John's Room Already "Rocking"

The drywall folks are working their way downstairs.  This is John’s room.  The openings get builtins that are then framed in molding.  This whole wall will tie together.  Below the window is a builtin window seat with a hinged top to store blankets, pillows and other items. As an amateur sheet rocker I appreciated the perfect depth of every sheetrock screw.  When I sheetrocked my projects it seemed difficult to get the sheetrock screw to just recess below the paper face of the drywall.  Sometimes proud and sometimes the screw would be too deep.  Leave it to the professionals.

 

 

 

 

 

 

First Layer of Coffered Ceilings

First Layer of Coffered Ceilings

Finally figuring out the quirks of photo importing so I can add descriptions. Small victories (Theme of 2009!).  Anyway, Gregg starts with the beadboard layer.  Applied to this will be the 2x lumber and applied to that will be molding to give it the final dressed look. They had to be pretty scientific about locations of speakers, recessed lights, smoke detectors and other items to fall within the individual coffers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Installed Stair to Patio

Installed Stair to Patio

Not many remaining items left on outside but we finally have a stair to the lower patio.  Was not a priority but one of those things to eventually knock out.  To have it covered with Azek properly, Gregg’s guys first cut the pressure treated stair joists cutting out the areas where the treads and risers go.  They then covered the pressure treated with two rows of Azek and then routed out the extra material.  When done you just see Azek side and Azek deck treads, and Azek risers. No maintenance (which is the recurrent theme of our chosen materials).  Also in this picture is the horizontal rim facia board of the deck.  This was just wrapped in Azek within the last two weeks which really gives the porch a finished look.  Driving around the back you can see the pressure treated underside of the porch and deck.  So sometime in the future I will whitewash the underside.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Garage Doors Installed

Garage Doors Installed

Project is now able to be fully locked up with garage doors installed.   We went with insulated metal garage doors for several reasons.  The fancy custom wood doors run about $4500 apiece.  These are about $1200.  Also, the wooden doors don’t have much insulating value.  We hope to finish the garage upstairs apartment some day (Dow 13,000??) and to be truly hospitable in the winter, the garage needs to be well insulated.  We were advised that insulated garage doors were mandatory if we wanted to heat the upstairs apartment.  There is also a no maintenance for the metal doors.  The decision would have been harder if the garage doors were visible upon approaching the house.  These doors are not visible from the front.  You have to drive around the end of the garage to see the doors.  The garage still needs a coat of white paint so the siding will look closer in color to the doors.  Only evident in this picture to the person paying is the plowed driveway.  Mike LaPoint is point on driveway plowing.  We hope for 2.5″ of snow with each storm as Mike plows when it gets to 3″.  In Richmond, even if the house goes unused in winter it is a necessity to plow so fire and police can access the house.  I guess I would not have to plow the ring around the house but once Mike has plowed a 900′ driveway its not much more work to plow to the end of the house.  This winter we need daily access for Gregg and his crew and his subs.  And this winter we need to heat daily for the workers.  Ouch. Some relief on propane. First fill was at $2.45 gal while the recent 500 gallon refill was at $1.50 gal.  At least the house is insulated now so the rate of fuel use should slow down.  Another nice thing to see is my Bearcat Chipper in the third garage.  Gregg towed it from the back yard and removed the tall chip exhaust chute and it fits neatly in the third bay protected from the winter weather.  Today, I put 3 ounces of gas stabilizer so we will be good to go in April.  John and Charles get ready!

 

Ruffing Inspection Crew

Ruffing Inspection Crew

 

Still chilly inside even with the heat set to 55 degrees.  With the attic door not in and the basement not closed off and people coming in and out, hard to keep the temperature up.  Fitting we are all gathered in the kitchen since that is where everyone congregates anyway.

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December 7, 2008 – Pre-Insulation Inspection

Smooth Pine Sided GarageRare Kim and Tom weekend visit.  We came up Saturday morning on a cold Berkshires weekend.  Project purpose was to examine all the walls for content before insulating. Content being ethernet, cable and phone lines.  Also last chance to add any wiring for lights or any other in the wall item.  It is amazing how many wires are running through the house.  And all the colors.  Last layer of wiring was security.  Code requires a large number of heat, and CO units.  Low use in the winter requires a lot of low temp detectors.  Jeff Mason’s A-1 Security did a great job of locating these items.  In addition to these safety items the usual complement of motion detector and other security items.  Also added two exterior cameras so that jpeg picture alerts can be emailed when driveway and other not to be disclosed 🙂 exterior sensors are triggered.  Door you see in picture had two different primer colors. Will be white when painted.  You can expand the garage photo and see the look of one coat of primer on pine clapboards.  It shows quite a bit of know bleed through.  It kind of grows on me.  It will get one more coat of finish white paint which Kim is very much desirous of.  For me the garage is best rustic and not trying to look like the house.  I hope the one coat knocks down the bleed through a little for Kim’s preference but still yields the rustic look.  I have said it elsewhere but the demassing of the garage is the best design work of the project and there is a lot of good design work.  Thanks David.

dsc_0001-duplicate We have spent a lot of time on kitchen cabs after the design work is long done. Unexpected time.  Since we are painting cabs anyway we can go MDF doors which is a greener execution.  But it turns out that the MDF doors are subbed out from Superior Cabinetry.  We got to see Superior Cabs in Mickey Rabina’s Stockbridge Bowl house on this trip (more later) and they look sharp.   I show our Briarcliff Cherry inset doors here because we are specifying a similar design.  The design feature here was a slighty thinner rail stile, 2.5″ and a shallow inset, 1/4″.  In Richmond David spec’d an even narrower 2 and 1/4″ rail and stile for an even thinner look and the same 1/4″ depth.  Well it turns out the vendor upcharges $990 to make a thinner rail and stile and a shallower panel.  I sent a pretty blistering email about American factory engineering inquiring as to why changing the rip width of 100 linear feet of mdf could cost so much.  Regarding the panel depth, panel may be same thickness but the dado may need to be closer to the stile and rail surface.  To me, another one time adjustment.  There is a lot of talk about custom cabs but I am not in a good mood when upcharges come up after quote.  We also got interested in Blum soft close doors and were excited to use them but found out later that these only work with sprung hinges and we have inset doors with plain unsprung Amerock hinges.  We will have soft close drawers.  While the project is a farmhouse and some Shaker influence was wanted we did not want hidden hinge cabs.  Felt it needed some flair.  Like Briarcliff.

dsc_00031Custom designed front door by Mr. Potter.  First go around was built incorrectly.  Ouch for the manufacturer.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
dsc_0214-duplicateHouse went from 98% to 99% trimmed out with the completion of Azek panel installation under the family room balcony.  Three of those openings are for small lights to highlight plant containers.  Two large ones are for exterior speakers and two rectangular openings on corner are for rear floods that will be used for illuminating the back yard when we need to check the exterior.  Would not be left on for any length of time.  Richmond has strict dark sky regulations.  Normal back deck lighting will be the two period lights either side of the living room french doors. We like the dark nights up there and will do our part.  The remaining trim board work is the horizontal band all across the outer rim of the back deck.

 

 

 

 

iphoto-library This is one of 3 walls in mech room.  Like I said. Lots of wires.

 

 

 

 
dsc_0133-duplicate1This is our conduit for wiring adds after the walls are closed.  From the basement we can string in joists anywhere to first floor.  This conduit runs from mech room to the attic.  From the attic we can drop into any second floor room. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

dsc_0171-duplicate The other new item was the central vacuum. White tubes going in a lot of directions.  Gregg even gave us an outlet in the attic.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other parts of Saturday were used for tile research.  We went back to Country Tile in Hillsdale and worked with Ali.  Kim chose a combination of subway tile for upstairs small hall bath (in shower and wainscoting around the room) together with 2×2 tumbled white marble floor. Highlight of weekend was Saturday night dinner at Mickey and Ellen Rabina’s  house on Stockbridge Bowl.  Joining us were Gregg, Tammy, Kyle and Ashley.  The house is a tour de force.  A camp style house that looks smaller than it is.  High vaulted ceilings with light green painted pine boards.  Stained siding. Stone walls as works of art really.  Could go on and on.  Fun to hear the Rabina’s experience with Gregg which of course was great.  Best stories are when client wants a certain item and builder shakes his head (with a grin of course).  Kim was taken with Ellen’s slate countertop and raised as an island possibility but joins soapstone and a number of other items on Gregg’s non-recommended list.

Next visit will be a 6AM trip up on December 21 so I can get back late morning to celebrate Christmas with the Dutchess Ruffing’s.  This will be the post insulation pre drywall visit.  Only chance to inspect the insulation.  Insulation Co. comes from Springfield, MA. Big crew of guys and a lot of insulation.  Gregg says he does very thoughtful installations.  Not a job you can do too fast. Then spots get missed and cold spots result.  After that install on to drywall.  Now that will be a neat sight.

dsc_0150-dupeClose up shot of primed garage siding. Very barn like which is the idea. Though smooth side out.  Rough side was a little too rustic.

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November 22, 2008 – Alarm System Consult with A-1 Security

This visit was 

dsc_0023

Primary purpose of this visit was to meet Jeff Mason of A-1 Security to go over his alarm package.  As the house is not occupied for much of the year, there were a lot of low temperature sensors, heat sensors, water sensors in laundry, etc.  Items that can identify a problem that if unnoticed in an empty house would cause a lot of damage.   As we get way into the project there are not big changes from visit to visit. Main difference is more and more electrical wiring, duct work and plumbing lines.  This photo shows much of the heating system.  That white box on the wall is the furnace.  Amazing.  Just a very efficient propane driven boiler. On left next to hot water storage tank is the manifold that mixes and distributes to the in floor radiant heating in the basement.  

dsc_0035The upstairs balcony was covered in Azek Deck.  Looks simple but actually a buildup of deck, EPDM (rubber), treated lumber sleepers and then deck.  Railing to follow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

dsc_00141Breezeway beadboard ceiling is in.  Not entirely happy and will talk with Gregg.  Instead of installing staggered as in flooring the lengths were put in all the same length so that they butted above the beams.  I think the intention was to not see the breaks.  But this emphasized the breaks because the butt ends did not line up.  Then the shadow line caused by the beam heightened the butt line mismatch.  But natural wood finish will look great with light stain and poly.

 

 

 

 

 

dsc_00431Very tres, as Katie would say (instead of tres bien).  Sided, house looks spectacular.  Simple white, simple gray, and while a lot of windows they don’t eat up the exterior. Those concrete walls will get Pennsylvania Ashlar veneer someday.  About $30 psf. Luckily, not that much of the wall shows in any one spot. But will have to go down to footer, then build up with cheap 4″ concrete and then, where needs to be visible, 4″ stone veneer.  The driveway got a fresh cover of road base.  The drive had gotten a constant pounding from all the trucks during the summer so the drive had found new levels that caused potholes and unlevel areas side to side.  Would have been very difficult for Mike LaPoint to plow snow.  So Phil Callan brought in a load of drive base and filled in the unlevel areas so we have a level drive side to side drive as it climbs uphill. That brown pressure treated wood band is the last item to be cladded other than underside of balcony.

After the meeting, Alice, Newt and I headed to Baroods in Lenox for lunch.  Always good.  Then headed up Route 7 to Berkshire Lighting Outlet to meet Ross Kunzmann.  Lots of lighting options there.   Without Kim mainly worked on the barn lights that go over the garage doors and garage side doors. He carries ANP Lighting products.

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November 8, 2008 – Irrigation Meeting -Progress Review

The month of October may have been the busiest month that I ever worked. The quarterly reporting for the entire portfolio was required for October 17th. That ties into the public company reporting which culminated in the earnings call October 27th.  All of that in the middle of a continuous financial meltdown that had every financial counterparty grilling each other.  We made dozens of calls to Borrowers and Servicers and received volumes of inquiries from lenders, partners, rating agencies, servicers, etc.  The followup from these exchanges was unending.  So bad news is a month (and some weekend) of 14 hour work days and lots of food on the train.   Good news is we scrubbed our loans and bonds thoroughly. Meanwhile, the company stock got to a low of $3.80. Which is quite a slap in the face.  There is a investment banking quip about ending the year and figuring that “you paid to work there”.  Applies a little here.  But a great working team and have faith that the platform will continue to morph to restore shareholder value. So, what does that have to do with the house?  Well, in a month that the house moved along substantially, HVAC, electrical, and plumbing, we really did not have to do that much with the house. So much effort had been put in earlier in the process regarding plumbing and other features that the builder could move ahead without us.  The walkthrough for electric was the only real time commitment. I set up some appointments for Nov. 8th. We did settle on a new bakery layout with a microwave drawer. That was solved by Gregg and David suggestions; we take no credit.  So a lot of internal progress in the month of October. And of course the siding was completed.  Would be fun to come up every weekend but there is too much to do in NY.

dsc_0069 Looks like a finished house on the outside.  Was a time we thought there were way too many windows but a trick of the eye with blue housewrap and the empty window openings.  inside however, there is a lot to do.  Elec wiring is all through the house.  HVAC is halfway with all kinds of box supply and flexible duct.  Double click on the photo to see full size and then back arrow out.

 

 

dsc_0063 And from the back.  All sided. And the big pop was from the cladding of the framing with Azek. Notice the balcony with the rim all cladded.  Also, the porches have their ceilings covered in Azek beadboard. Deck rim board is next and that long brown line will be white.

 

 

 

dsc_0070  Small pic here. Fitting because it is meant to show the XM radio antenna.  Gregg and Tune St took it upon themselves to hide it on the upper dormer.  It had to be on the Western side of the house and I struggled with installing because I thought it would be seen on the main house upper gable. But they found this spot.  Unseen from the back of the house.  

dsc_0072  Our beloved Village Oven in West Stockbridge closed.  Someone in town said it was a landlord tenant issue over increased rent.  Not the strongest economy for the landlord to try to find a new restaurant tenant for an oddly configured group of 3 buildings. Maybe he splits it up again.

dsc_0039 This a view never filmed before.  From the upper attic one gets a neat view along all the metal roof ridges.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

dsc_0009 After the breezeway was lowered we had to figure out the right size box beam with David and Gregg. not too thin and not to bulky.  They got it just right. Leaves volume while not looking insubstantial.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

dsc_0007 When we lowered the breezeway we decided to fill in the gable.  The end wall was always to be sided. We sided the new gable and the new small window looks real sharp.  The beadboard ceiling will be left natural as will the beadboard in the breezeway vault.  Vent to be spray painted white.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

dsc_0014 Very happy with our custom designed mudroom door.  Now the decision as to finish on the doors. Could stain and poly. Had been thinking a steel blue paint. Both front and side and other end of breezeway (with matching door) are protected from the weather and would survive the elements.  At the end of my house picture taking I met with Carl Paolucci of Berkshire Irrigation.  We are not maintaining much lawn but what we do have I want to be very green.  Carl will tie his lines into our cistern which will collect rain from 80% of the roof area and the patio.  That will feed the cistern which will irrigate lawn and drip hoses in Kim’s garden area and front bushes. Picked up prints at Davids, got some lathe tools for David Handsman, hit Subway then dropped in at Country Tile in Hillsdale. Met Ali. They have a very nice selection.  Will have a visit with Kim in December to pick tile.  Since we have a very white palette, choices should be pretty straightforward.

large_photo68872_375571 OK. What does this have to do with the house. Nothing. It’s just more important.  This is from the Hackley Girls Soccer semi-final win in the season ending tournament for Independent Schools.  HGVS won the Ivy League (Dalton, Trinity, Riverdale, Fieldston, etc.) for the 5th straight year (co this year) and happy to report that on Sunday Nov 10th, at Columbia University, HGVS won the championship for the 4th time out of past 5 years.  Last year they were not permitted in the tournament because of an admin error.  HGVS had beaten the champion 3-0 twice so settled for Ivy League championship. Go Hack!

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October 18, 2008 – Tune St. Audio System for First Floor

Had a productive meeting with Luke Germain of Tune St. He got me to the right equipment to outfit the first floor of the house with stereo and speakers. Goal was to not go over the top. No Crestron controllers.  Got a budget friendly solution shown below. On Oct 29th Luke’s guys will wire the first floor, put up brackets for speakers and place boxes for the control pads.  Chris Botti playing throughout the first floor. Looking forward!

Niles ZR-4 is the central amplifier and interface with the and the wall mounted control pads. controller of the speakers. Each control pad is in a separate room and gives speaker volume control and control of each of the four inputs (the controller’s AM/FM, CD Player, Ipod dock and XM/Sirius satellite radio).  Each room can access any of the four inputs independently.

 

Niles Speakers (CM730) will be placed in the living room, kitchen, center outside deck and sitting room.

 

 

Integra six CD turntable lets you load up some music.

 

 

Onkyo DS-A2 Ipod dock. The ipod can be controlled with the Niles system remote. So just plug in and surf from your seat.

 

 

ant-sat_hi

 And finally a Niles house antenna mount. Arm is 8.5″ and antenna pad is 4×4 so not very visible at the very top eave of the house.

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October 18, 2008 – Sound System Planning

 

Did not expect to come up this weekend but thought that I wanted controls for the ceiling speakers to be in an electrical box. That would have involved Scott Leprovost choosing larger gang boxes. So Mom and Dad (down for Katie’s Senior Night Soccer game) dropped off car at Rt 55 and joined me for this trip. I printed off a bunch of 11×17 plans and elevations so I could walk through the first level with Luke Germain of Tune St. Tune St. does all of Gregg’s houses and has done work for friends in NYC with homes in the Berkshires. This was the first view of the fully sided house.

When you approach the house from the drive you see the house turned about 20 degrees north of west to east so you see mostly across the front and the whole west side.  This shot is of the west side from below the driveway.  So Mom and Dad and I surveyed the progress.  While the siding advanced nicely, most of the work was inside.  Most of the outlet boxes were up.  Ceiling mounts were up. And some wiring was started.

 

We are very happy with the roof color against the white.  Discussed in earlier posts, we were at first wondering if the roof was too light. We now very much like the contrast, not too much, not too little.  Englert Dove Grey.  As the siding goes up, the windows tend to dissappear. Quite a few in this area.

 

 

To the left is the door we designed (well David designed but with a lot of input from us) for the mudroom and the garage entrance.   The doors face each other at opposite ends of the breezeway.  Full double paned glass with 2×2 divider to match the window geometry. Rogue Valley door.

 

 

 

 

 

 

To the left is the display for the stone veneer we are going to use on the exposed rear concrete walls.  Pennsylvania Ashlar.  Zach allowed 4 inches in the Bluestone edging overhang.  Before I left I ran the woodchipper for 15 minutes.  Complained a little starting up and then the Honda engine purred.  Will store in the third garage bay over the winter.  On our way to the site I saw our neighbor, Andy Fisher, outside so we stopped and introduced ourselves.  Nice gentleman who retired to Richmond from DC.  Helps our in the Health Department.

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October 11, 2008 – Electrical Walkthrough

Purpose of this trip was to do the electrical walk through with Scott Leprovost and Gregg.  Scott is with Henry’s Electric in Lee, MA.  A walk through sounds leisurely but it means a 6 hour tour of the house identifying every outlet, switch and electrical fixture in the house.  Kim and I had to choose where recessed lights would go, sconces, and light fixtures.  Figuring out the 3-way switches took some doing. A 3-way switch handles the situation where you turn on a light at the bottom of the stairs and have a paired switch that will turn off the light.  We were running 10 minutes late and jumped out of the car not noticing that the siding was going on. Both of separately asked Gregg when the siding would go on.

The previous trip subject was figuring out the breezeway and as part of that how to treat the horizontal ties. We decided to beef them just enough to give them some mass without clogging the vault.

 

 

 

 

 

 

This visit was at the peak for fall color in Richmond.  Caught this area of the woods with lots of ferns. Our friend John Mickel is known world wide as a fern expert so we sent this pic to him for ID. Answer to follow.

 

 

 

 

 

One of our favorite features is the rear bluestone patio.  Took Zach a lot of sorting through bluestone deliveries to get a set with slight variation in color and not too much cleft (uneveness of surface when split)

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