Door Drama: Part Two

Alright…here’s where our little door project gets fun (aka A BIG HEADACHE).

Once the security door was gone, we saw that the furring wood underneath the previous door frame was in not-so-hot condition. We decided it would be best to replace that wood so that we would have a solid new entry way.

The problem was that the “furring wood” was actually 1×4 planks that were under aluminum casing. Feeling a bit wary of what we were getting ourselves into, we removed the aluminum casing. Here’s what we found…

…a bazillion hornet’s nests. Awesome. Jonathan sprayed and swept the heck out of that mess. Actually, we were glad to know about it…and totally creeped out.

With the aluminum casing gone, we saw this mess.

Now, we were almost more confused about what our next step should be. The old molding was nice (once) but rotting in places. Can you say demolition time?

Things were getting more complicated with each step. We had no idea how to rebuild this thing. We thought we could save ourselves some new lumber by using the 1x4s on the outsides, but one side was pretty warped at the top (preventing any new wood from precluding). Our solution was to remove, scrape, and de-nail the planks. Then, we flipped them up-side-down and nailed them back in.

Next up was buying our new wood. But, first, we had to figure out what dimensions we needed for our frame. Queue the diagram:

We had the home improvement store cut our wood (at no extra cost, fyi) since we only had a small hand saw . Now we were ready to rebuild. After a long day of hammering, holding, and baby-distracting, we were done with the initial framing. Here’s how she looked:

All that was missing were the 1×6 planks to finish off the sides (we thought we’d wait until the storm door was up for those. Not sure why, really).

We were feeling pretty proud of all our hard work. Time to install the storm door (which we had also never done)! But, I found a YouTube video, so it should be a piece of cake, right?

Jonathan, along with his brother and dad, devoted an entire evening to that glass door. First set back: the framing we did was in the way slightly, and needed to come back down. Seriously?!

By the end of the evening, the door was in place. Phew. One small problem: the concrete on the floor was cracked and, therefore, crooked. The door wouldn’t seal and hardly closed (I guess that negates the energy efficiency claims of the door).

Let me just say, I was feeling slightly tired of this project. But, what other choice did we have other than to move forward and complete the thing?

So we called on my oh-so-handy dad, who borrowed a concrete grinder from a guy at work. Pretty cool piece of equipment, I must say. But M-E-S-S-Y. I can’t describe the magnitude of dust that was on our front step. And in our living room. Let’s just say I mopped the living room 4 times that afternoon and still felt dust on the floor. Yeah.

But, she worked like a charm. A charm that cost us hours in cleaning 🙂

Okay, back to framing. Deja vu. Hard work…again. Blocking was our real issue. We had nothing to nail the planks into. Michael, Jonathan’s brother who is frequently mentioned in our house project blog posts, came with his nail gun. And, glory! It looks better than the first time we framed it (and took half the time)! If there’s one thing we’ve learned in all of this, it’s that using the right tools makes all the difference.

That’s where we are now. Sigh. But, I’m really happy with how the whole thing has turned out. It will look just beautiful painted white. I know all the neighbors will be as happy as we are about this mess being completed. Note the lush, green grass our lawn has this summer. What heat?

Next up, we caulk, prime, and paint. Oh, and the storm door is still having some dang issues. A gap is keeping the door from latching. 😦

Then, it’s on to tearing down awning, making some wood shutters, and building a large, roofed front porch.

Eventually, of course. We’re tired.



Filed under DIY projects, home improvements

6 responses to “Door Drama: Part Two

  1. You are learning so much, and it will be to your advantage in the end. It’s looking good and one day you can make a book about this door to keep in a scrap book 🙂

  2. Eric

    All of your learning reminds of people that used to look and Mom and Dad’s concrete stone work (like on our sidewalk in Smyrna or underneath the back addition) and say “I wish I had a skill like that!” Mom and Dad thought “We didn’t have any skill. We just gave it a shot and learned along the way.”

  3. it always takes longer than you expect…always! not you are the only one 😉 glad you got those hornet nests out. Looks great!

  4. You’re so brave! Keep it up!!

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