Friday, August 17, 2007

Introducing - PERCY!!

Hello again everyone,

Well, the wife will probably kill me for posting this, but several people have asked.

We think that our house might be haunted. Long, long story, but needless to say weird things have happened around here. Perhaps somday I will document these 'happenings' here.

Anyway, last November we had a professional group of paranormal investigators contact us about our house. Through several e-mails we decided to let them have a look. It was the COOLEST think I have seen in years!!! It was just like a CSI episode. Lots of equipment and gear and techi type stuff.

The group that came is called 'The Southeast Kansas Paranormal Investigators' (SKPI for short). Here is their web site:

If you go to the 'Case Files' page you will see us listed as case file #006. You can read their report.

Attached you will see a couple of photos. The one that looks 'fuzzy' is a still taken from a video they got of 'something' going down the stair-well of th attic. We have named this 'something' Percy.

Let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Here is a photo of our house taken in 1930. In one of the windows you can see what appears to be a very tall (over 7') person standing in the window.

I won't tell you which one. However, the window is in one of the rooms a person died in.

And here he is ~ Percy!!!

Huston, we have a floor!!

Hello again everyone!

Well, it is beginning to look like a new room in the attic. We have about 45% of the new floor in. This weekend we will finish putting in the rest of the insulation and then I can put in the rest of the floor.

At first it seemed like such an easy task to revamp the attic - boy was I wrong! We have had to deal with wiring problems; gas pipes we were not aware of; and then we had to deal with the original ceiling/floor joists – not to mention the 100 degree + temps!

At first they looked true and even but NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!

Turns out that parts of the second floor ceiling are sagging in spots. You can only see it if you use a laser level. When you add the new joists it becomes more obvious that they are uneven and sagging in spot too. So, I had to spend extra time shoring those up. Unfortunately, they are still not in perfect alignment with the new joists and with the new flooring. It is subtle, but noticeable, that there are lower spots. On top of that, none of the joists are plumb and true!

I have had to make part of the new flooring accessible so that we can get to the gas pipes. We need to trace them and cap-off the ones not needed and add a junction for the new line that will connect to the heater we'll install.

When we first re-wired the second floor Annette's father did it for us (I hate working with electricity). When I started to put the new joists in I found out he didn't do it the way we asked! We wanted the second floor to be done in 'zones' using J-boxes. By doing this we would be able to work on the wires easier. Well, it turns out he didn't add a single J-box!!! Everything was wired directly to the 2nd floor fuse-box. The only J-boxes were the ones the light fixtures were attached to. So, I snipped-snipped the wires and re-did them with J-boxes. Since the flooring is being attached with screws I have marked all the major areas the J-boxes are located in and if we need to work on one we can just unscrew one of the floor boards and work on it. BTW - yes, I know the J-box access should be exposed, but hey, that's one of the joys of living in a small town with no codes!!!!

Both of us lost our balance and fell off the original joists. Fortunately it was over the ceiling of the Master Bedroom; a couple of years ago I re-did this ceiling and reinforced it. After each of us fell I did run down stairs to check for damage – not even a crack or bulge!

All in all it is coming together. Doesn't look too bad so far. I will post an up-date and pics as we progress.

Mmmm....look at all that yummy pink stuff!

We think I'm allergic to it. If I even went near it I would break out and couldn't stop itching! So, the wife ended up doing this part.

And yes - I know it was installed up-side down, but you try to tell that to the wife.

More of the pink, fuzzy stuff!

WOOHOO!!! We have flooring!!!

What a difference a floor makes. We even noticed a slight drop in temp.

More of the new flooring.

The big black cable is THE main power cable that supplies the second floor. I will be dropping it to the basment in a couple of weeks.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

The Attic

Hello again everyone.

Well, it has been a while since I posted, so here's an up-date on the latest project - the attic.

After about 5 years worth of false starts and other projects getting in the way, I have finally been able to start construction on a wargaming room / hobby room.

Part of the house hunting ordeal was making sure there was space for a gaming room (wife's insistence). The attic in this house is bigger than our first home! Anyway, it had never been finished, just filled with junk. The beginning of last week was the first day I could start cleaning it out and getting ready to build. Additional floor joists and flooring need to be added, as well as lighting and such. When finished it will be a blank slate.

The total space is about 960 sq. feet. Once the knee walls are up and the built in storage / book shelves are in it will shrink the room to about 700 sq. feet. The top of the ceiling is just under 13', right below that is where the gaming table will be.

You can't tell the size by the pics, but the picture that has a straight-on view of a white book case. Thia is where the gaming table might go. It is big enough for a 6x9 table with room for expansion.

You might be amused to see some of our Halloween props hanging, and lying, about. They are not the bodies of the previous owners or neighbors, nor is the white haired woman my grandmother! LOL LOL LOL

Last Thursday I, along with neighbor's kid, hoisted the new floor joist up and into one of the attic doors (they're too big to take through the house). It surprised me that it was harder to lift a 2"x"6x14' long piece of lumber up onto back porch roof than it was getting it through the attic window.

Here is where the table might go.

Or it might go to the right side of the chimney.

Another view of where the table might be placed.

To the left back of the pic you can can see the dormor and just the top of the window in it.

Top of the stairs.

The window in the background is going to be the lounging area.

At the back of the pic you can see another window. This one overlooks the West lawn.

A better view of the same window.

The window in this pic is the spot where my painting table will go.

This picture shows where I am planing on having most of the books that will be up here.

It's hard to see the back of the space in this pic, I'm not sure what will go there yet.

Another pic trying to show that back space better.

Last, but not least, here is a pic of the neighbors (oops - did I say that?).

The past few days saw me clearing out the last of everything in the attic. Annette insisted we do this, she wants to go through the junk and get rid of most of it.

Several of the new floor joist are in and the rest are awaiting placement. I'm needing to re-route some wiring first. They should all be in by Thursday and the insulation in by Friday. We are also having the new floor delivered Friday so that it can be installed this coming weekend.

Here are some pics so you can see the work done so far.

The top of the stairs area going down.

The lounging area will be in front ot the window.

The painting table is going to go by the window that can bearly be seen to the left.

Here's the spot where most of the books will be going.

Finally, a better view of that back area I wasn't sure what to do with yet. Annette thinks it would be a good gaming storage area.

The window is where the painting table was going to go, but that has been changed.

The other far back corner.

The very top of the house, almost 13' up!

I will post more as we progress!