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I said I’d be drywalling. But.

I said this morning I’d be drywalling all day. I was, sort of. I finished a second wall of the bedroom, but ambition to cover the longest wall got derailed by my ambition to do it right.

That wall was the exterior wall of the original 14 x 24 cabin. Presumably the blocked-off doorway was the back door. But shortly after Jim Beam and Jack Daniels built the “big chicken coop” (as the builder’s great grandson, who works at the lumberyard calls it), they added the bedroom wing, covered all that over, and I never knew what to expect until The Wandering Monk and I began tearing stuff down.

One of the unexpecteds is that the long walls of the original of the house lean inward. It doesn’t appear to have been an accident. It’s too consistent. In any case, both my four-foot level and my eyeballs tell me that wall leeeeeaaans. So I spent the day shimming it out.

Doesn’t look as if it should have taken all day, does it? But it was tricky getting each ascending shim — from the 1/4″ thick lath at the bottom to the 1 x 2s backed by eight layers of tar paper at the top — to exactly the right depth. And to do as much as possible with materials on hand.

It’s not pretty, but it’s going to make the result a whole lot prettier. I’m quite pleased with myself tonight.

Tomorrow, the drywall. These will be big pieces again. I’m only putting up two of the three that go on that wall. The Monk will be here next week to frame closets and I’ll recruit him to help me raise the last giant slab in the room.

My goal is to be moved into the bedroom by the end of January. That may be ambitious given all that has to be done (closets, floor repair and finishing, wall mudding and texturing, and more). But it’s satisfying to be making progress.

Not to mention squaring this old trapezoidal parallelogram, possibly quadra-dimensional tesseract, of a house.


  1. Edward
    Edward November 29, 2017 6:52 pm

    Oh no! Walls do not lean outwards by design, not ever, unless built by total numbskulls. Please do check that the leaning wall of pizza is not moving outward at the top due to roof trusses (more likely just single 2×6’s with struts and center supports) are not slowly spreading outwards as the roof peak slowly sinks for whatever reason. I pray it is just drunken builders and not something structural. Best of luck and you are doing a great job!!

  2. Joel
    Joel November 29, 2017 7:33 pm

    What is currently siding that wall? Almost looks like slats of some sort.

  3. larryarnold
    larryarnold November 29, 2017 8:48 pm

    I’d guess it’s 3″ shiplap.

  4. Mike
    Mike November 29, 2017 8:49 pm

    Claire, you are a better person than I. Since I retired I’ve been slowly devolving into a much less driven person than I was. You do good work Claire, much better than I. Keep it up and while you may loose the occasional battle remember, you’re winning the war. đŸ™‚

  5. rochester_veteran
    rochester_veteran November 30, 2017 2:24 am

    All of the surprises you’re finding in your place! You’re doing good, Claire, at making things right!

    Mike, I’m almost where you’re at and am retiring at the end of August of next year. I’m relocating to Colorado right after I retire and I’m slowly shedding stuff that one accumulates when you live in a place for 22 years. My townhouse has 3 bedrooms and a big finished room in the basement and I plan on moving into a 1 bedroom apartment, so I have a ton of stuff to shed!

  6. Claire
    Claire November 30, 2017 5:28 am

    Edward, I hear you in your dismay. But no, these walls do not lean outward. They lean inward (on the original main structure). That gives them an outward lean relative to the bedroom, but the bedroom was an add-on.

    Joel — larryarnold is right. You see the original exterior siding on that wall and it is 3″ shiplap.

    Mike and RV — Good luck with your downsizing and de-ambitioning! ;

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