Sunday, February 19, 2012

Need some wood?

Anyone remember the Presidential debate in 2008 when GWB said this? I think we were rolling on the floor - it was so goofily uttered. But we recently needed some wood. My mission over the past month has been to find old boards. Anything old (we are going to whitewash them) - barn boards, attic boards, subfloor boards. Whatever! Lots of them and decent widths.

The board quest is because in the kitchen area of the cellar, we need to basically make a dropped ceiling, and we plan to make it look like the rest of the cellar ceiling, but just to create panels that look like the underside of subfloor, and hang them down lower. We ran all the wires and other ugly stuff in the kitchen area to keep the rest of the room clear, so we just have one section to cover up.

By the way, I'm done scrubbing the ceiling in the living and kitchen areas and have moved on to whitewashing - sweet!

First I found a guy on craigslist, sort of nearby but we could make another errand in the general vicinity. The guy said I should call his dad. They advertised wood salvaged from old barns that could be made into flooring or whatever - and in the photo, it just looked like a giant wood storage barn. I was salivating. Our budget, as per usual, was as close to $0 as possible. So, I asked if they had any crummy old scraps for cheap - he said sure, they had seconds in a pile that weren't suitable for flooring and would probably work.

So, we loaded ourselves in the truck and took off down un-marked roads (partly dirt) in search of the lumber barn. The dad of the guy we emailed was there. We walked past heads and entrails of hogs he had just slaughtered (nice), and up rickety stairs, being admonished not to step off the 'obvious' places in the attic so we wouldn't fall through. There was the pile. As he began pulling mouse-poop-covered boards out, he started talking about price, and said something about $5 a board foot (for rotten poopy seconds? C'mon, man!). I did my best negotiating but in the end we left empty handed rather than spend several hundred $ on not great lumber - and we only had about sixty-two bucks with us anyways!

Back home, I grumpily typed a 'wanted' email and put it on the e-bulletin board at work. Next morning, a guy emailed and said he had a bunch of old boards in the basement he'd love to get rid of. And was only about 10 miles away. Back in the truck - and we went down cellar to find the motherlode - a whole pile of 5/4 barn/subfloor boards, properly aged, and up to 12" wide! We gave him something like $40 for the pile and quickly packed it up and left! The boards are almost too nice to use - hopefully we'll have extra and can make something sweet with a few pieces.

We are almost done with final insulation and we have some time off in a couple of weeks - the plan is to finish up a bunch of ceiling work and maybe even get to wall sheathing very soon!