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Deluxe Basement #1: Symphony Of Destruction (ie making a decent opening for the stairs and coating the walls)

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Blog entry by Sodabowski posted 05-19-2013 12:14 AM 900 reads 0 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Deluxe Basement series Part 2: Stairway to Hell »

So after four iterations of the plan and much useless discussion with the parents about how better it would be to spend less money and have a better and more functional staircase that what’s on the market, I finally pushed hard enough to have them listen to their son and make the jump.

First order of business: enlarge the basement opening, too small for anything else than a ladder, there’s just no way that I let mom go up and down a ladder carrying anything. It took us three full days to get to the point were we had a full opening, first day I drilled through the concrete to prepare for the heavy destruction (I considered using explosives at one point – no kidding, this thing is really rock-solid) and then it was a matter of using the big boys toy and destroy it all. The holes I had made on the first day really helped keep things under control and we managed to get the armed concrete to break exactly as we wanted it to.

You can definitely tell we had a blast here… well, not quite, but at last we got the job done. By the way, how do you get a 20+ kilogram (~40 pounds) electric hammer in there and use it against an horizontal concrete slab without too much effort? by hanging it to the upper stairs of course (with the strong nylon flat rope I use to pull out stumps with mom’s ride :D). We had no effort to do to keep it where it should be and completed the actual dismantling in around an hour.

Secondly, we made a nice mold to tidy up the opening (which will be encased with wood eventually).
This is where you can definitely say: there is no such thing as scrap wood. I used polystyrene blocks to fill the gaps and wood spacers to keep the mould from touching the sides and preventing us from putting the cement where we needed it.

Gotta love daddy’s looks in his heavy duty outfit ;)

Next we coated the walls with a stone-colored, erm, construction stuff which name I don’t know in english (“enduit” in Froggish). I had dad buy a real compressor and projecting device for that – and later told him about the pneumatic nailers and the possibility to hack it into an air pump to build a vacuum press, which idea really got him excited. I made the most out of my free Facom baseball cap and managed to get very little sand in my huge metalhead hair ;) These compressed air projecting devices can really make a mess in no time. I couldn’t get decent pictures of that part of the process but imagine a nice warm yellowish stone colored wall in a basement and you get the idea of what we ended up with.

I’ll split this post here and continue with the staircase construction in part two.

-- Holy scrap Barkman!



10 comments so far

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

11126 posts in 1694 days


#1 posted 05-19-2013 12:23 AM

Now thats how ya demo!

Couldnt have done it better myself.

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View Sodabowski's profile

Sodabowski

2040 posts in 1521 days


#2 posted 05-19-2013 12:37 AM

I really could have used my explosives chemistry skills to blast it out but the dust would have made a huge mess in the nearby bookcases, so we went the slow way :p

-- Holy scrap Barkman!

View waleedwaheed2013's profile

waleedwaheed2013

138 posts in 573 days


#3 posted 05-19-2013 10:50 AM

Congratulation the problem it removed

-- Waleed Waheed

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

11126 posts in 1694 days


#4 posted 05-19-2013 01:46 PM

Also +1 to the megadeth referrance.

“Ya take a mortal man and put him in control…”

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View Sodabowski's profile

Sodabowski

2040 posts in 1521 days


#5 posted 05-19-2013 02:08 PM

;)

-- Holy scrap Barkman!

View Schwieb's profile

Schwieb

1536 posts in 2149 days


#6 posted 05-20-2013 12:41 AM

Thomas, I just got back to my reality after being out of town for a few days and away from computers. Grandfather stuff to deal with, you know? Isn’t understanding physical principles great? looks like a lot of work!

-- Dr. Ken, Florida - Durch harte arbeit werden Träume wahr.

View Sodabowski's profile

Sodabowski

2040 posts in 1521 days


#7 posted 05-23-2013 04:06 PM

It was, particularly drilling the effing holes. The big toy was a breeze (but I still would have prefered to use explosives, or at least Dexpan).

-- Holy scrap Barkman!

View chrisstef's profile

chrisstef

11126 posts in 1694 days


#8 posted 05-23-2013 04:10 PM

Ive been doing demolition for 11 years now and im still looking for an excuse to use Dexpan! I almost had it when we had to cut down some concrete piers for a diving board around a gunnite pool but alas, they kept them, and I didn’t get to use Dexpan :(

-- "there aren’t many hand tools as awe-inspiring as the #8 jointer. I mean, it just reeks of cast iron heft and hubris" - Smitty

View Sodabowski's profile

Sodabowski

2040 posts in 1521 days


#9 posted 05-23-2013 04:43 PM

That stuff is a dream come true: no noise, no hazards, no freaking dust, just pour and go get a beer while it works for you. Awesome. I’ll have to stock some for our next demos! Plus I really can use that stuff when digging for crystals =D

-- Holy scrap Barkman!

View mafe's profile

mafe

9561 posts in 1777 days


#10 posted 06-04-2013 10:38 PM

Nothing as rewarding as destruction of concrete!
Looks wonderful, the project.
Looks also like tired arms.
I agree, you needed a bigger hole.
Look forward to part two.
Glad to see you building along with your father.
Best thoughts my friend,
Mads

-- Mad F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

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