Monday, March 26, 2007

Tooling the bead

Saturday morning we slept in a bit and had a nice relaxing breakfast outside at the picnic table, under the tree, about 70 degrees and sunny. Shortly after, the perpetually dusty clothes went on and we headed off to the house. Along the way we stopped at a neighborhood antique store to scope the scene for a dresser that might make a nice bathroom vanity. Also made the usual stop at the hardware store, this time to pick up some pvc sealant (please work...please work) and rent the crimping tool and gauge for the pex tube fittings.

I immediately set to the task of sealing up the pvc leak. I rubbed it down with alcohol, cleaned it up nice, and loaded the stuff into the caulking gun. "Tool the bead for a good seal," it says.

I had two goals for the day: Replace the water supply lines between the water heater, bathroom, and kitchen with pex tubing, and finish positioning and gluing the pvc drain for the future bath. I'm happy to report that we met those goals!

The pex tubing job was pretty much as I envisioned it to be, minus a couple of snags at the start. Once we got the hang of it, it was pretty simple. Erika stood in the basement with the 100' roll of it and I crawled into the crawlspace and took one end from her (through the access hole to the basement). I just reused the 3/4" hangers that were already in place from the old tubing. No sweat. It took about 10 minutes to make the first run. The next run was to go from the end of the first run and back to the bathroom. The last owner ran 1/2" tubing from there and we want to run 3/4" up to the fixtures. That meant the existing hangers needed to be removed and replaced. I sped off to the hardware store and picked up 30 or so plastic 3/4" hangers and jumped back into the crawl space suit and slithered under the house.

I could break the old hangers and their nails with my gloved hand. So it was like this: I'd start in the bathroom, holding the end of the pipe, and crawl under the floor to the far end of the house while Erika fed me more tubing. Then I'd work my way back to the bathroom, on my back, breaking the old hangers and nailing up new ones. Then, crawl back to under the kitchen and make my way back to the bathroom on my back, hanging the pipe. There - hot water run done. Repeated all of this for the cold water lines. Still need to hook the lines up to the kitchen sink, and need to finish the job in the basement at the water heater. I need to do a little more research before making the kitchen connections, and the water heater area can be taken care of at any time of day, since it's in the basement and easier to access.

We sat on a boulder along the creek and ate dinner. It was nice. We were hungry.

After dinner I glued the upstairs drain together, that waterpark-lookin' chute from the future bathroom that feeds into the new wye. Another nervous task, but in the end we got it glued in and lined up perfectly. We left by 9:30, feeling accomplished. What a treat!

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