The Pumphouse

The Pumphouse is a project that comes and goes as we have time and energy to spare on it. No one lives there now or has any desire to live there in the not too distant future, so there's no schedule of when it needs to be finished. Plans keep evolving as new needs keep showing up (such as new deck posts to replace old, rotting or nonexistent posts). Future plans include but are not limited to: Remodeling the bathroom, framing in the existing back door with a window, tiling the whole house, raising the bathroom side of the house about a foot, adjusting the posts under the house so they're straight up and down again, install a kitchen area with cabinets and sink and lots more. The newest pics are at the top, so if you want a chronological view, start at the bottom and work your way up.

3-7-07. It's been an awful long time since I've updated work on the pumphouse.  There's been sporadic work over the past year, with a will to finish it by August of 2007.  A lot of the progress has to do with money, and a lot has to do with time and how I feel about doing the work.  I'm trying to play catchup and list the actual dates work got done, but this is the first update in about 2 years?  Bad TJ!

There's plans to put 3 new windows in this, soon to be kitchen area.  The yellow door will disappear. A sink will be approx. in the same place, so we need a window to look out from that spot.  To the right, in the corner, on the same wall will be a smaller window.  And the existing window will move 2 feet towards the same corner.  Now we're in a bit of a holding pattern because we need money to buy the windows.  Oh did I mention the floor underneath that wall needs more support?  That has to be done before windows.  The weather needs to be a bit nicer to work on that, but I've been collecting what I need, piers, posts, wood to frame the windows and wall where the door is.  Insulation needs to be put in (no insulation in the original walls), with a vapor barrier before I even think about sheetrock.  I want to redo the ceiling sheetrock as well, and hopefully find a way to cover up the redwood beams going across the ceiling, but I may be wishing.

9-15-06.  I was pleased with the painting progress and had great energy for this project again, for a short while.  I finished the entryway's wainscoting.  I thought it turned out rather well, since the wainscoting was a little too short, I had to get a thicker decorative piece for the top.  It's primed and ready to you to paint, Niomi!

8-10-06.  Here's the woman herself doing some wonderful finishing work on the room addition.  You can see bits of the wainscoting behind her.  The room is pretty much finished.  It's just the rest of the house that needs work.  Every so often I feel like I'm in an episode of "Flip This House."  It's taking forever to get it done.

And here's Sari doing her part in supporting her sister in this endeavor.  The colors look very nice.

7-4-05.  I brought up about 10 bundles of roof tiles from Home Depot.  I never thought I'd make it over the mountains because it was probably 700 pounds, and the mud flaps on my rear wheels were dragging along the ground.  Only until they wore away though!  Peter and Amanda helped me put this new roof on.  The top looks awkward because there's an attic  venting system along the ridge, under the top layer of tiles.

Here's a wide view of the back roof.

Amanda worked on this project after coming back from Taiwan.  She pretty much got the roof tiles removed all by herself.  The cast-iron stove inside was removed and there's no plans to install another, so the chimney is in the process of being removed and patched before new roof tiles go on.

Below is the back view of the pumphouse, looking out over the creek.  Since we added a new room to the front, we had to reroof it immediately.  We decided to wait on reroofing the back portion for a while.  

By the way, here's a view of the creek from the back deck during a rainstorm.  Water only flows for a day or so after a rain.

6-23-05. Here's a little project DA asked us to start. Because he's had a fence torn down, he decided to expand the pumphouse's new flat area out along the creek. (see picture from 7-13-03)So we get to dig and put the old rotting fence boards down in the hole and cover it up. Sari and Peter have some helpers at home so this is a good project to keep Amanda and Peter Z. out of trouble.

4-23-05. After a visit from Niomi and dozens of paint choices looked at, Niomi chose the same door color as Sari has on her front door, and in the picture below, Sari has obligingly painted the door. You can also see the relationship to the Hot Tub in this view.

7-5-04. Here's one of the latest pictures of real work that's been done lately. Niomi found a ceiling fan and table light matching set at Home depot, so we got busy and installed it.

4-25-04. Unfortunately, the tiling guy left the light on after he went home, and since it was just a temporary light, it got too hot and caused a fire. Peter was the first to notice it before it got very far and we all had an exciting night. Took the fire dept 45 minutes to finally get there, but we'd already extinguished it ourselves. No one slept that night. Another 10 minutes unnoticed and we'd've been able to start the project all over again from scratch.

4-24-04. All the tile and grouting is done in the bedroom...

3-29-04. This guy works hard and for cheap rates. The plywood on the wall is set to take the wainscoting.

3-29-04. Finally got everything I needed to do some tiling.

3-13-04. Here's a couple sample pictures I took for Niomi to decide on which way she wanted the tile to go in her bedroom. Guess which one she chose? The harder one, of course! Never give a choice...

9-14-03. This is the finished floor, but looking the other direction in the bedroom. You can see we have the drywall installed and spackled. The blue stuff covering the brickwork is a foam insulation that's been glued to the wall. And we have the first view of the closet and the storage shelf that's going above it.

9-6-03. This is the bedroom. The old cement porch. The one that's not level. We had a laser level and managed to make some wild cuts on some 2x4's. Glue these down, then add 1 inch plywood on top of these, instant floor!

4-3-04. Large rock put in the drainage trench. Roofing paper put against the concrete foundation to try to keep it dry.

3-27-04. Another part of the root is gone, so the electrical pipe is safe for a while. Got the drainage pipe installed.

3-27-04. Digging was easy?! Who said that! I came up against a monster of a redwood tree root, and to make it worse, pipes in the way. The pipes have been there 40+ years and the root grew bigger and broke one pipe (which had electrical wires), and would've broken the water pipe in a few more years. My favorite tool, the sawzall, did the job here. But there's always a root branching off straight down (that white circle in between the cut root.)

2-9-04. With the cement bench out of the way, digging a trench was actually easy! We also took out the cement stairs that led to the French doors that you may have seen in one of the early pictures.

1-10-04. This is yet another project we needed to get done. We noticed a lot of water was coming down the hill straight to the Pumphouse, and since we finally got raingutters installed, we thought we'd dig a trench around the base and put in some drainage pipes. But this stone bench was in the way, so I got a 15lb sledge and went to work breaking up the concrete. It was several days worth of work and sore muscles to get this far. And on my birthday even!

11-2-03. Termites had their fill and left town.

11-2-03. We found out why the whole house sags on the bathroom end of the house. The post holding that corner up had a few termites. Actually there weren't any termites left, because they'd finished their meal (above). We used a whole house jack to install a new pier and post. Fun stuff to raise the jack a half inch and listen to the house above you make all sorts of noises. Maybe the other posts need some work, too. They don't seem level, but maybe that's because of the camera angle. And maybe not!

10-20-03. This is a rare view from the driveway looking north. (The new hot tub deck is just off the picture to the left, before the sawhorse). We tried our best to line up some wood siding to match the existing siding. But the whole left end of the house sags. Wonder why that is? Oh, no one will notice it once it gets painted. The front door artwork is attributed to Niomi. She couldn't find a green she liked.

5-17-03. So what's the difference between this picture and the one below it? I'll let you figure that one out. (It's not the ladder.)

5-12-03. Another view of the picture below. A doorway has been created to the new bedroom. And an entryway too! The plywood floor that we put in this little square area told us we were going to have to raise the floor of the bedroom

5-12-03. Now we've got a foundation, walls framed in, and the siding off the old wall, and removed a window.

4-19-03. The start of another phase of the exterior add-on. We've cut away part of the side deck and will build a structure that will house a doorway into the new bedroom.

4-6-03. Drywall is going up. That green swatch is really drywall for a bathroom, but it was just the right size that we needed there. The brickwork/old cement wall looks really ugly, and not very even (nothing old is straight or level, remember), so we're planning on wainscoting to hide it.

3-29-03. Here's a good view of the exterior of the house with it's siding finished, and all the windows installed. Look at the bottom right hand side, below the window. There's a large concrete bench left over from the original porch. It needs to go.

7-13-03. Getting ahead here, but this is what the patio looks like after some landscaping. Gotta have this next to the pic below, or else it's hard to compare.

3-20-03. In between work on the house, we've been digging away alongside the Pumphouse deck and filling the area with debris from this project. There's no garbage pick-up at Wildwood, and it wouldn't make great firewood, there's still many nails in these boards, and old roofing is in there somewhere, so we thought we'd bury it and gain a nice level patio area. A dog run for Zippy! All this wood has since been covered with a lot of dirt.

3-20-03. The old French doors used to be here. They'll be covered up and forgotten...

3-08-03. Another window and wood siding gets installed. Prepainted by Niomi and Sari.

3-1-03. We've got windows! The roof has been on long enough to get a collection of leaves.

2-2-03. Quite a lot of work later, the exterior is covered with plastic to keep the rain out, and will be used as the vapor barrier as well. The interior walls are framed in, and we're ready for some sheetrock. This new section will have 2 rooms: an entryway/laundryroom and a bedroom with (a very small) closet. The back room is the bedroom.

10-11-02. Ah, finally a picture of the people behind this mess. "When I nod my head, you hit it with the hammer..."

10-11-02. There's a couple of hard working youngsters putting a new roof on the house. Photo courtesy of Ivey.

10-6-02. A detailed view of the old and new roofline. As usual, nothing of the old stuff is level. Above the far door (which will be the new entryway) you can see the where the ceiling will be. About halfway up the new wood on the old front wall.

9/29/02 We've done a lot in the past 2 days! The roof is going great. Rafters are in place, plywood is going on top of them, and we've got bags of nails waiting to be used.

9-28-02. Here we've ripped off the old roofing and just left the rafters to hold up the other side of the roof. We've built a halfway point for the new roof rafters on the existing front of the house that we tore up in the picture below. Since we used 8 foot 2x6's for the new outside wall, the room in there is going to be about 10 to 11 feet high. The old interior has a ceiling of about 7.5 feet high. Quite a difference.

9-14-02. The front of the house gets torn off. A new entry into the old portion is being framed in (by the loft), and say goodbye to those French doors. We had to replace some of the boards at the base of the wall which were rotting away, and put in a 4x4 beam between the new entry and the French doors so the wall could sit on something solid. The floor joists also needed upgrading where they came in contact with the cement slab.

8-29-02. This goes backwards in time, but it's a good view of the interior.

8-31-02. Pa and I are busy working on the wood phase. Niomi and Ivey are available this week so lots of progress is happening. The wall framing is just about done. (ok, Ivey is a little young to pound nails...)

8-27-02. Here we have the cement wall completely up and starting on the wood phase. There's a rusting water pump to the left side of the wall.

8-26-02. Here's Pa listening to Niomi's grand plan. "And a view of the ocean right here..."

8-17-02. Here's the old cement stairs to the front of the house. Some of the cement wall was already there and we have to make do with bricks to fill it in. Of course, nothing is ever level in the old construction.

8-17-02. Later the same day... We've built a few layers of bricks with a few to go. Cement and bricks are going fast.

8-17-02. Here's the extension after the cement has dried, and we're getting ready to work on the cement wall.

8-10-02. This is the first step with the new construction. We had to move a woodpile and dig out an area for a cement extension of the patio. We wanted to keep the new addition the same length as the original structure. There's a cement stairway to the right going down, which will be covered over later with plywood. See those pipes going through the boards? Keep that in mind later on...

Here's a view looking the other way, out the back door.

Another picture of the original, untouched interior. The loft is behind the curtains on the right hand side.

This is a picture of the original house. It's basically one main room, a bathroom, and a "loft" sleeping area. It's called the Pumphouse because right below the loft is a room with a well sunk about 75 feet down. In the early days it was the only source of water around, and had to be pumped to a holding tank. Eventually the area was upgraded to city water. Here you see the front French doors (one is in bad shape and doesn't open anymore). The cement porch entry was what got Niomi interested in expanding the Pumphouse. She wanted a screened in area, but it quickly became much more than that.

e-mail me: