Sunday, 18 July 2010

Making progress

Despite the winter throwing some truly dreadful weather our way, and both of us being laid low by The Cold From Hell, we've still managed to make reasonable progress on the house build over the last few weeks.

We've finished the cladding!
The west wall, showing the kitchen windows

We've now completed the cladding, and we've started treating it with wood preservative. We wanted a more or less clear finish, as we like the blond colour of the plywood, but there isn't anything like that available in the type of treatment we need to use, so we've gone for a mid-brown stain. It tones well with the roof, and gives the house a rustic, cabiny feel. So far we've only managed to stain the back wall and the east wall, because we've had to wait for a run of two days of dry weather to do any staining, and those have been few and far between this winter!

The stained east wall and some of our new flax plants

You may notice in the photos above that we've now got some plants in our 'garden'. They're a dozen New Zealand flax plants, which we got free from a friend of a friend, whose little garden in town was being overrun by them. In the summer New Zealand flax has large, lily-like flowers on long stalks, and the flowers attract native birds, such as the tui.

We hope to get some tui visiting our flax in the summer.

We've still got a lot of work left to do before we've completed the exterior of the house. Next weekend we're going to start work on the soffit lining on the verandah roof. When we get some dry weather we need to continue staining the cladding. Once the staining is finished we've got to put beading under the eaves and on the gable ends, fascia under the verandah, and timber reveals around the windows and doors. Then there's the verandah deck to build!

Close-up of the stained east wall

Even though we've not finished the exterior yet, we've still managed to complete the first job on the interior, which is insulating the walls. Our next indoors job is to put the insulation in the roof and gable ends. Once that's done and the exeterior is complete apart from the deck, we can get the building inspector in for the 'pre-line' inspection.When we've passed that, we can start putting the gib (plaster board) on the walls.

Frosty morning scene during the cold snap we had last week

Although we're still a long way off finishing building the house, the end does feel as if it's in sight at last, and we're hoping, like all good self-builders, to be in by Christmas. We're not saying which Christmas, mind you! ;-)