Friday, May 20, 2011

This week more has taken shape, albeit slower than hoped but it's positively progressing in the right directions and quality of workmanship is spot on with Arnie at the helm. The floors for upstairs are nearly finished and this also doubled as ceiling for the entrance hall, along which there are new & freshly stained black slats of decorative wood.

This plywood flooring fits neatly without joints being visible from underneath. As the work on the house finishes, we'll unscrew the boards, cover them in white textured wallpaper and re-fit for a neat job.

A large section of the upstairs flooring neatly comes out, so we can hoist furniture upstairs, instead of trying to negotiate the tight corners & stairs.

Yesterday Arnie took out the old pantry & today began to replace a few (Non structural) timber that had been turned to sponge courtesy of previous resident woodworm. Once this is done, the upstairs flooring can be completed. Note that all of upstairs is to be covered with Tatami (Good for partially sound proofing the floor too!

During this week Shinobu worked on the 2nd lounge (Which by original design is the grandest room of this traditional building).

First they made a simple dust barrier in the 1st lounge..

To protect the next door lounge room from this:

Once cleared of dust accumulated throughout a couple of hundred years Shinobu oiled beams in this 2nd lounge so it's ready for Arnie to make & fit new framing in that room next week.

Whilst Arnie's making framing in the 2nd lounge, Shinobu will be able to clean off the dust then oil all the beams in the guest room upstairs. Thist will make part of the beautiful decorative ceiling.
Once Arnie is finished framing the 2nd lounge he can go onto the framing for the guest room ceiling too. They only have one scaffolding, so this is why they work seperate rooms at a time.

Once all the framing's been done electrical work can begin with conduit running the length of the house through the central walls, to branch out as needed for electrical fittings. By having conduit, there's no chance of rodent damage, which means virtually zero danger of electrical sparks in the vicinity of straw that's hundreds of years old!

Once the electrical work's done, the wooden ceilings and plasterboard walls can go on, to be coated with cream coloured covering - the type that's made from crushed abelone shell. This shouldn't take very long to do.

In the meantime we wait for local electrical contractors to upgrade our electrical system from a measley 30A to 100A. This should be plenty enough to cope with whatever we need and avoid the hassle of the breakers tripping when there's many appliances on at the same time.

We plan to base most if not all of our lighting requirements on LED dimable bulbs, which should help keep consumption very low. Our heating will be free, as it'll be based on 2 traditional style cast iron wood burning stoves.

Once the electrical work's done and there's a couple of rooms finished, the plan is to have wireless internet (Fibre-optic cable based). With this I can be the first to move in and spend a few days there each week. I'll work during the day and when not busy, help with finishing the rest of the interior whilst learning from Arnie!

As mentioned before, the garden is morphing into a jungle in places. I was pleased to receive a carburettor servicing kit less than a week after ordering from the States for my little Stihl HS85 trimmer bought on Yahoo Auctions - Japan.
From very early tommorow (Saturday) morning I'll spend a day working with this and the Stihl weeding machine and seeing how much I can blitz through in a day.

Might even manage to sweep the forest path which is getting covered in debris.

This week Shinobu spotted a grass-snake trying to catch a frog...

He Saved the poor little bugger!

I reckon soon after we move we'll get 2 Jack Russels to keep our Border Collie company. The garden's big enough for three dogs to run around on... Not sure if the semi-wild cats that live in the bamboo forest will think much of that though, but Jack Russels are naturals at catching snakes, or scaring them well away!

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