Thursday, February 26, 2009

Meeting the Man in charge..

Hello all,

This morning we met with our SS for the first time, "J". All our communication thus far has been emails and phone conversations. We had a long list of issues and questions, as everyone does. So, bright and early at 7am we met at the house.

We are both really pleased with our SS and his approach. He went through each of our concerns individually and let us know what would be done in each case. As we went through other things cropped up and those were listed. "J" was meeting the chippies on site after us so he was going to get them to address these issues and he is organising a roof check too.

Our most worrying issue, cracked roof truss..

"J" also spoke about what happens from here outlining what will be happening in the short term. Wisely, he refrained from venturing an opinion on when he thought it might be finished!! Still cannot see how it could take until August 11. But lots of things can stuff up from here. (Hope they don't of course!)

Anyway, bricking has continued this week and we are really happy with the way that the bricks are looking now...

The insulation both sound and wall is now in, it went in Monday and these guys were amazing. Every little space everywhere was packed. No hole went unfilled (leave that alone!!) and we were surprised at how good a job it was.

Insulation now installed..

Plaster has arrived. Supposedly the plasterers were supposed to show up on the 25th, (Ummm... No Appearance Your Worship!) "J" is going to chase them up.
From the front door, looking down the hallway. Plaster stacked in the family room...

Then came the sparkies, without a doubt, the messiest, could not give a continental, lazy B*'s, you'll ever come across. Insulation pulled out and ripped off around power points, holes, section. Some places they just pulled the bottom half of the batts completely off. One thing about sound screen, if there is a hole; sound will travel through it, rendering the rest of it as useless. The sparkies left the house littered with sound screen "bits", wall bat "bits" and crap. "J" said that it is part of the plasters contract that they put the insulation back in if it has fallen out. But the insulation has to be there first and we went up each night and put all the insulation back in where we could. We will get another packet of sound batts this weekend and fill everywhere else.

Lots of plastering and cornice to come...

Have a great week everyone!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Bricks and Spaghetti

Hello everyone!

What a fun week it has been so far this week. I fear we are becoming spoilt, as when we went to the house on Monday nothing appeared to have happened and we felt quite disappointed. I can't complain about our SS, he has the trades lined up to come in bang, bang, bang and so far everything has been great with the build. If it keeps up at this pace, I am sure that handover will be before 11 August. Fingers crossed!

I spoke to the SS on Tuesday, as we have to move the cold water point in the WIP. S has a bulging disc in his back from, you guessed it, moving a fridge! So, our cold water point has to go above the fridge so that we can change the filter without having to move the fridge every 6 months. He said he'd speak to the plumbers. He also said that we have to have the gas meter at the front of the house as it has to be 1 meter from the meter box and 600 from the HWS. He seems pretty pedantic about things, so it's going to be on the side of the study.

The Ducted Heating unit and the ducting were installed on Tuesday. S climbed into the roof to make sure it was the upgraded unit (while J had heart failure!!!!) and found that PD place an alarm on the heating unit. Makes sense I suppose given the price of these things, but it is a sad comment on the world we live in.

There's a heater up there somewhere...

Fit off of the plumbing inside the house...

The Gas lines to the hot water service were put in...

The offending cold water point in the WIP...

Then on Wednesday, the Plumbing was finished off and the brickies gear arrived on site. no brickies, just the gear. Thursday night we rocked up and BRICKS!!!!!

We have Nougat bricks by Austral. Like many other bloggers, when the bricks arrived I was not too sure about the colour. When we got to see the bricks laid up close, I was still not too sure and a bit disappointed. Then I saw the bricks in full sunlight and they were exactly what we chose. The colour looks soooo different in shade/filtered light compared to full sun. One thing though for anyone contemplating Nougat bricks, go the Off - White mortar, it really completes the look with the bricks.


From the front which is in the shade, the bricks look much darker ...

The brickie is really neat so far. This is full sun, bricks are much lighter..

When we got inside, the electrical rough in has started!! Spaghetti everywhere. We were trying to remember the data points, power points,foxtel cables etc. Need to take the plan up and compare.
Some of the spaghetti for the HT area...

More spaghetti and they are not finished..

And the last pic is of our timber window which was stolen and has been replaced!
Now that the electrical is in, we are going up Saturday to put in extra noggins where we need them for pictures, hand rails etc.

Have a great week everyone!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

A Roof over our heads

This week saw a slow down in activity at the chateau!

The roof tiles went on, which took two days and then then capping and "pointing", as I am told it is called. For those of you who are not au fait with all building terms, capping are the tiles that go over the ridges on the roof and "pointing" is the goo, cement like stuff that they use to hold the capping tiles on and basically make it waterproof.

We also had more bricks arrive and sand as well. We have asked for off white mortar but this sand looks very dark, so I am a bit worried that the "off white" will look decidedly "dirty grey". Only time will tell as the bricking has not started yet.

Friday we went to the house and found that the cavity frames, for the cavity sliding doors had been fitted. Our back door is on, and the french doors from the dining room to the alfresco are on too.
The back door..

We also have a temporary front door as well. Our timber bi folds and timber window are still missing. Apart from that I think once the bricks go up, it will be at lock up. I'll need to check the contract definition to be sure.

Amazingly as you see below, the sticker says "this side out", and guess what, it's inside of course! Any one see a problem with that?

We need to make some changes to power points (we need them moved higher on the wall) and the water point in the walk in pantry (need it higher as well). Am I likely to get a better reception from the SS rather than my CSC? Has anyone done this successfully? I'd rather get it done now than have to get it moved after hand over, when I will need to replaster and repaint when I move it.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

We're wrapped!

Firstly, I am sitting here and we can smell the smoke from the bushfires just up the road at Yering and Yarra Glen. Friends of ours live two streets away from our block and they can see the glow from the fires in their back yard. I just want to say Thank You and Stay Safe to all the CFA guys and girls who are doing a wonderful VOLUNTEER job fighting these fires. You people are ace!

Also a big WHOOO HOO to K, who finally got her building permit. Another gorgeous Illoura is soon to be built!!

Now on with the house stuff. Today (Saturday) we got an email from our lovely neighbours T&L to say that our house was wrapped today! They must have done it early because I would not want to be working in 46.4 degree heat!

There has been so much happening this week. The roof frame has been entirely finished, the windows are in!!!, majority of gutters have been put on, the scaffolding for the roof has been put up, the roof tiles have arrived, the plumbing has been roughed in AND some pallets of bricks have arrived. I really think it starts to look like a "real' house when the windows go in.

Like most of the other blogs I have read, I am not impressed with the bricks, now that they have arrived. We chose Nougat and on the wall at Austral Thomastown they are a white silvery colour. On the sample board, they are more of a beige/cream/parchment colour. I was told that the wall is the correct colour sample because they have changed quarries. Our bricks look like the board, not really a white silver colour at all. I know others have not been very impressed with Nougat once they arrived. (Hi G&A!!) so I will wait until they have been laid with the off white mortar and decide if I like them or not!

This is a brick sitting next to the fascia/gutter/downpipe colour. There was a smudge on the camera, which is why the colour is not clear.

We have received the frame invoice and we had our building inspector check this stage. He says "overall well constructed" and only found two minor issues, which we were really happy about. So, off this week to the bank to pay the frame invoice and do our bit to help the economy along.

The house on Monday, windows are in!

Wednesday, notice anything different? The portaloo was moved, they emptied the rubbish cage, "they?" swept out the frame, collected all the wood off cuts and rubbish from around the house, and used a bob cat to clear the footpath, graded the driveway and put down more gravel!

This is now the cleanest building site I have ever seen!

Friday, and we have scaffolding, roof tiles and bricks delivered.

And from the back

After they wrapped us up on Saturday. We extended the study by a metre so it sits out from bed 2..

The bit I was really hanging out to see, how big the entry was going to be. Because we extended the study, we were not sure if it was going to look a bit weird. We think it looks fine!

Have a great week everyone, stay safe!