JENS MALMGREN I create, that is my hobby.

Electricity and water

This week we got electricity and water! We started applying for Gypsum plates on the walls in the living room. On the outdoor project, we did a lot of preparations, but progress was slower.

Monday 2 November

Tonight I painted the third layer of sealer on the fascia boards. I found I had a battery light with a clip that worked well. It was almost like a regular lamp. It was a full moon when I came to the house.

Tuesday 3 November

I decided to go to the house again. This time I painted the surface of the fascia boards. Yesterday’s lamp was not recharged, so it was not so bright as yesterday, so I was forced to use the torch again. The moon was not so full as yesterday.

I lit a candle to get a little more light, but it is not enough for painting, but it looked cozy anyway.

With these two evenings layers of paint, the boards are probably ready for montage tomorrow afternoon. That would be great. I heard the weather is going to be sunny so it can be excellent.

Today was the last day of the election in the United States.

Wednesday 4 November

This morning started well. It was sunny, and I was looking forward to working outdoor on the red planks project. When we finally arrived at the new house, I discovered that the fascia boards still were not dry enough. Perhaps I had applied a little thick layer of paint.

Gerard, our electrician, was working at our house. He was busy in the hallway on the ground floor. We talked about applying more outlets around the windows on the ground floor.

Since working on the outdoor project was canceled, we decided to work on gypsum plates on the ground floor where Gerard was finished. Then we received a guest. The digger from the electricity company came to see the installation’s situation to take place tomorrow. He did not know we had casing pipes installed under the dirt road!!! “So, where are they?” I showed him where the casing pipes lie, at least the stick indicating where they are, and he was happy to be informed. He will arrive tomorrow afternoon. “I was not informed there were any casing pipes installed at all??”

This Wednesday turned out to be a social Wednesday, a neighbor came by and had a chat, and then our plumber came, which was good because then we could discuss the progress of the ventilation system project. We decided on tap to be installed in the washing room, that way we got drinking water from when the water meter is installed. The time to work was consumed, and that consumed my patience. When the dusk had started to set in, we got around to install the first gypsum plate.

The result was not bad at all. We finished three plates. Each plate is 1.2 by 2.6 meters, and that is around 47 by 102 inches. One such plate weighs 28 kg, nine and a half times as heavy as a brick. A brick is 2.9 kg. A boy around nine years old is 28 kg on average. For the rich out there, a gypsum plate is as massive as two and quarter gold bar. Last night I put the torch on the recharger, and lit up quite well.

Gerard came with tips for how to cut out the hole for the window. At many building sites, it is done in place. The window is cut out while the plate is mounted on the wall. That way, there is no need to measure the window and transfer the measurement to the plate. It will still be necessary to find the sockets’ location—the holes for these need to be drilled before putting up the plate. The electricity holes are 67 mm big, which isn’t easy to find drills of that size. We could borrow a drill from Gerard.

We noticed that the saw could be wondering while sawing a longer distance. We need to get better at this. Perhaps it is a good idea to put a line anyway for where to saw, and if the saw is deviating from the line, then it is possible to compensate while sawing.

Now when we start to get more and more plates up, the house’s feeling will transform again. With isolation, the sounds are not bouncing on the walls. I think that when we get the gypsum up, sounds will echo more.

Thursday 5 November

Today we received the electricity and the water. We also received an optic fiber for data at the same time. The plan was that they would come and install our electricity in the afternoon. They could not find the casing pipes of the neighbor, so they came to us first. I had pointed out where they were supposed to be, and it turned out so that I was correct.

My wife had arranged she could work from the new house, but the trench was already finished when she arrived. We got our electricity installed with a meter in our cupboard. The water pipe was also installed with a water meter. They left the optic fiber in a roll on the floor of the cupboard.

A few moments later, the trench was filled up again. The electricity was now in the house but not in a way that we could use it. Our electrician came and connected the electricity to the two outlets that he had placed in the cupboard. I was happy now. A couple of weeks ago, I made an unhappy doodle about the electricity, so now it was suitable to make a happy doodle.

In the evening, we decided to go to the house, insert a plug in the wall outlet, and enjoy the new house’s new feature.

We finished mounting the west wall with gypsum. It was feeling like a milestone to finish a complete wall with gypsum. To this, we added the first plate of the north wall. It was a little tricky to get the wall mounts through predrilled holes. There is no way around this but learning how to do it. I measured the wall-mount location and placed marks on the gypsum where it should be on the gypsum. Then I drilled the hole and removed excess gypsum. When the plate was hanging in a good position, it turned out that there was a little deviation between the real wall mount and the hole. For this, I unscrewed the wall mount, pulled it through the hole, then screwed the plate all around on the beams, and when the plate was in the correct position, I screwed the bottom of the wall mount to the underlying OSB-plate. I see no better method to do this?

Friday 6 November

I woke up with a sore left shoulder. Presumably, I had done a little too much or heavy work with my left arm when working above my shoulder height. The Dutch call it working above your power. In the Netherlands, they even go so far as to say you should not work longer than a minute above your shoulder height before having a rest. In the morning, it wasn’t feeling excellent. As the day progressed, it became better and better. Have I talked about my special gift before? I am de facto double-handed. If you give me a pencil or a brush I might prefer the left hand. For the use of power tools or a computer-mice for that sake, I am double-handed, and it is useful when standing on a ladder in a corner doing work in the new house. From now, I will need to relax my shoulder so that it can heal.

In the afternoon, we decided not to go to the new house. We stayed at home.

Saturday 7 November

This morning my shoulder was already much better. It was fantastic weather today. I had a chance to take beautiful pictures of my construction at the entry of our driveway. I can see that it has the effect we were looking for, that people need to be a little more cautious when turning at our driveway. It is not so that the road will heal by itself, but this way, there is a chance it is not getting worse.

Further away, along with our plot, my barrier tape was not giving enough of effect. The sticks had almost been run over. The sticks started to lean outwards into our plot. That was not how I left them. At least they are still standing.

Since it was an epic autumn day, it was good to continue with the red planks. There was no momentum in the red planks project, though. First, I mounted the fascia boards now properly painted and dry. I noticed they had become a tad too long, but I decided to mount them anyway. Then I took out planks to prepare but soon after, I realized that on the other end of the planks, there was more preparation work still to do.

Along the bottom of the house, we will mount cement boards. It won’t be easy to mount these after the planks, and I understood that today. There was just a little bit of foam plastic to remove to create space for the cement boards. It is enough to remove 5 centimeters of the foam. I used an ax to remove the foam. We bought the ax to cut wood, but the ax is unsharp, so we have not cut any wood. It was such a bone ax that it bounced on the wood. I can sharpen the ax quickly, but I had not done that yet. It turns out that a bone ax works perfectly for removing foam plastic. I put the ventilated beams on the wall and mounted the cement board on that.

Mounting one cement board was how far we came with the east wall today. Tomorrow I will mount more of the cement board, and with that, it is ready for preparing the planks. All this is such a tedious project. When it got dark outside, we went inside, turned on the lamps, and continued applying for gypsum plates. I had feared that my shoulder would ache again, but that did not happen. We put up three plates tonight. With that, we finished the north wall of the living room.

The news came tonight that Donald Trump has lost the election. Joe Biden will become the next president of the United States in 77 days.

Sunday 8 November

It was a beautiful morning. The first task of today was easy, remove access foam from the foundation. I was poised to reach sufficient progress today. Mounting the cement boards was easy—all the work at the ground and no climbing on the scaffold. I laughed out loud when I found that the boards had different height. Why is this Wijnand?

The boards look nice when mounted. No one will see the height difference. I figured I had to make sure that the corners are done correctly so that the boards will meet up at the correct place.

The boards were smelling when they were sawed with the angle grinder. Perhaps I got the dust of cutting the board sticking in my nostrils because I smelled the board long after I had cut them. I even asked my wife if she could smell the boards, and she usually got a good sense of smell, but she could not smell it. Peculiar indeed.

Next up, I started to measure the planks between the windows. There are eight planks. They got an angle at the top. Since the wall’s height is longer than our longest planks, I will need to make the planks in two pieces. I am advised by the Internet to put planks’ seams at different heights because it will look nicer. It is the first time I am doing this, so let’s follow that advice. Measuring this took a surprising amount of time. It did not help that I phoned my parents in Sweden to chat about how things are going. Then a neighbor came by and had a chat. I am getting better at cutting off to tell people that now I need to continue work.

When the afternoon was turning into dusk, I had finally started with sawing planks, and right away, I made a stupid mistake. I turned the angle around. No worries, I could use the rest of the plank for another place, just a little shorter.

When it became too dark to work outside, we moved inside. At that point, I had sawed only three planks. Since we got electricity, we have extended our work in the evenings. We got two bright lamps that I bought to do a YouTube video a couple of years ago. I think it was a video about a Pentagonal Dodecahedron. Since then, I had not much time to do any YouTube videos. We still got a little stripe of gypsum to put in the corner, and with that, three walls of the living room got gypsum on them. You can already now experience there is more echo in the room. It will stay like that until we put furniture and curtains in the room. You can now sit on a chair at the wood stove and barely look over the pile of gypsum. It will be fantastic when you can sit in the living room and have a full view out of the windows to the garden. When we have that, I predict that we will move our table to the living room, currently standing in the hallway near the hobby room.

So what is the result of this week? It feels frustrating that it takes so long time to prepare for a couple of planks on the one hand. On the other hand, those preparations are necessary. We have been preparing with the gypsum since we got the house, but it does not feel like preparing. It feels like that work is done in two phases. Perhaps that is the mindset I need to take on for the outdoor planks as well. The work is done in phases. In the planks project’s preparation phase, we need to mount the fascia boards on top and cement boards at the bottom. When that is done, it is work with planks but not earlier. Take a deep breath, inhale, exhale. Continue.

The incident with the left shoulder was peculiar. I must have done some strange movement and hurt myself. I got away with it rather easy, can I say in hindsight. This evening it is totally over.

The real significant improvement this week is electricity. I hope we get a water crane next week; that would be awesome.

With this hopeful thought, this week came to an end.

I was born 1967 in Stockholm, Sweden. I grew up in the small village Vågdalen in north Sweden. 1989 I moved to Umeå to study Computer Science at University of Umeå. 1995 I moved to the Netherlands where I live in Almere not far from Amsterdam.

Here on this site I let you see my creations.

I create, that is my hobby.