JENS MALMGREN I create, that is my hobby.

Replaced downpipes for the fourth time

This was the first week of 2021. We worked on the inner layer of red planks on the north wall. We started talking to a carpenter. The downpipes got replaced for the fourth time!

Tuesday 5 January

Yesterday I brought the car to the annual vehicle inspection, and it passed without any issues. Tonight I started working on the maintenance of the blog. While I posted blogs last year about the new house, I said I should create a separate category for posts about the house. Tonight I created that category: "Building a new house". It holds all posts about that subject. (Later I will link to the category) It will take a while before the house is ready and we can move in, so I think there will be a couple of posts in that series.

The first artwork of this year became a doodle.

Wednesday 6 January

We worked half day and then we went to the new house to continue on the north wall. There were two options for how to proceed. We could, on the one hand, continue with red planks between the window and the door. Or we could, on the other hand, continue putting up beams. We chose the latter. It is a little easier to work with the beams since they are more comfortable maneuver than the planks. It is many smaller tasks. Besides that, when we got a good portion of the wall prepared for planks, we could probably get a good flow in working with the planks.

Today we received a visit from a carpenter. He arrived just before it got dark. We discussed what he could do for us, and when we were finished, it was completely dark. He will be back when he gets more time, takes appropriate measurements, and sets up a quote for the work.

When the carpenter left, we still had work to do outside. For that, we put out lighting so that we could finish the work for today. During the work, I had noticed that we had forgotten to fasten the downpipe at the northeast corner. There was no time for fixing this tonight.

When all was tidy, we went home, had our supper, and started to get news from the United States.

It was a surreal experience. A group of terrorists was storming the congress in Washington. It even looked like they were allowed to storm the congress. A wide range of euphemisms of what to call these people were used, but they were terrorists. People were shocked by the scenes at Capitol in Washington, and I was shocked. I think it will take a long time to repair the damage caused here. The US will need to inaugurate many trustworthy presidents before the world can start to be relaxed about the USA as a reliable and stable country. Not only will there need to be a successive row of trustworthy democratic presidents. To be seen as reliable, there will also need to be trustworthy republican presidents inaugurated. When the world has seen that the United States is stable and not a wacko banana republic, it will be welcome back as the beacon of light on the world stage.

It has been tiring to see and hear Mr. Trump these last five years. Years filled with so many lies. There has been constant loud noise from this man. I tried to block him on various social media platforms not to need to see his face. I have been disgusted just by hearing his voice. The media around the world have loved him. They blasted out his lies without any remorse. And it went on and on without an end.

After the election 2020 that Mr. Trump lost, he has been obsessed with unprovable fantasies about election fraud. Not only that, he sucked a group of people into his fantasy world. Mr. Trump told them to walk together with him, down to the capitol to sheer on to the strong congressmen and women. That part about walking together with him did not happen. It was another lie. Instead, he went back to the white house and turned on his television, and did absolutely nothing. The crowd walked down to the capitol and stormed the congress in a gigantic coronavirus super-spreader event. People died, glass was broken, offices were looted. The trust in the US democracy was shattered. Instead of being handcuffed at the spot, people were helped down the stairs by riot police. It was surreal to look at the treatment of these terrorists compared to the scenes during the Black Lives Matter protests last summer when officers harassed ordinary peaceful people.

Trump has created a parallel universe where he both could be a politician and the opposition at the same time. It is (or was) a world where the value of words did not matter. His illusion was uncontested until he demanded that his followers would storm the Capitolium in Washington, and they did. That was the moment when it turned out to be so that words do matter. It matters to the world, and it matters to every descent thinking Amerikan.

The scenes at the congress went on for a long time. We went to bed, wondering how this day will be perceived in the future. At this time, the event had a feeling of a poorly choreographed festival. The day after, and the day after that, more sinister aspects came to light—for example, the brutal murder of a law enforcement officer. The failed arrests that did not take place on Wednesday started to take place in the days after. For every arrest, the more evident it was that words and deeds do matter. It was clear that you cannot drink chlorine to heal Covid, and it is impossible to avoid forest fires by raking the ground. You cannot ask people to march to the Capitolium to show strength. For me, this indicates that world order starts to be restored. My healing can start. A lie is a lie, and the truth will prevail.

Thursday 7 January

Today it was a full regular day of work. I went to the new house in the evening, and I tried to fasten the northeast downpipe. When done, I concluded it would not let loose again. The fragile plastic was broken, though. It was not the right moment to start applying more of that plastic when it was dark and raining. At least we would not have something fluttering around the northeast corner. That was good.

I also lit a fire to warm the house.

Friday 8 January

Today it was a regular working day. It was lovely weather today. I worked perfectly well from my old home, but the downpipes' situation was still an issue lurking in my head. I called the nearest hardware store for PVC products. This store is not like the city center's hardware store but rather a previous farmhouse barn near our new house. They did not even have their gates open because of the lockdown rules of Corona, but it was possible to order things and pick up the items at the store.

Tubes of PVC is usually used for wastewater, and then the wall thickness is 3 millimeters or thicker so that the tubes can be buried underground without collapsing. There are also tubes aimed for rainwater, and they are 1.5 millimeters thick. They cannot be buried. The store had long variants of the rainwater tubes. The longest was 6 meters, and that was what I wanted.

PVC stands for polyvinyl chloride. I think it is nice to know what abbreviations mean. Not that I know for the rest why it is called so. It is made from fossil fuel (natural gas) and sodium chlorate. When reading about PVC, most health issues are under control regarding the manufacturing of the PVC. PVC products are fine while in use. There are issues with the burning of landfills containing PVC products. That is the moment when the chlorine is freed, and that is a health risk. If, for example, the hardware store near my house is burning, then this will emit chlorine, and we will need to close windows and turn off ventilation and stay inside. It is possible to reuse PVC quite well, so it is not needed to put the products in landfills. In the European Union, rules are in place to promote the reuse of PVC. These rules are essential since they save valuable already excavated CO2, and done correctly, it minimizes health hazards.

I arranged that I could have a little more extended lunch break to go to the hardware store. It was not clear what lengths I could buy at the hardware store, so I brought a trailer as well. It turned out not to be necessary because the best way of transporting the tubes was on the roof of my car. The hardware store also had accessories for the tubes, so I bought extension parts. Also, I bought the elbows that I need for the ventilation of the foundation.

Saturday 9 January

It was a frosty morning! I found a puddle where the ice had formed a spontaneous figure. That was nice.

On the south side of the house, you could feel the heat of the sun. There was just one small issue. We were working on the north side. We worked on putting up support beams for the planks. The planks on the scaffold were frosty. They became slippery when walking on the frosty planks. I decided to spray a thin layer of sand on the planks of the scaffold to avoid accidents.

We finished the beams for the part of the scaffold with two platforms at noon. Then we had a lunch break, and after that, we finally continued with the red planks.

While working on the planks, our plumber came, and he had brought the toilet bowl with him. Unfortunately, there was a hiccup in the order, and he had got the wrong bowl.

We discussed different other things to solve and agreed on changing the pipe path bringing in fresh air into the ventilation system. The fresh air is taken from the south side of the building. Below the ceiling in the hobby room on the first floor. The tube is then brought above the ceiling over the hall into the utility room. After we agreed on this, our plumber worked on a temporary sink in the hobby room on the ground floor. Next week he will be back and continue to work on his tasks. While we talked to the plumber, the sun started to set. It was a lovely sunset tonight.

We worked on applying red planks and finished the planks' inner layer between the window and the door.

Sunday 10 January

It is already ten days into 2021, and today it was not such a sunny and beautiful day as it was yesterday. It was around freezing point during the nights this weekend. We managed to keep the water pipes from freezing in the house up until now. When we arrived at the new house, we like to light a fire. The new wood stove works brilliantly. The big glass is not collecting soot, but if there is soot on the glass, it is easy to remove with a wet cloth when the stove is cold.

The first thing we did today was to carry our red planks to mount to the wall. After a while, we reached the end of the first column of the stack. Below the last plank, we found a butterfly that had decided to rest there for the winter. My wife helped her to find a new place to hide.

The next column was covered with other wood, so we could not access more planks. We rearranged some of the wood stacks in the container to reach all the different kinds of wood.

In this stack, we got (A) beams to use in the ceiling indoors. We will use these beams after we finished the outside wall. At that time we hope that electricity and ventilation are finished. We will put these 40 centimeters apart in the ceiling and screw the gypsum plates on these beams. Next (B), we got the remainder of the original beams to isolate the inner walls. These beams are 45 millimeters in square and two and a half meters long. We figured that the original beams would not be enough, so we bought extra (C) with the same diameter as B but longer. These will be used in the ceiling of the hobby room on the first floor. Finally (D), the beams that we will use when we work on the roof are ventilated beams inside the fascia boards. When the stacks are organized like this, and we refrain from putting more things on top, then we got full access to these different kinds of wood. To stabilize the stack a little bit, my wife put a bit of barrier tape around the stack with a lovely rosette.

We had carried out two too many for this batch of planks, but that did not matter. We had to deal with that later. The most critical part of the preparation is putting up the planks along the wall without dropping them. Another risk is that a wind gust could make the plank fall. Here we had the planks resting on the wall support of the scaffold. When we finally got started, and everything is ready, it is not difficult to mount the planks. We did the first minus the two extra, and there were no issues with the pneumatic nail gun. The work flowed nicely.

There was another task that had to be done today: Putting up the PVC downpipes. It was surprisingly easy. On the north side, I decided to unlock the gutter, lift it so that the downpipe would fit between the lower drain hole and the upper gutter input. The six meters of PVC fit just like that without any extras.

On the south side, it was a bit more tricky because the distance was longer. Here I used the short piece the builder had provided. That pipe was extended with an extension piece and then cut off at the top to the correct length. For connection, I made a piece that slid over to the gutter and held together with a clamp.

The southwest side was an issue because I removed the planks from the scaffold there. How did I solve that? Well, there were four planks on the top level. I took two for the other side. It was enough for this task only. If I were to mount fascia boards, this was not okay, but now it was just for this one task.

When all four downpipes were done, it was just a short time before dark. In this time slot, we hung up the two extra planks as well!

It is so lovely to have the downpipes sorted. The plastic that fluttered in the wind was such a source of annoyance.

21 October 2020, we installed temporary downpipes for the first time. We had bought a roll of this material – like a very long plastic bag. The first version was only mounted at the top. The rest was fluttering in the wind. On 19 December, we mounted the downpipes for the second time, both at the top and bottom. This time we discovered that the bottom was not firm. It was just pressed into place. The wind pulled out the tube, and now when had a tube dancing around in the wind. On 26 December, the storm Bella undid two of the temporary downpipes. The rainwater has since then been filling the area around the house. 30 December, when we put up the temporary downpipes for the third time, I strained my neck. I still feel the neck hurt right now, but it is not an acute problem. I can sleep and work, so that is all very well. Today we installed the PVC version. It is the fourth time we install the downpipes.

When we went to our old home tonight, it was feeling good. We sorted things and booked progress. The fascist in the White House is almost gone. Vaccines are distributed around the world. We are entering lighter times. Next week we will probably be able to poop in our new house!

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.