Outside toilet project

Yes I know I have already written posts about the project but I thought I’d give the project its title this time. It was the last Monday of April and we had just gotten over the bad weekend weather courtesy of ‘Storm Hannah’ when we had very high winds and lots of rain. Now it was the opposite, calm, dry, warm and later sunny. None of that mattered to me at least until late afternoon when I took the opprtunity to relax in the sunshine after working on and off all day. First though I went for a walk since I hadn’t been able to for a few days. It made a change not getting blown all over the place and the walk was very pleasant indeed. On my return and an hour after breakfast I put on my working gear and a hat too for I was about to resume work on the project knowing there would be dust and debris falling. The work was to remove what was left of the wooden door frame, the top and the two sides then begin to remove both of the wooden lintels that somebody many years ago had installed. The door frame proved a little difficult at first as it had been held in place with cast-iron spikes deep into the brickwork but the crowbar was no match for them! The frame itself was showing signs of rot but was still strong and substantial. The two lintels however were in poor condition and the inner one had signs of woodworm which had spread to some of the ‘temporary’ ceiling covering nearby. Fortunately the main joists had not been infested. All the woodwork would be receiving preservative later and before the new ceiling would be installed. Before I could remove the lintels I would have to prop up the stonework above. I did that on my return from a small shopping expedition after I had removed the door frame. I purchased three downlights (recessed fittings) for the new ceiling when it is installed then visited the builders merchant to purchase the two lintels, one of concrete (for outside) and the othern timber (for inside)

Before returning home I visited Dobbies garden centre to browse and have a coffee. It was lunch time so I waited until after lunch to recommence work. Now before I talk about the lintels I will show you what they were supporting. There is a stone stairway at the rear of the house and a stone slab at the top with a stone step into the kitchen which is above the room I am converting.

On the left is the stone step beneath the kitchen door. Although it is there we seldom use it. Now that is one heavy step and one heavy slab. Below is a picture of them from beneath and you can see the two ‘Acrow’ supports I had to instal before removing the old lintels and the bricks above them supporting the slab and the step above.

They were supported to some extent once the lintels had been removed but only just. That is why I placed the Acrow bars there before removing them. They will remain until the new lintels are in place. I will need help to lift the concrete one into position. Here is a detail of part of the brickwork and the gap left when the lintels were taken out.

The dark coloured timber is part of the wooden door frame for the temporary outer door which will be removed after a new door is installed to the room. Speaking of that I arranged for someone to come and measure up and give me a quote for a new plastic door and frame. They would be coming the following day. I don’t expect that will be cheap! Anyway the timber above needs removing at least at the nearest end for now so that the new concrete lintel can be installed slightly higher than the old one was. So there you have it, progress is being made slowly.

Shirley Anne

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Author: Shirley Anne

Happy to be alive because of Jesus

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