Little Hangups

Katie was upstairs hanging wallpaper the last few days and I worked on the Pony Express yard to keep from being underfoot. This is a plus for me since I like working with wood a lot more than trying to line up wallpaper with perfect seams. I really don’t know how she does it.

The first Pony project was the back doors which came out very well considering the difficulty I had finding the right wood. The problem was that all of the tongue and groove lumber that I could find was 3/4″ thick and quite expensive. No matter how I designed the door, it seemed apparent that I would have a door that would be good for about ten years and then I’d be building a new one. Then, I stumbled upon 1.5″ thick planks at Home Depot that would provide a much stronger door that was actually less expensive than the thinner wood that I’d been looking at.

Home Depot wasn’t going to fess up about the species of the wood but I suspect it was spruce and it went together fairly easily.

Once the doors were hung, I needed to make them look old. The product that I used was a water based aging stain that makes everything it touches look old, including my hands and clothing. Yes, the stuff was really sloppy but the end result is pretty cool.

This is the inside view showing the bracing and the final door color. The wood columns on the sides are a little lighter because the aging of that wood was real. The wood was recycled from the old carport we knocked down.

For a little added color we got a potted tree that contrasts with the dark stone wall and door. It is a Japanese maple from the nursery across the street. It is a shade loving tree and should be happy in the southwest corner of the yard since it gets little direct sunlight.

The next item on the agenda was something to hang our towels on. For this, I dove into the salvage pile again and found a redwood 4×4 as a central post. Then, I went into my coveted supply of telephone insulators and the wooden pins they mount on. The look was funky as expected and the insulators catch the light very nicely.

Essentially, it’s just a coat rack.

The insulators have seen years of service but the pins were new old stock having been in storage for many years.

Now, to change directions completely, I will be focusing on window and door casings inside the hotel.

Counting Sheep

In our last episode, we were prepping for the paver installation inside the Pony Express building walls. It seemed like all would go without a hitch but it turned out that we did not have enough gravel bedding for the pavers. We had ordered 14 yards which had already been delivered but we needed another 4 yards to complete the job. The problem was that there were no available deliveries from Cinderlite on short notice so, it was up to me to get three pickup loads of gravel on my own and unload it one shovel full at a time. And I thought retirement was going to make life easier.

Meanwhile, the paving contractors started the installation without further incident. They did a great job and finished in time for the hot tub delivery the next day.

The next project will be doors and some sort of window treatment for the back wall of the Pony Express yard.

To be honest, I don’t look great in a bathing suit anymore and I don’t want to advertise this fact to the neighbors with beams of light reflected off of my fosforescent untanned torso.

Another recent addition to the hotel is the prefab shed.

This one is a 10′ x 12′ which is the maximum size that can be installed on a commercially zoned lot without a permit. Residential zoning allows a larger shed without a permit and we do have the residential special use permit but I decided not to push my luck in this legal grey area. In most instances, I like to comply with the strictest requirements to cover my bets.

Now, it’s time to relax in the new tub and enjoy the Dayton’s version of big city life.

Yes, even Dayton has traffic problems.