Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Peeling off the Exterior (Part 1)

This all started because I had to remove a small piece of aluminum to caulk all the way around the back door. Well, that did it. Demolition bars are naughty things like that.

I pryed off some of the aluminum, then more, and then more. A few minutes later my neighbor Fernando stopped by for a surprise visit. Perfect timing. He grabbed a beer out of the fridge, then caught a glimpse of the demolition bar and before long, he was eagerly ripping down the whole wall. Clearly, he is also tempted by the mischievous claw bar.

The wall of aluminum Fernando removed. He too is a fan of vintage homes, so we share the same zest for demolition and restoration. 
Why stop there? We moved on to the side:




In one swift move, Fernando managed to get the entire gable uncovered with one tug. My jaw dropped when I saw what was underneath! 

The gable was trimmed with Arts & Crafts architectural details, including brackets, corbels, knee braces and widely spaced dentil blocks! (Arts & Crafts Homes featured a great article about these ornaments in the article Artful Cuts: Gable Trim)

Too bad that the architectural accents were shaved off when they installed the aluminum exoskeleton :_(
Fernando spraying down the exposed, original cypress clapboards. There is still a section of asbestos to remove between the windows and from the gable. Check out that detail that used to be on the side gable! 
I then began tackling the asbestos on the rear of the house. It took some trial runs to get the hang of removing the shingles without breaking them:


Of course, we just couldn't resist moving on to the front of the house:

step 1

step 2

step 3

step 4
Can you hear the neighbors gasping??!


On the front gable, I caught a glimpse of cypress shingles hiding under that awful asbestos siding! How cool is that!


The architectural details along the roofline of my neighbor Florencio's house really showcase the arts and crafts features that were once on my home. Apparently his place was in shambles when they first bought it--like in really, really, really bad shape. Year-by-year he has been restoring the interior and exterior and he has done a tremendous job.

Zoom zoom:

The gable is ornately decorated with gorgeous architectural details. I love those deep eaves and how the supports are accented along the fascia

So yea, some day. But for now, here's where we're at: