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high desert. small house.

Day 293: Paneling Part IX, North Wall & Heat Pump Prep

Monday, 5/2
This morning’s discoveries-

  • Brian spoke to DAP and learned that none of their caulks were suitable for use in our walling project.  We had planned on using Dynaflex 230 or Alex but found out that they are not to be used underneath a polyurethane finish.  Nothing DAP makes can be used that way, in fact.   Something about the solvents used in the clear-coat will cause the caulk to break down. Yes, even if it’s water-based polyurethane – no go.
  • An internet search of “type of caulk to use with polyurethane clear coat” is absolutely infuriating because caulk itself contains polyurethane.
  • Brian researched more and wondered if it was just a matter of order.   He called DAP back and asked if we could apply Dynaflex 230 or Alex in the seams AFTER the polyurethane had dried.  Yes, we can so long as the polyurethane has cured.  Phew!
  • Okay, great.  After reading that the triple thick polyurethane takes 7 days to fully cure, we learned that we’d have to rearrange our task schedule going forward.  We had wanted to finish paneling, caulk seams, apply clear coat, break down the scaffold and then have Jeff do the tile.  But because we now have to apply clear coat, wait 7 DAYS and then caulk seams we think we are going to schedule Jeff for the delay window.
  • If Jeff lays the Ditra and tile during the 7 day cure window, what do we do with the mega scaffold?  We don’t want to take it down entirely only to have to rebuild it in 7 days.  What we decided to try is get it supported on the cross beams and maybe the bathroom, remove its legs and allow it to “float” for awhile.  Jeff can work, the polyurethane can dry and we can reassemble the scaffold when we need to caulk.

Tired yet?

After speaking with a local contractor, we also decided against clear caulk.  We are going to look at “almond” or “tan”.  The reason being that clear would allow the gaps between the panels to show as gaps – shady or dark lines between the panels.  He thinks near-colored caulk would hopefully help the wood look more continuous.

Brian had a productive day at the house – He cut the opening for the heat pump and fitted the conduit in place.  He also cut and attached two north wall panels.

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Our of our Home Depot purchases was a new filter for the shop vac. The old one is now in the garbage. It had been cleaned several times but when we noticed some rips we got a replacement.  Suddenly the vacuum is much more loud and angry sounding.

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The Bosch carbide oscillating tool blade (top) is thicker than our Harbor Freight Bi-metal (mid) and the Bosch Bi-metal (bottom). Thicker = easier to control, especially while making any sort of shave cut.

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We’ve been cutting a lot of thin plywood and trying different blades.  The top two blades have a wave pattern in their pull saw-like teeth, but not the carbide one which is flat with pointy teeth. This may be another factor that makes the carbide so good at precise, gentle nibbling and drama-less straight cuts. The Bosch Bimetal one may be a lot faster at plunging and ‘straight’ cuts but it takes a lot of effort to stay on top of it and compensate for what it wants to do. The carbide one does exactly as it’s told. The Harbor Freight Bimetal was thicker and easier to control than the Bosch Bimetal one we got, but it got dull after an impressively long life cutting PVC and wood.

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1 5/8″ strut. ~ 1400lb capacity per point if attached every 24″.  Adds strength to roof beam and creates numerous attachment points for climbing rope or whatever else we want to install.

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13/16″ strut. ~ 500lb capacity per point if attached every 24″.

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After deciding where the conduit was to go, we had to dig out (and save) the cellulose insulation and mark the hole location.

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To the outdoors – using a 3.5″ hole saw, Brian cut the opening in the north wall.

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Height of the hole above the ground. The hoses from the heat pump will come out that hole, take a hard right to go around that window (or a left if you’re looking at it from the hose’s perspective) and then drop straight to the condenser on the ground. We estimate this distance to be about 12 feet; the hose included with our unit is 15 feet. Phew!

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The conduit fitted in place but not attached yet.

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We used plumber’s tape to secure the conduit against the stud.

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The insulation that we removed was stuffed back in around the conduit.

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Conduit penetration is weatherized using butyl rubber.

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A scrap from the lower row is now the first panel of the second row.

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Brian used the first panel as a template to trace the piece for the other side of the second row.

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The second panel was a little tricky because it had to be cut to fit the window and holes had to be cut for a light box and the heat pump. Prior to its final attachment, Brian made sure the conduit was flush with the surface and properly attached.

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