Siding Post 7: I Can Do It in Every Position

Get your minds out of the gutter, folks. I’m talking about painting of course!

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That shirt’s really taken a beating. Mostly because the back of my house has all kinds of awkward tight spaces. You’ve probably seen before that I needed to hop the property line to lean a ladder against the side of the house above. Plus there was the excitement of finagling that big, heavy (non-conductive) wooden ladder in between all the phone lines. But the other side is crazier.

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Yup, the ladders are against the house next door. And to get onto the big one, I have to climb up the small one and then do a totally OSHA approved* ladder jump, and then turn backwards to the ladder and lock my heels around the rung I’m standing on. Putting the siding up over here was equally annoying, and I can’t even see this. I’m still glad for the fire retardance the fiber cement gives me.

*Note: OSHA is not mandatory for DIY’ers, but we are encouraged to follow its recommendations anyway.

The window wall is only 5 feet from the property line, so it’s tight over there, too. You saw before that we had to dismantle the fence, set up the scaffold in the alley, and then reassemble the fence around it. That makes the ladder jump at the bottom of this ladder seem pretty tame.

But at the top, I always got to choose whether I wanted to lean back with the power lines pressed against my face, or lean forward and push them out with the back of my head.

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And no matter where I was, there was always the uncomfortable choice between painting opposite handed and doing the awkward elbow-over-head crossing maneuver. Believe it or not, this worked better than anything in some of those tight spaces. I don’t miss being up there.

And since starting this project, I’ve learned that soot fall is real. This paint is only about a week old and it’s already filthy. Note that where the window closes the sill stayed clean.

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So you can see I’m almost done! One thing left to do is install crown molding underneath the drip edge, which looks like a big awkward shelf for now.

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And yeah, I’m almost done. But you won’t get to see this area again until it’s really done. Next up is tiling around the bathtub! But I’ll leave you with one more shot, the last time you’ll get to see the (what were they thinking) before and almost-after “porch ceilings in the same frame. Yes, that green textured plywood was nailed right on top of perfectly good beadboard that just needed a little caulk. The view is fun, and this stuff served me well cut up into shims and boarding up my windows. But I won’t miss it when it’s gone.

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5 thoughts on “Siding Post 7: I Can Do It in Every Position

  1. Mary Elizabeth

    Chad, if the wires are going only to your house, I think you should have the power company come and shut them off and then come and turn them on again on the days you are working on the house. This may be a pain in the neck, but it’s safer. Or you could ask them to reroute the wires entirely.

    That being said, the more we see of the progression of the painting, the more the color choices seem perfect!

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  2. Chad's Crooked House Post author

    The wires don’t go only to my house; they’re wall mounted to every house about halfway down the block. They have insulators, and that bulky stuff near the connection to my house is temporary insulator that my electrician wrapped the small live parts with.

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    1. Chad's Crooked House Post author

      You never know about ever doing something again. I could easily be out of the house before I need to repaint. Or not. Now the ladder business in that post… I’m glad they didn’t win any Darwin awards.

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