Can a city boy build his dream homestead on a mountain, by himself and with no mortgage?

So pretty, but so evil

nu door sm

The new door, she’s a vixen. Pretty, strong yet welcoming… she’s just plain lovely

…and evil.

The special-order door arrived and since I have a job next week, I grabbed it and ran to the mountain to install.  It looked simple enough, a pre-hung steel door already in the frame. Put in place, tweak a bit, screw down, go home. I had no idea that it would be an all-day PAIN IN THE ASS!

It took almost 5 hours to get it square and swinging easily. Add in 2 walk-away frustration breaks and it chewed up my whole day.

Apparently you need to have the exterior siding in place so the door is in the correct position or there’ll be an air gap on the outer edge. I did this by laying in some 5/8″ boards as siding stand-ins. Then the shim/squaring begins. What they don’t tell you in the instructions is that each time you shim one end, the others go out of square, the outer siding boards fall off and the door starts to sway and wants to crush you as it falls. Hanging a door is not for amateurs, that’s for darn sure.

I eventually got it square and swinging but then the pre-drilled lock/knob holes won’t line up with the jamb holes. After much swearing and getting clobbered by the falling steel door again, I screwed the damn thing in and re-cut the holes in the jamb so the latch and lock would hold.

Lesson for the week… never install a door again without an experienced carpenter and a six pack of October pumpkin ale.

The next step is the metal roofing, going up after I finish a freelance TV commercial this week.

I laid out a few panels on the floor of the Lowe’s (it’s a new store by me and never crowded) and realized I under-estimated the cost of the metal panels.  Since I only get 32″ of coverage on a 36″ wide panel I’ll need 2 more for coverage. This means more money and in my rush to weatherproof, my focus may be slipping. After the door fiasco, I need to give myself plenty of time with the roof.

Rain, rain, stay away (for at least another week and a half!)

You can read my entire cabin blog HERE…

2 responses

  1. Well it’s looking great… sorry to hear about the extra PITA sweat equity. Later once the siding is up you can probably go back with some insulation or spray foam (be careful with this stuff and keep the door closed when you do it or it can warp the door jamb) and tighten up that seal around the door.

    November 2, 2009 at 3:51 pm

  2. surprisingly Michael, the gap is minimal… a little weatherstripping will go a long way! (and I have all the feeling back in my hands today, LOL)

    November 3, 2009 at 12:14 am

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