The front window, which you see here after the edge of the wood cladding
had been sawn free and prised off, had been allowed-for in the house price.
Although perfectly serviceable,
it had the uncanny ability to bring on the memory of
sad windows in Blue Mountains trains. (NSWGR must have "bought Australian",
noble if foolish.)
From the inside, it looked perpetually like the world was wet and dismal.
This is the hole sans window.
We are still chasing flies out of the house... the event unfortunately
synchronized with the cooking of a beef casserole.
This is Dan and his colleague inserting the new frame.
Dan is Kent's brother, who returns to California periodically
for special jobs. He is one of the many emmigrants from
California, repelled by the opressive levels of regulation
(not to mention the cost of living).
Hey presto, new window in place, trim reattached. The key facts that
you have to know to deal with windows in wooden houses are these: The
original window is nailed in place before the outer cladding is attached,
so you have to cut off about one inch of the boards to expose the
window frame and allow it to be torn off the wooden beams in the walls;
once done, the hole in the wall can be expanded or contracted by the
removal or addition of wood willy-nilly to fit the new window; finally
the whole needs to be rendered weatherproof by means of caulking
compound and trimwood.
The rear door was actually more of a problem both before and during the update. Before, it was very difficult to open. When he was here, Tony and I had looked at adjusting the door, which did not roll open properly. We concluded that the hole in the wall was not square, and it had no chance of ever working properly as a consequence of any adjustments we might make to its mechanism.
After removing the old door, which again required confident circular sawing of the outer cladding of the walls to access the attachments, Dan had to cut back and alternately add wood to make the hole "standard" size and square. You may see evidence of this in the picture.
An additional problem was that the size of the door panels (5'x7')
meant that the door could not be transported flat without endangering the
double-glazing, a fact that Dan only learned when he went to pick up
the door. Quick work on the part of the supplier delivery team saved
the day, as the work had begun by then!
The picture here shows the finished door, save for the painting of the trim panels. These were partially re-used, and partially replaced, as the intermittant paint testifies. The hole was a little wider (note the bare extension top middle), and a little less tall. The slightly wider side panels cover the region where the cladding wood was removed to allow removal of the old door.
The double glazing is already making a difference: The rumpus room
had been rather colder than the rest of the house, having a large
area of single-glazed glass. It already seems warmer. We will be
laying in the winter wood and firing up the wood-burning hearth
therein real soon now.