A blog dedicated towards architectural refinement of buildings and environments in which we live, work, and play. Chiefly this is brought about by the author with finish carpentry at heart, and many other disciplines radiating or spinning off from it.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Handicapped Access Door ~ Historic Federal Building

I fixed a rusty steel door yesterday. I used Duraglas on some metal lath.

Brushing on Hammerite paint is like working with marshmallow cream. You get one or two good brush strokes and that's it. Done. No more trying to correct anything...and it stinks. Xylene! Duraglas is interesting. While it is curing up you can cut it with a sharp wallpaper knife. When it's hard you can't do much with it at all. So you have to stand by and feel it for the right time to trim it. I used it at Haddonstone for repairs to their ornamental models and some molds.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Continuation In Early September 2008

view east on north section

With an idea that a commercial corner roller could be implemented in painting these standing seams without having to bend down I finally use the one I bought years ago in anticipation of rolling in interior wall corners. After a couple days use it is falling apart. Presumably from the interation of the paint medium's Xylene with the closed-cell foam. Not wishing to go back to brushing the seams bending over or kneeling I made a new roller core shape out of plywood, then delicately perform the surgery of sewing it while still soaked with noxious Hammerite, as cleaning it would have been a long process. (At the end of the project it will just go into the trash.)

I resolve to try and take pictures of progress from a further distance, since it is a larger edifice, and more prominent for it's more decorative flourishes.

Start Sept 08, Hist Fed. Roof

NE hip 1st coat, Hist. Fed. Roof

Saturday, September 13, 2008

After the roof painting project was shelved for the summer work now begins with 30 gallons of gold Hammerite in reserve. Below are some of the initial forays getting used to a repetoire with all the safety equipment, preparitory scrubbing, and rinse which required an additional 100 foot of water hose coming up from the second floor deck.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Roof Painting ~ The Historic Federal Building, Pueblo Colorado

After repairs and preventative measures painting can now begin upon the metal roof of the Historic Federal Building in downtown Pueblo, Colorado. The paint to be use is a gold Hammerite Rust Cap, and ten gallons have been initially acquired towards covering its approximate 12,000 square feet. It is a little tricky washing and rinsing the old paint and rust off, and a couple of long water hoses and valve-controlled brush designed for washing cars is employed.

process Hist Fed roof

The temperature has to be below 85F to insure a good coating, but the afternoon clouds are helping out somewhat. Other than that, this painter will have to adjust to gettting up very early in the morning and get off the roof, or wash down the next day's section once the temperature reaches that point. It is possible to do two coats if it is done within 45 minutes of the first application. Barring that the product also says to wait seven days before giving a second coat. It is entirely possible that I may make a circuit in a week, and begin the second coat there. For now the only difficulty is insuring that the ridge seams are done first. The more thorough method is to brush them, but that goes much slower. I am avoiding brushing the tops, since a roller can hit those just as well during the rolling of the wide panels. Using a roller on this small vertical surface might be done quicker with a small roller, but it might also use more paint if not done properly. For a test amongst the practice of application, weather, heat and author's discipline, the northeastern hip roof will be done first to see how it goes.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


In continuity of sharing building innovations to processes and materials I am updating website links to things I have found of interest in my field:

Adding A Barrel Vault

The above being an article cost comparison of installation time of wood framing to metal system.

USG's Architect's, Designers & Specifiers Site

Links to innovative articles.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

June 2007 ~ Creative Crown Molding

[Edited May 2, 2008]
My job in this unoccupied residence was to install painted crown molding around the ceilings of the kitchen, breakfast, formal dining room, entryway and front hall. With this client a horizontal baseboard is installed underneath the crown molding. The above photo depicts the start of this process. I have come to rely on Zip-Wall spring-loaded poles to assist in support and precise positioning before shooting any nails.

Crown set against base. Midway through.

I am also painting this molding with a first coat before installation. This I do on sawhorses in the family room.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Progress On The Roof Painting Project

Before any regular traffic could go on up on the roof the old decking right outside the door had to be replaced, the rails cleaned off and painted.

Redwood boards would be the deck replacement, varnished in the basement and set to dry, chopped to size, then fitted from underneath with galvanized hex lag screws.

[Editor's note: Only recently could photos be added of the decking completed some time ago. The author having taken on a job sub-contracting labor around his home community of Rye, Colorado - April 6, 2008.]

A test area was cleaned in this triangular west facing area in order to see how chalky the old paint was, preparation for a sample to be applied.

Friday, March 7, 2008

From Old Blueprints

Got approximate square footage to bid on painting a steel roof in downtown Pueblo for the Historic Federal Building. (It used to be a copper roof that was salvaged during WWII.) It was interesting taking it to Kinko's. Got it on a CD in the process, an eighty year-old blueprint.

There is a wealth of information to these prints in the basement of the old building. Study them long enough and you get a sense of history passing by, a genealogy of sorts, or archaology. I've mentioned them to a former painting collegue, who's now working for an architectural firm, that he could come look them over some time, as the owner has given me the priviledge. He must be too busy.

[Addendum March 17, 2008 - for use in estimating safety lines and cordons:]

After inverting the colors I can get a basic idea with MS Paint on where I want to string main safety cables to drop down the roof from.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Egg and Dart, Finished Design

Egg and Dart (third session)

I've found a simple method of developing the contour that couches the egg, with a little widening of same. Still working on the darts, and a uniform method of developing them. A lot of this is learning extrusion commands and intersects.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Egg and Dart

My next chosen challenge on Google Sketchup 6 seems to be a first draft at egg & dart molding.
It wasn't very hard to find a tutorial about egg shapes through their online warehouse. The main trick or difficulty seems to be merging models together. Research in existing moldings tells me that I could make the grooves and separating lines stronger and the egg a little more bulbous.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Exterior of Windows - Historic Federal Building

Yesterday I started scraping and priming some windows at the Historic Federal Building in downtown Pueblo, Colorado. This should arrest further deterioration of the old paint until a new coat of paint can be put on.

The intial problem solving of ladder placement entailed re-using old lag screw holes with wooden dowels already in them for a brace for an extention ladder. A trip to the local steel scrapyard was called for, whereupon a piece of orange steel shelving was found the exact length for $2. The only modification was re-drilling the holes large enough to use a 3/8" lag screw.
These sit at three spots on each side near the top, bottom and approximate middle of the first four windows I am attending. A previous look at the blueprints showed that they once held up decorative grills.

I put some thin shims underneath the metal to keep from damaging the brick, and give it a tighter fit where it would not roll around.

Though these windows are very simple there will be time involved in scraping and painting, with a little sanding to feather over edges from existing to raw wood. After the ladder brace is set up, this takes four hours.
Scraped sound.

Done for the day.

Upon leaving and rounding the corner I decided to take a picture of the front of the building because I am interested in casting from the eagles on the facade, among other things at least cataloguing the stonework. Efflourescence is apparent underneath the roof . At the proposal a couple of years ago of painting the steel roof, I am hoping that whomever does the painting - and it might be me - they will also be able to wash the efflourescence off, which is probably being caused by a slight leak, or water sitting too long somewhere.

Here it is again high upon the south west wall.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Ideas: Shower Stall - Spiral design

I have no idea how I will make curved glass this big. I suppose I could make it out of glass block.

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About Me

Sculptor, Residing in Southern Colorado, USA. age 58. Interested in mould-making, public or outdoor sculpture presentation, and space or environments in which to present them


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