Saturday, 8 September 2007

More windows and other stuff.

The roofers weren't the only people busy in Preuilly last week.

I decided that finding a glazier just to put glass in window frames was too big a task for my French for too small a job, so I measured the windows and went to Bricomarche in Chatellerault. There the 9 panes of glass were cut to the size needed and wrapped nicely in brown paper - all for 23€. I also bought a big tub (2.5kg) of linseed based window putty and a box of glazing nails.

Surprisingly, reglazing windows isn't as traumatic as I first suspected. I managed to get all 9 pieces of glass into the frames without breaking anything. The only slight problem I had (apart from the sheer worry of nailing glass to wood) was one of the glazing bars had completely rotted. I chiselled out the guilty party and replaced with a new glazing bar I made myself. Easy!!

Once the windows were done, the next task tackled was removing various forms of wall cladding from the house. The front room (lounge, sitting room or salon) has nasty wallpapered chipboard nailed into battens that have been nailed into the stone. This made a satisfying mess and huge cloud of dust when removed, but I now have a large pile of rotting wood and slightly damp hardboard in the middle of the room. Next stage is to get rid of it - buying a trailer may be fairly high on the list.
The front room - then (insert) and now.

In the kitchen area we had an inbuilt cupboard with decidedly manky attributes. The door wouldnt work either. This was removed during the course of a quiet (until then!) evening listening to the cricket.

I also started work on removing the cladding from the walls of what will eventually become the utilities room/wc. This is plaster board backed with 6cm (about 2½ inches) of expanded polystyrene. The board is glued with large dollops of "mastic" (it's all mastic in France) directly to the walls. Unfortunately, in our case, the walls were skinned with particularly hard concrete in the past, so this had to be chipped off the delicate limestone blocks too.

Yet more mess!Eventually I think we will be leaving the large blocks exposed, and plastering over the dodgy looking brickwork.

All this was fitted around using roundup on the remaining (and re-emerging) bramble bushes, a visit from the electrician, appointments with the bank, having bank cards that stop working when I had a trolley full of stuff and a checkout lady looking expectant......


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