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Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Crash! Thud! Bang! Is That Santa On Our Roof?

By 7 this morning, the roof at That Old House
was crawling with men who are far, far braver
than I . . . that roof is high! . . . as the first stage of
Operation Roof Replacement gets underway.

Thank you, Superstorm Sandy,
for stepping up our timetable for this project.

While our roof was certainly old, it was still keeping us dry.

June 2011

After Sandy, not so much.

October 2012

Howard snapped a few pictures from the cul-de-sac as
he was leaving for work this morning.

That is one big dropcloth.
I could paint a lot of old furniture on that dropcloth.

If you look at the front of the house, on the right of this picture,
you can see the old wood roofing shingles, the brown cedar shingles
that are believed to be the house's original roof.

That makes them 180 years old.  Not bad.
I wish we could have somehow preserved
and repaired that old wooden roof.

Much of the roof will need new sheathing, and we therefore
will go down in history as the first homeowners to put
any plywood into That Old House.
(Not something I want in my obituary, if anyone's making notes.)

What looks like plywood on the rear of the house, above, on the left, is not plywood.
It is wide boards, or -- late 19th century sheathing; it was done in the 1880s.
Some of that may be still useable.  Fingers crossed.
Have you seen what plywood costs these days?  Sheesh!

In our Dylan Dog's little world,
the advent of strangers on the roof is quite exhilarating,
and good reason for barking and making nose prints on the 
window panes, and being told to get OFF the windowsills . . . .

One of Dylan's issues is leash-biting, and we've made
really good progress in extinguishing this behavior (as the
trainers say), but it still surfaces now and then.

Like yesterday.
Anne got a picture of Bratticus Finch, AKA Dylan,
with his lead firmly in his teeth, trying to initiate a tug-of-war.

Of course, like a 3-year old child who defies a parent,
Dylan has no idea how cute he is when he does this,
or why we are not completely intimidated by his power.

Sorry, Dylan, we don't do tug-of-war with bratty boys.
We ignore bratty boys!
And then, they give up, cause then it's not fun anymore.

It really is so rewarding, and such fun, to watch Dylan blossom.
Even when he's still an occasional brat.

I hope your Tuesday is bright, as I'm sure our gray and damp
day will be, eventually; I'm seeing bright sky in the distance!  -- Cass


  1. Oh...he's just so sweet! Hard to ignore him, huh? Your roof brings back memories of Our Old House in NH. Thanks for taking me back. Keeping good thought that you have dry weather for the next few days!

  2. Yikes, what a mess! We had to rip our old roof off several years back including the original wood shingles. (Our house is a youngster compared to yours at only 100 years old when we replaced the roof.) There was such a mess in the attic. Oh my, I don't envy you.

  3. A project I must address some day. Good luck, looks as tho you are in good hands.

  4. Incredible that you still have original roof! How neat to be able to see it!

  5. Oh my goodness that face!!!!!! What a cutie!
    We did the roof on Lavender Hill a few years back when we did the big reno... what a LOUD experience! Be careful of hanging things in the house, the banging and vibrations actually knocked a 100 year old mirror off the wall in the dining room here - what a sad mess that was!

    Give Dylan Dog a squish from me!


  6. Rory does the leash biting and shaking thing too. We haven't made much progress in helping him stop!
    A new roof at Christmas time - you are the multi-tasked of all time!

  7. Been there, done the roof bit. Original roof here was cedar shakes, now illegal because of fire hazard. That was covered by us with composition shingles. I had both layers torn off, plywood decking installed and topped the whole thing off with metal shingles. They look like regular shingles, but hook together top to bottom and side to side. Never have to be replaced, which was its selling feature for me. If Dylan gets too bratty, you could send him out to play with the men on the roof. :-)

  8. We too replaced a roof on a house built in 1926. Original wood shingles still there and barn board under. They/we chose to only replace a few areas w/plywood as much of the original barn board was in very stable condition. As Sweet Posy Dreams said, what a mess in the attic. Took weeks to clean up and we still occasionally find a piece or two up there!

    Dylan is such a cutie.

  9. Oh honey!!! I HAVE DONE THAT!!! Yes, me with my own two little hands. FH helped me tear it all off, then he had to go back to work. I was DETERMINED to get it done so we could go on vacation in a week - - - so he would start some rows in the morning before he left for work and I would sit up there, bent over, hammering WITH A REGULAR HAMMER, until nearly dark.

    Of course, our roof wasn't as high nor as steep as yours - - - but still - - - I have me some ROOFIN' EXPERIENCE!!!

    I NEVER want to do it again.

    I'm just sayin'

  10. The weather sure is warm enough to get the job done. Merry Christmas Cass!

  11. That Old House is really amazing, considering it’s still standing after 180 years. Unfortunately, the problem with an old house is that it is inevitable for some parts to deteriorate. I think, after superstorm Sandy, you made the right decision to replace the roof. You don’t want the next superstorm to come and blow away your roof, right?

  12. What a wreck of a home, its a shame that the damage was did. Long live legendary architecture, a piece of art.

    -Keystone Contracting Corp.
    Roofing Contractor Queens

  13. Woo! Quite an improvement! This is totally better than the mess in your last post. :D Make sure to stick to maintenance and quick repairs now. Also, judging from the design of your roof, it’ll be good to hire a roofer annually to inspect it.

    Neil Hirsh


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