Sunday, February 6, 2011

Construction Reclaimed Materials

We bought our home in Seattle from the original owner. It was a 1961 split level that had not been properly maintained.  We had to make some choices about whether we should remodel or rebuild. Was there anything worth saving?

After living in the house for 5 years and learning about all of its' needs we decided to deconstruct the house, save the pieces we could reuse, and rebuild.  The deconstruction has been a long process......

We recycled aluminum

We saved our fantastic front door, which we may turn into an interior door in the new house----this is my friend about to do a little dance.

 Reclaimed all of the hardwood floors, sold the 60s era shelving and light fixtures.

Reclaimed other solid building materials that you can't see like big support beams etc.

Our kitchen cabinets have been retrofitted and have a new life in another home in the area.  Here they are awaiting their new home.

Pretty much everything else had used up its' useful life, unfortunately that is how things were built in the 60s.

We look forward to putting a quality home in place, one that fits the neighborhood.  Even though many of the homes that surround us are from the 60s era they have deep overhangs like the Greene & Greene homes.  Our scale will be similar to those on the street.

Here are a few photos of the exterior deconstruction over the past few months:

One of the nice things of living in a small community is having friends stop by and the guys in the neighborhood love hanging out at the job site at the end of the day. Before the fireplaces came down they regularly gathered to enjoy an outdoor fire and a warm beverage.  They have all decided that the new house now needs an outdoor fireplace built into the plans. 

Over the holidays our daughter, home from college, and our son helped with the deconstruction.

Sam claims he is now 6'9"

In addition to reclaiming building materials one of the best parts of this project so far is having the kids involved. Very few teenagers know the reward of physical labor today.

A little father/daughter time:

These kids rose to the challenge too, they worked in rain, snow, and miserable wind.  A friend helped out as well and on those days the job was definately more fun, especially on a sunny but cold day!

Over the past week we have had a big dirt mover on site removing the old foundation that was not up to todays' code, shoring up the perimeter, and removing old concrete and bricks that could not be reclaimed. We are getting very close to being able to pour a new foundation.