Tuesday, August 24, 2010

And Then I Go and Spoil It All by Doing Something Stupid Like . . .

(We pause while Frank and daughter Nancy go to fade . . . )

All right.  Today I got back on the 3rd floor stair sanding work.  The general plan was to do as many treads as I could with the shop vac at the top, then when it would no longer reach, to move it down to the 2nd floor and finish the treads at the bottom.

But I discovered last week that with patient application with the big oscillating sander I could clean the treads off a lot better than I thought when I started this job.  So before I moved the vacuum cleaner down, I wanted to go back and redo the three winders at the top.  I'd given up too soon before and left a lot of the carpet knife scratches on them and some general dirt, and I knew I could do better.

So I did.  The scratches aren't totally obliterated; at least, there's still some discolora- tion in the wood where they were (which shows up less in person than it does in the pictures), but for the most part the cuts themselves are gone.  The winder treads look a lot cleaner and brighter and now they match the ones below.

However.  Still.  Nevertheless.

The third winder from the top has a crack in it, that left the pieces on either side of it uneven.  You know, I says to myself, if I just keep at it with the sander I can get that levelled off and get off the dirt that's collected in there.  What?  You say I could switch out and use the palm sander to do that?  Oh, surely not!  That'd leave a depression!  I'm going to use the big dual motion sander and keep it moving and the tread will come out nice and even!

Uh, notice anything strange about this picture?

Yeah, that's right.  Talk about "something stupid"!  No, sanding down the rest of the tread to match is not an option.  I want to be able to walk on it, after all.  Nor is replacing it without mass destruction, since the treads are slotted into the stringers.

Oh, carp carp carpitty carp!

OK, let's think of something.  All right.  How's this:  The wallpaper is going to be William Morris, and he was influenced by designs from the Middle Ages.  The tile I've got my eye on for the first floor hall has a Medieval motif to it.  I've got reproductions of Gothic art all round the house.  That's it!  I'll just tell anybody who asks that I wanted my 3rd floor stairs to look like the turret stairs in a Medieval castle!  Never mind that in that case the low place would be in the middle of the tread and not at the side . . .

No use!  Epic DIY fail!  Now I've gone and done something that future owners can rag on me about.


A @ Is It A House Yet said...

Chalk it up to "house character" - and trust me, I've given my house a ton of "character" over the years, including a 4''x4'' wide, 1/4'' deep divot in the hard wood floors with one of those floor sander rentals. Oh - and a recent deep scratch on the bottom tread of the new wood stairs. Don't kick yourself over it. Your stairs are going to look great!

AJDS said...

Don't worry about- it will just be one of those bits of character that only you notice. You've done a ton of good work on your house- one sander oops won't make a bit of difference. Good job on your hard work. :)

Kate H. said...

Thank you both for the kind and reassuring words. I ran short of sandpaper, but now the shipment has arrived and God willing I might be able to get back on the job tomorrow. :-)

Sandy said...

I agree with both comments! I think the stairs look beautiful.