I bought a fixer-upper a while back and, like all houses and especially fixer uppers, it needs a lot of work. This section is here to document the many fun projects ("homework") I do. A close friend has suggested that I rename this section to "Incredibly Overengineered Solutions To Problems You Never Knew You Had". I take that as a compliment - I've almost never had so much fun!

I didn't want to take on any major projects until I'd lived here for a year; I think it takes time to understand a house. So instead of ripping the kitchen apart I've started with a few smaller projects.

My first project was a rain barrel project - I'll post plans, pictures and links to suppliers/resources soon. This was for fun but also part of a strategy to divert the rain away from my foundation because of leakage into the basement. This project is divided into four sub-projects:

  • Downspout diversion
  • First flush device
  • Stand for the rainbarrels
  • Rain barrel plumbing

For those who don't know what is or how a first flush works, it is pretty simple. When it starts raining the first water coming off of the roof is really dirty from the dust and debris that has collected since the last time it rained. You don't want this water in your rain barrel so you need a way to discard the first few gallons. This is where a first flush device comes in. I built one which collects and discards the first five gallons of rainwater. This isn't much since we get a lot of rain here and as I calculated, only 1/4 inch of rain will give me about 60 gallons.

Other projects soon to come (next six months) are window handles, gutter replacement, repointing brick, building a brick wall, running conduit, rewiring and more!

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