Monday, April 27, 2009

Chain link fence railings

With some large chunks of time on my hands this past weekend I decided that I would go ahead with major project # 43,652: ripping out the temporary loft railings and constructing the new "finish" railings. What you see above is the result of close to 10 hours of work. I think it came out really nice.

As you can see from this shot, I only got half-way done. At the lower right of the image the 2x4 temporary railing is visible. I have long ago learned to cut in half any estimates of what I think I can accomplish on the house at any given time. The design I came up with was driven by my desire to spend as little as possible (pretty typical). I knew I wanted tubular metal railings and wire stays. Back when I was sourcing products for the play loft railings I priced out some professionally fabricated and installed railing systems: BIG bucks. My solution? Go to Home Depot and see what I can come up with for cheap.

What I came up with was basically chain link fence parts. The vertical posts are the chain link fence posts; the horizontal (or diagonal as it were) bars are the fence top rails, and the hardware is all the cheapo hardware for chain link fence. I bored out a hole to seat the base of the posts into, drilled some holes through the posts and then bolted them through the stair risers into the stringers beneath.

The cable cost something like 6 bucks. I anchored it in the downstairs post and then passed it through holes I drilled in the center post and finally fastened them to the wooden end post (which I built to match the other loft railing posts) via simple turnbuckles.

Score one victory for the cheap-skate! Seriously though, I love coming up with smartly designed modernist solutions to design problems that would cost thousands to do "right". All in all, I would say this cost me about $65. Not bad at all.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

See BHB on iTunes

Now you can download the episode of Renovation Nation featuring Bare Hill Barn (for only $1.99!) In iTunes, search for Renovation Nation. Click on "Vol.2". We are episode 13 of Vol. 2 titled, "Today, Steve checks out a 200 year old barn renovated into a modern, eco-smart house." Oooooo! Enjoy.