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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 4/13/2018

Finally after the third blower arrived, and it was tested before shipment, and it didn’t work, I delved deeper into the entire unit.  While I had power going the the motor, it still wasn’t coming on.  Dug around the wiring schematic and then looked inside, which wasn’t easy as things were hidden pretty well.  But finally [!] I saw that the neutral wire was not connected to the receptacle for the motor wire.  After several minutes of squirming one hand and arm, then the other trying hard not to slice either on the sharp edges, I was finally able to connect it to the receptacle and voila! It works!  So much consternation for a simple issue.  Ok so no the front sections of the hood cabinet are on and we are waiting for cabinet lighting to arrive so I can install it and set the crown moulding.

Second level stove arrived and is installed {it is soooo ugly.  Sandra has laid down the law that I will not order anything that is visible ever again}.  But with that set I was able to call out the propane company to come out, check everything and then they can call for an inspection.  They had a couple of comments which I took care of in short order and am ready for the inspection.

I have been focusing on the stair railing as we work towards a CO.  Headed to Santa Fe to pick up some more doug fir for it.  Not everything is intuitive until it starts getting laid out.  I originally had the top board higher than it is now.  On certain sections, I will use 2x8’s instead of 2x6’s to keep proportional look on taller section sections.  I have a bunch of steel tubing and angle coming Tuesday for the intermediate rails that will have to be welded or brazed together.  Get to try my rusty skills out.

Granite guys come out to install on Tuesday as well, and half the doors should arrive next week. In the midst of all of this, Sandra created a punch list for the fourth floor.  I love punch lists as it helps my A,D,D self complete the miriad of little things that don’t take long to finish, but for which I always have an excuse to put off doing in the name of getting other things started.


Kitchen hood finally near completion save for crown moulding on the top of it and surrounding cabinets. The crown will reach the ceiling and cover the vent pipe.
Another truck load of live edge wood. We traveled to Nashville to pick up what we purchased last Thanksgiving and bought another truckload as well.what shows on top here is a 2” thick slab of Cherry about 8’ long. It was an huge sum of - - $95 ;-)

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 3/31/2018 11:34:29 AM

So the vent hood company has sent out two motors.  Not easy holding the heavy thing above your head getting it in place and getting screws started.  Neither of them worked.  They sent out another one yesterday, supposedly tested it first, but that was supposed to happen on the second one and didn't.  Should arrive by Tuesday and we'll try again.

Got the last bathtub set yesterday after getting its faucet hooked up.  The faucet required cutting sheetrock and thus took a few days to repair.  Really tired of patching sheetrock!  And will have the last two toilets set byt the end of the weekend.

Stove for the second floor arrived and I got it converted to propane.  Will get a flex line for it Monday and see how it works.  Drilled into the concrete lintels for brackets for the newel posts for the stairs and started laying out the railings.  Going to be a bit of trial and error to see just what I want.

Time to think about ordering glass for the showers, or at least some of them. So I'll get some mesaurements this weekend and contact the fellow I used on the Mutton Bustin project in Nashville.  He's in Florida and can deliver all the glass and hardware for half of what it is from local shops. It's not too difficult to set the glass, just heavy and requires two people.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 3/24/2018

So the water damage ended up being pretty well contained with only a few more planks to have to be removed.  We’ll save that for the future as that level will be finished after we move in under a CO.

Sandra was able to install nearly all of the drawer and door pulls.  We’re missing a few to finish the job but getting over a hundred of the suckers drilled and installed was a labor of love for her.
The granite guys came out to template the counters and finish the shower curbs and niches. Well, they got the templating done, but STILL didn’t finish the rest.  I swear I am over this.  I did get them to get the master’s curb done so I could set baseboard, which then allowed me to set the tub.  One tub left to do.  

Dishwasher drawers came, as well as the main level fridge.  Got those up to the third level.  A stove for the second level arrived damaged and we refused delivery.  AJ Madison, whom we had ordered it from was fantastic! Showed them a picture of the damage and they sent out a new one the following day.

Today I was able to get the 700 lb stove for our kitchen off of the dolly I had made for it.  Wasn’t sure how I was going to do it, but again using lever techniques (and a low profile car jack) I was able to slowly, stepwise lower one end and then the other until it was fully down and I coild slide it onto lower boards and repeat the process.  Now in the process of relocating the gas line and electric, as this stove doen’t have an open area across the entire lower back.  And a year or so ago when those utilities were being installed, a stove had not been chosen so- - A lesson to ya’ll, plan your appliances early, early on. I should have everything relocated tomorrow, the stove set and leveled, and will try it out.  Earlier this week, I did the LP- high altitude conversion.  Hope it all goes smoothly!

Not sure if I said before, but we have half the doors ordered and they should arrive the week of April 15th.  And next week, I hope to begin scoping out the stair railing.  That is a biggie to getting the CO.


The stove last December when it was sitting on the homemade dolly. It is sitting about almost a foot off of the floor.
Stove off the dolly and onto the floor!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 3/21/2018

Last Wednesday, just before we left town for a few days of R&R, I was working on finishing getting the remaining vanities connected, both water and drains. I was moving along nicely.  The faucets I was using allowed the use of a 3/8” copper line with a rubber gommet to seal it to the faucet.  This allowed for a clean installation. So I’m down to the last vanity, and I walk over to where I had been cutting PVC for the drains, and the floor is FLOODED!!  I cut the main supply as quickly as possible.  Turned out that one of the connections on the 3/8” copper had given way and slipped out.  What to do?!  Water throughout one bedroom, which did not yet have hardwood, but went across the hall to the main area and another bunk where both had hardwood.  Began vaccuming it up and took about 30 gallons out.  The vanity where the failure occurred was full of water.  Pulled drawers and set them outside to dry.  Then pulled up some of the hardwood to survey the extent.  Fortunately, in the greatroom, the water stopped within the first board or two and exited through a seam in hte subfloor.  In the bunkroom we’re not sure how far it got but suspect something similar but are waiting to see how the wood responds before tearing everything up.  As of our return yesterday, it actually looked pretty good.  Very little cupping, and having had a flooded floor once before, they can settle down significantly as they dry.  The whole thing was unbelievable.  But I try to be a “glass half full” type of person and realize that if the issue had happened while we were gone for five days, the second level of the house and the garage ceiling would have been total losses. 

I’m in the process of swapping out the copper for flexible lines with fittings, and will turn off the water every evening when we leave and certainly when we leave for an extended time.  Just when you think all is going along just fine - - - 

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 3/10/2018

The great thing about ready to assemble cabinets, is you save about 40% over the cost of ready built semi custom cabinets.  And much more if you install them yourself. The downside is the time to fully assemble them.  While I spoke of having to asemble the boxes a few weeks back, drawers, drawer fronts and doors all need to be installed as well. And this takes time.  But in the course of a few weeks, everything will have been assembled and installed and we will have saved an unbelievable amount of money over either buying from HD and installing ourselves or subbing out the entire job. 

We are just about finished with getting all of that done, minus the heavy crown and other mouldings, but as soon as we can set the main stove, we can set the last two base cabinets and get the granite guys in to template.  The stove is waiting on an LP high altitude conversion kit that was supposed to be ordered last fall when we ordered the stove, but the salesman was lax about doing it.  Seems that the new orifaces are very specific for altitude, changing every 1000 ft in order to be correct.  So Sandra explained the elevation we live at and the kit should be sent out Monday.  As heavy as the stove is, I want to move it into place while one set of side base cabinets are still out, and after the conversion is finished.  It would be a struggle to get it out and back in with the base cabinets fully installed.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 3/6/2018 9:01:41 AM

Sunday, I set the upper cabinets. Included was a large cabinet for the range hoodwhich Ray helped me lift into place.  Question came up as to what hieght to set that at.  We went and set it even with the top of the others.  Well yesterday I went and installed the 70 lb hood inside, took away the scaffolding and ...... realized it was too tall. I would have have to nearly stand on tip toes to reach over the stove and get to the controls.  So back goes the scaffolding, out comes the hood, I drop the hood cabinet down 6 inches, reinstall the hood, and we are good to go, finally.  Waiting on a backordered blower for it which should be here in a couple weeks.  I’ll run the base cabinets along this wall today. I have a couple pantries to build but we’re nearly done setting the cabinets. Feels really good.  Still have drawer faces etc, but just to have it all set in place will be great!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 3/4/2018

With the flooring done, work has shifted to setting and final assembly of cabinets.  That has moved along pretty well with only a couple of hiccups.  The cabinets that make up the china hutch around a large window are up, and while they need moulding at the top and glass in the doors, are set in place.  The island took over a day to set, primarily because the floor isn’t level underneath it.  That has had me scratching my head as to why - probably because of the swelling of the subfloor that took place.  Everything needs to be perfectly level, perfectly square.  As one set one side and work around, constant checks with a long straight edge are required in order to keeep everything in alignment.  It just takes far  more time than one can imagine.  But all turned out great in the end.  I may attempt to put up a couple of wall cabinets today. Woild be nice to get some of those off the floor.  Sandra has been doing a fantastic job of installing the drawer glides.  Very tedious work and involves locating and screwing the glides to the back of the cabinet and to the face frame.  It is something that I have traditionally done, but she took it on and that has made this move forward a whole lot faster.


China hutch assembly. Put together from individual cabinet pieces.
Island cabinets. Sink is set in place, dishwasher set in place. Drawer fronts need to be put on, once Sandra figures which fronts go where. Not as simple as it sounds.
Backside of island. Doors and false panels are on.
Drawer fronts, doors and false panels laid out in the great room as Sandra tries to figure what goes where.
Main living area with the floor finished. Nice to be soooooo clean!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/28/2018 9:33:11 AM

Ray and I spent the last two days putting in the flooring on the main living area.  And it’s done.  Actually begins to finish off the look of the place!  Sandra and I started the china hutch cabinetry that fits along the north wall.  We need to look for the rest of the pieces today and try to finish that off.  Will also begin putting together the replacement wall cabinets so we can begin to set those.  Sinks and dishwashers arrived yesterday. 

Inspector came out on Monday to review the downstairs venting for the fireplace and passed it. So I can go ahead and close the ceiling back up, tape and mud it and Sandra can repaint.   But that’ll take a backseat to working on the cabinetry.  Only thing left on the plumbing is the final, which will require all of the vanities and sinks to be connected. 

Granite guys are to come back today to do the stuff they have had ready for a few weeks now.  Once we have the cabinets done, they can come back and template for the rest of the job.

Got door quotes back and need to sort through them.  We’ll probable make a few changes to eliminate some custom widths as they came in hugely expensive.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/25/2018 2:16:47 PM

I got a call from our landlord yesterday morning.  He is looking to sell the house we are renting and wanted to run the prospective buyers through this weekend. Wow! That was a bolt out of the blue! He did confirm however that our lease is through June and he will hold to that. So - that makes us double down on getting an occupancy permit a nd move in by that time.  Now technically, all you need for the permit is to have a working kitchen, a bathroom, railings on the stairs, walls covered, and electrical and plumbing completed.  Final finishes, including flooring, tile, painting etc are not necessary.  But we don’t want to be traipsing over a living area to get to finish areas above.  So our original plans remain intact - finish the house from level 4 and work out way down.  Our  main level for Sandra and I is Level 3, which would mean only two levels would get us moved in & out of construction zone. However, all the way to level 2 still needs to have the plumbing and electrical completed for finals on those necessary for the occupancy permit. That means all the vanities needs to be hooked up, the kitchen sink on that level needs to be hooked up etc. So, a fair amount of work needs to be finished in addition.

Was that confusing enough?

Sandra and I finished the kitchen ceiling.  A new load of aspen was much straighter that what we had left from the original load last fall.  This made running it a lot quicker. Moved cabinets around so we could clear a major portion so we can begin running the living area  floor on Monday, tomorrow.  Over the last couple days, I’ve moved about 5000 lbs of flooring up there.  Thank God for the Skytrak! 

I’ve been getting 4th floor vanities set, with water connected.  Need to order p-traps and finish the drain connections and we’ll be good.  At the same time, will order toilet rings (I’ve switched to using foam rings instead of the traditional wax ones) and we can begin setting the remaining six toilets.

We held the granite guys off last week as winter has returned (arrived) with a vengeance and we figured they wouldn’t make it up to the site without 4WD. So hopefully they can get up here this week.

Got both fireplaces started yesterday.  They seem to work just fine. Inspector didn’t show last week, so I’ll call him so he can inspect the vent line of the lower fireplace and I can close it up.


Third floor living area ready to get hardwood.
Fireplace with the additional gingerbread added on the top.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/20/2018

Tubs and associated plumbing for the fourth floor all came in water tight. Got the two vanities on the same floor installed, with final hookups yet to do.

Started finishing the kitchen ceiling that the stone guy started some months back.  We had to wait to finish until the tubs were in upstairs, which had to wait until the floors were in.  Long runs of aspen T&G which are mostly not really straight.  So takes some significant time and two people, they being Sandra and I.

Monday we should start on the remaining wood floor on the 3rd floor -  kitchen dining room and great room.  About 1800 sq f.t worth.

Remaining vent pipes for the second floor fireplace came yesterday and I got them set today.  Inspector is to come back on the 22nd, but I’d better give him a shout to confirm.

Sandra ordered kitchen sinks, and dishwashers.  Second floor sink and dishwasher can get installed when they arrive.  Third floor once we get the floor and cabinets installed. We made a list of all the doors and have started to go out for bids.  A total of 28 doors.  

The granite guys are supposed to come back Saturday and do the install on the shower curbs, and 2nd floor vanities. 

Ray found a couple more things to add to the fireplace to take away from the stark top. They certainly do!

Things are moving along!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/18/2018 2:07:14 PM

That’s what I needed yesterday to assemble the faucet set into the tub of one of the 4th floor bathrooms.  Unlike all the others where the faucet is exterior, this one sets into the top rear face of the tub.  It’s a deep tub and trying to reach from the bottom and the topside at the same time needed someone with very long arms, or two people and Sandra had left for the day when I attempted it. After a couple long hours and many choice words shouted to no one, I finally got it all assembled nad proceeded to hook up the water lines, and drain.  I’ll get the drain on the other 4th floor tub done today and test both units for leaks.  If all goes well, we can start finishing the kitchen ceiling, which, Sandra reminded my A,D,D self, needs to be finished before the floor goes down.

Ray has nearly finished what he can on the fireplace. Bottom rows of stone need to wait until the hearth stone and the floor are in.

I went and set the second floor island.  Was going to set the units against the wall, but we are missing a piece of filler board.  Need to get hold of the cabinet company and get that made and shipped.  In the meantime, I can set a temporary filler so I can go ahead and set them against the wall.  Sandra ordered the farm sink and dishwasher for that floor as well.

Sandra’s staining baseboard and as it’s getting finished, I’m installing what we can without having doors and trim in place.

Got the three small baseboard heaters installed on the 4th floor and tested them.  They work. And got the vent pipe for the second floor fireplace through the ceiling and through the outside wall (after bringing out the jackhammer once again).  Now waiting on another section of pipe to finish it off.  That’ll be done this coming week.

So I’m thinking we are making great progress, when a fellow comes by to look at the house and remarks “You sure have a lot to do if you’re going to get in the house in June”
Besides being a bit of slap to my pride, it’s become a challenge to prove him wrong. Game on!


Fireplace nearly finished. We are looking for something to sit on the top to finish it off, and there will be a very bright, colorful painting that hangs on the front. Granite guys need to template the hearth.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/13/2018

The master areas have had the wood floors installed and the second floor has two bedrooms and half the great room done as well.  We’ve installed all the shower fixtures and are slowly working on three of the four bathtubs.  The granite folks were supposed to put in the shower niche bottoms, set all of the shower curbs and the four vanity tops on the second floor.  Turned out to be a total mess yesterday when they showed up 4 hours late with less than half of the material.  Total disconnect within their organization.  Sandra called this morning and read them the riot act.  The owner was totally unaware of what had happened, but promised to review with his crews and correct.

We got together with the local welder on Friday to explain the supports we needed to hang the hollow log onto the fireplace.  He had them finished today and they were set in place.  Basically two large protruding J-hooks.  With these set, Ray can finish setting stone.  We are really hoping that this will wrap up this week so we clean up the area and get it ready for flooring.  Right now it has become a total mess.  

I replaced the cabinet fronts on the second floor set once that area of floor was in. Really a pretty easy job. Looking forward to getting the main level done, but not until all is clean and the floor is in. 


Fireplace with more stone on, and hollow log set.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/8/2018 2:07:19 PM

The fireplace is starting to emerge as a finished item after we got an inspection on Tuesday and Ray was able to begin wrapping the framing with lath. Stone was started yesterday and should take several days since the curved sides take time.  Ray also needs to get brackets made and set for the new hollow log that is going to be placed across the front, but the initial results of the stone look good.

Sandra and I have been laying out flooring on the second level for acclimation, and yesterday started fastening the master areas - BR, closet and bath.  We should finish that today.  

Started work on getting ready to set vent pipe for the second level fireplace.  Had to cut open the ceiling in a bedroom to have access to a joist bay to run it in. Not pleased to have to do it, and the venting should have been run before the sheetrock was put in, but was one of those things I put off.  So now will have to patch a 12’ strip and repaint once the venting arrives and is set and inspected.


Ray, the artist who is building the fireplace on the main level.
Horizontally placed hollow log that Ray found in the woods. Final location will be about a foot higher than it is shown here.
Stone started. The face above the fireplace will be straight, while the sides will be curved as shown here
Flooring in the second level laid upside down to acclimate for a few days before putting down. We’ve seen just a hair change is moisture level in the already very low numbers.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/4/2018 9:08:20 AM

By the end of the day yesterday, we finished laying the fourth floor.  A total of less than four full days to lay 1100 sq.ft.  Or about 20% of the total flooring.  And that was including the ever time consuming hundreds of trips up and down the stairs to get the flooring up to that level.  We’re talking 3500 lbs of flooring hauled up those steps a few boards at a time. Sandra is out of commission while her remaining real knee recoversfrom that workout.  The other two floors should still be work, but there is no changing levels once the flooring is lifted up to those levels with the Skytrak.  I’m going to lay the high density sound material in the master bedroom, bath and closet today and bring up flooring to acclimate.  Would really like to get the floor in before the granite guys come back with the shower curbs as the face sits on top of the floor.

Meanwhile Ray is slowly proceeding on the fireplace.  He found a hollow log in the forest that I need to help him get out today.  He thinks it’ll fit in wonderfully.  Until we see what he has planned, we’ll hold our thought.  Great artist, but he keeps everything so fluid, it feels like nothing will get finalized.  The electrical inspector couldn’t make it to reviewthe additions I made for lighting for the fireplace, but said he didn’t want to hold us up and to move forward. The mechanical inspector said he’ll be here Monday, tomorrow, and we shoild be good to go to start closing up the framing, if Ray can finalize his ideas so he can place proper bracing and attachments.


Floorings pics from the top of the stairs

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 2/1/2018 9:19:55 AM

And flooring started!  All the accent walls we had planned, are up with the exception of trim.  Based on the first bedroom, and the reaction of the trim as it dries, and the fact that wood floor needs to be installed  before final length can be determined, we’ll wait until the floors are in.

So yesterday we started installing the floor on the fourth floor.  Getting started up there is a bit of a process with the number of rooms that are involved and rooms mean doorways and walls to contend with.  And we ran through all of the material we had staged up there. Need to bring more up, and if the moisture content is ok, we’ll continue to lay more, if not, we’ll hold off.  I’ve got plenty of other things I can work on, it’s just so nice to see the floor going in!


Upstairs, we’re using 6,7 & 8” wide planks, one would think wide planks would speed things along, but the long lengths(up to 12’) and width, actually makes it more difficult to get tongues and grooves to match up. The green material is a high density foam product that is supposed to dampen noise to below

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/24/2018

So after Sandra has gotten much of the rough cut sanded and treated, and the tile guy finished the showers on the fourth floor, we went and put up the accent walls in two bedrooms up there.  Went pretty quickly, a few hours each.  I started putting down a sound absorbing underlayment for the hardwood floor in preparation for getting some up there to acclimate and lay in a couple weeks.  But was taken off that task by the arrival of the flexible vent for the main fireplace.  Need to get that in so Ray could continue on his work.  When we poured the concret back in mid 2016 I had placed a piece of 8”duct in the forms as the opening for the vent as that diameter was supposed to be 7”.  But wouldn’t you know, the flex that I decided to use is 8” as well.  So out came the hammer drill to ream out the hole and we finally got the vent pipe through.  All the best laid plans....



Accent wall being installed
Finished wall

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/20/2018 1:43:01 PM

The work on the main fireplace has slowed down.  I ordered the vent kit, which should be here Monday, and I have to run electrical to both the unit and to any places we want lighting.  And then both of those have to be inspected.  So Ray can work on the tree trunks and get them fully cleaned and finished and can finish building the hearth while the other stuff happens.  I’m framing out the lower fireplace and running the gas to it.  

We ended up going to Pueblo, CO on Thursday as they had stone in stock that we liked.  While there we also found stone for the lower FP, but we’ll need to order that and retiurn to get it. 

Tile guys finished showers on the 4th and third floors.  They’ll move to the second floor next week to begin the last three showers.  Granite guys will come up after all of the showers are done to template the curbs and niches. I’ll bring some flooring up to the 4th floor to begin acclimating.

A bit of the replacement cabinetry arrived yesterday. More to follow. And Sandra is making great strides with the rough-sawn boards, sanding and applying the chemicals.  As they are pine, they react far more quickly than the aspen, and we should be able to start putting them up before too long.  Just want them to dry out some more before we do so.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/18/2018 12:27:18 AM

So the main fireplace os starting to take shape - a shape that seems evolve each day.  The latest evolution is to take the normally sharp edges and round them significantly to soften the look and tie in with tne curved roof.  It’s different, but I think it’ll be something that will work and certainly create some buzz.

I’ve gotten the gas line connected and the fan installed for it.  Need to bring power over from a nearby receptacle.

Sandra went to Albuquerque to try to find stone in stock for it. We’ll go down in the morning to pick it up.  

I decided to start installing the 2nd floor fireplace as well.  Will do thtis one more traditionally and by ourselves.  

Tile is going soooo slowly.  These guys are running at half the rate that I did.  But I’m not paying by the hour so I won’t complain yet. As soon as they are done, I can bring hardwood up to that floor to acclimate.


Early look at the fireplace. Shot is at night with the new ceiling lights installed. I had concerns that I might need more light when Imwas installing, but turns out that it is sufficient
Framing going up.
Framing finished

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/15/2018 1:12:43 PM

Pretty productive weekend.  Sandra got the main level ski room floor grouted, stone/tile guys started a shower on the fourth floor and it is looking nice.  I installed seven ceiling fans, and Ray cleaned up the second trunk to be used on the fireplace.  We’ll lift that up to the main level with the Skytrak this morning and stand it up with help from the tile guys as it’s a really heavy piece.  Need to go to the welder to get a steel plate that we can use to fasten it to the floor and spread the weight out as well.

Also got three of the four vanities on the second level set and water lines and valves installed for them.  Have one more to do on that level which I’ll try to get done today or tomorrow.

We have word that some of the replacements for the cabinets have been sent, so we’ll be looking for those later this week and I can go about getting back to building them.  Never a deatth of things to so! 

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/12/2018 4:32:10 AM

We’ve hired the artistic fellow (Ray) who helped with the corrugated ceiling to do the fireplace.  We’ve seen some of the work he has done on a couple others and think his work will come out as something special.  Sandra had the idea of using a couple of tree trunks to support the mantel, but Ray took it a step further to find hundred year old lightning-struck pitch wood trunks out in the forest.  He’ll start construction on it tomorrow.

I’m finishing the last of the tile floor work with getting the main level ski room done. That’ll be done tomorrow.  I’ve hired the stone guy to come in and tile the master and the fourth floor showers.  Looking at the scope of work and our timeline to get in, Sandra convinced me to hire more work out.  Those showers need to get done before the wood floors go down in those baths, and the floors need to go down before the tubs get set.  So by the time I’m ready to start the floors, showers will be done.  And lord knows I have plenty to keep me busy.

Set the lights onto the corrugated ceiling today, and it was an easier job than expected except for the dozens of trips up and down the scaffolding!  Also set the ceiling fan on the great room. As soon as I do one more small job in there, I’ll take down the scaffolding and organize the area so we can start bringing up some flooring to acclimate.


Membrane down in the ski room
Tile started. Will finish tomorrow so the saw can be free for the stone guy to tile.
Lights up on the corrugated ceiling

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/10/2018 3:44:44 AM

After making a few calls to the freight terminal in Albuquerque Sunday and to the local cartage company yesterday and this morning, they all helped out and got the 19,000 lbs of flooring up to the house today, before snow comes tomorrow.  What a relief!  Took two trucks to get all six 12’ pallets up and some maneuvering to get them off, but they are now safe inside the garage and we can start thinking about starting to bring some up into the living spaces to acclimate.  With some preliminary moisture measurements I made today, though, it might not take long.  They are pretty low already.  Now that the wood is here, it can snow all it wants! Yea!


Six massive pallets of flooring finally at home!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/9/2018 2:38:24 AM

So we went down to HD in Santa Fe and picked up a floor sander on Saturday late afternoon.  As we started to sand the OSB seams to remove the swollen material from having gotten rained on for months before the house was dried in, the clean look of fresh material looked so good that we decided to lightly sand the entire floors.  They were so stained from dirt, paint, stain, sheetrock.  While we didn’t bring them back to their full glory, they look a whole lot better and seem to brighten everything up. Sunday and this morning we got it all finished and ran back to SF to return the sander.  It’s tough when the nearest HD is two hours away, and it’s the nearest rental place that had a sander!


Sanded the seams first
How filthy the floor was! And the big difference after it’s sanded.
At least we have great views and no traffic on our two hour ride!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/7/2018 2:36:00 PM

Or maybe not as we are expecting snow on Wednesday.  It’s sitting in Albuquerque at a freight terminal waiting for transfer to a local line to bring it up here. I’m going to try to see if we can get it moved up in the schedule to Tuesday.  If not, it might be best to wait until the following Tuesday as the weather is predicted to be warm after the Wednesday snow and it may have melted.

Roughcut 1x boards for the accent walls were delivered Friday.  I’ll cut the bundles open and spread them out to dry some and to catch the UV needed to change the color.

Picked up a floor sander yesterday at HD in Santa Fe and sanding the OSB seams will be my chore for today and tomorrow.


Two bundles of stickered rough sawn boards. Also notice the Jeep with the plow attached. It hasn’t seen use all winter!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/4/2018

Tuesday we heard back from the cabinet company.  They will remake the face frames and I will remove the old ones from the cabinet box and replace with the new ones.  From our testing of frame removal, it should work out ok.  A smart smack with a hammer and a block of wood, loosens the frame and then I’ll run a sander over the edge of the plywood box to remove the glue.  The new frame will be glued to the box as originally done.  They had us overnight a drawer to them so they could get a proper color match.  They had already started work Tuesday so shouldn’t be long in getting them.  That’s good news!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 1/1/2018 3:49:03 PM

We finished the living room ceiling this week, which is a load off our chores.  And it frees up the space so I can get the floor sander this week and sand the seams in the subfloor that had swollen from rain before we got the house dried in. I’ve got lights ordered from Amazon for the ceiling.  Sandra will treat the frames like she did the corrugated metal to create a rusted effect and they’ll blend in nicely.

 The flooring was supposed to ship last week from Vermont, but we’ll see Tuesday if we can get confirmation of that. If so, we should have it by early the following week.  With the very strange winter - warm and no snow since Thanksgiving, we may get lucky and get it in the house without problems.  It’ll have to acclimate for several weeks with the low humidity here.  I’ll take moisture readings and we’ll lay it when they stop dropping.

In the meantime, all the shower floors are finally in and once we get more sealer, Sandra will finish grouting them.  We can begin tiling the walls after that.  In the main level ski/mudroom, I started putting up wainscot. 8’ on one wall where we’ll hang skis, and 6’ on an adjacent wall.  The wood is the grayed aspen we have been using in the living room.  It was laying on the floor and instead of having to move it when I sand this week, I am getting it up off the floor and onto the wall.  I think it’s going to look pretty good once it’s trimmed out.  

We have a lot of wood accent walls thoughout the house, and I think we have decided to use roughsawn 1x, again, grayed with the material from Canada.  Talked to the sawmill in Taos last week and they have plenty of Ponderosa pine logs to run the order.  I’ll head over tomorrow to get a sample to see how well it grays.

The cabinets arrived just before Christmas!  Thirteen pallets, some 10’ long, were delivered, and starting Christmas day, we started assembling them all, with help from our Houston daughter, who had placed the order, and who could explain which went where.  So- we put together nearly all of the boxes, complete with the face-frames.  Glued and nailed.  The color of the faces looked a bit light and silvery compared to what we were expecting, which was to be a more sable color.  But in our rush to get things assembled before she left, we just kept building. Then we pull out the doors and drawer fronts and - they they were the right color and did’t match the frames!  Apparently, the factory that made the frames forget the wash coat to create the sable color.  We are now waiting for the manufacturer to resolve the issue.  One of the possibilities is to send out complete replacements, another is to have them redone locally [not a good option], and the third, to remove the face-frames carefully and replace them with new ones.  I tried yesterday to remove a couple, and that can be done without damage to the boxes.  And it would be simpler than rebuilding all of the boxes and unloading another truck of material.  We’ll get this resolved in the coming week but it has set us back some.


The living room ceiling is finished. Need to install lights and a celing fan, and we can then take down the scaffolding! Yea!
Wainscot begun in the ski room
The color issue on the cabinets. Bummer.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 12/22/2017 2:59:10 PM

We started the curved ceiling yesterday with the help of the local artist/builder whose work with rusted-looking steel inspired us.  It took four of us to put the material - 42” x 106” heavy-gauge steel, up onto the ceiling.  Sandra and his daughter would prep and hand it to us 12’ up on the scaffold.  We would take it from there and attach it to the furring I installed a couple weeks ago.  In about three hours, we had gotten one of the three sections finished before we ran out of prepared steel.  Sandra will go ahead and paint/rust the other 18 sheets over the weekend so they will be ready to install next Tuesday, after Christmas.


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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 12/20/2017 10:09:53 AM

Cabinets shipped last Friday, and are to arrive this Friday, butwe have snow moving in Thursday.the predicted amounts vary from little accumulation to 4”.  We are hoping that it is the former so the semi can make it up the mountain, and I can get the Skytrack up the drive.  It will be an interesting snow watch.

In the meantime, sandra went to Albuqueque to get paint for the corrugated roofing after a disastrous order with Amazon and FedEx.  She has primed and put on acouple of coats of the oxidizing paint and tomorrow will put on a third and begin the activator with help from the local artist/builder who will also put it up on the ceiling.  We have 30 sheets and can only lay out 8 at a time on a slew of saw horses, so it will take a couple weeks to finish. 

I’ve started to tile the shower floors. We are using mats of broken, tumbled stone, that supposedly can be fit together like other sheets of mosaic.  However, even with slight trimming to get as good a fit as possible, there is still a visible line between sheets due to the random pattern within the sheets and the somewhat uniform jagged line between.  So I have been spacing the sheets a  couple inches apart and filling in with loose stones that we have stripped from sheets like a jigsaw puzzle. The first one took forever,  but with practice, it’s gone faster,  The result has been very good, and I have three more showers to do.

Finally got the 700 lb stove up to the third floor while the weather has been good.  I was going to hire some guys to try to muscle it, but it just wasn’t easy to get a grip on it.  So with Sandra’s suggestion to build a a made to fit dolly, I cut down a pallet and attached some 5” castors, picked up the stove on it’s broken pallet and using pipe for rollers, a crow bar for a lever, slowly moved it onto the dolly.  Took the Skytrack and lifted up to the third deck and with half an inch to spare, onto a ramp that we made to get ot over the threshold and pushed it in. Wow! It took nearly a whole day believe it or not, much of it building and inching the thing onto the dolly.

We have a daughter coming for Christmas and with her help, hopefully get the range hood installed. It is being delivered today. And we will enjoy the holiday and do a bit of skiing together, although snow is very sparse this year. We wish everyone a Merry Christmas and will post again afterwards!


Installing the tile in the showers by the new method of leaving large gaps between the mats and filling in with loose stone.
Further along on the infill
The stove sitting on the original pallet.
The original pallet after the sove was removed. You can see the mess I had to contend with in getting it transferred over
Bringing it in on the Skytrack. That machine is worth its weight!
And a tight fit in through the door.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 12/11/2017

Sandra followed up again on the fooring today.  Was supposed to be here several weeks ago.  Had been told there was a glitch earlier, but this was getting way behind.  Not to go into details, but the mill canceled the order as it was too big (huh?!) and the supplier had to find another. Weird.  So now it won’t ship until after Christmas. A serious issue.  The supplier is trying to contact local cartage so that it may have a chance to get up the mountain once snow finally hits.

Cabinets are scheduled to ship Friday, also a month behind. We’ll see if they hold to their promise.  If they do, we have a chance we could get them before Christmas, and the weather is expected to stay good until then.

In anticipation of the shipments, Sandra and I cleaned out much of the garage over the weekend.  Got it into the storeroom, freeing up a bunch of space.  Now I need to work on my side, more from just an organizational point rather than space.

And on another negative note, the paint we ordered from Amazon to do the corrugated ceiling material, has fallen into the great abyss. What was to arrive in two days ha turned into two weeks and only one of 18 items  has made it. Items have never made it to the carriers, those that did either ended up getting lost or leaked and were discarded by the carrier. A reorder on one was found to be lost yesterday after making it to Albuquerque.  Between Amazon and Fed Ex the order has been a disaster. I’ll mke one last call to Fed Ex this morning to we if they found the Albuquerque items and if not, cancel the rest of the order and buy through someone else. 

I’ve got all but one of the showers ready for pan inspection.  The last I should finish tomorrow.  Had to snake a line into a shower for the water softener drain, which wasn’t part of the original plan.  The softener drain has to be separated with an air gap and not tied directly into the sewer.  Most often it’s done in a floor drain or to a outdoor pit, but I have neither available, (bedrock and very cold temps in winter) so there will be a pipe into the shower at a low level to be as unobtrusive as possible. Get that finished and call for the pan inspection and we can start tile.

Still contemplating how to get the 700 lb stove onto the third floor when it’s sitting on a broken pallet.  Sandra has an idea to make a large 4-wheel dolly using large casters.  Still have to figure how to lift it onto it though.  

Got toilets! The port-a-can was removed Friday which put a priority on it.  So the two we ordered are set and working.  Will order the others after the first of the year.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 12/7/2017 9:25:16 AM

Long-range forecast shows to be good in terms of precipitation.  Crossing our fingers that it holds until big items arrive.  Until then, we have plenty to do with all of the showers, the ceiling in the curved roof, which has now been furred and ready for metal, get a toilet set and begin a wood accent wall once it ages to the proper patina. 

The showers will be ready for a pan inspection next week, after which we can begin tiling them.  Still looking for edge trim but haven’t found exactly what we are looking for in the correct size.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 11/30/2017 11:21:43 PM

While we were in Nashville for Thanksgiving, at the Mutton Bustin house, we paid a visit to a fellow in Sprinfield who has a large bandsaw and cuts live-edge slabs and sells them raw for a really good price.  We bought a half truckload of them!  Problem is, we had flown, so - looks like a road trip will be in order in the future.  The slabs will be used for kitchen shelving and top rails for sections of the railings where we are looking enough space for setting down drinks and small plates.

The rusting of the corrugated metal hasn’t gone as expected.  The cold weather slowed the reaction to almost nil, and then, the effect wasn’t what we were looking for.  Talked to the artist and what we really need to do is a reactive paint system. So, back to square one.  Until we get the paint, we have plenty to keep us busy.  I’ve started to put up the battens to which the metal will be attached to and Sandra has been restaining the beams.  They look so much better.

Gotten three bathroom floors tiled and one more to go. Set the shower drains and got the shower floor membrane installed.  Will start the walls as soon as I cut in the niches.

The main stove was delivered today, after being delayed by 5” of snow on Tuesday.  We got a first hand look at the difficulty in getting deliveries in winter as the truck had to park on the road and I went after it with the Skytrak after cindering the drive.  We have flooring, cabinets and vanities that are arriving in December.  This is not going to be fun.


Sandra on the scaffold staing the beams. You’d never believe she had a knee replacement less than 4 months ago and climbs the scaffold.
Floor membrane on a shower. Same material is used on the walls.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 11/18/2017

The past week has been spent with Sandra powerwashing the stone and decks the former having gotten seriously dirty from dirt splashing before the landscape was done and the latter from foot traffic bringing in not only dirt, but sheetrock and thinset dust, neither of which we can completely get rid of inside the house after repeated vacuumings.  But scrubbing with detergent and powerwashing has gotten the decks respectfully clean.  The manufacturer suggests we use a vinegar rinse as well to help dissolve any calcium film left.  That’ll be done next Spring.  Right now they look pretty darn good.

A week ago, we emptied the storage unit into the garage.  It might have been a mistake as now, even with all the room we had in there, it looks like many other garages in America - filled with STUFF!  And we have a LOT of things ariving over the next few weeks that I was planning on staging in the garage!  We have bathroom vanities coming Monday, one of the kitchen stoves any day, all of the cabinets and the wood floors. Hmmm, it’s going to be interesting.  One good thing was I have been able to get to a number of tools that had been packed away and will be useful going forward.  

I’ve been finishing plugs and switches on the electric, and the huge pile of them that I had bought has disappeared.  Ran short of a few specialties and will get them in as they arrive.

We installed all of the vanity lights but have had trouble trying to find bulbs that have the correct shape, color temp and brightness.  We ordered some, and they were way too yellow and dim.  I ordered some more that are much brighter and some additional that have a very cool white color, trying to see what will work best.  They should be in next week. We started setting the shower bases using a Kerdi knockoff and I’ll finish the last one today.  I can start running the wall membrane after that, but first - I’m setting tile in one of the baths so we can put in a toilet!!!!  Ordered one from HD and it’ll be in after Thanksgiving. Can’t wait!

And lastly, we finally made a trip over to Durango, CO on Monday/Tuesday to pick up the corrugated roofing for the interior ceiling in the great room.  It’s been sitting there since July, but with all the subs, with all we had going on, we just never had the time to get it.  It was a beautiful drive up over the Continental Divide and into southern Colorado.  I think we’ll repeat the drive next fall when the aspens change.  It’ll be spectacular.  Talked to our local fellow that knows how to treat the material for a rusted effect.  He’ll be here on Monday and we’ll get that done.  Then get that installed after Thanksgiving.

Speaking of which, we have a lot to be thankful for this year.  The house has proceeded well, with all of the major subs finished and the end in sight.  Our health continues to be good, something that at our age, you don’t take for granted, and we have had lots of visitors in the past year to share time with us. We hope all that read this blog have had a good year as well and continue to do so in the next.  Happy Thanksgiving to all!!


Final pic of the front with the railings installed.
Terracing of the backside
Steps heading up the terraced section to the patio. The blank wall of the end of the house will change as we add an outdoor fireplace next year
The back patio
Steps heading down, what used to be the access drive to the back, down the the front of the house
Setting a foam shower base. They are already pre-sloped, lightweight and are trimmed to size during the installation.
The decoupling membrane for a tile floor. Takes the place of Hardi backer, but better protection against movement in the supporting structure, such as pier and beam systems, or especially on direct contact with a concrete floor. Any crack that develops in concrete will directly translate into the tile above. This material prevents that. This is a flexible membrane that is attached with thinset to the subfloor. Tile is set directly on top in standard fashion with thinset.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 11/9/2017

The lanscaping is finally done, his equipment gone, and in its place stone patios, steps and terraces.  Some of it will take until the spring when the grass sprouts, but all of the bare dirt, bare slopes have been transformed and house looks like it has naturally grown from its surroundings. Kinda cool!

The railings are finished, T-stats are connected and operational with the furnaces, Sandra has been installing closet shelving and I’m trying to finish up setting light switches and receptacles.  The hot tub works great, just wish we were living in the house, especially after you get out!  Would be nice to just relax without having to drive home.

Fireplaces arrived Tuesday as did the rest of the tile. Did I say a ton of tile in a blog post? It was actually two tons based on the freight tickets.  Cabinets finally got ordered. They could be here around the end of the month.  In the meantime, as soon as I get the electrical finished, I’ll start setting the shower pans and the membranes starting on the fourth floor.   No wait, I need to get tile on one of the second level bathrooms so we can set a toilet - yes! A toilet! Getting rid of the port-a-can is a priority!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 10/31/2017 10:08:04 AM

Yeah, I know I said earlier that I was going to get the furnaces up and running, but the bad weather that was supposed to keep me indoors, never showed up and we continued to get things done outside.  But yesterday, with a front moving in I sat down, and did the final electrical connections, hooked in the thermostat wire and turned them by manually making a “heat on” connection on the Tstat wire [we just now ordered thermostats].  Everything fired up fine and we’ll get the Tstats connected when they arrive.

Went to Big Blue on Saturday to get the remainder of the redwood I needed to finish the railings and get some BX cable to make the final electrical run on the furnaces. They are considerably closer than Home Depot, but what a mistake! What they had was never kiln-dried and was soaking wet, but we bought it anyway as it saved an hour and a half over going the HD.  But now we are going to have to let it dry indoors before we can stain it and put them together.  In hindsight spending the extra time to go to HD would have allowed us to be more productive.

Landscaper is getting closer to finishing his project, but still has a few days left.  They are supposed to start snow making on the mountain tomorrow, weather permitting, so he needs to move along and finish the backside as there are 2 snow machines right there.

Sandra’s been busy, painting a few doors, cleaning the windows on the stairwell up 45 feet on the Skytrak and figuring out tile requirements and getting it ordered. It is a ton of tile - maybe literally. Closet assemblies are to arrive today.  A total of 45 boxes.  Thta UPS truck will have to be dedicated to us.  Waiting on two fireplaces.  They may arrive as well today, but not certain.  Flooring is in production, but will still take several weeks to get finished and shipped.  We got the cabinet quote back and will place the order for those in a couple days.  


Good thing Sandra’s not afraid of heights or the windows would never get clean!
Stopped by the river[Rio Grande] on the way back from Lowe’s to let the dog run. Beautiful fall day!
Landscaping now coming around the side of the house to the front

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 10/26/2017 9:47:48 PM

After a week in Texas, helping my brother in law start a house, help with a little maintenance on the “Barrel Race”house, and - oh yeah the wedding - we’re back in Angel Fire and back at work.  It was a great sight to see the landscaping coming further along with the patio reconstructed (there was an issue with proper drainage the first go-around).  The patio should be finished in another day, maybe two, but it’s just the finishing touches left on it.  Our horse statues (remember the name of the house, and blog IS the Last Rodeo) arrived while we were gone and are waiting to be set.  Herman the landscaper took it upon himself to have a hitchin’ rack made for them.  Really a cool gesture on his part.  Will be greatly appreciated. All will be set in the next couple days.

Today something we have been waiting for like years, since we sold our house in Virginia ten years ago, was set in place.  A jacuzzi, set at the edge of the patio, above the slope below, with a view of the 13,000 ft peak across the valley, something in which to soak our weary bones after a day of work, is within our grasp.  We can’t wait for the company to finish the setup in another week.  I just have to make an electrical connection at the GFCI box at the house and they’ll do the rest.

Sandra has kept working on cleaning the windows, yes there are a lot of them.  I got the railings finished today on the third level and began cutting out those on the second.  Still need to get the furnaces going, but I can wait a bit.  The house is beginning to perform in the fashion that I designed it.  With the attic insulation in, the tightening of it 98% complete, the exterior foam and the passive solar, the house warms up really well in the day and remains comfortable into the morning when the outdoor temp is in the low 20’s.  Of course the weather will get colder, so I do need to get them done, but I’m really still trying to get outdoor stuff done.  With much colder temps predicted for tomorrow and 4”of snow, maybe that’ll be a good day to spend on them.


A shot of part of the third floor railing
Sandra steps ot up to clean the windows
The patio is finally getting close
And the horses waiting to be set

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 10/15/2017 11:51:49 PM

Another wedding to go to, this time in Texas. Will spend a few days helping my brother in law start building a small rental house outside of Austin. Spent the day setting the piers and tomorrow will begin the floor framing. 

But before we left Angel Fire, several things have progressed. The attics got insulated to R 49. More deck railing has gone up though much more yet to do. Gas is connected to the furnaces but I’ve still got to finish making the final electrical connection to each. Mechanical guy has finished his work on them. Will pick up some smart thermostats and get heat on in the house when we get back. Now that the attics are insulated, I’m less concerned about the house getting below freezing in the short term. Last week when it got to8F, it was still reasonably warm the next morning even without insulation. But before long, the temperatures will get lower and heat will be necessary. Landscaping is dragging, but they started again on Friday. Promise they’ll be done by the time we get back in a week and a half. Somehow I don’t believe that but it but wouldn’t that be nice?!


Piers for the rental house. Used the existing slab from the house that was there before. Drilled holes for rebar, set block and filled with hand mixed cement. How did I ever think before that I had mixed my last bag

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 10/10/2017 9:59:42 AM

in the form of a snowstorm that gave us 5” and 8F temps this morning. Brrrr!  Still no heat in the house, but it should have survived will find out when I get up there.  I’ve not been anxious to get out there this morning, but will don the Carharrts and brave it shortly.  Insulation guys messed up the install date and will now be here Friday.

I installed all the deck railing sections we had been able to stain.  Will pick up more stain tomorrow on our way in to Santa Fe.  Sandra is continuing to clean windows.  Takes a huge amount of time as they are really, really grimey being the first time cleaned since they were put in, and spatters pf stucco, paint etc., and there are 40 of them.  ??


First couple sections of railing
A few hours after the railing shot as the storm was beginning

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 10/7/2017

The stone guy, who also does tile, staining, painting, carpentry etc etc, put in as much of the kitchen ceiling (t&g Aspen) as he can for the moment.  We have to set the bath tubs before he can do anymore because we need access below the tubs to connect the drains.  Tubs can’t get set until the wood floors go in underneath them.  That will be a while as we are just getting ready to order the flooring, all 6000 ft of it.  Trying to get the cabinets ordered as well to get them delivered before the snow gets so bad we can’t get them up the drive.  We are running against the clock now.

Meantime, the mechanical guy hasn’t come back as he promised.  Need to get him out.  The propane tank been delivered, buried and connected to the house.  Another call to him tomorrow.

Rained tremendously while we were  out of town so landscaping has not gone anywhere. Finally drying out and should be good this coming week for him to get moving.

Sandra’s finishing the last of the painting and cleaning floor by floor.  Between the spray paint dust and the sawdust from the kitchen ceiling installation, it was pretty dirty.  But she’s doing the windows too, getting them all spruced up after painting.  Starting to look like a home in some ways!

I’ve been trying to clean up ouside before snow comes.  Got rid of the OSB we used for temporary decking.  The sheetrock hangers never took it, so the stone guy took a bunch, and I took the rest to the dump.  Guy there ended up taking it.  That’s great as even though it was pretty waterlogged, it’ll be ok for simple stuff once it dries.  Got the cinders for the drive transferred from a rusty barrel to a 90 gal plastic garbage bin so it’ll be ready for winter.  The rest of the roofing scraps, stone scraps all gone.  Just need to lift a couple of pallets of stone up to the third floor for the fireplace and the outside will be pretty cleaned up.

Today I started on making the deck railing sections.  The first one took quite a while as I tried to figure out a look.  But from then on, it’s not a difficult job.  Just will take a long time as there are nearly 1500 holes to drill for the balusters.  There are about 60 sections to make.  Oh well, just something that will get done.

Friday the installers came with the car lift!  But- they lost some anchors on the drive up and while they got it up, they didn’t finish.  Will be back sometime this coming week to finish, but it looks great! Can’t wait to get to use it.  

All of the ventilation ducts and water heater vents are finished in the attic. The blow in insulation will go in Tuesday so the house is getting buttoned up. Still need to get seals around the garage doors, but it’s coming along.  If we can just get the mechanical guy to finish the furnaces, we’ll shortly be ready for winter.


T&G aspen in the kitch ceiling
First section of deck railing. Needs to be stained, but ready to install afterwards.
With this, the first floor is finished lol!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 9/27/2017

The exterior stone was finally finished this week, with all of the little nooks that were missing before, and most importantly, all the window sills finished and caulked.  Just in time as the weather is changing by the day.  The mountains got snow last weekend and we had a very hard freeze a couple nights ago.  I've contracted the stone guy to do the T&G on the porch as well as what can be run in the kitchen.  He's already finished the porch in a day and started on rhe kitchen area.  Nice to see things move along quickly!

The landscaper did come back, but between his equipment not working and the weather, more rain, it may be a while before he gets anything done.  The mechanical guy came and started setting the furnaces, but there is still a fair amount to do on that.  I started setting all of the gas valves in preparation for the propane.  We are going to bury the tank and the landscaper and propane rep need to get together to sort that.

Sandra has nearly finished the painting!  Some of the third floor is all that's left!  I've been taking care of a bunch of things and keeping the subs supplied.  Getting more of the electric switches and plugs in and with that comes more lighting. Trying to use the cold mornings and any inclement weather to work on that inside. 

Ordered balusters for the deck railings. Over 700 of those babies!

Received one water heater and ordered one for the second level as I found one on sale even though I don't need it for the moment. 

Taking a few well-needed days off for a wedding now. Will be at it again next week. 


Fresh air unit combining a fan with a heat exchanger
Window sills done
Sandra doing her painting. Almost done with 300 gallons!
Front stairwell windows full trimmed
Porch ceiling finished in T&G
Kitchen T&G started
A well-deserved mini vacation starting!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 9/21/2017 8:46:47 AM

So the landscaper hadn't shown up for a few days.  Got in contact with him and it turns out he had emergency surgery.  Will be out of commission for 6 weeks.  Nothing on this build has gone smoothly.  Obviously, the fellow couldn't help this, but it shows just how quickly things can turn.  I'm going to have to hire someone else to clear the area for the propane tank and dig the hole for the hot tub.  I'll give the excavator a call this morning.

Meanwhile the rock guy is back this week working on the window sills.  They are coming out pretty nicely. He might be done by Friday if the weather holds.  Sandra is moving along on painting.  We've had an issue with the sprayer in that it is not putting out a uniform pattern.  There are two heavier streaks along each side.  We've thinned, gone to a larger nozzle, cleaned and recleaned everything, but we can't get it fixed.  So it's been a combination of spray the first coat, roll over it while wet, and roll the second coat.  

The trim for the garage door has been stained and sealed and I hope to begin work on getting that up soon, as well as the fascia - which due to Sandra deciding to paint, hasn't gotten up.  I can't say she shouldn't paint though as it really has a great mental effect, seeing something that makes such a big change really makes you understand things are getting a bit closer to the end.

The insulation of the attic spaces will be done by a sub.  I have always, always done my own insulation, but this will save three days of time.  One day to haul a large trailer to Santa Fe to pick up the material, one horrendously long day to blow 50 bags, and a third day to retun the equipment.  For an extra $1200 it's done and we can keep doing other things.  In prep for the insulation, I'll be finishing off the last of the ductwork in those areas.  Still waiting on a water heater I ordered weeks ago online, so I can run the intake and exhaust vent for that through the attic, but I did set the air ventilator yesterday and as soon as I pick up some more ducting, will finish that work up there.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 9/15/2017 9:13:53 AM

Finished running the decking but need to set the last couple of railing posts that sit against the house.  Should have that all done today.  If Sandra can climb onto the Skytrak this weekend, she can lift me in the basket and we can run the fascia, which came in this week.  

When we went to get the Fascia at HD, we picked up another 25 gal of primer (that makes 100 gal) as well as another 30 gallons of color.  Sandra had run oit of primer and the painting came to a halt.  

Storeroom floor was epoxied yesterday, we bought heavy-duty shelving and can begin setting that and doing more organization.  We also bought three base cabinets and a 10' countertop for the garage workshop.  I've already set shelving there and loaded it with the stuff from the trailer.  It is sooooo nice to be able to find things!  

The ceiling on the third floor curved porch still needs to go up, and I think I'll get someone to do that.  It'll take two people to get the T&G together, and it'll be on scaffolding.  Something that should be fairly inexpensive to get someone to do, and take that off my plate, while I take care of other stuff getting the house buttoned up.  

Landscaper is working on the patio, but it takes time to transport the stone, and then get it set.  He tore a hydraulic hose off the excavator yesterday. Looks pretty serious as to where it came off.  That may slow things.  But as long as he gets it finished before the snow flies, we'll be fine.  Speaking of which, the resort people came by yesterday, bleeding the snowmaking lines ??!  Yes winter is coming!


The patio is slowly progressing. The rocks are massive!
I love the door step!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 9/10/2017 3:35:35 AM

The roofer finally finished everything this Friday.  The rest of the soffits, fascia and gutters.  So good to see it all done, no wood showing, all covered in bronze-colored steel to match the roof.  A totally finished, maintenance-free system.  One less subcontractor on the project.  There is only the landscaper, who has just started his work, and the stone guys finishing the work they started long ago.  Haven't heard from them for weeks, and haven't bothered calling them. 

I've been trying to finish off running the decking.  Close to doing so but got nothing done on them last week. Will try to wrap that up Monday and Tuesday. Then I need to begin the railings soon. 

 Winter is not far away.  Getting close to freezing some nights now, and the aspens are beginning to change color.  Which reminds me, I need to think about getting the attic spaces insulated and get the furnaces set, propane installed.  Argh! So many things!

Sold the cargo trailer we bought for storage on the Mutton Busting project in Nashville, and had to empty it into the garage.  So I'm trying to get that organized with some shelving.  (Something always gets in the way of the work at hand!).

Got the large storeroom painted and will prep the floor for epoxy.  Sandra's been out of commisssion the past 4 weeks from surgery, but late this week she began priming the walls on the second amd third floors.  She was going stir crazy at home and been itching to get on to the painting.  So a few hours each day helps her attitude greatly!

There is never a dearth of things to do! Oh so I wish!


Look closely and hou can see the new fascia on the roof. Totally blends with the roof and beams
Terraced hill and steps on the back side of the house leading up to the thord floor level
The entire back, located at the third level, will be a patio made of these massive flat stones

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 8/25/2017 11:49:03 AM

Leach lines were put in this week, and the area backfilled.  The only thing left is to set the pump and alarm.  Those will be done today. Finally!  We upped the size of the system by 30% to help ensure we have sufficient capacity during rental season.  Better to err on the side of caution.  Meanwhile, I've run some decking, but have spent the past couple days epoxying the garage floor.  Having to do it in sections, two coats needed so it'll take a week total.  But it is coming out nicely, with the exception of dirty dog tracks on one area.  Paint and cement - dogs seem to love both! 


All the equipment the septic installer has up there for the job. It includes a hammer as they ran into rock at one end
Leach field going in. There are five 60' lines
Garage floor getting epoxied. It'll be so much easier to clean than cement, and impervious to oils and chemicals
Aside from the single dog print, the others are bear. These was in the leach field area at the back of the house

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 8/19/2017 12:23:45 PM

Although we had a great week of weather, the septic is not finished. I admit that digging oit and redoing the pump tank was not easy, but it still seems like everything is in slow motion.  The septic tank is set, the pump tank has sewer line run into it again and it has been backfilled and compacted. The leach lines need to be dug and installed, and the forecast for next week is rain.  We'll see what happens.

Meanwhile, I have been working on the garage getting it prepared to epoxy the floor. The walls are primed and the ceiling primed and painted.  I used an airless sprayer, but between the 12' ceilongs and simply the size, ot took several days.  Caulking the control joints with urethane caulk and etching the floor.  The caulk has to cure for a week before coating so hopefully next weekend I can begin the epoxy.  As the caulk cures, I'll head back to decking and a couple other things.  No shortage of jobs to do for sure.


Poly septic tsnk.
Tank set waiting for pea gravel and backfill
Area above the pump tank, graded and compacted
Equipment brought up for the job. Quite a load!

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 8/14/2017 9:56:48 AM

A change in the weather is beginning to occur here. While many places in the country are still sweltering fall is beginning to creep in.  While we didn't see it, friends said there was snow Friday in the higher elevations.  The sun takes longer to show up and evening comes earlier.  

Forecast shows the the rain should abate somewhat this week, which is definitely needed.  Friday we got another two inches, drenching the work that finally started on the septic.  The rain all week pushed the start to to Friday and that became a short day.  As half the roof is draining into the area that was excavated it has gotten really soggy. Hopefully it has dried out enough they can continue today.

Drywall guys should finish today. They have to sand half the garage and touch up some sanding at various spots around the house.  This weekend I got primer on the half of the garage they had finished.  I also hauled the two large cans of spray foam up the the two attic spaces and crawing through the trusses, being careful not to fall through the ceiling, got most of the areas where the drywall meets a wall, inside and outside walls, sealed.  Also sealed all of the can lights, bath fans and ceiling fan boxes.  It was shocking as to how much light from below I could see around those fixtures.  Dollars of heat wasting away if not sealed up.

Garage floor paint will arrive this week.  With the weather forecast looking pretty good and a bit warmer, I'll try to get some of that knocked out.  While that cures, I'll get back to the decking, which slowly is beginning to get done.  

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 8/7/2017 12:34:00 PM

Sandra and I worked on attaching the aspen around the underside on the curved roof, perimeter only at this point.  The Skytrak forklift has been a godsend on this entire project for nearly everything and everyone, us, the framer, the roofer, the stucco guys.  With its 54' reach, and ability to tilt, it has been able to get into a lot of places I wouldn't have thought it could.  Saturday, Sandra operated while I was in the basket 40' up, nailing T&G to the underside.  A bit scary, especially as we had to tilt it somewhat as we extended further out.  Not particularly a good thing to do, but all went well and it's ready for the roofer to finish his job - whenever he comes back, which may now be a couple of weeks.

In order to finish the entire underside, we need to erect scaffolding on the porch, so we got back to decking on Sunday.  Hopefully I can get that ready by the weekend and finish off the underside.  


Where no man has gone before - well not quite. But the outside edge is what we needed the skytrack to be able to work on attaching the soffit.
View from 40'. The left side of the soffit will get covered with the fascia the will wrap around.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 8/5/2017 2:46:33 AM

The hangers have finished the living spaces and moved into the garage today.  They will finish that in another day and a half.  Tapers ran the third floor today, finished some mud and sanding on the second floor. I assume they'll start the garage after the weekend.  So by the end of next week, they should be finished!  When that's done, I've got to think about painting the garage floor and storeroom.  It may seem simply ridiculous, but it's not that long a job, and it has to be done in warm weather.  We're starting to park cars in there, a couple of which drip a bit of oil.  Would rather protect the floor now, than wait until next year.

Gotten back to running decking this week.  Been thinking that in order to get and occupancy permit, all of the safety things need to be done.  Railings to be specific.  Both on the decks and the stairs.  Inside stuff-baths, floors cabinets can be done in when the weather turns colder.  Decks and railings are better done while it's warm.  And we have the deck material. So among answering questions for the hangers and roofers, we went back to the decks.

But tomorrow, we get pulled off on another job.  In order for the roofer to get the soffit and fascia on the curved section, we need to get the T&G attached to the underside. So we'll attempt that tomorrow around the perimeter using the Skytrak in a not so simple setup.  We'll see. As soon as he finishes the curved section, he's done!

The framer's workers came back today to get the remaining knee braces underneath the exterior timber trusses on the east side.  The two have been in the garage since last fall.  Took less than half a day and really finish off that end of the house. So the framer has finished his obligations.  Slowly getting through the subs.


Great room finally with drywall and tape
Second floor kitchen and great room
Main kitchen which os on the third floor. The ceiling here will be T&G aspen. Hasn't been taped yet in this photo

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 8/2/2017 8:02:03 AM

Been a bit since my last post as friends came to visit and we've taken time out with them.  But things have been moving along.  The hangers finally made it up and have done the 2nd and 4th floors and should finish the third floor today or tomorrow.  Tapers have been doing their thing as well.  Depending on whether they work the weekend, the drywall on all four floors should be finished by the end of next week.  That would be fantastic! The house looks totally different as the drywall goes in.  Unlike the Mutton Busting project in Nashville though, it doesn't seem as earthshaking.  Perhaps because of the size, and that thay take a couple of days for each area, the change is a bit more gradual. Obviously it is a huge change, though and it is wonderful to see the spaces better defined.

The roofers finished completely permanently drying in the place late last week.  They are currently working on soffit and fascia, which seems to be moving along well and faster.  They need to finish the backside today as the septic begins to go in tomorrow and we won't be able to bring the Skytrak back there again for fear of crushing the septic lines.

I haven't been able to find anyone to do the t&g on the porch, the perimeter of which need to be done for the soffit on that end of the house, so Sandra and I will attempt to run those edges using the Skytrak this weekend.  Going to be tricky as there isn't really much area in which to place the beast, but we'll try.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 7/22/2017

The hangers were supposed to start on Tuesday, but the owner stopped by and said they had just started another job and it would be three days out.  Yesterday I called and he said they would be here on Monday, a week late from what we had originally agreed upon.  I'd normally be pretty upset, but actually it gave us some breathing room to finish taking care of items that needed o be done.  It looked like we were going to be just one step ahead of the hangers, but this delay allowed us to finish (and find more things to finish) in a more relaxed manner.

The fellow that will spray foam the ceiling of the garage came by Thursday to look things over.  He'll do half on Monday and half on Tuesday.  We've got to cover things up from overspray and that will take some effort, moving stuff from one half to the other and covering the floor as well.
The roofers have nearly the entire roof finished and dry, just one section left.  The curve is done and it looks great as well as the soffit and fascia on the gable above it.  So, things are progressing.   I've got to quickly find someone to place the T&G aspen on the underside of the curved porch roof, so the roofers can run fascia there.  I'd do it, but it is way high off the ground and would rather not. Roofers have several days left to get to that point, but if I can't get it done, it may postpone the final date.

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 7/18/2017 12:17:39 PM

Yesterday morning the sheetrock arrived on a bobtail and trailer, with five guys to unload it.  One operated the crane, while the others pulled it off onto a cart and placed it against walls in the house.  The hangers started another house and will be delayed until Thursday, but that's ok, we've got plenty to do in preparation with adding the rock wool in the ceiling for soundproofing and fiberglass in the walls for sound dampening.

The roofer showed back up as well, and actually waited through an afternoon rainstorm to then continue working until late.  I'm very glad for that as we need to get it totally in the dry. He is expecting to start the curved roof this afternoon, and finish by Thursday before they leave. Finally!

And the mechanical guys finished roughing in the ducts and vents for the furnaces.  We are slowly but surely getting set for drywall and by Thursday will be ready for them to start.


Soundproofing the second floor ceiling
Sound damping the walls between bedrooms and common areas as well as bathrooms and common areas using fiberglass insulation
Sheetrock unloading with crane

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Posted to The-Last-Rodeo by Larry in Angel Fire, NM on 7/15/2017 12:48:06 PM

Got the final two inspections that were necessary before the drywall goes in - framing and mechanical.  Drywall comes Monday and they need to haul 64 sheets from the third to the fourth floor before they begin.  Meanwhile, the mechanical guys need to finish cutting in a return air grill the goes through a wall on the fourth floor.  So we'll play a little dance between them and the drywall crew. 

As the roof isn't fully dry as we wait on the roofer, we'll stagger where the drywall gets put up, probably moving from one floor to another and back again.  The job is large enough that we should be able to keep the crew occupied the whole time and hopefully the roofer can get everything in the dry by the end of the week.  Trouble is there is rain in the forecast for every day next week.  But normally we can get through about 3 o'clock before it moves in.

I'm still working on things that need to be finished as well, creating a new punch list and working through it.  Sandra's been insulating interior walls for abatement.  We ordered  three pallets of rock wool insulation for soundproofing the ceiling of the second floor, but after two weeks, HD still hadn't shipped it.  So I cancelled the order and we'll head to Albuquerque Sunday to pick it up. That's another thing that has to be installed before sheetrock. But again it'll be a dance with the rockers.

I can't wait to see the drywall go on.  It totally changes the look of everything and it now finally begins to look like a home inside.

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