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The Problem With Old Houses: NOTHING Is Standard Or Normal Login/Join 
Get my pies
outta the oven!

Picture of PASig
posted
Sigh. The door knob to my powder room in my house that was built in 1951 needed to be replaced so I picked one up at Lowes.

I’ve replaced door knobs and deadbolts before so I thought this would be a pretty straightforward process. Oh no, nothing can be easy with this house, the hole in the door for the original knob is some oddball size that does not work with the new knob so I have to go get the hole saw and the template to drill it all out. Roll Eyes

Apparently they never heard of Phillips screws in 1951 because every damn screw in this house is a slotted one.

When the contractor was measuring the kitchen for the renovation he looks at the back door and is like “wow that is a real weird non standard size!”

So that doorway will need to be enlarged or we will have to special order a door.

You gotta love it!


 
Posts: 29098 | Location: Pennsylvania | Registered: November 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
My other Sig
is a Steyr.
Picture of .38supersig
posted Hide Post
Sounds like fun!

If you need any, I know where you can get some brand new two prong outlets. Some are wall outlets and the others are baseboard outlets.

At least I can understand the screws. The Phillips screw is designed to cam out and strip. Garbage.


 
Posts: 7383 | Location: Somewhere looking for ammo that nobody has at a place I haven't been to for a pistol I couldn't live without... | Registered: December 02, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Three Generations
of Service
Picture of PHPaul
posted Hide Post
I feel ya, Brother!

Original part of the house was built sometime before 1917 judging by newspapers found between the subfloor and the finish floor.

"New" part of the house was built in 1955.

NOTHING is standard, nothing is on any regular centers, most of it is full dimension rough-sawn framing, the old part is balloon framed, nothing is square or plumb and it was wired by my Father-in-Law who obviously had no clue what he was doing and never heard of "code".

Insulation? What's that?

Since retiring from the Navy in 1990, I've rebuilt or remodeled every square inch of this cussed place and every bit of it was a fight.




Be careful when following the masses. Sometimes the M is silent.
 
Posts: 14005 | Location: Downeast Maine | Registered: March 10, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I once lived in a circa 1920 house in the come as you are section of the fine city of Fairborn OH. Not a single door was uniform. Different sizes throughout the house. The indoor crapper/bathtub was an add-on, built into the former kitchen pantry. And plaster and lath wall construction.
That was an adventure in affordable housing! Eek


End of Earth: 2 Miles
Upper Peninsula: 4 Miles
 
Posts: 13026 | Location: Marquette MI | Registered: July 08, 2014Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by YooperSigs:
I once lived in a circa 1920 house in the come as you are section of the fine city of Fairborn OH. Not a single door was uniform. Different sizes throughout the house. The indoor crapper/bathtub was an add-on, built into the former kitchen pantry. And plaster and lath wall construction.
That was an adventure in affordable housing! Eek


Sounds similar to the colonial I grew up in built in 1764. Very little consistency from room to room.
 
Posts: 597 | Registered: February 24, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Get my pies
outta the oven!

Picture of PASig
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by PKFan:
Very little consistency from room to room.


I could understand things being eyeballed and inconsistent in 1764 but I’m still trying to figure out why the windows in the same room are not the same size in a house built in 1951. I measured three windows in one room and not a one is the same.

Confused

My neighbor removed his plaster in his kitchen of his house built around 1910 to create an exposed brick look and some of the bricks look scorched. He thinks they were re-used from the ruins of a deadly opera house fire a few blocks away, back in the old days they reused everything even if it was from an opera house that burned hundreds of people alive because they were trapped Eek


Rhoads Opera House fire


 
Posts: 29098 | Location: Pennsylvania | Registered: November 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
A Grateful American
Picture of sigmonkey
posted Hide Post
Before you drill the hole, use plywood (butt up to edge of the door) on both sides of the door and either c-clamps to hold, or finish nails if solid door, and a pilot bit that will go through both pieces of plywood before the saw starts cutting, to get it properly centered.

Easy enough to fill the nail holes.


For what it's worth, "This Old House" show title was almost 20 words, but the FCC Censors did some redacting and the three words we now know, were all that were left...




"the meaning of life, is to give life meaning" I could explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you. I'm gonna go to the Alamo
 
Posts: 42191 | Location: Our Kansas | Registered: December 20, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of m1009
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I feel that pain too. While our house is our home, and doubt we’ll move from it. It’s been an adventure. Built 1950, I believe, at least the wood is rough hewn oak, nice and thick, very strong. But, nothing is the same size, doors, windows, etc. it’s been added onto as well, before us, and we discovered an original outside wall in our bedroom when remodeling and removing a tiny closet.
Still had the cedar shake left on that wall, they had just covered it with frame and drywall.
Attic has a hole cut into from the addition to get into the original part. There is a step down from one part of the house to where they built on. We wanted to put hardwood flooring in the living and dining room, and contractor said better not. Not even enough to lay hardwood, and when they looked at options, like tearing out, said there were so many layers of added flooring from last work, might be a nightmare to remove enough and rebuild it to level it. Old flooring was wood, but cracked, uneven, etc. so, we tore up carpet, linoleum that was also there, put vapor barrier down, and underlayment to even the floor and reduce creaks. New carpet was the route. Worked well, we’re fine with it, at least it’s warm and soft to walk on.

All the old windows were pulley system. So thin when the wind blew you felt as if they weren’t there. Windows were not the same size when comparing rooms.

Crawlspace is not high enough, barely high enough to get through it, as it used to have the coal cellar as well. Ceiling height in basement is a bit low, you kind of have to duck if you’re tall to clear the furnace ducting.
So, new doors, new windows, new roof, new carpeting as we could, living here. At least it’s much more insulated and cost efficient. Oh, and new furnace and ac too.
So much fun. Trying to get all this done on time constraints and money as well. Took quite a few years to get to how it is now. At least we’re in the country, so that’s a plus.
Still need to upgrade bathroom, lol.
 
Posts: 906 | Registered: September 27, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Get my pies
outta the oven!

Picture of PASig
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by sigmonkey:
Before you drill the hole, use plywood (butt up to edge of the door) on both sides of the door and either c-clamps to hold, or finish nails if solid door, and a pilot bit that will go through both pieces of plywood before the saw starts cutting, to get it properly centered.



I have a jig from Ryobi that I use:




 
Posts: 29098 | Location: Pennsylvania | Registered: November 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
A Grateful American
Picture of sigmonkey
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Excellent! I wasn't gonna suggest you go spend money on a jig for a "one off". Big Grin




"the meaning of life, is to give life meaning" I could explain it to you, but I can't understand it for you. I'm gonna go to the Alamo
 
Posts: 42191 | Location: Our Kansas | Registered: December 20, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Excuse me, where are you 78” exterior doors, all I see is 80”

Excuse me, I need need 5” inch duct work to move my register, but all I see is 4”or 6”

Yup, fun times.
 
Posts: 167 | Registered: March 08, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Get my pies
outta the oven!

Picture of PASig
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by sigmonkey:
Excellent! I wasn't gonna suggest you go spend money on a jig for a "one off". Big Grin


I’ve got 13 more doors to go…

All the doorknobs in this place will need replacing for one reason or another.


 
Posts: 29098 | Location: Pennsylvania | Registered: November 12, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I guess the crack-addled gibbons that built my house worked on yours, too.


===
I would like to apologize to anyone I have *not* offended. Please be patient. I will get to you shortly.
 
Posts: 1814 | Location: The Sticks in Wisconsin. | Registered: September 30, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
member
Picture of henryaz
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quote:
Originally posted by .38supersig:
At least I can understand the screws. The Phillips screw is designed to cam out and strip. Garbage.

And slotted screws are designed so the driver jumps out and pokes a hole in your hand.



All your 10mm are belong to us
 
Posts: 10093 | Location: South Congress AZ | Registered: May 27, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of Leemur
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Original three rooms in my house were built with materials found on the property in the 1890s. Additions were done in four different decades. There ain’t a damn thing level/flush/square in the entire house. I had to make a threshold strip for our front door last week. I got it close enough for me (which is still not flush with the door/trim/floor) after almost TWO freakin hours.
 
Posts: 13044 | Location: Shenandoah Valley, VA | Registered: October 16, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Just having a good time
Picture of ragman
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My home is 101 years old. Built from timber cut and milled on this farm. I have remodeled it two times. Reading these posts brings back good memories and some nightmares. I wouldn't trade the experience for anything. Wink



" I didn't fail the test,I just found 100 ways to do it wrong." - Benjamin Franklin
 
Posts: 1405 | Location: N. C. | Registered: November 22, 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of ridewv
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by PASig:
Sigh. The door knob to my powder room in my house that was built in 1951 needed to be replaced so I picked one up at Lowes.

I’ve replaced door knobs and deadbolts before so I thought this would be a pretty straightforward process. Oh no, nothing can be easy with this house....



I hear you, I like modern construction where most everything is standard. LOL try working on an old house built in 1860 I have here on the property. NOTHING is standard, the walls don't even have cavities, other than a couple interior ones that were added maybe 40 years ago. All exterior walls and some of the interior ones are made up of 1" to 1 1/8" planks anywhere from 12" to 20" wide with each one going up 2 stories from the stone foundation up to the rafters. The same size boards are then run horizontally and nailed to them on the inside making the 2" thick wood wall. The wood used was chestnut, not wormy of course since it was before the blight. Needless to say what receptacles there are, are surface mount.


No car is as much fun to drive, as any motorcycle is to ride.
 
Posts: 5783 | Location: Northern WV | Registered: January 17, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Fourth line skater
Picture of goose5
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One thing I make is steel security doors. You're right nothing is standard. I've made doors for width openings from 28 inches up to 48 inches. Heights from 73 inches to 96 inches. That's the new thing for all the newer homes being built is 42 x 96 front door openings.


_________________________
OH, Bonnie McMurray!
 
Posts: 6440 | Location: Pueblo, CO | Registered: July 03, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A little late for this: One other thing about houses from 1951 is possible hidden lead paint or asbestos. Especially, if you don't know if the interior has been remodeled since 1980. Be careful about these 2 items if you have younger kids.


P229R - 9mm
Kahr PM9
 
Posts: 26 | Location: Pocono Mountains, PA | Registered: April 12, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of sigcrazy7
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You guys are all a bunch of liars.Razz According to the youTube videos I've watched put out by Europeans, we Americans tear down our flimsy wooden houses and build new ones every thirty years.



Demand not that events should happen as you wish; but wish them to happen as they do happen, and you will go on well. -Epictetus
 
Posts: 7426 | Location: Utah | Registered: December 18, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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