Picking up the steam sauna

On Wednesday I had an appointment to pick up the steam sauna we had checked out a few weeks ago. Yesterday out of the blue we had 20 cm of fresh snow and the temperatures dropped to -14. Pretty chilly to take of the rooftop tent to make space for the bath tub.

The drive to the country side house was great. It was sunny, blue sky, fresh snow. Estonia at it’s most beautiful (in winter).

Together with the previous owner we took the shower cabin apart, a time consuming job for cabin with so many different shower heads, lights, speakers and control panels.

After it was done we put the bath tub on the roof rack and the rest of the cabin inside the car. It all fitted pretty easy, which surprised the sellers.

When I got to Tallinn, I needed to arrange someone to help to take the bath tub of the roof as Marc could not make it. After some message to different people Martijn came to the rescue.

While waiting for him I tried taking apart a piece of the wall between the hallway and the future sauna and found out it was partly stuck by the floor. As that part of the floor had some loose floorboards, I took a few out only to find out underneath was another floor which was pretty rotten, which also explained the loose floorboards.

Garden and hallway

As the weather was pretty springy, Mo decided to do some work in the garden. Since there would be a lot of dead grass and leaves to carry out, we first went shopping for a wheel barrel and a prong. We found a very nice deal on an orange and blue wheel barrel at ABC for only 20 euros. Once I put it together we thought it looked very royal Dutch. The first use was to wheel Mo around the garden, while she was laughing out loud.

While Mo worked in the garden, I continued the dreadful work or removing the asfalt from the walls.

Back to work

After a wonderful weekend of Tallinn Sauna Camp last week, it was back to business this weekend.

I had planned to pick up the car, which I left at the house last Monday, so I went by bus, and took this opportunity to check out the bus stop on Mustamäe Tee and the route to the house. When I was almost there, I realized I had forgotten the keys. After a call to Mo, the keys where on it’s way and I started raking the garden, getting rid of the leaves and apples from last fall. At some point next year or so, the lawn sure can use some straightening. But that sure not a priority.

As we are still waiting for response for the sewer system and the insulation, I wondered where to start. So I decided, I might as well start at the place where electricity group 1 is, the hallway. There is minimal insulation to do and it will be nice to have a small piece of the house ready with new walls and lights.

Under the wallpaper I found roofing material nailed to the wall, which was very labor intensive to take off, so toward the end of the day I had only done about 2/3rd plus I had taken out the ceiling. Still nice steps in the right direction!

The base electricity is done

Today would be another day of installation work. With all the tubes in place I just needed to pull wires to the central boxes I installed in each room. From there I can later on distribute the electricity to plugs, switches and light points.

As this involves a log of work near the ceiling, I figured I could use a folding ladder. I had been looking for one before, but since I have one in the Netherlands, I did not buy it yet, but today was my lucky day. I checked some websites of the construction stores and found that Bauhof had a very good discount, so off to Bauhof and spend a whooping 57 euro. I needed to have a client card, but that was very easy to get.

Back home one of the first things I did with the ladder was put up the lights in front of the house a bit better and take down a cable that isn’t needed.

After that I installed the entire fuse box and rewired the cable going to the garage. Now I just have one group that is connected with a temporary wire, as that goes to the room what is now the warm ‘construction office’. Besides I left one group unconnected, so I have a spare for later on.

This has been a very satisfying day, with a nice result. Back home Mo was cooking a wonderful meal, so the day ended as good as it had been. I am ready for the Tallinn Sauna Camp this weekend, so no updates expected till next week.

Roof repair

Since it is a beautiful weekend. I decided to do a side step from my electricity work and repair the roof. A few weeks ago I checked where the roof was leaking, so now I just had to find the holes and fix/patch them.

The biggest holes where around the chimney sweeper hatches and on the dormer on the north. Because of the size it was pretty easy to find them.

The smaller holes where at the edge of the dormer where it would connect to the roof. Here I did the easy way, I put PU-foam all over the edge. So, now I just need some rain to find out where I missed a hole.

Since I left my phone at home I only have one picture.

Some pretty obvious holes that where patched easy.

A treasure!

Today Mo and I went to the house. I wanted to lay the last tubes to the smaller part of the house and Mo was going to take all the stuff from the attic down.

While installing the electrical tubes I found out about the difference in height between the two parts of the house, which results in the fact I can take the wired directly through the wall above the fuse box to the attic of the lower part of the house. When I found out about this I also checked if I could reroute the first wire I took upstairs and decided I will do that as well.

When I was working on the third group I needed to put a tube on the floor, since the floor was covered with saw dust, I cleaned this away. While doing this, I saw a piece of triplex in the corner. At first I did not pay much attention to it, but at some point I decided to take it out. When I did I found a small round package wrapped in brown paper with some thin robe around it.

I picked it up and got excited, what could this be. It was not very heavy. I took out the knot and unwrapped an old tin candy can with some metal wire around it. After opening it, I found something wrapped in some white wrapping paper. It turned out to be 10 packs of money! I quickly saw CCCP written on it, so it must have been hidden there for at least 28 years.

Later at home, I found out it was 10 packs of 100 ruble in bills of different value, of the 6th CCCP rubles, which have been used between 1961 and 1991. It had some 3’s, lots of 5’s and 10’s and some 25’s and 50’s. SUR 1000 in total, at that time a good year salary according to Mo, now more or less without monetary value. Still a very cool discovery!


More electricity groups

After a weekend in the Netherlands, the Wednesday was used to add more groups to the fuse box. So the future living room and Mo atelier got wired up before hitting the hard one, getting a wire to the boys room upstairs. For this I decided after a couple of test-holes , the best option would be to drill under an angle. Two angles to be more precise. I tried a couple of holes, but did not find a place the drill would exit, until at some point I found it in the side of the stairs. So far I had been drilling from upstairs. I tried one more hole from downstairs and finally had the hole I needed. All in all this took a lot of time and two fully charged batteries for the drill.

After this the last part was fairly easy. When I was so high up I checked out the chimney sweepers hedge, to find out where the leaking water was coming from. Well, it seems the leaking will be stopped sometime soon. Some of the holes where just to obvious.

From up there I had a nice view of the garden, so I made a nice picture.

Adding electricity groups

Wednesday I spend on the electricity in the house again. I made a little improvement in the fuse box, and figured out the best way to get electricity wires to the different parts of the house. In between I visited 3 store because I kept forgetting things I needed. At the end of the day I created three new groups in three different parts of the house, each with a different approach on how to get there. And of course I also started the documentation on what wire goes where.
The next groups should go faster, but as we have a weekend in the Netherlands planned, this will have to wait till next week.

More measuring

As the insulation of the house is one of the primary things that needs to be done, I need to know the amount of square meters of insulation material I need. Since I had no exact measurements of the roof, I spend the Monday evening taking measurements upstairs. I climbed to the ridge of the roof to measure the height. There I found an old folding screen and some sort of ladder device.

The upstairs of the smaller part of the house stored a lot of old stuff, almost an instant xmas card.

In between one of my Russian coworkers stopped by to go through the books we found in the house. My dad has a colleague who has been studying Russian for years, so we thought it would be nice to give him some books if there would be something interesting. We ended up with a few hands full of books, of which I will bring a few to the Netherlands during our upcoming trip.

Installing the fuse box

With the fuse box all wired up, it was time to place it in the house and take out the old fuse box. I made a plywood back wall to fit and put it into place. After that I once again took out the main fuses and transferred the wires to the new fuse box. After the main connection had been made the first wires I connected where going to a power plug next to the fuse box so I could hook up a light there for the rest of the connections. Then the moment of truth came. Main fuse on, residual-current circuit breaker on, circuit breaker on, light switch on. No sparks just light. A happy moment!

After this, I transferred the wires from the old fuse box to the new fuse box. When this was done I made detailed plans on which group would service what part of the house, trying to have two groups from two different phases next to each other in the living room and upstairs bedrooms, so in case one phase would fail the other can still provide some light.