The Bunkhouse just got bigger!  Not in terms of actual square footage, but in terms of usable space.  And bigger in style, too!   Jim has been busy using a mix of materials: salvaged 2x4s and joists, salvaged porch parts, and a dash of new lumber.  His porch project has been taking shape over the past year, and is nearing completion.  Here’s how the process evolved:

Disclaimer: This is not a restoration project. Think of it more as adaptive re-use with some of historic fantasy thrown in. The new (old) window has given the facade a bit more interest, but it still looks rather stark. The next step was the building of the porch floor. The concrete block piers were salvaged from a 1950’s power station which had been demolished. The lattice panels between the piers were made of lath salvaged from demolished houses. The T&G #1 Oregon fir flooring was salvaged from a house which pending demolition. Joists were similarly salvaged. NO new material was used in the creation of the porch floor.

The fir flooring installation is completed.  The porch is a bit deeper than normal; it is not historically correct for the period but will make the porch a more useful addition; outdoor dining is anticipated.  The bunkhouse is in a location which frequently experiences high winds – this fact is taken into consideration in the design.

Four Queen Anne porch posts – similar, but not identical – are primed and awaiting a new life. Note that the centers were cored – Jim has taken advantage of the fact by utilizing these channels to hide cable which will help to make the porch wind-resistant!

The porch posts are positioned and secured in place, awaiting structural members to lock them into place. Jim makes adjustments to the recycled truck tarp which has kept the bunkhouse dry.  Note the cable which hangs from the top of the center post… it will play an important role in bracing the porch in a wind-prone location.

Using a cable, Jim triumphantly lifts a 2×12 into place to serve as an entablature for the new porch. Its appearance will be subject to numerous enhancements.  Salvaged pilasters – similar to the porch posts – serve to anchor the sides.

With the entablature completed, rafters for the new roof can fall into place.

Time passes. The new porch receives nailers and a roof of recycled galvanized, corrugated, roofing. The original bunkhouse roof is then likewise clad. An antique salvaged ridge cap finishes the installation.

As if the porch weren’t enough of a project, Jim decides that the window and door casings need to be, you know, more outrageous.  He creates entirely new casings using recycled material (except for the bullseyes which were found online).  Then I find a Queen Anne door online with three matching transom sashes- dirt cheap… the seller thinks the original glass is plastic!  The three matching transoms will be used in a future bay window.  The existing red of the door is similar, but lighter, than what is planned.  The door has a hideous 1980’s replacement lockset which is promptly removed and replaced with an 1880’s cast brass lockset which I have been carting around for the past 40 years waiting for the right spot.  Found it!  Gray primer anticipates the final color…

This is my concept design for the porch. My colored pencil selection is limited; these are the closest colors I could find to my intent.  No, it’s not historically perfect; this is a “knowing” renovation – it’s about having fun with a lifetime of accumulation and making it useful on a structure which would otherwise likely have been demolished.  Just trying to add a bit of interest to a geographic area which is largely void of it.

These brackets are from Jim’s collection… they have all been given a fresh coat of their new appearance in anticipation of installation.

These brackets are newly made based on similar historic brackets. They will flank a core of black and green to give a pronounced depth.

The cores of the new brackets receive a fresh coat of paint.

New and old brackets installed! The half-round guttering is recycled and historically correct. It will be painted later to match the trim. Portions of the posts to be picked out in accent colors still display primer.

Painting-in-progress. Only the black bands remain to be added. Patches, an expert mouser, jumps in to assist.

Painting completed! The Shutter Green sawtooth band has been added, capped with a molding in Barn Red. The setting sun adds a warm glow to the composition.

Nearing completion.

The North side of the porch is complete. An antique insulator supports a power line.  Spot takes a drink of water by the door.

Detail of paint banding.

Too much is not enough!

New and antique brackets join forces to create a Folk Victorian fantasy!

Believe it or not, it’s still not done. There is more in the works!

An antique screen door – with original black paint – is added using antique hardware. The twisted wrought iron hook provides a state-of-the-art rural security system.

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