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Mid-Century Malaise – "SHOW ME PICS" Version

Friday
Oct282011

Chain of Pools. 

This big, wet 'n' turquoise wonder is my pool. Ooh! Aah! Like everything else at the Brookman Residence, it's handsome from a distance, and 20-30% less handsome up close (just like me). For the record, I have yet to go in it- it's kinda cold at present. I probably need a thermal cover. And a pool guy...

After about four days here, it occurred to me that newly-installed pump (installed by Fannie Mae people, yo thanks) never seemed to shut off. I'm pretty sure they aren't supposed to run all the time, so I googled it, and sure enough, they're supposed to be on one hour for every ten degrees of temperature (I'm going to be NV Power's new customer of the month...). It's a lovely seventy-something degrees here in Vegas, so about seven hours.

After trying to hit the switch and having it snap back, I determined that the timer box was working wonky. This guy:

Basically it's a crude little device wherein that wheel spins and has little metal clips that flick a switching mechanism on and off dependent on where on the "clock" wheel you tighten 'em. Mine flicked itself on ok at specified time, but didn't turn itself off. There was another whole box next to it with the same kind of mechanism, but nothing connected- this was for the long-disconnected heater which sits in a sad rusty hunk next to the pump. (Old-school pool heaters are super inefficient and costly to run, so no one uses them. BTW, we're in the f&*ing desert here)

The mechanism comes out of the box with an easy pry clip, so I pulled out the unused one, and figured out that its switch didn't flick on and off correctly either. After various prodding at the kitchen table, I cleaned and lubed it with WD-40, and it sprung right back to life. Realizing this is probably what's wrong with the other one, I turned off all the power at the breaker box (apparently it's a separate box for the pool stuff), and did the WD-40 and clean routine with the connected one. It seems to work when I manually spin the wheel, but I'll know in an hour or so if it actually succeeds in flipping the switch off.

I would've replaced with my kitchen-table guinea pig mechanism, but I realized it only had one set of contacts whereas active one has two. Hmmm. We'll see if my lube job fixed up the active one. If that doesn't work, I'll probably just replace the whole mechanism...

 

Thursday
Oct272011

Project #1: operation TP. 


I can never understand why any and all dwellings one moves into never have toilet paper holders or towel racks. What did the savages who resided there before you do? Use their hands? Rip them out in spite? "NONE SHALL WIPE!!!" Toilet paper without a roll holder = white-trash tragedy of epic proportion. I sprung for the finest in $5 TP holders from the local Home Depot, as I intend to totally gut the bathroom anyway (see how optimistic I am?). As you can see, there's a big mess o' pink wall there, left not by a previous TP holder, but a larger grab bar which I removed. I assume that was for previous owner Eileen Brookman who grew quite old here, but it was mounted so haphazardly that I fear it could've caused her to have fallen and not gotten up. But hey, maybe she had LifeCall™.



Here we see the other side, which has some sort of... I don't know what that is. The bars don't come off, so I can't see how it would work together with the world of modern toilet paper. Alas, it shall be one more thing I get to rip out and fill with drywall. Foofel the cat says hi.

Thursday
Oct272011

Mid-Century Malaise: Mitch's mega house renovation.

I decided to write a blog about the massive undertaking of rehabbing my newly-purchased sixties Brady Bunch Vegas pad. At the very least, I'll have a nice record of how things happened (or didn't), and at best, my friends and family can laugh at my dumb ass and all the misadventures awaiting me. I've been here less than a week, and already have some small things done, so I'll get on writing them up.

Without descending into false modesty, it really does look nicer in the picture. Kind of like a CG smoothed out version of how it really looks. Which is ok. But it's 48 years old. And imbued with 48 years of questionable decisions. It is my mission to undo the stupid. Hellz yeah. Bring it!

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