Sunday, March 02, 2008

This Olde House - Window Casings

So after (literally!) months of begging Cindy to get Cheryl (best friend / interior designer) to approve my idea for casings around our windows, I'm finally able to get started. I bought $300 worth of Howe Casing from Lowes and got to it

It was my first time to ever even attempt such a feat, but I'm decidedly happy with the results, and (I think) so is Cindy.

Pictures: (Click to enlarge any of them.) The first picture is a BEFORE shot of the smaller window where my computer currently resides. Notice the uninstalled casing to the left? I almost forgot to take pictures, I was so eager to get the ball rolling! The second picture is a BEFORE shot of the larger window, closer to the door. The third and fourth pictures are AFTER shots of the casing, once I'd put them all together. The brown wood at the bottom of each window is the original window sill. I figured it would be easier to keep them and paint them rather than rip them out and fabricate new ones.

Time spent: Per window, about an hour to case it and just over half an hour to caulk and spackle it. So, three windows (I didn't take pictures of the dining room window, yet!) took almost five hours. Not bad for one day's work.

Tools used: Dual-bevel compound sliding miter saw (my absolute favorite tool!) a cordless finishing nailer, a pencil, a tape measure, spackle and caulking.

Process: First thing I did was to get some of my scrap wood and cut a roughly square sample frame, to use as a reference. I know I'd need something to look at when figuring out which angle to cut. And my sample frame came in very handy. So, I'd measure two or three times and cut the first board to length, trying to keep it on the edge of the window, with enough room for the storm shutters to open freely. I'd use a SECOND piece of scrap as a guide to make sure I put the first board in the right place and it was square. Once I had the first piece up, I'd work clockwise around the window, always measuring from the inside corner of the frame. Usually, I would cut too little and end up having to shave off fractions of an inch to get the pieces together. But with a few exceptions, that worked really well. So a sample frame outside to help me visualize, a piece of pre-cut scrape inside to help me keep everything square, and taking off too little rather than too much was my plan. I like to think it worked out really well.

What's next: I'm pretty much done with my part. Cindy will paint the casing and I'll probably paint the remaining brown wood (from the original frame) this coming weekend. I'm going to use Kilz sealer/primer first. And Cindy will follow up with one, maybe two, final coats of white paint. And then it is off to the next adventure.
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