Does Whatever a Siding-Man Can

Exit Tim, enter Mark…

Mark, often referred to in these pages, is a good friend of Marsh’s sister and a pro builder. He did the original inspection on this house, gave us our first prioritized direction for starting the rehab, rebuilt the load-bearing beam in the basement, and loaned us tools, ladders, and trash barrels, all of which have seen lots of use.

He was fortunately able to spare some time this week (and perhaps Sunday/Monday next week) and got us completely in gear on our vinyl siding, which has languished since Jaison last left. We hadn’t even planned on hiring Jaison for the whole job (too costly) and if we’d had a plan at all it was to “do it ourselves,” but we didn’t really know where or how to start, so we’d concentrated on things we could do, and which were also important for moving in, such as insulation and drywall…. Meanwhile it was beginning to look like we were going to enter winter with simple house-wrap exposed on the exterior — not ideal.

Jaison had suggested he could come back for a day, do some finishing touches on the eaves and weatherproofing, and give us a tutorial on the siding so we could do it ourselves. But he is MIA. Meanwhile Mark came and gave us so much more than a “tutorial”: he labored with us from noon to 6 for two days, using and moving Jaison’s heavy ladders and pump staging. We got the back of the house completely sided this afternoon — me and Mark up on the staging, Marsh below providing vinyl material — the front partly sided, and this morning on my own I started the outer porch wall.

Last night’s progress this morning.

The northwest side, pink panel insulation put up by Dakota, Mark’s helper.

The back door newly trimmed, following Mark’s advice for trim moulding.

Front of the house, partially complete.

Face of the porch with a portion of panel insulation tacked up…

…and partially sided.

The back of the house, complete. (Though there are a couple of newbie booboos that have to be fixed later.)

The view from the top of the staging.

The siding is grimy and stained from sitting around — we’re reusing as much of the original as we can, though we will almost certainly have to buy some new to fill in. It should clean up nicely with a bleach solution and a pressure washer.

Turns out vinyl is easy enough to work with, though there’s a hitlist of tricksy tips to bear in mind so it’s done right. Overall two very satisfying days.