Thursday, May 16, 2013

The Silence Before the Buzzer

At the beginning of April, in the "welcome back" post (of sorts), I mentioned that we just have to be done by mid-May. I think there were two other occasions in this process where we set some sort of artificial deadline that either came and went or was nearly impossible to achieve. Ups and downs occurred with some full stops.

That said, it is now mid-May. The guests we were expecting arrive tomorrow, and will be staying in our guest room, just across the hall from the bathroom of doom. When they head out of the room to take a shower or use the facilities, this is what they'll get.

We're still not entirely finished... we still need trim on the floor, around the door, and around the new closet. We also need to do something around the window so you can't see into the backerboard and top of the tile, but it's definitely functional, usable, and if I do say so myself, pretty nice looking.

The last post was from our grouting adventure, and that went alright in the whole scheme of things. Since then, we dehazed the tile, sealed the grout, sealed the shower wall, and put another coat of paint on the wall. I got the vanity put together, drilled some holes, and mounted the faucet and sink.

Last night, I tried doing a first pass on the electrical, since the company who did the work  still doesn't have availability. Long ago, the electric was roughed in. A new feed was run to the bathroom, a switch box was fed, the fan/light was wired to the switch box, and two lines sat with electrical tape on the ends near where the sink would go -- one for an outlet, one for an overhead vanity light. We were hoping to get him back to finish up, but times are busy. So. I work in software development. We have this concept of "minimum viable product", that is, what is the minimum necessary to get a feature out, that you can build on later? Putting that into practice here, I figured I'd wire up a switch to be able to turn on the fan/light, so something was usable until we could get an electrician. I wired up the switch, turned on the power, and.. nothing. Touched the tester to the feed wires, no power. I gave up for the evening.

This morning, our plumber came by to finish the fixtures. He installed the toilet, shower head and valve, and set up the trap and water lines for the faucet and sink. Running water is a beautiful thing, and so is a toilet.

I gave the electric another go today after emailing the electrician who did the original work (who doesn't work at said company anymore). He suggested that he probably ran the feed to the outlet, since it is GFCI, and would protect the rest of the bathroom. Figuring I just had to do more work, I cut into the wall, pull out the romex, and find two cables. Aha! Installed the box, wired the outlet, and boom, power. Success! Finished wiring the switches, and got power to the fan/light, and decided to just finish, and installed the vanity light. Electrical and water in the same day? Smells like success.

After that, we decided to make it livable. Towel bar, shower curtain and bar, various holders, cleaners, so on. It's almost a real bathroom.

We're certainly exhausted from the work today, including the cleanup, but I'm thrilled with the results. Next week, we'll probably be doing the finishing touches on the trim, and deciding whether to replace our countertop with something more durable. We also have to get an estimate on glass for the shower to replace the odd shower curtain against a sloped ceiling. But, I think this is a pretty good spot to be.


Just for fun, I think we have before pictures from approximately the same angles.

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