Crawls Backward (When Alarmed)

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Sunroom renovation: Undoing the DPO's No-Nos

I've been chugging along on a renovation of the sunroom. It's almost done, but I had a bunch o'pixtures so I vill put zem here and make ze blog, yes?

In house and car restoration forums you'll see mention of the Previous Owners as "d**n previous owners" "DPO(s)," etc. If it meets with the Internet Blog Blog Blog Approval Committee, I shall call the previous owners of my house the Dreaded Previous Owners, or, ironically, DPOs. I have a saying, "Curse those (actual name of DPOs here)!" because they did A Lot Of Stuff in a shoddy half-baked manner. So when I do dese projectos, I find more half-baked stuff surprises which I get to undo before I redo.

Our example today is the way they attached ceiling tiles to the plywood ceiling in the sunroom. (Is it Sun Room, Sun Room, Sunroom? Eh, whatever.)

First off, those CHEEP tiles are...well, CHEEP looking and tacky. That's probably because they come in boxes at the Big Box store in CHEEP boxes of 25 or however many for like $5.99. They are in Sun Rooms, utility rooms, basements (both finished and half-finished), garages, and probably even living rooms all across the US o' A. It's like an Amerikin tradition. It screams "Finished Basement On A Budget!!!" And it should stop. Stop I say! I mean, CHEEP is one thing, but tacky and in bad taste is another.

But, that's just my opinion and I am getting off my soapbox now.

Because I don't care for those tiles, I removed them and put 3/8" drywall in its place. This is going to make the Sun Room look like...well, a room. And I am also going to put up some nice ceiling molding which will make you want to stay and spend some time rather than look up and say, 'gee, why did they put those awful tiles up there?' and exit the room quickly.

So whatcha see here is the aftermath of removing the dreaded tiles. The DPO apparently couldn't get them to stay put, so he stapled them to the plywood ceiling. I kid you not. Stay-pulled. And near the walls, where there wasn't enough room to staple, he used some sort of black, tarry adhesive. Clearly he and I are of different minds on assembly on these types of projects. His thinking is: cheap, fast, and 'as long as it works.' My thinking is: do it right, make it look good, and consider ease of future disassembly, repair or renovation.

After tearing off however many dozens of tiles, I am left with rows and rows of staples and some thick black tar on the ceiling. Geez. Out comes my trust Sears Craftsman set of pliers and plonk, plonk, plonk as I remove each and every staple from the ceiling. A handful came off with the tiles, but most did not, so I am left to plonk and pull away. And there is no way I can lay drywall over the staples - the surface would be totally uneven.

Once I got going, it wasn't too bad. It took about 2 hours total to get all the staples off. I more-or-less did a count as I went along. There were about 900 staples I removed. Nine hunnit! What was he thinking? Ah, right, he was not.

I then went to the dreaded Big Box store and got some black tarry adhesive remover. After a couple of applications, I was able to scrape it off. There are a number of spots that are permanently black, but zat is not problem, no? No.

I can't tell you how much better the ceiling is starting to look already with the tiles and staples gone. I'm getting encouraged that it will actually look good when I'm done.


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