A Residential Improvement……#168 (80’s)

.  The household heat provisions at the Willson residence was being upgraded, the floor furnace was to be replaced.  A used central heat unit from Richard Guthrie’s barn finding a new home, a gift, Richard having found a more suitable barn fixture. The central heating units location being position in Jan’s craft shop area adjacent to the dining room wall. The air intake in the dining room,  the heat output would be ducted in a 8 inch ceiling trunkline to the front of the house, through the dining and living room, with branch lines to the two downstairs bedroom,  and floor registers to the upstairs hallway and 2 bedrooms.    Gary having formulated how to fabricate and fasten the ductwork, noting with ten foot ceilings there was plenty of clearance.

.  With the ductwork completed, the next project at hand was the installation of the metal framework for an acoustic tile drop ceiling.  Gary by chance making a discovery at work, rummaging thru the pulldown laddered upstairs attic storage area at Kiowa Service, coming across several partial containers of 24 by 48 inch white ceiling tiles, remnants from the office remodeling addition.  A believer in ‘nothing ventured nothing gained’,  he approached Steve Miller, asking if he could utilize the leftover tiles found in the attic for a ceiling project at home,  Steve not giving it any thought, affirmed his request.   To Gary’s amazement, with a small addition from Hood Lumber, the panels numbered enough to encompass the two rooms, the dining and living room ceiling’s now lowered to eight feet.

.  Jan was rather upset, Gary having just returned from spending a winter Saturday night in Oklahoma City visiting his estranged family, and friend Jerry Willis.  Jan wasn’t upset about the visit,  but about the weather, the temperature in Kiowa having dropped into single digits,  informing him that the temperature got down to 61 degrees in the house and that was with the central heat running continually.  Apparently the central heating unit wasn’t up to what was needed in the drafty non-insulated house, Gary pondering whether to invest in a bigger unit,  but came up with an alternative for those extreme cold days, a wood burning stove.  Having never experience the use of a wood burner or consulting someone,  he bought what he thought was a proven reliable stove, one that had sufficed for hundreds of years, a classic Ben Franklin, and confident with its installation it would provide the needed additional heat, but in reality,  it produced more smoke than heat,  and there was a chimney problem, there wasn’t one,  having run a hazardous single wall six-inch stovepipe up the side of the house that the wind played havoc with.

.   Gary discovering that Humphrey Implement was a local distributor of fireplace and wood burning appliances and accessories.  Visiting with Kem Humphrey, the dealer giving testimonial that he had just installed an air-tight Hurricane wood burner, with an electric blower system in his residence and was totally satisfied with it performance.   With the purchase of the Hurricane,  Gary address the chimney, kem recommending  triple wall eight inch insulated pipe running up the outside of the two-story old house,  Gary having another alternative plan in mind.

.  Father-in law Bud Murrow,  when being told of the idea shook his head, but agreed that it would work.  Gary deciding to run the triple wall insulated flu inside rather than outside of the house.  He would install it against the inside outer wall,  thru the ceiling,  addressing the upstairs floor at the far corner of  Sandi’s upstairs  bedroom,  and continuing thru the bedroom ceiling to the roof above.  The pipe residing in the outside corner of the second floor bedroom, requiring only a square foot of room space which would be enclosed with Sheetrock.   The project finished, not exactly kosher,  Gary concluding,  that someone was right when they said “necessity is the mother of invention”, and adding,  “at least the wind won’t play havoc with it”.

.  Jan having made it known that sometime in the future she would like to host the Apostolic Churches Sunday night Bible Study & Singing,  Gary having assured her the time would come, he was doing the best he could in getting the house presentable.  The Roth families residential heirloom face-lift seemed like a never-ending project, Gary having improved the interior, but the residence outside posture having set for years enduring the Kansas environment was worn and weathered.  Gary somewhat perplex about the undertaking the outside painting project, whether to brush it or apply it with a spray gun, deciding to approach Tom Wells, the recent hired Service Co painter about the use of a compressor and spray gun.

.  Tom instructing him on some basic  principles, and during the process Gary discovered that when spraying you could vastly increase the amount of paint required if you didn’t know what you were doing.  Not being an experience spray painter  he had second thoughts.   The brushing of the ship-lap endowed two-storied  structure  commenced, as it progressed Gary discovered with the steepness of the roof, a ladder was required to be laid upon the pitch to for him to reach the throws of the gables, not a secure experience and somewhat time consuming,  but once again innovation coming to mind.

.   Once again approaching  Steve Miller, this time asking about borrowing the company’s forklift for a couple of hours Saturday afternoon, explaining he wanted to use it to reach and paint the gables on the roof of his house, Steve looked somewhat puzzled but said  he didn’t have a problem with it.   With a 48 x 40 pallet as a platform, the forklift in position all that was needed was someone to operate the lift and horizontal control levers raising him the proper height and position, so with some thought an answer was found

.  His Five-year old son Robert having been diligently watching Dad’s preparations,  Gary sitting the young protégé in the operators seat,  instructing  the astute youngster on how to operate the lift and  forks forward movement levers.   His young son,  apprehensive at first,  but then acknowledging he could do it, a confident Robert sitting at the controls, following dad’s directions enabling the levers when told, Gary acquainting the reaches of the second floor gable.   The resolute Robert  beaming with accomplishment, the residence endowed with two effervescent coats of paint

.  The house now somewhat more presentable,  Jan able to host a Sunday night Bible Study & Singing.

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