Jun 24, 2010

You shook me...

Apparently there was an earthquake up in Canada today, and it caused some swaying/rolling around here. I didn't notice it.

What I *did* notice was a doe running full-bore into a state highway looking like the hounds of hell were behind her. I hammered on the binders and swerved, just missing her by a matter of inches. Left a nice streak of my tires on the road in the process.

I had just chalked it up to deer being weird - and running full-bore into a highway at two in the afternoon in mid-summer is weird for deer - until I got home and was working on the door with the radio on. A "breaking news" bulletin announced the earthquake had occurred at 1:41pm...

I checked the receipt from the gas station where I'd grabbed a six-pack on my way home. 1:39pm. I'd nearly hit the deer about 1.5 miles down the road. Coincidence? Not likely. That doe was running from the earthquake!

Speaking of working on the door:
The storm door from kitchen to deck has been increasingly stubborn about opening easily or latching properly. MrsZ griped at me about it last night; I responded by taking the handle/latch off the door and saying, "Fine! Problem solved!"

This morning I got up and took the old door out completely, then pried off the Z-bars around the edge, and used a knife to peel off as much of the old caulking as possible. I stopped at Lowe's after my stop at the gun shop and picked out a new door. The selection is staggering, but I ended up going a bit higher in price than I'd originally planned and getting a Larson Tradewinds door. I'll get 30% of the price back as a tax credit next year, since it's an energy-saving improvement. The roll-up screen is very slick, as is the touch-hold on the bottom closer. It was a BIG step up from the other model I'd been considering - better sealed, better features, just a much nicer door overall.

Got that home around 2pm, and spent the next four hours carefully installing it, sealing around the edges, and then cleaning up. I hadn't read the reviews on Lowe's web site about this door before buying it, and might have been turned off if I had. Lots of negative commentary about how hard the install was, primarily due to the fact that the door is not pre-hung, and therefore has to be drilled for the latchwork.

They provide a template for the drilling, but it is, admittedly, not for the faint of heart. Eight separate holes - four per side, two each of 3/8" and 3/4" - and they have to line up through the door perfectly. After drilling the first couple my cordless drill crapped out (tired battery and I'd already been using it hard for driving screws), so I switched to the big corded drill. Much better.

In any case, the door is up, the closers are adjusted, the glass is cleaned, the Z-bar is caulked, the trim is on ... and MrsZ seems to be happy with it. Of course, she hasn't seen the receipt, either... ;-)

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