Week 36 – Joe
The “loft” area is located above the master bedroom. It overlooks the common area of the 2nd floor and would normally just be considered attic space. It has been an area much discussed, but up until now, not touched. Amy and I determined a long time ago that we would like to use this as a bonus play space, accessed by a ladder that will be built onto a wall in the upstairs common area. We will also add a window to the back of this area for added light. We have visions of slumber parties, a secluded reading space, pulley systems to raise and lower toys, or… worst case scenario, just extra storage space. The peak is tall enough to just barely stand straight up, but this area would mostly be just a playing-on-the-floor type of space.
The master bedroom ceiling was never meant to support much weight beyond the plaster, lathe, and maybe someone accessing the space for maintenance. In order to make this space usable we are going to need to beef up the structural support. This will be accomplished by adding larger sister joists alongside the existing 2x4s. We will also replace the angled braces with horizontal supports and short knee walls, but before we can do any of that we needed to clean out the area. All the debris you can see in the picture above must have been from when they replaced the roof about 10 years ago. In addition to removing all the roofing debris I needed to remove the electrical conduit and insulation. I knew this wasn’t going to be pleasant, but I was thankful that at least I didn’t have to do this in the summer!
Up to this point we had never really illuminated the area (besides just a peak with the flashlight) to get a good view of what we had up there. You might remember that the last time we touched this area was when we were removing a wall to create more space for the new stairs…
When we did that we found some old clothes tucked near the edge of the ceiling…
I did not anticipate any new discoveries this time around, but once I had a bright light hanging from the roof beams I noticed a dark jacket. Underneath that jacket was a yellow paper bag. Inside that yellow paper bag was a large tin can…
Want to know what was in it?
Well, you’ll just have to wait until the end of the post!
After pausing for a moment to appreciate our new find, I began the unglamorous task of bagging up the debris and insulation. The hardest part of this was making sure I didn’t fall through the ceiling. I used a piece of plywood as a surface to sit on. The job included a lot of crouching, bending, stretching, and squatting.
Here is the “after picture”
Here is a picture from the other side of the loft looking out towards the common area and the front window.
Here is a picture of me after the loft clean up…
We realize this space won’t be used frequently, but it isn’t all that much time or money to make it usable and now is certainly the time to do it.
Now, back to that found treasure. You probably guessed what we found…
A lot of old coins… and a small wad of dollar bills. On top of the money I found these hand scribbled notes…
It is hard to tell exactly what it means, but it looks like this person was just scribbling some notes to keep track of transactions.
Most of the old coins are from the 20s and 30s.
The oldest coin is an 1892 dollar.
I haven’t had time yet to do much research on coin values, but I don’t think there is anything super rare or valuable. Still, it is a pretty cool find.
Next step for the loft, structural support and a new floor!