Tag Archive: rust

Jul 27


Yesterday was very productive.


My friend Dave, a man wise in the way of home repairs, drove me to HOMES, the home center, and helped me pick up the items I needed to do my home improvements (the ones I’m saving money on by doing myself).



  • Paint & brushes for the exterior wood, and metal deck
  • Stiff brush to brush the mould off the roof
  • Wire brush and sandpapery stuff for prepping for painting


So, Dave leant me a chisel, and showed me how to scrape the areas on the metal posts that were damaged by rust.  I did the entire lower structure of the deck before I quit last night.


I went back today with the instructions to attack those paintless areas with the wire brush and put a first coat of paint on in preparation for the full painting on Thursday or Friday.


I had almost finished one pole when the URBAN guy, our renovator, came and told me I was using the wrong paint.  WHAT?  We went inside and he looked at the tin, and concluded that it was indeed the correct paint.  But he still strongly recommended that I start with an anti-rust primer.  The difference is that if I use the primer, I won’t have to do this again for 10 years.  If I don’t, I’ll likely have to deal with the deck again in five.




So, stopped working on that until I can get the anti-rust primer.


I figured, well, I’ll go scrape the mould off the roof tiles.  So, I got my brush and climbed up to the roof.  Now, I knew the tiles weren’t traditional Japanese tiles, but I thought maybe brick (due to a shard of brick sitting on top of one of them), and my wife told me later that she was told they were metal… but they seem to be made out of paper!  Or rather, a compressed cardboard thing.  As I brushed the mould off, I was taking off the brick-like finish and exposing the fibres of whatever-the-hell material that is underneath.


So I stopped.


(I found out later that the tiles are indeed a cement/fibre product sitting on top of the tin roof.  Ugh.  Someone want to buy me a new roof?)

Jul 22

Another Week Slips By

Another week slips by, and with it another chance to sign our renovation contract.  I’m pulling some real yuppie shit here right now and I’m writing this in a Starbucks in central Tokyo where I’ve taken refuge from a stinking hot day.


I haven’t kept up with this blog at all, but here are the significant details of the past 7 – 10 days:


  1. My friend Dave Waddington came by to look at the house last Wednesday and give me advice on how best to do the items of maintenance that need to be done.  The first priority is the metal holding up the ‘front yard’.  With Dave’s help, I will scrape off the rust, treat it with rust proofing, and repaint it.
  2. Other items that need to be done, some of which will require Dave’s help to choose the right supplies: re-painting the ageing wood on the window shades, re-caulking a good chunk of the siding, and scraping the green mould off the roof tiles
  3. The price on the tile bathroom is nearly 400,000 more than the unit bath, and that’s without the water heater.  So no go on that.
  4. We visited show rooms with URBAN, and decided on a more expensive unit bath from Noritz anyway (sigh).  Despite the bath being 20 litres smaller than the TOTO, it has cut-outs on the side that make it possible for me to sit much more comfortably without having to necessarily keep my knees together and up.  We’re still waiting for the quotation, but the comfort level is so different, we’re considering that a difference of between 100,000 and 200,000 Yen from the TOTO price would be acceptable.  Gulp!
  5. We’re waffling on the washstand (powder room sink) as well.  The one in the quotation is cheap and tiny and short.  Also, ugly.  So my wife has proposed a different one and we’re waiting on that quotation as well.
  6. We were supposed to sign the contract for the renovations last week, but the bathroom stuff held us up (Kitchen is decided and quoted).  The plan now is to sign the contract this weekend.  This means the move-in date is now pushed to late September, meaning that we’re paying for two residences until then.  Sigh.