My latest accidental demo, anyone else have one?

ks_toolgirlOctober 30, 2011

Please, tell me I'm not the only one these things happen to! Anyone have one of those movie-type situations, that you're sure will happen to you eventually? I'm talking "Money Pit", not "Godfather", lol.

Mine? (One of them, anyway). The "Foot/leg through the floor, and ceiling below" scenario.

It.. Actually.. Happened!! Geez - embarrassing, but funny enough to share. (And maybe a "heads-up" warning, especially if someone is working above you, lol - watch out for legs!!).

Ok. It all started with the intake register in 4-yr old's room. My mom had painted it when we painted his room, 3 years ago. She used the same flat wall paint, I don't argue with my mother. This register is in the center of the doorway, & foot-traffic had knocked a lot of paint off, plus it was cobwebby - I couldn't take it any longer. Could you??

(Paint splatter I haven't wrestled w/yet, it's a $@%#.

DH was out of town on business, kids were at Grandmas house overnight. SO.. I popped the register up & took it downstairs to clean. Was trying to do a lot of projects at once, since I was ALONE all night. Distracted? Yep. In a hurry, I went to put something into his room.. And I really "put my foot in it", this time. Darn near broke my leg - I was sure I did, for the 2 or 3 minutes I sat there, afraid to move & thinking about who to call... (Had phone in my other hand at the time, & didn't drop it!)..

Here's register hole after, you can see living room carpet below. The mess is from drywall, & guck from ceiling void.

And here's the view from below.

Anything like this ever happen to anyone but me? Lol - I had NOT been drinking, before it happened. After, absolutely!! I've never had a bruise like that! (Like "this", I should say, it's not nearly gone).

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Oh my gosh, ks! Not had anything like that happen--but I found a perfectly intact old wooden storm door (the kind with the eight window pane insert) by the dumpster, and lugged it to my back porch. I measured, and it was too wide for my back and side I was going to trade it for another from a salvage yard which was the right width; so, looking around for a place with one, I left this one on the back porch--and a huge gust of wind knocked it over, breaking half of the glass panes! It's now in my basement waiting either new glass, or a salvage yard who will give me something for it in partial exchange for a storm door the right size. :(

By the way, there are a few more pics on my House Pics thread if you didn't see them!

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 4:41AM
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Clients buying a new home under construction from me liked to visit (too) often. One time, the wife stepped right into an open vent. Fortunately she wasn't hurt, but in a split second she yanked up the hem of her modest skirt to her waist, exposing a shapely leg and all sorts of frilly things. Since then, I always nail boards over the openings.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 9:59AM
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Wow. Nice escape from serious injury. At the moment my carefully-cultivated selective memory is protecting me from remembering anything similar I have done but I have had some near misses. I'm the kind of person who carries the ten-foot ladder through the dining room and only AFTERWARD says, gee, this could hit the lamp (antique fixture with delicate and likely unmatchable glass shades).

As for "trying to do a lot of projects" while family is out of the way! Heck yes. No one to argue with about what to do and how to do it :-)

Karin L

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 11:07AM
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I've got the same register in a floor in front of the bathroom in the rental house.
Due to the recent flood we had to take all the vent work down in the basement and pressure wash it before the new furnace was put in.
No one stepped thru it but we did find almost a dollars worth of change in the ventwork right under that vent.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 11:20AM
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Yes. Years ago in this computer room when it was a bedroom. I was walking up above the ceiling in the crawlspace which I use as an attic. I have to walk on the rafters in most places, as there was/is no solid floor save for a couple pieces of plywood laid down. Entry to this area is accessible through a hole in a wall, reached by a ladder. As I was working up there, I happened to glance out the hole,down into the other room where the ladder was and saw my dog getting into the cat's litter box. Yep - I took off, forgot where I was and stepped right between the rafters and fell into the bedroom below. BUT - I happened to catch myself with both hands and was able to lower myself the remaining three feet to the floor. At first I was shook up, then started to laugh standing there amid showers of insulation and pieces of wall board. I called my Mom and said, "Mom! I fell through the ceiling!"

It took years before the ceiling got repaired and that was the last time I had a litter box in the house!

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 11:24AM
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Had a boss break a leg when a large pile of drywall leaning against studs fell over on him (about 60 sheets).

The OP now gets to learn how to repair drywall and match texture.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 11:26AM
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I"ve been off work for a week now after lifting my new-old swinging door after I sanded it, tearing my bicep tendon. Really makes finishing my kitchen remodel hard- not to mention the cool swinging door that I thought I got such a great deal on ($17 at the local rebuilding center), is now costing me a lot of money on doctors and physical therapy visits!

But the one "oops" that I'm still working on is the K&T wire I cut that I was SO SURE was the right one (yes it was off at the time :/), but turned out was not the one I wanted to cut out. I'm still living with no lights on one half of my main floor...... I know I'll get the new wiring in sooner or later. At least once my tendon heals.......

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 12:18PM
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Why would you even cut K&T?

Instal new cables and remove only the fed to the outlets the new cables feed.

You can then follow those back carefully as far as you can and disconnect them, and leave the remainder operating until it is no longer needed.

There is no requirement to remove decommissioned wiring, just to disconnect it from its source of power.

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 2:59PM
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CG, I'm glad you don't have MY luck! If it had been me - that door would've landed on me. Seriously - it would have waited till just the right moment, then SMASH! I'm literally an accident waiting to happen. (Really - I had wind, the only "gust" that day, blow a full sheet of plywood onto me.. Hit me in the back of the head!).

I'm so glad to hear that I'm not the first person to do this type of thing - thanks, all - for sharing your stories.

Carol - I read about your flooded house in another post - I'm so sorry for you, glad it was a rental & not your home - but a disaster is a disaster, taking your work, time & money that I'm sure you have other plans for.

Brickeyee - that's exactly what I'm worried about! I only know enough to know that I don't "know enough". This is going to be... Interesting, at best.

Oh well, ceiling needs painted anyway. I've never finished drywall, & I realize the texture-matching is going to be a bear. I'm (almost) 5'3", so a ceiling is the LAST place I'd choose to start learning.
However - it could be worse. I could've actually broken my femur... & it could still be too hot for jeans, forcing me to explain why the entire back & side of my thigh is black/purple, to perfect strangers that would inevitably ask. (& I would start making up different crazy stories, each time, but it'd be hard to come up with a story more crazy than the truth - I fell through the ceiling? Who'd believe that?).

    Bookmark   October 30, 2011 at 3:46PM
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Brickeye- I' ve been completely rewiring my house for over 3 years now, with the assistance of my professional electrician. Everything used to be on only 2 circuits, K&T, Stab lock panel. I have been painstakingly rewiring new circuits, then cutting out the exposed K&T in the basement to remove what I can to decrease the clutter in my ceiling joists, while at the same time allow me to know exactly where I am (I work a full time job in addition to all my remodeling).

It's a system that has worked well for me until this one time, and that wire happened to be hiding behind the ductwork, which is why I missed it. As I rewire, I cut the old out, gradually working my way back to the back of the house and all new wire. I removed all the old wire as I am planning on recycling it. I realize this may seem crazy to many of you, however that is how I chose to do things. I know it's not necessary to cut it out, but I like things to look tidy.

And, when I get that new appraisal, there is no way the new one will say what the old one did, "knob and tube apparently in use", which cost me more in insurance.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2011 at 12:15AM
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"like things to look tidy. "

Your time, your labor, your cost.

It is unwarranted and not required.

    Bookmark   October 31, 2011 at 10:26AM
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Also prevents anyone else from ever being tempted to hook it up again, means that anyone opening a potion of wall or ceiling in future ( esp once it's not possible to trace it for its whole length) doesn't have to guess what's live and what isn't, especially if the K&T is still partly in use, and you might be able to avoid drilling new holes in the joists and studs. From a safety perspective - the basic topic of this thread - I'm surprised anyone would advocate to leave it in if it is possible (walls or ceilings being open) to take it out.

We took ours out too. I'm still trying to think of some interesting way to repurpose the knobs and tubes - there has to be an art project in there somewhere! - but I actually think my husband mercifully threw them away when I wasn't looking.

Sorry to hear of your injury, OHG. I have more worn myself down (degenerating discs all over the place) than ever had an acute injury - not sure which to wish for!

Karin L

    Bookmark   October 31, 2011 at 11:15AM
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The knobs can be used as drawer pulls.
When I was renoing old homes for sale I removed all the exposed k&t to forestall questions about it. There are more than enough dumb questions to answer as it is!

    Bookmark   November 1, 2011 at 2:42PM
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"Also prevents anyone else from ever being tempted to hook it up again"

No one is going to try to hook up K&T again.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2011 at 4:14PM
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I ran ribbon through different length tubes, then gathered the ribbons & added them in a cluster to a Christmas wreath one year. I think I used a small brass light fixture canopy as a bell for the same wreath. Can you say "last minute decorating on a construction site"???

    Bookmark   November 1, 2011 at 4:29PM
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Thanks Karinl for the comments. IF it weren't for GW, I'd be really bored while I recuperate! I keep saying this old house is gonna do me in someday...... :)

I'm glad to hear someone else took out the K&T. I wouldn't be surprised if someone DID try to hook it up again- I've seen lots of crazy, against code stuff done.

I've got a gallon sized bucket of ceramic knobs and tubes that I'd love to find a use for.... Worthy, thanks for that great idea!

    Bookmark   November 1, 2011 at 8:32PM
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