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Notes of Music, organic gardening, eco-building, Permaculture designs and explorations along this Path in Life.

2013-08-14

The undoing of a japanese window frame

This is a sequence of pictures taken during the undoing of a window frame of a 60 old japanese house. You'll find it long and tedious (tell you from now...) if you're not into carpentry and how to make a good house or follow any of the very many schools of ecobuilding house making... Anyway
At moments it got to look like some sort of mind game to play fair and easy... but it end up being a dusty demolition, with a big wealth of insight on the oldtime japanese building techniques, the quality and the materials of a really well made type of house.

This is the top corner of the window we have to dismantle. Notice that the vertical pieces, painted in that blue grey color, has a precisely carved notch running all through the profile of the horizontal piece... it's quite amazing and feels too bad but we are meant to do it... c'est la vie!


When we remove the roof cover of the frame and the win the fight against the top piece, this is how the left side looked like. Amazing carpentry! 


Here is couple of detailed pictures of the left corner of the base (the sill) of the window.
This notch was inside the lowest part of the piece described in the previous pictures. Please notice the nails *very well hidden* under an about 5mm-thick layer of wood... note also that the vertical pieces did not make it and ended up smashed in pieces.


The right corner of that same board of the window sill, still partially inserted in the vertical piece.










Here is a detail of the center of the window sill, showing the notch that was holding the central post.
Notice that the profile of the piece entering here was a good 7mm wider and perfectly sealed.





 Amazingly long board but unfortunately had to be cut in the process...


There is no way out of the series of tricks of multiple notches. So here is what we ended up doing to take out the top post...
Soon after starting we have always been against the nails so pretty much working with all the nail bits that you'll see later on pointing against you... 







Notice in this section that this top post is actually made of two separated pieces, one not planed on top of the one with the glossy brown finish. Between the two pieces it sticks out the inserted portion of the table that was closing the window sill box. You'll see it better in the next picture.  
















 

 The central notch of the top beam.


This is the outside of the window after grinding and demolishing the external 30mm of some really hardly compacted dark grey cement layer under the peach color rendering.
What a mess of noise and dust!
In the next picture, as you can also have a look here at in the lower right corner, you can see the frame of the floor of the the room where we are connecting into.

 Other details of how various parts were connected together. Still rough surfaces but amazingly precisely cut. 




This is an interesting detail of great quality: the blue metal piece is the last bit of the top-right corner of the roof of the window box. 
As you see it's fixed under the horizontal board but was sticking out passing through the lower board, already missing in this picture... too fast steps sometimes, too fast to take good pictures at!

The second day of work we proceeded taking down the plastic cover another section of frame, the one holding all the rendering boards and the cabinet that was behind it. We are still debating on the posts to insert as we'll cut through the last section with the fan on top. Proper planning required in the next days so you'll see other updates soon.  






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