Saturday, June 25, 2016

Walling in the lower level of the Castle

Lots of old boards

With the upper floor virtually complete, I turned my attention to what will be the first floor of the grandchildren's castle. Following the same pattern as the north wall, I used old boards that once walled a pig house and other out buildings at the family farm. Most are pine, but a few are oak. Cutting out the rotten parts and squaring up the reminders has been quite a challenge. 
The walls of the second floor are complete.

A small window went above Mo's desk. We added two more larger windows—light downstairs being more important than security. The back of the east wall includes an extra door to give adults direct access to the ships ladder to the second floor.

Two more boards for the east wall and the doors for the south face, and the exterior will be almost complete. Lots of painting and caulking still to go.

The south entrance will have a double door.  Side door is for adult access.

Snow fencing helps keep the children out of the poison ivy and brambles.

Friday, June 17, 2016

Adding a bit of color to the children's castle.

 Banners for the castle

Thought the castle (in progress) needed a bit of color. It was raining, so I worked inside to finish the first two banners for the castle.
The yellow and black is my LODER coat-of-arms. The red banner with the sable rampart lion is one of the EASTMAN coat-of-arms. More will follow in due time.

The banners in their mounts. Getting them up there is not easy.

Charlotte and Rayne Loder visit the castle.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Building a castle

Castle as of June 12th

 A Play Castle for the Grandchildren

This is my first entry on the "castle" we are building as a play house for our grandchildren. Check back for updates.

Moses by his "house."
A "house" Moses built from loose lumber.
Moses Eastman, my older grandson, is a persistent builder. So in April, I said, “What would you think if I build you a castle?”
    So we read David Macaulay’s Castle. We searched the web for images of castles (Search under <> for a web site that has the most pictures of various real castles. We purchased a DVD of Ivanhoe (1953 version with Robert Taylor and Elizabeth Taylor—great scenes of a castle siege).
Moses making plans for the castle.
Site we picked behind work shed.

Moses drew plans. Papi drew plans. Mimi selected the best site.
Base and uprights in place—late April.
Four concrete bases and four 4X4 twelve-footers became the frame for a two-story tower in the woods.
Putting in the first floor.
The first floor has a trapdoor to give access to a dungeon.

Moses helped whenever he could.
Moses on stair to upper floor.
 The ceiling is just over six-foot between the joists.
The second floor is where the action is. A covered balcony with crenelations will allow the castle to be defended. The roof mirrors the roofs we see on many real castle towers, and allows adults to stand inside.
Outline of the roof.
Outrigger post.
We added posts as outriggers and buried them in concrete to add extra strength and stability.

 By early May the roof was beginning to take shape.

A castle in the woods.

The dragons were routed out.
 The porch uprights have Loder dragons carved into them.

The dragon posts in place.
Roof is covered and walls started.

Upper walls going on.
Starting to paint.

The framing lumber and plywood all came from our local Home Depot, but the lower walls and the back were built with loose boards from the family farm’s barn. Once they were part of a pig house.

At least four different species of wood.

Door to balcony and west window. Upper window in place.
The upper story windows were once part of a chicken house. Recycle-recycle.We made the door to the balcony using two of the old 1x12s from the farm—arched, of course.

Moses now has his own special corner on the first level with a desk and shelf.
Moses' corner.

The project is in its 50th day (more-or-less). The upper level is starting to take on its final shape. Still need to finish the drawbridge, main castle door and the first floor walls.  Stay-tuned. Will add another blog report soon.
Drawbridge is up but needs ropes.