We are all boarded up now and will get plastered tomorrow.
In my second post at this blog, I listed several potential problem areas ahead for this project. Now, just less than two months later, here is an update on the status of those potential dining room conversion killers that we faced so far.
Removal of a bearing wall section. My Master Carpenter laughed at this one. He tore out those studs without hesitation. In fact, after cutting through the nails to the bottom plate with his Sawzall, the studs moved freely while attached to the top plate. There was no downward deflection of the second floor at all. He added the hefty header beam nonetheless for the really sturdy opening shown here.
Utilities in the wall section being removed. As I said in that earlier post, we got very lucky. Moving the heat duct was even simpler than I imagined. It was run up a new stud chase to a ceiling joist, then over 1-1/2 feet to become a new baseboard register in the upstairs bedroom. You can see the riser going to the ceiling joist in the above photo.
Deflection of the floor. Very simply addressed by my carpenter. He "sistered" the floor joists directly below the new island. Deflection should be minimal. The four sisters can be seen in this photo.
Plumbing for new sink. We got extremely lucky again. Our plumber moved the water lines over one stud as shown below. The drain line did not even need to be moved. We did add the width of a stud in thickness to the wall here to accommodate all the plumbing and electrical activity crammed into this one stud bay.
The existing kitchen side is pretty much done. A coat of new color, polyurethane on the corner of the pantry, and the new granite countertop for the island running through the wall and this side is complete.