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How to make a huge mess! Aka: The AttiCat system.

Time for a good catch up round here, but first you probably need a lovely, calm photo because the rest of this post will be rather chaotic and over-the-top messy!

So here is some sunlight and a gentle breeze coming thru my bedroom curtains. 😀

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It all started with my bloggy friend Donna’s FB challenge to really clean up. This gave me inspiration to haul over my studio/office area. Truthfully, I’ve wanted to do this for the better part of the year now, but more than that, my 100 yr old house doesn’t have any insulation in the roof line, so my studio is generally difficult to keep warm over winter and too hot over summer. So I thought that if I committed myself to a through cleaning and purging, then it might be a good idea to make an even bigger mess and insulate!!!

It’s that breaking a whole ton of eggs to make an omelette type mess.

Robert and I reevaluated the situation, and decided that, while there are a couple removable panels in the gyprock walls which afford a little bit of access to lay insulation sheets, the majority of the space needs drilled holes and a blowing machine to insulate between the gyprock sheets and the roof rafters.

So a bit of research revealed the AttiCat system rentable at good ol’ Home Depot, and, after two days of moving stuff and hauling stuff to the local thrift, off we went to buy $600 worth of sheet and blown-in insulation.

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The first day was rather easy. There are two large trunks of costumes in the storage under the eves and so, reasoning that old costumes are probably easier to wash fibreglass out of than our every day clothes, we dressed appropriately: R in a funky Hawaiian shirt…

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And me, who had to crawl into the spaces between the wall and roof line to lay the insulation, I got a bit more coverage in my black wig, safari shirt, and 40 yr old bell bottoms, 😀 ,and got to work.


At Home Depot, we also bought a special hole cutter for gyprock, attached it to my hammer drill and drilled an exploratory hole to see if our mad scheme would work. Seemed like a goer.

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And then, a lovely end to our day, my son Jonathan drove his resurrected turbo Datsun Z to show us his work.

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This is particularly nice for R since he’s away from his experimental engines in OXON and always has a bit of fun car stuff withdrawals.

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And then yesterday was a new day, and I jumped out of bed first thing in the morning and rented that AttiCat machine.

We brought it home and plunked it into the back garden and snaked the 150 ft of hose up the three stories to the studio.

Now, we did our homework and asked our questions and watched the how to videos, which, by the way, show a lovely pony-tailed blonde in beige jeans and push up bra calmly scoring the bail of insulation along the cut lines and then gently placing one half into the machine while the machine does the rest. It conveniently doesn’t show said lovely pony-tailed blonde having to actually haul and break that insulation bail in half. I think that quite possibly she didn’t because it took all 5’6″ and 138 lbs of me to full force jump on the scored bail over the garage stair cement threshold several times to actually break it in half.

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But I’m happy to report that the system does work…after a fashion, (the remote just doesn’t work and I couldn’t hear R shout instructions from three stories away while the machine was whirling away, and this lead to R looking a bit like an animated pink snowman at times)…but soon we had half of the space fairly well insulated.

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And then it was already 2:30pm and we stopped for a bit of lunch.

And then disaster! Nowhere on any of the instruction videos or write-ups or in person instructions at Home Depot does it say: “NEVER STOP FOR LUNCH!!!!”

Our lunch break resulted in expanded insulation firmly blocking a huge portion of the 150ft hose and we spent a delightful hour, (not), removing insulation from the machine, uncoupling the hose and beating and reverse blowing the stuck product out of it till my back yard looked like an over-the-top cherry blossom festival gone horribly wrong!

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But we did persevere, and the last photo I took, at about 5pm, is this one of a fully insulated roof, insulation and gyprock dust everywhere, and a very tired Robbie. By the time we finally cleaned up and took that machine back it was 9pm.

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What a few full days! Time for a break I think before we begin the process of repairing the gyprock holes. It’s all going to be so worth it! 😀

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Comments: 6

  • Jo

    October 1, 2015

    Now that’s a job – I felt like I was right there with you. At the end you will be happy with the insulation, summer and winter. As my grandson says – to clean up you have to make a really big mess.

  • daryledelstein

    October 2, 2015

    i am exhausted just reading this … x

  • October 2, 2015

    when renovating… i’ll say, whén renovating, always expect the unexpected. i’m sure you guys are weathered rats on the reno front, still it does get our knickers in a twist and then some, at times… i’m admitting i’ve enjoyed the fun side of this, reading about it. i hope you are already having a laugh at all of this too… and thxs for reporting back, i mean, courageous rats too!! you’ll be SO happy with the warmer / cooler room!!!! well, well done to you and R!! n? LOOOOOOOOVE da wig!

  • October 2, 2015

    LOL on the outfit!

    Oh my gosh to the mess… I don’t know whether to laugh or cry for you! That would have been so me leaving the insulation to grow all on its own. Fabulous…

    But on a brighter note, that room is going to be so COOL (warmer?) when it’s done! Love the roof line!

    You’ve taken on a big project much like I did. I’ve reverted back to just cleaning for now. haha

    Can’t wait to see more!

  • October 3, 2015

    oh my gosh! you did this yourselves! that is a huge endeavor. You will be so happy, so warm, so cool.
    nice that it was a family affair.

  • October 5, 2015

    Hello lovely .. oh boy what a job! Just love your work attire! LOL Sounds like the lunch break wasn’t such a good idea .. whoops! Can only imagine the clean up process .. but wow pat yourselves ons the back. Good job! Loving the sunlight and gentle breeze …

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