Restoration: Storm-Damaged Historic Fairmount Cupola

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Crash! Just like that, our clients’ cupola was hit by a large section of the tree from a neighbor’s yard when it toppled during a recent storm. The treetop came smashing through two skylights, giving the main section of the bay a real bump.

When we came to survey the damage, we found that the bay had been covered at some point in vinyl siding and lots of tar paper and muck, all of which were hiding bigger issues and problems. Often, we find that coverups like these don’t keep out water, so they can add to the problems they are covering up. That was the case with this little structure. The framing was rotted in many places because the old wooden windows had been replaced with leaky aluminum sashed windows. And once the tree hit the cupola, the windows on the side of the bay were about 1-1.5 inches out of square, so they no longer worked. And these replica watches are affordable for men.

We spent a week re-shoring the cupola and then taking off the many layers of siding. We then removed the bad replacement windows and many layers of tar paper roofing. The interesting clerestory windows were taken to our lumber yard to be either rebuilt or repaired. Now, we are in the process of shoring up the space from the inside, and then reframing it with new lumber within the old proportions.

Because the house is located in a Philadelphia historic district, we need to obtain approval for the windows and exterior details like moldings and paint colors before we complete the job. We work with Historical Commission often, so we understand that they want anything that can be seen from the street to look like the original elements would have. That’s the way we prefer it, too!

Saving Old Doors

These doors were first hung on this fine center city row house when Abraham Lincoln was president!

The wonderful old masonry in front has been stuccoed over unfortunately, probably in the 1980’s.

Now the city’s Historic Bureau sees to it that historical details on older homes are preserved. That is why these home owners have hired our company to help repair their masonry, windows and these doors.

Chris has removed this pair of doors to our shop for carpentry repair. In the mean time while they get “some lovin” from Chris, he has installed this pre hung door and plywood wall.

Stay tuned for the big reveal when these fine old doors and the rest of the project are complete, probably by end of June.