Then clearly, Sunday is for scraping wallpaper.

Fortunately for me, I get to spend ALL THREE days scraping wallpaper. Somebody pinch me.

From the archives:

This animated .gif allows me to compress 5+ hours of pure misery into about 5 seconds, so I can enjoy over, and over, and over |

Yes, loyal reader, that took me about 5.5 hours to remove about 5 square feet of wallpaper. In looking at that .gif, the first slide looks more than 5 sf.... Let's say, for the sake of round numbers, that the number is 11 sf. Doing the math, we can estimate that I have a wallpaper removal rate of (11 sf / 5.5 hours ) =

**2 sf/hr**.

Now, my conscience tells me that the 2 sf/hr might be a little low because that particular wall in my bedroom was pretty stubborn. However, that wallpaper in the bedroom was all

*very*reachable with a ladder from a solid surface. This weekend, I had to plank between two ladders over my stairs and scrape wallpaper off the ceiling on a springy 2x10. Trust me when I say: 2 sf/hr is starting to sound like a pretty fast pace.

Walking the plank matey (above stairwell) |

When I bought this house, my one

*major*reservation was the amount of wallpaper. It honestly was a serious consideration because I know how horrible removing wall paper can be. Even with that moment of pause, I still underestimated the true horror of wallpaper.

This is what success looks like |

Let's take a moment to do a quick-n-dirty analysis on the time component of removing the wallpaper in this house:

Assumptions:

1) I'll use my recent appraisal of this house as my layout drawing (it's

*loaded*with even numbers).

2) Let's ignore all interior walls for now; instead, we will only focus on wallpaper on the party walls, exterior walls, and the ceilings. I've taken down (re: demolished) some walls and ceilings, which has allowed me to forgo wallpaper scraping... even though I think that this assumption is generous (since interior wall have wallpaper on

**both**sides), let's leave this as assumption #2.

3) Wallpaper removal rate is 2.0 sf/hour as calculated above. Obviously, this number is a scalar and could be used as a sliding parameter in the final calculation.

Appraisal sketch |

Downstairs:

Height = 9.5 ft

SF = (46*16 - 4*16) = 42(16) = 672 sf

Perimeter = 46*2 + 16*2 = 62(2) = 124 ft

---

Ceiling SF = 672 sf

Wall SF = (9.5 ft)*(124 ft) = 1178 sf

---

Total Downstairs = 1850 sfUpstairs:

Height = 9 ft

SF = 672 + 7*8 = 728 sf

Perimeter = 124 + 7*2 = 138 ft

---

Ceiling SF = 728 sf

Wall SF = (9 ft)*(138 ft) = 1242 sf

---

Total Upstairs = 1970 sf

Total SF of Wallpaper = Total Upstairs + Total Downstairs

= 1850 + 1970 = 3,820 sf

Hours to scrape walls = (3,820 sf)(2 sf/hr) =1,920 hours

OK, so I'm not feeling so bad about this. Wait---how many work hours are there in a year again?

Man hours in year = (40 hrs/week)(52 weeks) =Work in a couple weeks of paid vacation and/or holidays, and you're certainly there.2,080 hours

Conclusion:

I'm not making these numbers up.There is enough wallpaper in this house to keep one full time person employed for over a year.

Should I double check that rate again?

This weekend, I scraped the area starting at the top of the stairs |

Then draw a level line from about 4ft above the upstairs floor all the way across. Everything above that imaginary line, and the ceiling above the stairwell. |

Going back to the sketch, it looks like this week I pulled down:

= (12 ft)(4 ft) + (2 ft)(6 ft) + (3 ft)(12 ft)of wallpaper.

=96 sf

Hours of project time:

Fri = 8

Sat = 6

Sun = 5

Future = 5 (I'm certainly not done this area yet)

Tot =24 hours

Thus, this weekend, I accomplished the following rate:

(96 sf)/(24 hours) =4.0 sf/hr

Which is

*double*the guestimated rate from the animated gif.

Weekend results. (I just realized that the light fixture in the hall isn't even closed to being centered+ |

Looking up to the high point of the ceiling above the stairs. This is the end result of spending a weekend scraping wallpaper. Sad, right? |

So, what have we learned? The rate of scraping wallpaper on the occupy site is somewhere between 2 and 4 sf/hr. Meaning that it would take a full time person somewhere between a half a year and a full year to complete the job.

Using a blended rate of about 3.0 sf/hr and adding in all the interior walls.. we're looking at the better part of a full year (if I didn't have a day job)

If that's not enough to put me on Prozac, let's get real:

If I can squeeze two (2) eight hour days in on every weekend, and use the superstar rate of 4 sf/hr, we get the following

(16 hrs/week)(4 sf/hr) = 64 sf/week rate of removal

(3,820 total sf of wallpaper)/(64 sf/week) = 59.7 weeks

to remove all wallpaper from house, which boils down to

**1.15 years**if I can manage to work every weekend.

Well, that mathematical analysis really cheered me up. Please check the math as I was just doing the calculations in my head as I typed. For a back of the envelope analysis, I think I'm pretty close.

Bottom line:

1) I'm a terrible wallpaper scraper; I need to increase my removal rate.

2) It is definitely cheaper to just knockdown every wall and ceiling, if time has any monetary value at all.

HOLY F*%K! I know what to get you for Christmas...a couple day labor dudes that stand outside Home Depot in the morning. Seriously, this shit is CRAAAAAAAAZY!

ReplyDeleteHang in there Jay... all I can say, after having scraped wall paper in 50% of the rooms of my house is... sometimes you get lucky and it just comes off in huge sheets! Helps if you have 6-8 layers, with paint on top. May the force be with you. Have you tried a steamer? I never bothered, just used warm water in a spray bottle but yours looks more stubborn.

ReplyDeleteStacey: it is crazy

DeleteKate: I do have a steamer, but it works about the same as the fabric softer + water solution in the spray bottle. In fact, the steamer kind of just turns the old wall paper into a paper and glue type pulp, which winds up getting all over everything. The end result with that method is a lot of scraping as well, unfortunately!

I honestly didn't set out to do any math on that post.. I was just thinking about the time investment per ft^2 this past weekend. I knew it was pretty bad--- but this is like a whole new level!

Oh well. One room at a time.