Season Two: Newton, MA
This project premiered on PBS
27 half-hour episodes; Program #10114-10140
Our host introduces the Bigelow House, a rambling 19th-century hilltop home in Newton, Massachusetts, designed by noted Victorian architect H.H. Richardson. The challenge—convert the abandoned structure into five modern condominium units, while preserving its architectural integrity. Vila and our master carpenter talk about the best way to tackle the project.
Our host discusses plans for renovating the barn unit—insulation, demolition and replacing broken windows.
Demolition is nearly complete and our host shows us some of the problems he's uncovered—including extensive damage from carpenter ants, vandals and rot.
Our host discusses some of the key decisions to be made about condominium sales. Also, plans are made to install woodburning stoves in the ice house and the woodshed.
We're ready to do some plumbing at the house. Our master carpenter shows us how to pour a concrete wall and Tom Wirth, our landscape architect discusses the lay of the land.
The exterminator gives the house a top-to-bottom bug check. Professor John Coolidge talks about the architect of the Bigelow House, H.H. Richardson—considered the foremost Victorian architect of the 19th Century.
Our host discusses plans for a new, historically compatible five-car garage. The electrician begins wiring and a solar energy expert recommends the best location for a solar collector.
Our host and our master carpenter give us a progress report of the house. It's also time to winterize this energy-guzzling summer home with insulation and fireplace fix-ups.
All radiators are not created equal. Our host shows us an efficient, aesthetic European version. Our master carpenter is busy installing new windows and a lighting expert make some illuminating recommendations.
The south roof gets an ice shield and cedar shingles. The living room wall gets a layer of energy-saving polystyrene board. And the grounds get a face-lifting.
This week, our host looks at the wiring needs in the barn; demonstrates lathing and plastering and talks about choosing tiles for the foyer in the main house.
Shingling is completed on the south side of the bungalow and the lights are in placed in the main house. Tile setter Charlie English shows us how to trim tiles.
What are the best tiles for the master bath? How is the electrical work coming? What type of cabinets should we use in the kitchen of the main house? Our host supplies the answers.
It's time to tackle some tough shingling jobs on the turret and roof-top belvedere. We'll also install a skylight, hook up a toilet and talk about water service for the house.
The crawlspace in the barn gets a concrete floor. The main house gets a parquet floor. And we get lesson in tile grouting.
Our host sizes up the tree cutting clearing hob outside the Ice House unit. In the barn, he discusses the wood beam framing. Then, it's up to the main house for a look at the stairway.
Our host reviews plans for the interior of the barn unit. In the main house he decides that some of the floors will have to go; and out plumber is ready to install the Powder Room sink.
Tonight, our host tours the barn and gives more thought to the hardwood floors n the main house. It's also time to select locks and hardware for the antique doors.
This week, our master carpenter installs the unusual floor-to-ceiling triple hung windows; while Charlie, our finish carpenter, sets in window casings and kitchen cabinets.
The kitchen in the main house gets a ceramic tile floor. The south facade get a glass sunbath. The barn gets a heating and cooling fan. The fireplace gets a new stone face.
This week, the old metal garages come down and barn lighting goes in. In the main house, it's time to install the air conditioning and kitchen window casings.
Now that the old garage is gone, plans are made for the new one. Our master carpenter discusses the stairway in the barn. At the main house, a downdraft stove is installed and the sunbath gets a copper roof.
Our host inspects the custom-made hardwood spiral staircase in the barn and takes us on a tour of the factory where it was made. Later, we go up to the main house for a look at repairs on the fireplace tiles.
Our host inspects the custom-built kitchen cabinets in the barn and checks the plastering work upstairs. Then landscaping architect Tom Wirth gives us a lesson in brick paving and takes us on a fascinating tour of a granite quarry.
Things are really shaping up at the Bigelow House! Tonight, the white cedar shingling goes up in the barn greenhouse. Inside the barn, our host oversees installation of a heat pump, then he heads up to the main house to help apply the exterior stain.
Our host takes a stroll around the grounds and shows us that the landscaping is well underway. There's also been great progress in the ice house and woodshed. As for the barn, it's nearly complete.
This Old House is new again! The workmen are gone and the newly renovated Bigelow House is ready and waiting for its new occupants. Our host takes us on the long-awaited tour in this one hour special.