When the Stiletto was finished, I started worrying about having it in the shop with all the work going on, and suggested we should temporarily enclose the area under the deck over my kitchen windows. Sean said “why not enclose it permanently?” So we bagan looking at all the materials I had – the tall narrow windows, I had 10 and we needed seven. The 8 foot aluminum extrusions I almost hauled away for scrap many times, but kept telling myself I would need them some day, and a pair of 20 foot aluminum extrusions, one perfect for the top of the wall, the other perfect for the bottom. We set everything up on the drive-on lift and Sean began taking measurements and cutting. After the wall was built, we has one 8 foot piece of extrusion left over and a few short scraps. The whole wall structure weighed about 100 pounds. The concrete slab under the deck was about 8 inches wider than the deck, so we decided to use that space and build a wide flashing to keep the water out. I had a three inch square tube that we used for the corner post, just in case of impact with a vehicle or whatever. The wall itself supports no weight except for the glass windows.
I sketched up the sheet metal flashings we needed and faxed the drawings to my favorite sheet metal shop. I also ordered some sheet metal panels to match the siding on my house. This was not hard to figure out, as I have done it before. Our friend Dan Pevarnik who owns National Door Co, frequently replaces garage doors that are in good condition, but people just want a different door, I suppose. He gave us the door panels, tracks, pulleys, cables, everything but the springs used, but this door is so light that he had to give us new springs – the door only weighs 85 pounds. We removed the angle reinforcements from the tracks and mounted then directly to the wall on both sides. One balance spring is in the wall and the other is up in the ceiling, but it works perfectly.
We finished off the door installation with a header panel above and a wood threshold the keep the water out.
We had a strip of wall below the windows and it seemed like a good place to put some pictures. Peter had the idea of making a one piece mural in vinyl, with a clear vinyl laminate to protect it. I picked three of my favorite sports cars and ha went to work with Photoshop. The Teardrop Coupe was pictured on dry, brown grass, but he brought the grass back to life. The Alfa Romeo was actually pictured sitting in a gravel pit,hardly an attractive background. Peter took another image of a car sitting on the lawn at Pebble Beach and by magic, the Alfa is now sitting at Pebble Beach. Since we were using teak stain on all the wood and a panel of teak near the door, Peter photographed a teak panel on my wall and used this to form the background for the three images. He emailed the image file to a printer who sent us the vinyl mural within a few days.