I’ve never attempted to use clapboard on the octagonal portions of my houses — too many small pieces to cut and corners to make neat. On the Queen Anne Rowhouse, I just painted the wood. I would have done the same with the Seaside Villa, except I needed to fill in a portion of the door frame to make the front door fit, and that would have looked bad with paint over it. So I used board and batten siding like I did on the Victorianna’s towers.
I like this stuff because it’s easy to cut, and the vertical lines allow for neat seams at the corners. I glued on all the front pieces, then moved on to the clapboard, saving the smaller pieces on the back of the tower for last.
A few years ago I bought two old packages of Northeastern Scale Lumber clapboard cheap at a flea market. In the past I’d always used Houseworks siding. I’m not sure if it’s due to age or this is just the quality of this product, but the siding is very brittle and hard to cut without splitting. I thought about buying a new package of siding for the Villa, but that stuff is expensive, so I decided to do a few test pieces first. If I had any trouble cutting those, I’d order a new package.
I started with the piece under the upstairs porch roof, since the roof gives a flat surface for the siding to push up against. This would help me keep the pieces lined up all the way around the house.
(Note: I didn’t actually glue the pieces on as I went along — I cut them all first, then glued — but I’m showing the pictures I took as I glued them in.)
Next I cut the angled piece above this. I made a template of the space using pieces of paper.
I expected this to be a mess when I cut it, but it came out perfect. I decided at this point that I’d move forward with this siding.
I continued down the wall. These were easy since they don’t have window or door holes.
I cut the equivalent pieces on the other side of the tower and glued them in, leaving it to dry overnight. I used tape over the seams between pieces to prevent a visible bulge where two pieces of siding meet.
I did these pieces next, being careful to line up the boards at the corner.
I did run into some issues cutting the window holes. The thin parts at the edges or between the windows tended to split off. Fortunately they split cleanly, so the seams blend in once they’re glued back together.
For the other side, I thought maybe I could avoid the splitting by drilling holes at the corners of the window holes.
Turns out I got lucky with the first two sheets of siding I used. The sheet I cut the final pieces from was horrible, and every piece basically shattered as I tried to cut out the windows. I had to throw them all away and redo them with another sheet of siding. So that was fun.
The last task was to finish the board and batten on the tower. Again, I used paper to make a template for the angle.
The board and batten I used was leftover from the Victorianna. After doing the front I didn’t have any wide pieces left, but I had enough scraps.
The vertical lines in the siding make it easy to piece these together without an obvious seam. Once it’s painted I don’t think you’ll notice it at all.
So that’s the front of the house complete! I still need to add siding to the back. I’m planning to make the door and windows for back there, so I need to do that first to ensure the holes are the right size before adding the siding.