Time to paint the area in the basement!
First, I did all the brushwork. I brushed in around the trim (that will eventually be painted the colour Cable Knit -- same as upstairs) and the electrical. Since there will eventually be a finished ceiling, I painted a line just above the bottom of the joists to make it seem somewhat neat, and sort of a faux ceiling line, as well as making a neat line at the bottom of the wall.
This after I completed the colour coat. It looks quite nice, I think.
Also, note that the ground wire really disappears into the wall. I am quite pleased with how that turned out.
I also cleaned the fireplace, as a bit of soot builds up on it. This is the before photo -- it's a bit close so you can't really see how dirty the glass is. Note the darkness starting about 1/3 of the way up from the bottom - that is soot on the glass. You can see that the bricks are darker - it's because there is soot on the bricks, but that is mostly obscured by the soot on the glass.
This is the fireplace after I removed the glass. You can see the soot buildup on the bricks much more clearly here. You can also notice that there is a 'log' that is just laying on the bottom of the firebox at the front middle, just in front of the grate. That is clearly out of place. Obviously Charles doesn't know how to read and follow instructions like 1-2-3...
Fortunately the soot comes off very easily. I used an old toothbrush since I figured any brush I used would be useless for any other purpose afterward.
And this is what the firebox looks like after all the soot is cleaned off. Much nicer.
After I removed the logs, I gently brushed them to remove the soot buildup. Because the logs were not installed correctly, one of the logs had a huge chunk of soot on it that fell off when I set it on the newspaper.
This is the fireplace after I put the logs back in place. Properly, I might add. You can see that the errant log is no longer in the wrong place but is properly positioned.
Next step was to clean the glass. First I used paper towels to get all the loose and easily dislodged soot off. Then I applied glass cleaner to the glass. It said to apply a thin film and wait 1-2 minutes and then wipe off. I took this photo while I was waiting the 1-2 minutes.
Wow! The cleaner really did a nice job on cleaning up the glass - the glass felt very smooth, like it was polished. I liked it so much that I did the outside (room side) of the glass too.
And now, this is with everything cleaned and put back together. It looks much much nicer. I should have turned the gas on for this photo, but I'll take a photo the next time I put the fireplace on.