Wood and Stone

A site to track our progress as we build our FirstDay Cottage Canadian house kit. Come on in, get a cup of coffee, set a spell and follow along on our journey or join in if you like. Check back for the weekly update (usually by Wednesday when things are going right) to see what we are currently up to!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Setting the record straight

Today we needed to get the last beam on across the back wall, brace the beams and start decking. As always, Law #1 of the Owner Builder comes into play - "Everything will take twice as long as you think" Law #2 is the mandatory follow-up and was originally penned by Murphy.

Mimi and Pop came up to help out by watching the kids and help out on-site respectively. We made the last 3 beams and put them up. When we had to notch the beams out for the bolts sticking through the sill plate, Wendy learned to use the sawzall - I guess it is a bayonet saw if you don't have a Milwaukee - and I got a refresher course.

While Pop and I put the beams up, Wendy increased the Feng Shui of the basement by using a pipe wrench and breaking the majority of the concrete snap ties off, reducing our chances of impalement on a daily basis by upwards of 50 percent and making being in the basement much nicer.

After getting the beams up we started checking plumb of the interior walls and found that we were out. After some adjustments, we started measuring in order to put on the bracing and found the 'Scooby Doo Mystery' of the day as Wendy has dubbed them. It seems each weekend, we get near the end of the day and find something horribly out of whack that we need to fix, ala law #2. This directly causes law #1 to occur. This one was that the western interior wall was too far back in the house by 3/4 of an inch, throwing the beams out of whack. You could see by looking down them that they were crooked, but we didn't realize why until we took measurements.

The back beam in place, wall moved and wall connected to sill
In the spirit of getting things right, we opted to fix it correctly by detaching the wall from the floor, moving it and reattaching it with Tapcon screws. This reduced the twistedness of the beams considerably. Next was to brace the interior walls to the back sill (and beam) for stability, and we ended up connecting the front wall too. We also started putting a 2x6 across the bays at the end of the beam, in order to hold the beams straight up while decking. That involved me nailing the 2x6 in place while Pop twisted the beams with the bowrench. There has to be a better way than just using it as a simple lever. We have been putting the bars on the beam to be straightened and pulling up or down. I will figure this tool out yet.

We got one 2x6 on and it was getting to be 5pm. Pop was ready for a siesta, so we packed it in for the day and went to meet Mimi and the kids for dinner at Garcia's

Pop has the right idea...  What did we do with that hammock?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pop looks like he had a good day and it was now time to rest.

July 30, 2007 at 7:09:00 PM EDT  

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