Thursday, June 10, 2010

Day 8, 9 & 10 Gazebo Project

What a week this has been trying to move forward on this project.  I have to admit I never really thought this project all the way through about how long it was going to take.  With an 8 sided object everything must be cut at angles. I was praying to the geometry gods all week and they weren't always answering my prayers.  Many 'adjustments' had to be made.

I rarely tell others that they can't or shouldn't take on a project but unless you are VERY good at fractions, angles and visualizing things spatially a project like this may be your undoing without more detailed plans than the free ones we are using. My engineering degree came in handy on this one.

We worked very hard to be precise when we were laying out the footings and standing the posts but even with all the attention to detail it's just not possible to get things exactly right. Hence the 'adjustments' I mentioned above.

We spent Monday afternoon getting the main floor joists and rim joists in place.  Trying to get the angles to match up at the posts was the toughest part.  Any time you are trying to put angles on both ends of a board and cut it to an exact length it's complicated and we had to do make more 'adjustments' to get things to look visually correct. We started on the front that everyone will be able to see and on the back side we were a little sloppier since we figured only the squirrels, foxes and neighborhood cats will see it anyway.  We spent about 5 hours to get to this point.




I had some actual "work" to do Tuesday so we had to fit in about 2 1/2 hours in the middle of the day to finish up the floor joists.  It has been so hot and humid this week it's made the work tougher. I felt like I was back in my hometown of Pittsburgh with all the humidity.  This day was easier because the angle cuts weren't as critical and we got to actually make some straight cuts along the way. 

Yesterday was the toughest of all days. We spent all day working on the decking and other than the 2 hours we spent shoveling rock into and out of the pickup...I couldn't turn down free rock...we spent 6 1/2 hours and only got the first row of done.  We not only had to cut angles on both ends but notch out for the posts.  I don't mind the mental challenge of figuring out lengths and angles but this was tedious.  There must be some tricks to the trade we don't know because no one could make any money if it takes them this long.  We ran into a minor snag when we decided we wanted to have the first row hang over the rim joists rather than be flush.  The overhang will cover any problems with missed angles, etc but then I realized we need to add additional supports that required a trip to the hardware store and at least an hour of extra work.

Here's me at the end of the day.  My husband insisted on taking a picture I was too tired to even stand up.  We are taking a day off since we both have other things we should be doing besides making a career of building this thing, plus I'm not sure my body can take it.  Since everything is taking so much longer than I though it would we decided to cancel a short motorcycle trip we had planned for early next week and spend the time trying to get this done.

We will be having a party when this is complete, that's for sure!

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