Construction Journal for 2002, Part 6 of 6

12/17-19/02 I went up to the property for 3 days with Chuck: Tuesday through Thursday.

We arrived at 12:45 and there wasn't as much snow on the ground as there was when I left last week. There was some new snow in the pass as we came over, but not much. After getting a few long runs at it, I was able to drive the pickup all the way up to the trailer without putting on chains.

Bert and Ernie came by to visit and we had a good time greeting them and feeding them our apple cores. This time there were two so Ernie got one. Usually Bert takes the one from me and Ernie misses out.

Chuck and I talked about how I was going to do the plumbing at the spring and bring the line down to the building. We went up to the spring after we moved in so he could see what I am up against. The creek coming out of the spring goes under a huge boulder for about 12 or 15 feet, and then it goes underground, beneath some big trees, for the next 30 feet or so. My plan is to get a string or a rope in the creek bed underground so I can pull a length of copper pipe right into it. That way, the creek water will keep that section of pipe from freezing. From where it comes back above ground, I will bury the pipe the required 18 inches underground for the rest of the way. In our discussions, Chuck told me how to use a steel rod that just fits inside the copper pipe to straighten the very end of the coiled pipe so that you can use the entire length and get it straight. You just put the rod inside the pipe and tap the pipe on the outside with a hammer. He says it will straighten right out.

After that, we went and looked at my sewer pipe, septic tank, and the ground in between. The rock pile is square in the middle, so a lot of rocks will have to be moved to install the line. Chuck thinks he can help me with that job when it comes up.

After lunch, Chuck helped me drag the plank that I had ripped last time down to the gwizzing station. Then he went to work bucking, hauling, splitting, and stacking all the old logs that were lying on the upper roadway in front of the building. This was a low priority, non-building job that has been sitting in front of me for a long time. It was great to have Chuck do that work while I worked on other things.

I gwizzed the one new plank and then lowered another old plank from the loft, through a front window, and down to the gwizzing station.

On Wednesday Chuck went back to work making firewood. I lowered the second plank that was still up in the loft down to the gwizzing station. Then I gwizzed both of the old planks. I rigged up a come-along hanging from a rope through a pulley hanging from the anchor on the Grid B purlin. Chuck hooked the other end of the come-along to the rebar pin holding the old log chute together. Then he cranked on the come-along and pulled the chute up onto the roadway. The chute has served its purpose well by helping me skid logs up over the rim of the cliff. We used a pipe with a tee on the end to straighten the rebar pins so we could remove them from the chute. Then Chuck went to work bucking the logs that made up the chute. Chuck also helped me flip the log I was ripping over. With the slab and one plank ripped, it was still too heavy and broad for me to turn over by myself. With the log turned over, I scribed it on both sides for the slab.

After lunch, I had Chuck help me lift all the planks that I had gwizzed so far up onto the porch. We lifted one using the block and tackle I use when I'm by myself, but Chuck thought we could do it much faster by hand. He was right. I stood each plank up against the porch deck and he pulled them up onto the deck by hand with a little help from me lifting them off the ground. We weighed one of the planks with my home-made scales and it weighed about 68 lbs. It wasn't one of the biggest and Chuck estimated that some of them weighed a hundred pounds. Anyway, the job went a lot quicker with two guys. We also stacked three slabs which will be usable as stair treads under the porch.

Chuck and I were both happy that the jays decided to visit us. Chuck was able to feed them from his hands and I got a couple pictures of it to prove it. He said that was the first time he had ever fed wild birds from his hands and he was pretty happy about it.

Chuck spent the rest of the day working on the firewood and I moved two logs from up on the high rock down to the porch deck. These will be useful for the staircase structure, or maybe I will rip one in half for stair treads. Anyway I wanted to get them out of the weather.

It snowed a little off and on during the day, but there was not much accumulation. The forecast was for a clear night so I decided not to move the pickup down to the road.

On Thursday morning, Chuck and I both worked on bucking, hauling, splitting, and stacking the last of the firewood. We got a stack just under two cords and covered it with a tarp. We had lunch and left for home a little after noon.

12/22/02 I did not go up to the property this week because Christmas fell on Wednesday. Bought three 60-foot rolls of one-inch soft copper pipe from Chuck. He got it as salvage from his job and gave it to me for a fair price.

2002: Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4 | Part 5

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