Construction Journal Entry Week of 12/22/19

12/23/19 (Monday) ordered $1000 worth of stair rail parts from for the loft staircase. Delivery is scheduled for January 23.

12/27-29/19 I went up to Camp Serendipity for 3 days: Friday through Sunday.

Before I left, I got an email from Stairsupplies with some instructions and a link for scheduling a phone call with them. I scheduled a phone call for 1:45 that day since it was their last slot for the week, and it would also allow me time to get to Camp Serendipity to make the call.

There was extra thick traffic and there was snow on the road most of the way over, so the trip was slow. I stopped and visited with Earl and Patty for a short time, just enough for me to give then a jar of Ellen's Christmas jam. Then I left for Camp Serendipity and arrived in time to make my phone call.

On the call I learned that they use FedEx or UPS for delivery and that once they ship my package to the carrier, I would have to deal with the carrier to arrange for the delivery. I will receive an email from Stairsupplies as soon as they select a carrier and give them the package. Both carriers make a lot of deliveries in the area so I don't think it will be much of a problem arranging to be there when they deliver.

Since there had been only about 3 inches of snow on the driveway, I had had no trouble parking and walking up the stairs in time for the phone call. Now, I went back to the truck, hauled up my gear, built a fire, hoisted the flag, had a late lunch, and a nap. Shirley had left a gift for us in a bag hanging on the crawlspace doorknob. I brought that in too.

When I got up from my nap, I went out and shoveled the concrete steps off and brought my tool bag up from the truck.

On Saturday morning the temperature outside was 24°. After breakfast, I got in the truck and delivered Christmas jam to three more neighbors. When I got back, I chiseled the notches in the Grid C2 and D2 columns to receive the top 2x6 for the balustrade between them. Then I had my lunch and a nap.

When I got up, I cut the top 2x6 to length and chamfered the ends where it was needed. Then I placed it in the notches in the columns and screwed it in place, finishing that structure. All that remains is to touch up varnish the chamfers on the ends.

Next, I counted the prepared balusters I have on hand and learned that I needed to make 12 more to finish all the loft guard rails. I used Dr. Dick's handy rebar cutter/bender to cut 12 more baluster blanks.

On Sunday morning, the temperature outside was 25°. I used the wire wheel on the front porch workbench to clean the rust off the 12 baluster blanks, and then I used my paint thinner dipping tank and a rag to clean the oil off the rebar so they would be ready to paint. Since it was too cold to paint them outside and I didn't want to spray-paint them inside the cabin, I decided to take them home and paint them in Seattle where it would hopefully be a little warmer. I carried the cleaned baluster blanks and the paint rack down and loaded them into the truck for the trip home.

Back in the cabin, I cleaned up all the chip mess on the loft floor, the loft stairs, and the first floor. Then I varnished the parts of the balustrades that needed touch-ups. I left for home at 12:45 happy with the progress this week.

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