Tom Ramcigam (magicmarmot) wrote,
Tom Ramcigam
magicmarmot

So much to do, so little time

It's all kind of a blur now.


Tuesday night:
Had the truck packed with all of my stuff and tools. Bryan was a little late, so I think we made it into Minneapolis sometime around midnight. I was excited, because I had a three day plan to build the shed, and a bunch of CAD drawings that I had obsessed over.
You know those TV shows (like Monster House) where they do this amazingly complex project in three days?
Don't believe them.
Phoned in refill order for my prescriptions. 2 of them require doctor approval.


Wednesday:
Wednesday was buying stuff day. A trip to Menard's led to the rental of the Menard's truck, which has a maximum payload capacity of 1500 lbs.
I overloaded the truck. I had to split the load. Just the framing lumber alone made it so that the bed was rubbing on the rear tires going around corners or hitting bumps, and the remaining materials weren't much better. That's literally a ton and a half of building materials.
That should have been my first clue that things were going to take a little bit longer than anticipated.
Happily, Menards was having a building materials sale, and almost everything I needed was around 20% off of the list price. Because I bought a LOT of stuff.
Note to self: for large projects, have materials delivered to the job site.
I also purchased a boiler. Or at least ordered one.


Thursday:
Jess called, and came over perfectly in time for lunch at Our Kitchen, a cute little diner close by the house.
The day turned into mostly job-site prep, cleaning and digging to level out the space for the foundation. Having a level foundation is crucial, and this turned into a much longer time than anticipated, partly because of the discovery of the collapsed garage foundation being about a foot farther out than it seemed.

Actually paid for the boiler in advance, with guaranteed delivery monday morning before 10:00. Since we would be gone, they would put the boiler in the newly-finished shed. Because of course, the shed would be finished by then.

You see where this is going, don't you?

Finally we got the three foundation beams in place, and the rough outer frame (rim and end joists) before discovering a cute little fact: dimensional lumber is not cut to size. A 12-foot 2x6 is a little longer than 12 feet, by some inconsistent amount.
Cuts away, and a couple more hours of leveling, and the frame was in place.
Teresa came to pick me up to see her show at around 7:00. Bryan stayed and finished installing the remaining floor joists, which kicked major ass. At the end of the day, we were really only a little behind where I had planned.
This was the last time I could make that statement.

Barb took the explorer up to Bemidji with a load of stuff to move into her new place. Which she didn't have yet.


Friday:
First things first: laying the floor.
3/4" treated plywood is godawful heavy. Somewhere around 100 lbs. per sheet. It's not horrible with two people handling it, and there were only three sheets. But it makes for a really sturdy floor on 16" centered joists. Especially when glued down with construction adhesive. In addition to the screws holding it down, that floor isn't going anywhere.

Once the floor was in place, I set up a jig for the roofing trusses. Normally it's easier to order pre-made trusses and have them delivered, but they would have to be custom made, and there just wasn't time.
So we did site-built trusses.
And I set up the jig according to my drawings with a 6-12 pitch, and cut out the first pieces just fine. Everything was going smoothly, until I went to cut the crossbrace, and discovered that my miter saw wouldn't do a 62.7 degree cut.
After some discussion and a lot of swearing, I decided to change the pitch of the roof slightly to accommodate a 60 degree angle for the crossbrace, which meant a 30 degree cut for the peak.
Or so I thought.
As it turns out, it was 31 degrees. Go figure. It took something like 3 hours to finally get a jig built that would actually fit the pieces together right.
During this time, Bryan was busily sawing up plywood sheets to use as the truss plates. A lot of them. Like 60. I spent a great deal of time measuring and cutting individual framing pieces for the trusses so we kind of had everything in kit form.
After what seemed like forever, we finally were able to start building trusses.
Normally, you would use a hammer and nails to nail the truss plates in place, but being amateurs at the handling of a hammer and knowing that hours and hours of hitting things with a hammer would make for really (really) sore muscles and difficulty moving, I got screws and with two screw guns, figured we would make fairly short work of the trusses.
Well, as it turns out, the trusses kicked my ass. It took us something like 45 minutes to do one truss, which put us at only five trusses of the ten needed by the end of the night.
I am realizing that my time estimates are screwed at this point. I had figured we'd be done with the trusses and wall framing and have the sksleton of the shed in place.
The big boys use an air compressor and a nail gun. (Well, the custom shops use metal plates and a press, but that's beside the point.) I had neither an air compressor nor a nail gun.


Saturday:
Oops. Forgot some stuff. Run to Menard's (with Barb's little car). Came back with an air compressor and a nail gun. Went back to Menard's to exchange the nail gun for the correct nail gun.
All hail the pneumatic nailer. Trusses now completed in 10-15 minutes. Late start to the day puts us behind again, so by the end of the day, only the two end walls are framed, and neither one is vertical. Far, far behind.
And oopsie-- despite my careful calculations and overpurchase of 65 2x4s, somehow I am short. By something like 20.


Sunday:
Rocky came over in the morning. I went to Menards a little early to try and fit a bunch more 2x4s on the roof of the Barbmobile. With the correct strapping, it worked fine-- but I was an hour later than I wanted to be.
With Rocky there, we finished framing the last two (long) walls, and managed to get all four walls up and standing. This was a VeryGoodThing. Rocky had to leave early in the afternoon, and then Bryan and I spent the rest of the day installing trusses.
For the most part, this went very well. A bit of a stumbling block on the two end trusses, but some ingenuity and a lot of glue make these now quite strong and solid. The rest of them are held in place with glue and hurricane straps, which are steel plates designed to hold trusses to walls. And we got the sheathing on the long side walls.
By now, we are exhausted, and not nearly done. With rain clouds coming, we decided to put a tarp over the top to minimize the water coming in.
Tarp was too small.


Monday:
A little bit of standing water remained from the overnight rain, but the skies had pretty much cleared by the time we got started.
We put up the sheathing on the end walls, and cut out the door panels. Bryan climbed up on the roof and was a rafter monkey for much of the day, nailing up the roof decking, drip edge, roofing felt, and finally the ridge vent.
We finally ended up by sealing up the unit like King Tut's tomb with plywood over the door frames at a little before 10:00, got cleaned up and had a last meal at Applebees.
Packed up and got on the road a little after midnight.

There was fog. Thick fog. Really thick fog. Really, really thick fog.


And I made it in to work this morning at about 11:00. Go me. Now I must get caught up.
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