Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Deck boards begin

Last night I came home to a lot of progress on the deck board installation. Chris and Ryan got about half way and expect to finish today.

Sunday, April 26, 2009


I spent the morning installing 8 light fixtures and 2 fan supports. In the afternoon, my dad and I got everything wired up.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Trusses and sheeting

The last few days have been very exciting. After the posts and rim joists were done, 23 2x10 deck joists went in.

Due to a few of the footings being a little off the intended measurements, two of the treated 6x6 posts had to be notched at the base connector. I didn't really like the look of it, and was concerned about having to treat the notched part. Most likely it was not really an issue and the posts would last 100 years, but I tend to get a little crazy with the most minor details. I knew I'd better ask Chris to rework the posts, otherwise I'd lose sleep over these stupid notches. It was a borderline unreasonable request, but he fixed them up how I wanted, with no complaint. It was the first real test of the builder-client relationship, and I am very happy with the outcome.

Trusses arrived on a truck, with an 85-foot crane, which hoisted the 7 trusses over the house and onto the roof beams of the deck frame.

It only took about 6 hours to set the trusses and get the plywood sheeting on the roof. This thing is really starting to take shape now. It looks about how I envisioned it. It is big and may take some getting used to. Of course, it will look much better once the roofing and finish work is done.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Framing, day 1

The lumber load showed up around 8:30 this morning. Shortly after, Chris and Ryan arrived and started the framing.

These guys made it look easy. Just a few hours later, all the posts and rim joists were set.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The pour

I was working away this morning when messenger popped up... "Honey, there's a concrete truck in front of our house."

Yessss! Progress is becoming regular now. Concrete was poured today. Nine 20" diameter footings.

When I got home, I went out to take a look. There had just been a rain storm, so there was a half inch of water standing on the fresh concrete inside the forms. Apparently, this isn't a problem.

Tomorrow: the first lumber load arrives.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


After three months of thinking about and planning this project, there is finally actual work being done by other people in my back yard. Nine holes have been dug for the footings. It's amazing that only one of them intersected with a sprinkler pipe. Concrete forms should be going in the holes very soon.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The wonder of craigslist

I'm getting ready for Chris and Ryan to start next week. First step: tear off the old deck. They'll be doing most of the work on this project, but demo work is right up my alley. So, I decided to just dismantle the thing myself. The physical work would do this ol' keyboard jockey some good.

I figured I'd have to make a couple dump loads with the truck to dispose of the old deck. Just as I was getting started, I thought, "I should put an ad on craigslist." I snapped a pic with the phone and mailed it to myself. Went inside and posted the ad: FREE DECK MATERIALS.

Ten minutes into the tear down, my phone was ringing off the hook. One guy took the deck boards, and another guy took the rest. I mean, they took it all: deck boards, framing, posts, and even the old rotten railing. The best part is I didn't have to load the debris in my truck and pay to take it to the dump. Two nice guys came and took it all away.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

I got it!

After much ado, I've got my permit in hand. For a total of "only" $400, I've got a fancy yellow sign that says it's OK to build a deck on my own property. Now the real work can begin.