Tuesday, November 16, 2010

from the beginning (part 2)

Early-mid 2010: Finding local concretors who are both reputable, affordable and available is a long process. Finally locked in the gun man, Col Briggs, who was a pleasure to work with and did a great job with his team of guys getting some 55 cubic metres (thanks over-excited engineers!) of grey stuff poured into shape. 5 months later we are yet to even see a hairline crack develop in it. Warren Crosbie manned the excavator like a pro and Wally Dunn laid the pipes for all the wet stuff. All old-timers who knew their stuff and smiled the whole way through...a sweet change from some of the commercial contractors I'd been dealing with at (paid) work.

Col & Jeremy
the pour started early
under way - yay

nice work fellas

halfway there

finishing touches

we have a slab 

July 2010: Gave teh two finger salute to the bossman and joined the ranks of the funemployed. Not now paid for hard work but getting a house and lifestyle out of the bargain. Hours are long but rewarding and I'm getting fit and strong to boot. Poor old Dana is still slaving away selling suckers to windbags (she works with vacuum cleaners!) while I get to work in the bush. What a trooper... It's a harsh deal but, unfortunately, I'm better with the hammer and the buildy-stuff.
July 2010 continued...: We are going for a polished finish on the slab. Hired a terrazzo grinder that the hire place assured us would do the job fine. Unfortunately, 32mpa concrete is as hard as diamond. 3 days of pushing this beast up and back barely scratched the surface. We later hired a concrete mower (what a great term) that got us much closer to the required finish (2 more days of up and back). However, it still needs a final grind / polish to bring out the aggregates. This'll have to wait for later...a bit over grinding by now. :(

Dana, Jon & Karena on the grind

are we bored yet?

Jul/Aug 2010: Sol the mad chippy and his mate Phil the slightly less mad builder came and helped us prep the gorgeous red ironbark poles that help hold the whole thing up. Meanwhile, steel UB rafters were sourced and rolled into a slight curve (250 x 145 @ 31.8kg/m on a 65m radius for those so inclined) in Melbourne before shipping to Ford McKernan Engineering in Euroa for fitting of cleats and 90mm SHS poles. The bush poles will be visible and the steel ones hidden.

I had to choose only 3. Wanted them all...

Phil & Sol prepping poles

...part 3 coming soon (Mawson's hut, evil weather, fun with backhoes and some more progress).

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