Here's a quick summary of what's been going on regarding life around the build.
Dana and I got the hire pressure washer again (do we own it yet??) and spent a day washing down the external rock faces. Jason had done his best to leave moss and lichen on the faces so we had to be a bit careful not to blast it off. As ever, it looked bloody marvellous.
|more wire brushes|
|yummy enough to eat|
...Starter bars extended
We have 60-odd starter bars poking up through the blockwork. Engie spec called for a ring beam at the top course and then chem-setting bolts to tie down the bottom boxing that the straw will sit on. I figured that welding all thread to the starters would give a much stronger bond between slab and wall, so a couple of hours with Wally from McKernans saw 16mm threaded rod attached to all of the starter reo with 3-4 inches of double fillet weld.
Blocking required core filling with 20MPA concrete. I looked at getting in a mini-mix and trying to shoot the sloppy grey into the wall cavities. However, it worked out cheaper to get Jason and Jess back to mix at 28MPA, then transport and fill by hand (or bucket and barrow). I made up some formwork that allowed EZ-pour and the guys were very thankful.
...Back to the grind
Next step was to finish off grinding the slab and get it sealed before we did any internal framing. So we booked the mower again and dragged it up to site late Friday night `to get the floor surface done and behind us. KnJnCrew came to help and we all had a good fight with the noisy wobbly gouge maker. Dana got blistered and bruised and Jon did his wrist in the process.
|what a grind|
|looks like hard yakka|
Not only that, the beast left horrid gouges everywhere and the slurry got all over the once beautiful stone work.
|even more grrrrr|
|"Oh Mr Hart - what a mess"|
Harried call to the hire company on the Sunday got the response that machine was sick and needed to make the return 4 hour trip for a Monday replacement. Bugger... So, back out to Clayton and swap over for a better machine then 4 hours back to site to keep at it. Jon and Dana came back on the Tuesday to avoid a stoopid horse race and finish off the slab. Not so. Towards sunset time we realised that it would take another 3-4 days at this rate to (maybe) get the finish that we were after. At $500 per day for the mower, this was getting silly. Time to call in the pros. In the meantime, I got out the 9 inch grinder and flattened the tops of the walls where that bale supports will live. Very messy...very fun!
|this was fun|
Todd from Smoothstone gave us a good rate and Matt came out for the day with a real grinding setup: truck mounted 3-phase gennie, 3-head grinder, the biggest commercial vac I'd ever seen and a crane to lift it all on and off. 8 hours later and we had a winner. Phew...
|shoes for every occasion|
|this thing sucks big time|
|a real proper grinder|
|the whole kit|
There has been much more go on since then but I'll leave that to a subsequent posting.
Ciao for now...