Monday, October 7, 2019

Remodeling Our Hut Part 11: Concrete Walls (and Rain) Pouring

 July 19, 2019 was a hot and sunny one for a change.  The concrete wall contractors arrived bright and early to start pouring footings for the new walls and garage floor.  I had gone over to the Hobbit House to make our dinner and when I came back to our house in the afternoon, I was greeted by three cement trucks and conveyors backed up on the road.  It was a fascinating sight to see how all of this works.  The crew uses a 'spout' to direct the wet cement right to where it is needed.

It is an elaborate setup.  The cement trucks sit on the road and their spouts line up with the conveyor which sends the wet cement to a spout.

 The man in the blue shirt has a remote control on his waist and can direct the spout and send signals to the cement truck drivers to tell them when to release more cement or stop.  It's really efficient.  Back in the day, cement would have had to be brought in by hand in wheelbarrows. This is a vast improvement.

 Carl was home from work that day and went down in the hole to help trowel.  It was very hot, in the 90's and not a nice day to be down in a pit.  
 The concrete crew is also just two men, brothers Paul and Carl, who took over the business from their father who had poured our original basement wall in 1978. 

 Finishing up with the basement addition, and heading to the front porch addition.

 Carl took a picture of me looking dejected as I watched from a safe distance.  It was hot and there really wasn't anything I could do but stay out of the way.

Carl and Paul of the concrete crew worked very quickly.  I don't know how they can do this for years on end, it's very hard, hot, heavy work. 
 As soon as the footings were poured and the troweling was done for the day, I went back to getting more of the stuff out of the upstairs bedrooms.  Above is a pile of fiberglass lamp forms for more stained glass lamps we hope to build someday.  Joel and Abby have them all in their basement for now.

Of course, we had to have another thunderstorm that evening, but once again, we were lucky.  Being July, the garden has been on its own this year, but it was still rewarding us with beautiful blooms despite my neglecting it entirely since mid-June.

 I had several cement truck drivers take a stroll through the gardens, too.  I was grateful to take a break on the gazebo every afternoon and just soak up the serenity.

With the footings poured, Monday, July 22, the forms were set for the walls.

  Carl was unburying our gangplank walkway so we could get back into the house again.

 Form trucks arrived the night before.

 There's a lot of work that goes into foundation walls.  Tile, rebar, gravel, insulation, lots of things.

 Lots of trucks, lots of equipment.
 The living room and dining room windows would be bumped out, so there were foundations poured for them, too.

 That night we had another nasty thunderstorm and more tree damage.  Rain, rain and more rain. 

The next morning the foundation crew set the forms in place.  I watched them as I worked on hauling more stuff out of our house.  It's amazing how much the two men accomplished in such a short time. 

 Audrey came to visit that night and helped Grandpa Carl feed the fish. 

 We always love to see our little Audrey.

Tuesday, July 23 and the walls are being poured.

 While the cement crew was working on the wall outside, the contractors were working on more demolition on the inside.

 Things were happening at a breakneck pace. 

Thursday, July 25, the forms were removed from the walls. In the picture below, Carl and Carl from the concrete crew are putting insulation in place along the mudroom addition wall and backfilling the tile with gravel.

 The new frost wall for the front porch, below.

The walls had to sit for a few days before backfilling.

July 29, Charlie and Ryan arrive to put the dirt back in the holes up against the new walls.

Burying the main power cable, below, Carl, Charlie and Ryan hard at work.

 Later on that night, Audrey stopped in to help do some backfilling, too. 

 She's throwing some rocks in strategic places that need work.

 She tried her hand at sitting in the driver's seat, too.
 By the next day, Tuesday, July 30, the back-fill work was done.

 Charlie added some gravel to the front yard to make things less muddy.  

After a very hard day's work, Carl dozes on the couch at the Hobbit with all of the mess surrounding him.  Everything from laundry baskets to old Easter baskets are piled up willy nilly.  Such an organized life we lead at the moment.

Up next: More demolition.


Alison said...

I truly am amazed at the breakneck speed that your construction work is getting done. Even though I know you've said you are still not finished, this seems like fast work (and fascinating to see, thanks for all the photos). Hugs to you because I know you must be so very stressed, over not living at home, living in the midst of so much chaos, over the work itself, etc., etc., etc.

Karen said...

Thank you, Alison, for bearing with me as I tediously document the process going forward. :-) Thank you for the hugs, too, they are greatly appreciated. I've been amazed at the process myself.

chavliness said...

Ever since the middle of June, when you announced "the party is over", I was waiting for details of the home project. Knowing how well you document everything, I knew I was in for a treat. I enjoy reading about the progress, and I know before long you'll have lots of before and after photos to enjoy.

Karen said...

chavliness, yes, the party is definitely over, that's for sure. :-) The only reason I'm documenting this as tediously as I am is to keep a record of our antics this past year. Thank you for following along!