Monday, August 16, 2010

The earth is retained

Friday I went out to the house, to pick up some tools and materials for making the furring strips that will go over the garage. Scott's guys were out there finishing up the walls on the garage side. I came up with mom and dad on Saturday, and found that they had just a few more blocks to put on the one retaining wall. I didn't see any blocks laying around, so I was guessing their estimate was off by just a few, and they needed to haul a few more out to finish the job. As dad and I got setup to work on the final touches to the waterproofing on the overhang, we heard a big truck down on the road. Up the driveway came the wall builders, with more dirt and a few more blocks. It looked like they were planning to finish the walls Saturday morning. They got the truck unloaded, and started putting in the last few blocks. They finished up the wall, packed up and cleaned up. Now I had all my walls.

Front walls

Garage walls

One large thing off the list of things to do. While they were finishing the walls, my dad and I were finishing the waterproofing on the overhang. I wanted to put an edging of foam along the overhang so that it would encourage water to flow away from the front of the overhang. I cut foam boards to lay under the final layer of plastic. As we turned one of the pieces around, dad found that he was bleeding. He apparently got a paper cut on the edge that I had just cut on the foam. (I was wearing my gloves, he wasn't wearing his)

Dad modeling the paper towel/packing tape band aid.

Things went quite well, until around lunch time. It had gotten too hot to be working out on the south side of the house. So we went for lunch. I checked on some conduit fittings that I will need, and we headed back to do some work in the shade behind the house. Well, as we got back, we saw that it had rained. That was going to limit what we could do outside if it was a significant rain. We got back and found that things were somewhat muddy, but not bad. As we went around making sure tools were brought in, in case it rained more, the sky started to darken. Thunder rumbled. Well, looks like we will have to see what we can do working inside. The wind came up, and then the rain started. It was blowing into the garage, so we had to close the door, so things in there didn't get soaked. We went around to the front and watched out the windows. This was a real gully washer. I watched as lightning flashed just a little bit away, and I heard the thunder simultaneously, it was real close.

After the storm passed, dad and I went out to check things over. The dirt around the house was now a field of mud. We were able to climb up the ends of the blocks on the one retaining wall by the garage, and survey things without trudging through the mud. It looked like the plastic on the overhang was staying basically in place. We went and checked on the daylight drain for the foundation drainage (we had not seen it draining water before, and I had concerns that the drainage might be plugged). No problem there, the cap on the end to keep critters from making a home in the drain line, had been blown off and was lying a few feet from where water was pouring out of the drain line. It had quite a bit of dirt in it, and my guess is that some of the dirt that I know had settled in the drains while they were not properly terminated, was getting washed out. Before I could get a picture of this, the rain started again. We ran back inside, and closed the garage again. I went to the front windows, and watched as the trees bent in the wind, and the rain went almost horizontal.

I am dry, but in front of the house is a mud pit.

We watched inside, as pieces of wood in front of the house actually started to float. The fellows who built the retaining walls had not filled in the area next to the house and retaining wall on the east side. It was a low spot, and water was flowing into it. The puddle there got to be a few inches deep. We watched as mud flowed and fell around the end of the retaining wall. The rain stopped again, since we couldn't work outside, we decided to test a way of cutting the Hardie panels that are going to be used as siding. The recommendation from the manufacturer, is that you take a knife, and score the surface of the board a few times, then bend it at the score to snap it. We tried this while the rain started up again outside. It worked very well. No dust, and a fairly clean edge. After the rain stopped again, we went out front, on the boards we have in front of the front door. The whole front of the door was wet. But it had kept out the water. The puddle by the retaining wall was already down a few inches from where it had been. Obviously the drainage in front was working as well. We decided to leave before any more rain moved in.

Sunday afternoon, we decided to just work on the furring strips that will go above the garage door. Since they will have to extend above the Nudura walls, and will provide support to the top of the siding, as well as the drip edge construction, I wanted to stiffen the Trex. To do this, we decided to fasten aluminum bars to the side of the boards. This should provide a very stiff and strong support from the concrete walls, up to the roof. We had to cut the aluminum to the proper lengths. Dad did this in the front lawn at his house.

No need to sweep up the aluminum sawdust.

We drilled holes in the aluminum, and then attached it to the sides of the Trex boards.

Aluminum, attached to Trex, with stainless steel screws.

Next steps are getting the Hardie panels installed on the front of the overhang, and working to install the furring strips we made, over the garage. It looks like things have dried out sufficiently to work on the overhang tomorrow.

No comments:

Post a Comment