Monday, March 17, 2014

MORE Construction....

Sunday's Update:

We are done ! ... well, we are done with the shade structure.  There is a lot of clean-up, etc. left to do but we are all happy happy happy with it!  We still have a few details to work out:  Where to put the outdoor furniture, where to place the planters, if I want planters to go around the bottom of each viga, etc.

DS doing some trimming of excess shade cloth
I know "walking a wall" is a desirable trait in DS's line of work but,
as a mother, it makes me cringe.
It has already made a HUGE difference in the sun exposure.

DS relaxing in our amazing new shade!!

The final photo will have to wait....  the camera's battery gave up the fight... the I was distracted,.... and then it was dark.  I will post the final photo soon.

Now we just need to clean up the mess from the multiple projects we have had going on lately!

May your day see the completion of something on your to-do list.

Saturday's Update:

The supplies for the weekend....  

Aluminum straps, shade cloth, and LOTS of screws.

Also, 4 ladders, an impact driver, a drill press, and lots of clamps.

First step was to lay the shade cloth, the long way, on the top of the structure next to the house. 

The shade cloth was then attached to the structure along the house.... 

Then we unrolled the cloth and worked our way to the outside of the structure, attaching it as we went.

(Ignore the super young and super sexy girl on the ladder...  HA!)

We got about half of the shade up in about half of a day today.  We will install the rest of the shade cloth tomorrow....

...complete some minor adjustments and trimming that have to wait until the end.....

...and then do the clean up...

...and arrange the outdoor furnishings!!

Trust me that pictures do not do this project justice!  This is a way COOL (in more ways than one) project! 

Friday's Update (a week later):

DS will be back up tomorrow morning to put the shade cloth on the structure.  Have I mentioned how excited I am to have all this new shade??  AND, if the boys can spare me, I am going to hit a yard sale tomorrow that is featuring fabric....  yes, you heard me:  FABRIC!

Life is good!!!

Friday's Update:

DS left Friday morning about 9am as we could NOT get the dealer to confirm if the shade fabric we ordered to be attached to the top of the structure had been sent.  We had some errands to run all over the north valley and when we got home, guess what has been delivered at 1.30pm?  Yep, the shade fabric.  We had already made plans for him to return next weekend to install the fabric on our prayers and hope that it would be delivered before next Friday.

We spent the afternoon cleaning up a bit and straightening things around so that we would be ready for installation next weekend.  We are VERY VERY excited that this plan is TOTALLY coming together.  I even installed (with DS's assistance) a hammock chair that I think will be perfect for reading.

I will post photos of the finished structure with it all painted and ready to go very soon.

Wednesday's update:

The last of the really hard and heavy stuff is done (I hope).  The boys worked hard today but it was a shorter day then yesterday and to celebrate, we went out for dinner in Cave Creek.  Interesting sites up there, that's for sure.

So the last of the vigas are up and the frame for the shade cloth is complete.

Tools of the trade.
Before we took off for dinner, we cleaned up a bit, picking up tools that we probably won't need again and sweeping up the debris.

It's amazing how many things can be pulled out to do a job...  and how far they can get spread out.

But then, I am a quilter..... and I have to eat the words in the last paragraph.

The most fun for me to use was the transit.  (middle bottom in collage).  It enables one to make something level over short or very long distances.

I used a magnet to pick up metal shavings. 
They are nasty little things when they get into
your skin but make pretty designs on the magnet. 

DS made an impromptu cactus from leftover pieces.

Tomorrow, the metal framing must be wiped down and then primed.  I may work on oiling the each viga with Linseed oil if I feel up to it.  I predict not feeling well tomorrow after a rough evening tonight but I hope I am wrong.
They haven't delivered the shade cloth yet so I hope that makes it soon.

Friday, I have some errands to run so I will miss some of the fun.

And sometime this weekend, I will get MY new (used) Harley Davidson!!!  yay ME!!!
Then I have to get our V-Rod cleaned up and ready to sell.  Two motorcycles is all this family needs and the V-Rod is just too fast for me - I was cursed with a lead foot (or wrist, in this case) that will just get me into trouble.  Once again, it proves that its good to know your limitations!!!

DS welding on the steel frame.

Tuesday's Update:

Another busy day at Casa del Cohoon!  Everyone worked today and we are all pooped.

Custom post base

Viga sitting on post base

DS designed and built post bases specifically for our needs.  The base is attached to the concrete and viga sits on top of the base.  

The straps on the sides of the base will come up on each side and be secured to the viga.  The base, straps, and about the bottom foot or so of the viga will be covered with a box covered with stucco, similar to the ones on our existing vigas, but the new ones will be a little shorter.

In front of the addition (man cave)
DS spent a lot of time either on a ladder or going up and down a ladder today.  The supports were all welded in place and minor adjustments were made to ensure that everything was level and secure.

I am pleased (as a mom) to announce that DS takes safety very serious and took necessary precautions.

DS's support crew (DH and me) were busy moving tools and making sure he had everything he needed where he needed it.

Have I mentioned how AWESOME this is going to be?  I am EXTREMELY pleased with how its looking.

The angled support that I think will hold our hammock chair :)
The corner of the shade structure.

6 of 7 vigas up and secured.
Tomorrow, the last viga and the last section of the structure will be built along with finishing some of the detail work.   Plus, DS has some small jobs in our area to complete this week but not sure when he will be away to do those yet.

Monday's Update:

Prior to any construction
This property has undergone a lot of changes to its exterior since we purchased it in 2011.  It was your basic overgrown desert in the back yard before DH got his hands on it.

First, we added a fence around the back yard with custom gates that DS and DH built.

Next was a spa, waterfall, and pool.

Pool added
Then came an addition, which houses a man cave, a woman cave, and will someday house a bathroom. 

But we needed something in front of the addition beside dirt....  so a large patio was added.  The new patio extended from the farthest end of the addition all the way across the back of the house.

Cool, huh?  Well, yes, but it's hot too! :).

View along back prior to addition.
It was our intention all along to put shade over the new patio...  but we were having trouble deciding what TYPE of shade.  Our options were a pergola type shade, a shade cloth type of shade, or a solid roof to match the house.   We finally decided on a shade cloth.

So, what type of structure to hold the shade cloth? 

The boys (DH and DS) wanted to do steel (insert Tim Taylor type noises).  My input was that I did NOT want a steel upright in my line of vision when looking out the window.   Stalemate - while we discussed additional options.

And then my Karma came through again!!!   I found some 4 vigas at an extremely reasonable price....  And I bought them!  We already have vigas used as upright supports at the back of our house so I am excited that it will all match!

 I go to the engineer/contractor/builder with news of my purchase.  Further discussion garnered a plan I could live with but we needed 3 more vigas to make it all work.  DH finds additional vigas, we order the steel and the shade cloth and we are ready to roll.  YAY!!

Finally, after "sort of" working on this for 6 months, we are ready to build.  DS finds a week he is willing to be away from DIL and DGC to spend with us and build our shade.

Step 1 was to bring the vigas to the build site at the back of the house.  Of course, they were dropped off at the front of the house.  Vigas are HUGE, straight tree trunks that have been stripped of their bark.  And heavy.  Very heavy.

I am trying to include a really bad movie of how the boys (DH and DS) got the vigas from the front of the house to the back of the house.  I gotta tell you:  I was pretty impressed with their procedure!  They even shoveled a little path in the rocks so their "big rigger" would roll easily.  Hopefully, I can figure it out soon!!!

All vigas present and accounted for.
Both my DSs are pretty creative but they still amaze me sometimes.  They can make almost impossible feats look so easy.

First ledger up on the addition.
First viga up with supporting bracket to ledger.
DS welding support between vigas.
End of day 1: Four of seven vigas up.

Stay tuned for updates throughout the week!

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