Monday, June 22, 2009

More progress on the shed

After a little research, we decided not to use cement to set the locust piers. Instead, we opted for packing the posts in with gravel. Well, we don't actually have a supply of angular pea gravel handy, but we do have a large pile of small rocks and gravel as a result of sifting the first round of garden beds that we dug last year.

It was tough work on this warm, solstice weekend. We would fill the wheel barrow and push it out of the woods and up the hill to the shed a half dozen or more times. Once a pier was in place and relatively level, we'd fill the hole about four inches and then Erika would hold the pier with a level on top and keep it right while I tamped the gravel down all around it with a 2x4.

Then we'd add another four inches or so and tamp again. The tamping was done with all our strength, really packing the heck out of it. By the time the hole was full of packed gravel, the post would not budge. Half of each pier was buried. Nice and sturdy, and if we ever decide we need to remove them or something, we can unpack the gravel with a metal rod.

After setting both piers, we jacked the front of the shed up so we could pull the 6x6 beam out, move it over the piers, and measure it for cutting. Once it was cut, we set it in place on the piers and lowered the shed back down onto its new seat and called it a day.

The next day, we used some large nails to spike the beam to the piers and then the shed to the beam. Then we started figuring out how were were going to frame this floor out.

The floor needs to be on a different angle than the shed. That's just the conditions we're working with. So we've got all sorts of funky nailers in place to make this happen. We ended up adding a 2x6 flat across the beam so that the floor joists would gain another inch and a half lift at the front of the shed. We added our diagonal support in the back corner. And we managed to install four of the six joists. The last two will be the toughest because there is some old framing in the way and we'll need to find a creative (or forceful) way to deal with that.

Also, we harvested garlic on Saturday!

- John