Wayne: “US-destined PODs are shipping, Canadian PODs tomorrow”. I’m seeing if I can hold my breath 24 hours. If it does, indeed, ship in the next couple of days and get her in the next week, it looks like I will have successfully got ahead of the snow. Fingers and toes are crossed.
Monthly Archives: October 2009
Treated the Deck with Wood Preservative
I’ve been a bit worried about the uneven weathering of the deck wood that I expect will happen once the dome is in place – the outer part of the deck will be constantly weathered – including being snow-covered for 6 months each year – while the inside will have no water or sunlight on it, practically ever. We had a warm break this weekend, probably the last one of the season. Temp outside is 11 degrees right now, so I applied a heavy coat of Thompson’s Water Seal (which requires 10 degrees to go on). No rain forecast until tomorrow night, and the Thompson’s says it needs to be rain-free for 24 hours. So, this should work out OK. I used a colourless preservative that promises water to be repellent and to preserve cedar against greying. I also put quite a good coat on the top of the concrete pier, hoping it may help reduce water penetration and icing damage. This week is the latest estimate from the factory of when PODs will be shipping so I’m really hoping to be installing next weekend.
Shipping Charges and Signs of Life
Had some communications with Wayne today. The factor is running flat-out and hopefully there will be a POD with my name on it within a week. Also received and paid the shipping charge – he was able to get a slightly reduced price by combining shipping for me and another Ottawa-bound POD. I’m hoping I’ll have it for next weekend, which should mean it’s up before serious winter sets in.
Waiting. . .
Well, the deck has been ready for a week now. Every day I go to the “check order status” section of the SkyshedPod site and learn the order is “processing”. Snow in Calgary, snow in Winnipeg, snow in Michigan. I’m hopeful the dome will arrive before the permanent snow cover here. Wayne announced on the mailing list that they expected to do NA shipments next week so maybe we’ll be one of those. I’m not good at waiting.
Updated Drupal to version 6.14
Drupal has been bugging me that there was an “important security update” to verson 6.14. I didn’t want to install this manually and waited until the web-based installer from my ISP caught up and offered the update. Mistake – it failed and screwed up the site. So, I manually restored the site to its healthy state (fortunately I took a very complete backup first). Then I learned how to do a manual update. Other than being labour-intensive, that worked fine. The total lesson took several hours though. Next time I’ll just go straight to the manual method.
Deck Largely Complete
During the business day today (I was at work and missed it) the K-Deck guys did essentially the whole deck. I came home just as they were fastening the last side panel on. It’s beautiful – solid, square, central pier placed exactly right. All that’s left is some minor clean-up and the stairs – I think they’ll be done tomorrow.
Successfull Concrete Pour
Today K-Deck successfully finished digging the footing holes, placing the sono-tubes, and pouring the concrete, including setting the J-Bolts in place with their placement form. Very professional-looking work, carefully laid out and leveled.
Tomorrow they’ll clean up the ground, lay gravel and landscaping cloth, and other preparatory work. I’m not sure whether woodwork will start tomorrow – I suspect they’ll want a full day for the concrete to cure before stressing it.
Drilling for Rebar and Pouring Footings
The team digging the deck footings is here today. Confirmed, they showed me the bedrock base the holes hit. They’ll use a concrete drill to drill into it and then drive in rebars. That’s going to be sturdy. I test-fitted the J-Bolt form into the sonotube when they brought it in – now would be a good time to find it doesn’t fit, rather than after they pour concrete. It fits – phew.
Configured some Drupal modules
I more-or-less finished configuring Drupal to my satisfaction for now. Added the “image” and “image assist” modules to easily imbed images in posts, and the FCKEditor module for near-WYSIWYG editing. I’ve been using FCKEditor, in its MediaWiki form, on several web sites for a year now, and have come to like it. Now I feel ready to start filling in some content. If only the DNS propagation would come through.
Footings Hit Bedrock
Mike of K-Deck called. Did I notice the holes weren’t as deep as I probably expected them to be? (Yes, I did, and assumed they just weren’t finished digging yet.)
They hit bedrock. About a metre down, solid “Canadian Shield”, not rocks, not a boulder. This is not bad news – bedrock is pretty sturdy. Monday he’s going to drill into the bedrock in each hole. Into each drilled hole he’ll drive a rebar, leaving it protruding into the hole. Then, when the concrete goes in, it will end up anchored to the bedrock. That’s going to be solid for sure.
All this should happen Monday, weather permitting. I have the J-Bolt form ready for setting the mounting bolts. Also covered the bottom of the wood form with waxed paper to reduce it sticking to the concrete.