Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Progression Of Slowness

It seems like I'm spending more time lately plowing snow than working on the house. The white stuff has been falling incessantly and is slowing me down considerably.

I was actually reading an article yesterday on cold-weather construction, and it stated that - on average - any given task will take four times longer to complete in the winter than in the summer. That made me feel a bit better about the fact that I only got another three pieces of subfloor down this afternoon.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Hydraulic Spew

I had a hydraulic hose burst on the tractor on Sunday while pushing snow. Damn fluid squirted all over the place! As a result, I spent all day today finding a new hose, installing it, and plowing snow. All this snow would be great if I was building an IGLOO!!! (Harumph.)

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Continuing With The Subfloor

Still working on the subfloor. Between the extra-chilly weather at the beginning of the week and the new snow yesterday, I don't seem to have gotten much accomplished this week.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Floor Joists All Done!

Work has been progressing rather slowly this week due to the cold weather... -15 or colder every day. However, I did finally finish installing the rest of the floor joists where the scaffolding used to be.

I've also been working on the subfloor this week. Because the joists in the kitchen area are spaced at 12", and the rest of the joists are spaced at 16" (January 4th post); the joists on one side of the main beam don't line up with the joists on the other side. This means that I've got to make some Z-cuts in some of the subfloor sheets so that all the seams between the sheets are located directly on top of a joist. Like lots of other things I've run into, it's not really a big deal, it just takes extra time.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Digging Out Floor Joists

Now that I've got the scaffolding removed from the inside of the basement, I can finish off the floor joists. The only problem is that they're buried under three feet of snow. They're okay there because they're on blocks to keep them off the ground and they're covered with plastic to keep them dry, but they are buried nonetheless.

The solution? Dig out one end of the joists, tie a chain around them, and pull them out with the tractor.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Frost Bites!

One of the hazards of winter construction is the possibility foundation movement due to frost heaves. Until a house is closed-in and heated, the footings are susceptible to movement due to freezing, particularly the pad footings because there isn't much weight on them. Also, clay soil is particularly bad for this, and that is exactly what I have here.

The big column that supports the main beam at one end of the house has risen up 1/2" since I installed it on Dec 30th. I've had to remove the column temporarily and replace it with an adjustable steel telepost. That allows me to lower the main beam back down to where it should be. Once the house is enclosed and the ground in the basement has thawed, I'll trim the wooden column to size and then put it back in place.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Open Spaces

The scaffolding has been removed from the inside of the house. Its funny how you become accustomed to something in a relatively short period of time... it looks so different now.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Another Big Column

In order to support the corner of the stairway that leads up to the loft I've had to put another big column in the basement. This one was made out of solid dimensional lumber as well, and sits on top of a pad footing. It provides support directly under the floor joist and also goes up on both sides of the floor joist. This gives a large, solid area on the main floor to support the bearing wall that, in turn, supports the top of the stairs to the loft.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Framing The Floor For The Stairwell

I've built up a column and added some more floor joists to accommodate the corner of the stairwell.

Notice where the short beam attaches to the I-joist... the building code calls for that area to be filled in with two pieces of 1/2" plywood on each side of the I-Joist. That makes the center part of the I-joist (the web) the same width as the top and bottom, and creates a good solid backing for the hanger that holds the end of the beam.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Main Floor Subfloor

I've started laying down the subfloor for the main floor. I've also put up a new gang-plank at the front of the house to get in and out. Now I can dismantle the scaffolding in the back corner so that I can finish installing the floor joists there.

Monday, January 7, 2008

More Floor Joists

I've finished installing all the floor joists that I can do for now. The only area left is where the scaffolding is. I'll come back to them after I remove the scaffolding... which I can only do after I've got another way into the house. That's coming next.

Friday, January 4, 2008

Floor Joists Half Done

The floor joists are about half done now. The kitchen area is complete as well as part of the living room. Notice the different spacing between the joists on one side of the beam as compared to the other. In the kitchen, the joists are spaced every 12 inches because of their extra length. On the other side, they're spaced 16 inches apart. The end all result will be a solid floor throughout.