Building a Good Foundation

hard-workThe last time I posted the block layers were suppose to arrive and install the block. Well, they came on Friday, September 27, and worked and worked.

Block installers

Block installers

Mortar sand and concrete

Mortar sand and concrete

Laying out the blocks

Laying out the blocks

Put it over there

Put it over there

The end of day one of block laying

Towards the end of day one of block laying

Sewer pipe

Sewer pipe

After the block layers left around 2:30, Bill went to work. No one wanted to apply the mastic (tar) on the blocks. It was even noted on the block layers contract with JQM Construction that their work did not include applying mastic. Bill even asked the workers if anyone wanted to do the job that day and they all said, “NO!” The purpose of applying the mastic coating is to restrain the entrance of moisture into foundation walls. It was a dirty job. Poor Bill took on the task. He worked until dark applying that yucky stuff with a brush. He wore throw-away clothes and shoes.

Bill after a long day

Bill after a long day

Bill and his mastic bucket

Bill and his mastic bucket

One wall with mastic

Westย  wall with mastic

See the exterior door into the crawl space above? I will never be crawling in there. ๐Ÿ˜ฏ

Back wall with mastic

Back wall with mastic

More blocks

More blocks

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Garage area on the left and Laundry and Kitchen area on the right

Front view of the house

Front view of the house

The block layers came back and worked on Saturday to lay more blocks. Then, they gave Bill the news that they needed more blocks. Like 185 more blocks! They worked until they used up all the blocks. Bill had to call and order more blocks and had to be at the block supplier early Monday morning to pick them up. The guys said they would be back Monday to finish up. Bill ended up having to make two trips to get block as he borrowed Jim’s parents’ Expedition and their 16 foot trailer. Those blocks were heavy. At least he didn’t have to load and unload the blocks. ๐Ÿ˜• Well, he did end up picking up a bunch of them this week when he was cleaning up.

Monday the block layers finished their job. The top one or two rows of block that will show above the ground are cutface blocks. Bill did not apply mastic on those. They look really nice and we can paint them to match the house. The back doesn’t have any of those blocks because we don’t have any that will show – most of the back of the house will be a very large long patio.

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More mastic to apply

More mastic to apply

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As you can see from the photos above, we had some rain, but as Jim said, at least the rain did not prevent us getting the foundation laid – which is always a concern at this time of year. Bill tried to get the rest of the mastic applied on Monday before more rain headed our way. He thought he was done at the end of that day. But, Jim and Bill had to re-evaluate where the ground was going to meet the blocks, so he had to apply mastic on more rows of block today. Bill says he done with that messy job! ๐Ÿ™‚

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See the cutface blocks on this picture?

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View of the front of the house foundation

View of the front of the house foundation

This is what they left behind

This is what they left behind

Look what else was delivered this week!

Dumpster

Dumpster

Bill spent a lot of time this week trying to build a table for his saw as he got rid of his old one when we moved. He’s getting there. And, he also installed a light (running off the generator) so he would have some light in the back of the workshop.

Making a new saw table

Making a new saw table

Let there be light!

Let there be light!

And to let you know that you can never have enough clamps (Bill’s favorite saying), here are pictures of all his clamps.

New Clamp rack

New Clamp rack

Rack Bill made that he outgrew.

Rack Bill made that he outgrew.

And just a funny . . .

Shark jaws mounted on his soon to be half-bath walls.

Shark jaws mounted on his soon to be half-bath walls.

Bill also made lots of phone calls this week making arrangements for electric, gas and plumbing services. He finally got word that Vectren will be able to install the correct transformer on a new pole at the end of our driveway. Bill also made arrangements for a saw post to be installed 75 ft up from the new pole. That will give temporary electricity for any of the contractors needing some power. Of course, that also means we’ll be getting an electric bill soon. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

Last Saturday we bought our fireplace. Firemaster was having a big sale so we decided to see if we could get a better price than our original quote. Turns out they had given us a really good deal but brought it down even more for us. We ended up getting to meet the Enerzone sales representative and he was very helpful and gave Bill a free wood moisture tester. Yahoo! And, you might know that when we were looking at the model we were buying the top grate was different from the one I had used to design our fireplace. ๐Ÿ˜ฎ Turns out we had originally ordered the better grate. So, of course, I had to redesign that fireplace yet again. It’s not too much different from before, but it changed.

Fireplace before I knew grate was different

Fireplace before I knew grate was different

Fireplace design with new grate

Fireplace design with new grate

Bill is taking this design down to the stone guy next week. I’m done with this – I hope! ๐Ÿ™‚

Jim text Bill today that he heard from the framer and he will be able to start on our house in about 1-1/2 weeks. Oh goodie! I’ll be back from my trip then. However, we need to order our windows and doors tomorrow before I leave!

I’ll leave you this time with some pictures of the chickens that live next door at Jim and Joan’s. The chickens are laying 3 eggs a day. So we have plenty of free eggs now!

Two of the roosters from the first batch that Maggie didn't kill. And, they are mean.

Two of the roosters from the first batch that Maggie didn’t kill. And, they are mean.

Five laying chickens and one rooster from the second batch

Five laying chickens and one rooster from the second batch

They fly on top of the coop

They fly on top of the coop

If you look really hard you can see a brown egg on the right in the tray

If you look really hard you can see a brown egg on the right in the tray

I hope things aren’t too crazy for Bill while I’m gone. I hope he gets to finish up his workshop and get started on those cabinets. Soon I hope to post pictures of house framing and cabinet building!

2 thoughts on “Building a Good Foundation

    • Sandy…love all of this…especially the new stone…KEYSTONE…of the new fireplace. This reminds me of every chapel and church and sacred stone arch for gardens. You are so creative. Have a great trip. Love, Paula

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