Saturday, February 26, 2011

It's All About The Tool

Last weekend I started assembling the rafters for the warehouse.  After a full week, I've managed to assemble two.  Measure, cut, swear, measure, cut, glue, measure, cut, swear, swear, measure - see a pattern here?  With the need for so many identical pieces, measuring and cutting each one individually just doesn't work.  Today, I picked up The Chopper.

I wish I'd bought one before I even started construction.  After reading the instructions, and the helpful safety tip

I was able to, in just under an hour, cut all of the pieces necessary to assemble all of the remaining rafters.  After another hour or so, I had four of them finished.  The two shown below are the original two that took all week to build.  The new ones from today are still pressed between sheets of wax paper, waiting for the glue to dry.

Three more to build, and I'm done...

Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Walls Are Up!

I'm finally finished with the basic four walls of the warehouse (no more siding to install!).  I put the finishing touches on the removable end wall this evening.  The next step is the rafter/truss assembly and finally the roof.  Here's a look at the structure with and without the end wall in place, followed by a couple of shots with a reefer car staged in front.

I Don't Do Windows (OK, I Guess I Do)

I run a green railroad, doing my part to reduce waste and keep materials out of the landfill.  Ok, actually, I'm just cheap and will reuse all sorts of "trash" as construction materials.  A favorite "reuse" is clear plastic packaging - the stuff works great for window glass, as you see in these next three photos.

These "glass" panes are simply squares cut from a plastic packaging "bubble" that I saved.

Pay Attention, Dummy!

I made a mistake.  First, the excuse - it's been a rough month, I'm tired, and I'm fighting a head cold.  Now onto the mistake.  Look at this first photo.  Notice the frames around the windows, inset into the siding?

Now, look at this next photo, paying particular attention to the window on the left.

When I installed the siding, I forgot to leave room for the window frames.  Using an Xacto knife and a couple of needle files, I was able to carve out the necessary space, as you can see with the window on the right.  It all worked out in the end, but with a lot more effort than necessary.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Long week

I don't have a witty title for this post, nor do I have much progress to report.  It's been a long, rough, unproductive couple of weeks.  Watching parents struggle with the loss of a child is never easy, but it's even harder when it's your own parents.  A weekend that started with an unexpected plumbing project ended with the loss of my brother, and a 23 hour drive through a blizzard and ice storm.  It's a long way from Minnesota to Ohio under the best of conditions.  Long drive, long week.

That said, I did finally make some progress tonight.  The permanent front wall of the produce warehouse is done.  The doors are framed, and the wall is attached to the floor.  If I can get some momentum behind me, I might get the removable end wall finished up this weekend.