Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Studio/Workshop Progress Report - Stumps

The weather was so dry here as summer drew to a close that very little of the soil excavated from the stump holes stuck to the auger, as would've been the case had the soil contained any moisture. The task of removing the excess dirt from 80 stump holes was therefore more physically demanding than I had expected, but was made easier after a very generous neighbour pitched in and helped over a couple of days. 

Once the holes were cleaned out and given the OK by the building inspector, the next job was to pour 200mm (8") of concrete into each hole to support the cypress stumps. With the aid of a small cement mixer and a wheelbarrow I found that this too was a lengthy and exhausting process, and I was greatly relieved when all the concrete was in place and could be left to cure for a week, allowing me something of a reprieve.

Installing the stumps with the required spacings and alignment required careful measurement and bracing, and much more physical exertion than I'm used to; not only did the soil have to be backfilled around the stumps, but to achieve the necessary stability I needed to compact it in layers with the blunt end of a crowbar. Needless to say, I'm feeling much stronger and fitter than I did before I began this project!

I'm fortunate to have been able to borrow a laser level which will make the task of cutting the stumps off to their final height a much easier task, with greater accuracy than I could otherwise achieve. 

From this point on, I'm hopeful that the fun factor will increase and that the demands I've been placing on my weary body will diminish a little!


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