Musist. Tired. CtC demanding.

CtC has turned. He's using me to get himself off the critical path. He's devious. He knows I too am devious. He does have me in a box where if I accept assignments we move forward more quickly. As nice as DnT's place is, I've taken to calling it the Quail Manor Annex. I want the hell out and to be done with this project. We're at that phase...

So with my ever-present good nature and smile I'm accepting.

CtC knows my skills, useful to him, are dubious. And I've stopped bringing down tools. So, my assignments involve shovels and wheelbarrows. He seems to feel a little bad, giving me coal mineish assignments, but I think that is just part of the devious...

This musist has some fatigue. Good news is the weather seems to have turned. Still hot. But more a Denver hot. Manageable. Actually turned off the swamp cooler this evening. More good news. We get our first retirement check from my dear partners at The Firm on 1st October. Getting paid for doing absolutely nothing. It's a good thing.

Over the weekend I was busy cleaning the Quail Manor. There are a shocking number of nails embedded in the Quail Manor. There seem to be an equivalent number of loose nails scattered surprisingly far and wide. 

Me and my magnet were very very busy. Me and my shop vac were busy cleaning up wood shavings from stud bays and the floor. Me and my blower were busy evicting stubborn wood shavings from high-up stud bays on to lower stud bays and the floor where me and my shop vac could clean them up.

Now, these wood shavings were not doing anyone any particular harm in the stud bays. But they were annoying me, so remove them I must. All can rest easy that the Quail Manor walls, when filled with insulation and covered with drywall will be free of foreign matter.

Loose fasteners on the concrete floor are another matter entirely. Even with the Ram Board down, if someone steps on a nail or screw or whatever, it can take a divot out of the floor. I've found some divots. Hopefully my diligence has kept the divots to a number that adds character to the floor. Loose fasteners in the dirt pose a hazard for Haul'n Otis when they return in a couple of weeks to work with The Brain Trust on final grading. His Bob Cat has rubber tires. A flat could be devastating... So I pick-up nails.

Drywall starts tomorrow or the next day. I'm betting there will be a whole lot a screws flying about. They tried to deliver the drywall today whilst the insulators were doing their thing. CtC sent them away. No place to put stuff.

Now to my fatigue. Over the weekend, I was assigned to patching a "termite tunnel" where the old sewer line penetrated the bad old foundation stem wall. Don't want any of those buggers that are sufficiently wily to bypass the termite traps in the yard to have an easy path into the thoroughly poisoned soil resulting from treatment each time we poured slabs under the Quail Manor. If they can survive the poison I suppose we will have spot treatments... I'll bitch about that later.

Theoretically, I was the right guy since I had already dug it out once before to be patched by the masons doing the wall. Tony the Mason, coincidentally was by today. He'd not seen the place since the pouring of the colored concrete. Was blown away. I'm pretty sure sincerely. Kept noticing and commenting on details we'd worked hard to install. He passed the sincerity test and was gratifying that the details were noticed by a knowing eye. Anyway, the hole got filled in the first time with no patching, so two months later, I'm digging it again.

 Termite Tunnel patch to the left side. Diversionary clay pipe shards were found on the right side of the trench.

Termite Tunnel patch to the left side. Diversionary clay pipe shards were found on the right side of the trench.

I recollected it was quite deep. Further, I recollected it was somewhere in a 6 foot section of wall. That memory only helped to tamp down my spirits as I started digging. And digging. Then the hole had to get bigger so I could get (my fat ass) down in it and keep digging. Found some clay pipe shards. Figured I must be close. Turns out they were diversionary. Don't know where the shards came from, but the they were not near where I eventually found and patched the hole.

Then today I had to refill and tamp. 

CtC was busy working off his critical path punch list. In an idle moment, he noticed me Straw Bossing and THEN assigned me to raise the walkway on the south side of the Quail Manor about 8 inches so the future electric meter was no more than 6 '- 3" above grade. Some kind of code thing. And grade had to be at least 3 inches below the stucco weep screed. Some kind of code thing.

The grade on the south side is actually quite steep. Frequent readers may recall the last time SWITBO was here we built some steps using the waste concrete from the original the Quail Manor slab. Then you may recall the gas meter movers made a real mess of them. Anyway, the process of raising the grade involves first building what amounts to a retaining wall with waste concrete hunks that are of course no where near where the raising of grade needs to occur.

So I'm hauling and placing concrete hunks. One at a time. My back just started to hurt again from the memory. Then, the wheelbarrow must be filled again and again from a pile of what is now pretty compacted compactable fill (the concrete wizards call it "AB"). The compacted compactable fill pile is in what will be the guest parking area. The raising of grade place is on the opposite corner of the Quail Manor grounds. The logical way to get between the two is blocked by 80 sticks of recently painted 2 x 2 steel tubing stacked neatly on what have become flimsy saw horses. One pile is listing pretty badly. We braced it and have hope. The next best haulage-way option is through the back courtyard, past the trench I luckily just refilled, and down the steps out of the back courtyard.

We haul around some old OSB and build a ramp down the steps. My first load goes to building a ramp up to the ramp that goes down the steps. All eventually worked out quite nicely and the electric meter is now 6 feet 1 and 1/2 inch above the recently raised grade. And we have the required 3 inches clearance between the stucco weep screed and grade. Check.

So I keep working my way East on the South walk. To fairly quickly encounter the sewer clean-outs and grey water diversion valve. I think I found out it is very handy to have a welder who frequents the house across the street. I'll tell that story another time. He may have come-up with a solution (involving steel and welding, when you have a hammer the whole world is a nail or something like that) for the sewer clean-outs and a grey water diversion valve that are on a steeply sloped hillside AND live right where a walkway between the front and back yards has to live...

Here are today's pictures. Mostly the insulation was installed. Really darkens the place up. But that will sort when the drywall starts going up in the next couple of days and we paint that a shade of white. AND, CtC installed the front and back doors! AND 2TP primed them. The primer is in the direction of the final blue but quite a bit lighter. He told me not to worry... CtC also got the oxymoronicly round boxes for the front porch lights raised. Looks a lot better to me...

Careful readers will note we insulated:

  • The bathroom walls for sound privacy.
  • The "fart fan" above the "wet wall" between the bathrooms for sound abatement.
  • Behind the dishwasher on the peninsula wall in the kitchen for sound abatement.
  • Behind the washer and dryer in the garage for sound abatement.