Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Tiled up

On Tuesday, Warren spent much of his time putting down ceramic tile on the floor of the men's restroom. These tiles were about a foot square. Other tiles that will go on the wall are about an inch square. Others, even smaller and multi-colored will be used for decorative borders. In the women's restroom, a vinyl backsplash was installed on one wall.

Meanwhile, outside, Coles sanded and stained the two big beams that will hold up the translucent entrance awning and the cross beams that directly support it. Inside, the new "beams" at the back of the sanctuary were stained so that blended better with the color of the original beams.

Also, interior doors and door frames were delivered. They'll be installed soon.

Larry, Paul and Sue are spending hours on the watering each day trying to keep the lawn and the new landscape plantings alive during the heat wave.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Top shelf

It was exciting to see the cabinets hung in the preschool rooms on Friday, among the first of the finishing touches on the new building. The first was probably the vinyl flooring, which also has been installed now in both preschool rooms.

Several more visible signs of progress are expected this coming week. Coles has readied the cross beams for staining and placing on top of the big beams supporting the entryway awning. First, though, those big beams need to be sanded and stained. After that the translucent, high-tech plastic roof can be installed on the cross beams.

Meanwhile, work continues in the sanctuary to prepare it for painting, staining and the other work necessary to make it again into our place of worship.

Monday, July 20, 2009

On the right path

Last week, lots of dirt got moved one wheelbarrow full at a time as 14 yards of topsoil were placed around the construction site. It's a sign that the outside work is almost finished. Thanks to Larry and Paul the grounds are as clean as they have been in months. In the process, they replanted several shrubs that had been disrupted by the construction work but which are, amazingly, still blooming.

They used some extra gravel to recreate a path from the entry way around to the rose garden and beyond to the side door to the sanctuary.

Inside, progress is subtle. The restrooms are nearly ready for tile. Work is under way to clean, sand and level the preschool rooms' floors for installation of vinyl flooring.

And the watering crew is keeping the grass and the new plantings alive.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Q&A opportunity

Warren wants everyone to know that this Sunday after service, he and Steve will give an update on where construction stands and then be available for questions. The project is at the point where there are likely to be many concerns regarding money, what it can buy and who will decide.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Welded supports

The welder showed up Monday morning, July 13, to fasten the steel support posts for the awning beams to the metal plates in the concrete piers out in front of the new entry way.

These photos take you on a quick tour around the front of the building with its new look.

Here are some detail shots of the [UPDATED 8/26/09] welders earlier in the morning taken by Sue and the resulting supports. Also, the railings for the ramp and stairs from the fellowship area to the classrooms were installed, and there is a photo of that.

After all the work that has been done, there is both junk and surplus building supplies all over the place. Larry and Paul found that work was picking up.

Monday, July 13, 2009

All rise (or two, at least)

After church, Sunday, July 12, a crew of Warren, Steve M., Bram, Larry, Lee and Paul finished raising the two main beams for the front entry awning. We had rented a hand-cranked lift to get them up in the air.

First, Steve and Warren built a wooden support for the outward ends of the beams. The welders wouldn't arrive until Monday to install the permanent metal supports. Then, Warren trimmed the beams to length.

Steve cranked the first beam higher than a mobile scaffolding. Then, the scaffolding was rolled under it. When the beam was set down in the wall bracket, it didn't quite fit. So, it was lifted out to allow minor adjustments to be made with Steve's plus-sized circular saw.

After that it was rinse and repeat with the other beam.

Once both were in place, they were squared up and braced.

Piece of cake.

Give Sue credit for taking all these photos.

After all that, a few of the crew went back to the shed and unloaded Warren's trailer. It was filled with wood from the big old beech tree that used to stand between the classroom building and Bruce Hall. These huge slabs are now carefully stacked, off the ground and covered, under the cedars north of the shed.

Hurry up and ...

On Saturday, July 11, a work crew showed up at the construction site ready to hoist some beams into the air to support the roof/awning over the entry way to the new building.

Among the first things accomplished was the moving of one roughly 27-foot long by 15-inch high by 6-inch thick beam from the parking lot to the entry way. With six guys lifting, it was only extremely heavy.

Steve M. figured out a rather complex set of cuts that needed to be made in the first beam. Then, he made the cuts, which were necessary to fit the beam onto steel brackets that would be fastened to the wall of the building. Bram worked to assure that the brackets would be fastened solidly to the wall.

Meanwhile, not wanting to distract these two from their complex work, Earl took several loads of construction debris to the dump or recycling, and Larry, Dave McC., Bill and I found other ways to make ourselves useful. It is unlikely that we asked Steve M. the equivalent of "Are we there yet?" more than once every 15 minutes. We moved dirt piles and re-stacked several loads of lumber that had been removed from parts of the old building.

Warren was busy preparing the restroom floors for installation of tile.

After lunch, provided by Mary Ann, the second beam was moved into place on the entry way concrete before some people had to leave.

Mid-afternoon, as Steve was explaining to Bram the correct way to cut the second beam to fit on the wall bracket, it became clear that was not how the first beam had actually been cut. Steve walked quite a ways off for a while, so none of was sure how he really felt about this, but when he came back he cut off the end of the beam he had been working on and started over. Luckily, the beams were longer than they needed to be.

Working together, Steve and Bram completed the various cuts on the two beams by early evening.

The crew was recalled for work Sunday afternoon.

14 yards of topsoil ...

... were delivered to the church construction site this afternoon. It all has to be shoveled into wheelbarrows and moved to the landscaping beds around the church. There it must be raked smooth. Larry, Coles and Mary Ann got started on it Monday afternoon. But, says Mary Ann, you really can't tell from looking at the pile.

So, if you can shovel nice fluffy topsoil, move it in a wheelbarrow or rake it out, your help would sure be appreciated until the pile has been moved.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Sidewalks finished

Wednesday, Warren, Coles and Larry plus the concrete finishing crew completed the entry way slabs, the sidewalk around to the kitchen and Pastor Steve's back door and the sidewalk along the parking lot blacktop.

Sue captured it all.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Sidewalk superintendents

On Tuesday, Warren and crew were halfway through pouring new porches and sidewalks around the building. Forms had been removed from some of the porches and were ready to be removed from about half the sidewalks so new forms could be built for pouring the second half of the concrete.

Rebar was in place for building some steps down into the utility basement.

Larry and Paul were working on a bit of carpentry in the eaves where the old building and the new building meet. Some carefully measured and cut tongue and groove lumber was being fitted under the roof to plug a ragged little hole.

Inside, some canny carpenters have hoisted what appears to be another beam up under the roof at the back of the sanctuary, so that the beams in the front and back match in size. It turns out to be a little trompe l'fir -- a box made of a 2x6 and two 2x8s. But with putty and paint, who'll know?

Elsewhere, mudding and sanding of the drywall continues and electrical work -- especially for the fire alarm system -- goes on.

And some grungy-looking guy claimed to be giving the grass a one-month dose of fertilizer, but he mainly seemed to be wandering about on the new lawn.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Lots of action

Sue, once again, was on the scene to capture two great action sequences as, first, Warren, Coles, Larry and Paul helped pour the slabs for the entryway, and, second, began work on the sidewalk behind the kitchen and offices.