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Archive for March, 2012

A beaming update

Progress has been good on the beam project. We have all three sections of the new beam up and we have been jacking up the house. Although this has been straightening out the doorways along the beam direction, it has been making the doorways to the bedrooms out of square. We have a plan to fix this but for the time being, the cats just have to locked into the public side of the house during the night.

Today, we measured the level of the beam across the length and learned that the sag wasn’t too terrible anymore. On the first post set, we decided that we are good and put the new wooden posts in place. Everything lined up well and we had no problems setting the new posts. We didn’t quite achieve level across the two posts but the difference in minor.

First sets of posts installed

We have been working on other projects that are associated with this beam project. Yesterday, A. redid the water pipe from the meeter across the house where it branches off for the kitchen and bathroom. It’s pretty handy to have a master plumber at hand and I have gotten pretty good at cleaning and fluxing fittings. We also had to redo some wiring as it was going through the load bearing wall. This was pretty uneventful and we didn’t have to be without overhead lights for too long.

The weather here has been unseasonably very warm with temps in the 70s and 80s for almost two weeks.

March 3rd, 2012

We were skiing on March 3rd and it was in the 70s the next weekend. This weekend, March 24th, the fruit trees are leaving out, the tulips are blooming and I mowed some grass. We turned off the heat over two weeks ago and have been sleeping with the windows open. The house got up to 75 one day and our thermostat alerted us with a high temp alert. The warm weather makes me feel like we are behind on our projects because I feel like we should be working on the siding and gutters, but it is still only March. I did make some progress on painting some of the hanger brackets for the gutters and also realized that I forgot to order one part.

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We spent last weekend and some of this weekend gathering the materials for our beam project. The pile of new wood is rather large and it is hard to imaging how we will find a place for all this.

Pile of LVL and posts to install

Cross blocking cut out

After we had the new beams cut and prepared, we cut our the cross blocking in between the two sections of the old beam. Remember, the cross blocking and subfloor is essentially all that holds up the load bearing wall. You can see the load bearing wall to the left of the big hole in the floor and how it clearly does not fall on the beam below. We placed the post temporarily, mostly for piece of mind.

New beam resting on ladder

Once all the cross blocking was gone and A. ground off all the nails, we lifted the beam up. While relying on the ladder to hold it, we had to whack it quite a bit to get it seated all the way onto the concrete foundation. We even jacked up the old beam a bit at the foundation so it would slide in.

A header with temporary screw posts

Once the beam was seated, we installed a header with two temporary screw posts. This allowed us to jack the new beam up under the load bearing wall and even lift it up a bit. This is evidenced by the cracks showing up on the wall in the living room. Eventually, we will install 6×6 LVL posts, that will not be adjustable. We already have the post bases installed.

Post bases for new posts

The post bases will keep moisture from wicking up into the wood and they also tie down the post into the footing.

Stay tuned for more beaming fun next weekend.

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