Mr. Collins spoiled us by doing so much work with the Bobcat in such a short amount of time. Once he was done, the quick work with the big machines was over. The slow grind began….
First order of business: Foundation work (probably the most boring/ least photogenic/ least interesting part of the whole job). Here it is in a nutshell…
Our old house is like many in that it was built on a post foundation. This means that the first floor was framed on wood beams that were sitting on wood posts in the dirt (usually Bois D’arc or cedar). Modern foundations are obviously very different but many of these post foundations still exist. In order to level a house, it is best to remove the wood posts and replace them with solid concrete blocks. This is tough work. It involves a lot of crawling under the house, lifting the house with 20 ton jacks, taking the wood posts out, dragging in heavy solid blocks, positioning them strategically, and lowering the jacks back down. All intermixed with a fair bit of Spanglish, blaring Tejano music and cussing.
Sounds like a blast, right? Why not crawl under your house this weekend and give it a try???
Luckily years back in my remodeling career, I did find a VERY unsophisticated way to help speed up the process of removing the wood posts around the perimeter… The method is called the “hook a truck up to the post with a chain and floor it”.
NOT OSHA approved.
Coincidentally (or not) my transmission went out a few months after this. Oops. Guess I yanked a little too hard.
After a couple of weeks of wood post removal/ replacement, the old gal started to level up.
Along the way I did have some good help.
But my help was easily distracted.
Or easily irritated.
Not sure what that look was about–but check out that snazzy new perimeter beam in the background–MAJOR progress (even though it looks like nothing).
We also started some demolition at this point. There was a brick flue in the center of the house that vented air from old wood burning heaters. It had to come out in order to accommodate the new floor plan. This is the aftermath of that job…
We also took advantage of opportunities for shenanigans like these…
Because when you are gonna tear out everything in a house anyway, what’s a little indoor bike riding gonna hurt?
Next Up: Hardcore Demolition!