Once the first half of the excavation work was completed, my stress level about everything became [nearly] nonexistent. My coworkers ask about the barn daily, and, much to their surprise, I tend to just shrug and say, "It's moving along," without much detail.
The biggest contributing factor to my lack of stress is that Dave is incredibly careful and precise where his work is concerned. As a result, I have no anxiety over the barn construction. Each day when I come home from work, it's a fun surprise to see what they've accomplished. It's also fun to witness Dave's excitement about the design work and get to collaborate with him on little design details. I'm going to have a very pretty barn when everything is said and done, it seems. Much prettier than I ever imagined anyway!
A Quick Aside to Discuss MORE Design Modifications!Before I dive into a photo-by-photo progression of all we've accomplished since my last update, I realize I have some quick updating to do. The structure has continued to change [in relatively minor ways] since my original design. I knew changes would be a part of this process, and I am glad that I have been flexible about it all because the changes just keep comin'!
Doors/Aisle: So, once upon a time, I was only going to have one double-door into the aisle from the uphill side. The way we envisioned the barn on the landscape would have left the back door (along the woodline) opening up to a downhill, wooded area. It seemed silly to have a big double-door there that would never be utilized. It also made sense to keep openings to a minimum for winter winds. However, things changed major once we saw what we would really be working with down in that big ol' hole we created during the excavation process!
So now, the back door will be a big double-door where hay is delivered and where the vet/farrier can access. There's a surprising amount of space back there for a single vehicle to maneuver and there are a lot of options for how we can bring a trailer through. It makes a lot of sense, too, from a hay delivery standpoint because the hay storage is situated in the middle and back third of the barn where that door opens. This will make unloading and stacking a lot more efficient.
The "front" door isn't going to be a sliding barn door at all. We haven't fully decided what exactly it will be, but bottom line is that it won't be a big door that spans the aisle. There isn't enough room between the toe of the slope to really turn a vehicle into the barn, so no need for something huge. I still want to maintain the utility of a door to pass through with a horse in hand and the wheelbarrow or whatever else, but we can skin that cat a lot of different ways. I'm letting Dave worry about how best to do it and am consulting with him as needed.
Windows: Originally, I'd planned for 1 large picture window in the tack room, 1 smaller window for the other tack room wall, and 2 smaller windows in the stalls with a wall. The only thing that is still true about this statement is the big picture window. For the other tack room window and the window into the front stall, we will have big 4' x 4' windows that will actually open (and are screened). We might do the same for the other stall in the back, but that is TBD. (And lest you worry that I'm limiting my storage space in the tackroom with big windows - worry not! There is ample space in that 10' x 12' space for all of my tack + grain/supplements + room to grow.)
In addition to the above windows, Dave has added a window to the hay area because we already have it (leftover from when he built the house) so why not?! It'll be blocked by hay for part of the year, but I'll just make a point of using that area of the hay storage first so that we can enjoy some natural light sooner.
And Now, Progress Photos!The posts were all placed.
|Corner posts and a couple others|
|All but one post, still excluding the overhang posts|
|A hole not yet filled in|
|So much going on in this image, which is what I wanted to capture...|
Levels, lines, holes, scaffolding, ladders, posts, bracing...
|Standing in a stall looking across the aisle and through the tack room up toward the house|
|The barn! And Dave!|
|Partial framing of both walls. Hard to see, but on the posts near to the house there are little cut out shoulders. This is where|
the top 2x12 will rest that the trusses will then sit on
|2x12 mentioned above now set in the shoulders on both long sides shortly before the trusses were set to arrive|
And on June 27th, after a lot of hustling on the 25th and 26th to prep, the trusses arrived!
|Unloading the 10 trusses|
|Placing the third truss|
|Placing the third truss|
|Dave with spreaders or spacers, I can't remember the technical term, but he's making sure the trusses are spaced correctly|
and then securing them in advance of more framing/bracing.
|Had to get some shots of Dave!|
|Placing a spreader|
|Nailing a 2x4 to brace and support the trusses|
|All done! Really starting to look like something, now! Still some posts to be trimmed (corners).|
Dave really hustled to get ready for the trusses. He wanted to help guarantee that the crane was there for the least amount of time because it is expensive. The arrival of the crane and placement of the trusses coincided with a meeting with the electrical company that I'd taken off work for, so I was able to be present for the whole thing. Very cool!
On June 28, the roof was framed/braced more until they ran out of 2x4s to complete the work.
|Corner posts nipped down to size and the majority of bracing complete for the roof. Plus a preview of the insulation panels|
that precede the metal roof. Dave hadn't worked with this material before and wanted to see how it was going to play out.
|A preview of what things will look like from the inside looking up.|
|A completely braced roof ready and waiting for final framing pieces + panels!|
They'd hoped to do a bit more than they did on the 28th, but when the hardware store only delivered part of the order, it hamstringed progress. Deliveries are only made on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so not much of anything was able to be completed on Friday. Womp, womp.
Last week saw more progress with the arrival of more materials, framing, prepping the tack room floor, and prepping for the barn doors - which Dave is designing from scratch!
|Closest corner of barn is the tack room and you can see the floor of that area beginning to take shape|
|Looking down the aisle from the main doors|
|Hay storage leading into the tack room and the future front door.|
|Hard to see, but the window (on the ground bottom right of barn) in the hay storage area will be here...|
|Easier to see the framing now.|
|Framing out the tack room floor. Subfloor will be placed on this and then I get to enjoy a beautiful paneled maple floor as|
the finished product! More leftovers from when Dave built the house. I'm not complaining!
|Looking straight down the aisle from the back door to the front door. Hay storage leading to tack room on left, stalls on right.|
Everything is really starting to come together and Dave says I should really start to see "big changes" this week and next. Which, like, I already see "big changes" so I can only imagine how exciting the next two weeks will be! He worked on his own on Saturday and on Sunday (with my help!) this past weekend for several hours because things have reached the "fun" point for him where he geeks out hard(er) than he already has and enjoys every piece. (Yes, he was "that kid" who was always building shit with Legos lol.)
Tentative plans going forward over the next two weeks include: finishing the framing the structure + doors/windows, placing the posts for the overhang over the outside stall openings, getting the OSB (oriented strand board) up, finishing the subfloor for the tack room, beginning the roof, beginning the siding, and completing the excavation work...
Unfortunately, the excavator is delayed - again. And, again, it's due to other delays out of our control with my future office building. (Grumble, grumble, insert snide comment about government work...) He was supposed to return July 1st for a three-day stint to complete my French drain, dig trench for the utilities, lay the water line and electrical conduit, and spread stone for the barn and the dry lot. But unfortunately things have been pushed back to this Thursday (the 11th), "maybe".
I'm understandably frustrated with the second delay of the excavator because it pushes back when we can install fence and get the horses home. But! I'm grateful progress on the barn can still happen while we wait.
So, as is our theme with these posts, stay tuned for continued updates as everything progresses and to hear whether the excavator makes it back in time to finish before I complicate his life by putting fences up. 🙈