Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Waiting On The Engineer




On March 30, 2005, we finally got our COA from the city. Everyone was in agreement that we could start with our addition. But we still couldn't go to Building and Safety for our permits because now we had to wait on the engineer. And wait we did - for five weeks.

Steve couldn't stand all the waiting so he decided to start digging, excavating the area by hand.Yep, he dug the whole thing by hand.(I have to say here, he has a lot of energy - I watched.)



The first picture shows the length of the addition which attaches to the garage, the second picture shows some of the depth need. Later we learned from the engineer the exterior footings needed to be 24" below grade and 12" wide (which only necessitated a bit more digging). The third picture shows the site of the master bedroom. We had to put up yellow tape to keep our standard poodle, Dylan Thomas, from racing across there and falling in the hole. Being a rather smart dog, he got the idea quickly and stopped short of the yellow tape, even when he saw squirrels on the other side which was amazing as he lives to chase squirrels.

After a lot of digging and hauling away dirt, Steve was done with the preliminary excavating so he turned his attention to the back wall of the original house where the fireplace chimney is positioned. He knew he would have to take the stucco off the exterior walls so he got busy. Once the wall was cleaned of stucco, we found that the wood was totally gone. Termites had eaten every bit of eatable wood! I don't know what was holding up the living room wall, maybe dead termite bodies. So now we had to replace all the studs and wood on that wall which meant that the living room fireplace wall which had looked so good (freshly painted and all) had to be ripped apart. And you can guess what happens when you cut through wall board on the interior. Right, dust everywhere - everywhere. I need to explain here that we had to open the interior wall to get the wooden supports replaced behind the fireplace which could only be reached by cutting through the interior wall.


















Look at the smile on this man's face. Does he like demolition or what? We also found next to the chimney a skull of a tiny rat. Ugh. I was hoping for gold coins, but the house is only Mid-Century so not old enough I guess. Now I didn't help with this demolition or rebuilding, but I did do a lot of vaccuming. (Note - use a shop vaccum as the dust from wall board and paint will ruin a regular vaccum in a minute. I learned that lesson a year ago while updating the interior.

By the end of the first week in May, the stuctural drawings were done and also the calculations. Now we could go to Building and Safety for the permits. But would we finally get the permits? Would the building gods smile down on us and give us the go ahead?

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