Sunday, October 28, 2012

For you Doubting Thomas's

And to all you blokes out there who whinged and whined that the downpipes weren't in and said it would take ages for me to put the pipes in... The downpipes are now in. Big effort too!

Actually I think doing the photos and the blog itself took longer than the actual work of putting in the downpipes! The job was to connect this gutter outlet:-

 to this pipe sticking out of the ground  - twice, as there are two downpipes needed.

It turned out I didn't have any spare pipe, so would have to get some when I went to get the fittings. So this morning it was off to Bunnings to get my supplies, but all they had was the 100mm downpipe itself - no fittings - so no purchases were made.

So it was then off to the Home hardware over near my train club and they too didn't have the fittings. So back home I go empty handed. Onto the ol' pooter and Google to find my next local hardware store, which turned out to be a Mitre 10 which is down at Sandgate. Yep, they'd be open on a Sunday morning, so into the car again I go.

Into this nice big 'ol hardware store goes I and yep, they have a lot more fittings to look at in the sizes I am after. So I found the 100 mm straight sleeve joiners, so 2 go into my hand for purchasing. 

Now to find the rectangular to circular adapters to go from the gutter outlet to the downpipe - but I can't find the right size! Over comes a very helpful bloke from the counter and lo and behold, next shelf up were the relevant type of fittings I was after. They had the correct size rectangular bit, but didn't do it for a 100 mm pipe, only for the much , much more common 90 mm pipe.  Why is it that I always end up with non-standard stuff around my place - arrrrgggggggggghhh.

So I figure I have three options. [1] Bugger off home and call a plumber to do the whole job (expensive) [2] Nick off home and do more research of places to go buy plumbing bits, which would entail doing the driving around during the week most likely [3] Get the 90 mm adapter that is in stock and make it work.

What the heck, I grabbed two of the rectangular to 90 mm circular adapters and headed to the counter. 

Got a 6 metre length of 100 mm pipe as well. They kindly cut it in half for me too. I had to fold the seats down to get the pipe into the trusty old Camry and driving was interesting with only half an inch from the pipe to the gear stick - the pipes being over the top of the gear stick. Must also go buy a new ocky strap as all mine are buggered and none in the car. Luckily an old shirt sufficed to tie down the boot lid for the 4.4 km trip home (so said Google maps).

Got it all home and went to work on it. Measured the length needed from gutter to pipe sticking out of ground and cut my pipe knowing it would be a fraction too long, requiring a small cut to make it right. I found the slide on joiner sleeve made for a great cutting guide too. I'd slide it to the measured mark and then put the hand saw blade up against it and by keeping the blade against it I'd get a square cut for once in my life!

Now since the adapter was for a 90 mm pipe and not the 100 mm pipe I had, I figured I'd just sit it loose in the top of the 100 mm downpipe and make the pipe a neat fit against the piece sticking out of the ground, and then slide the joiner into place. I'm a genius - it worked! 

The pipe stayed in place and the little bit of slop of the 90 mm into 100 mm hole can, if I ever want, be sealed up with silicone sealer - but I doubt it is needed since it is at the top of the pipe and water can't get out anyway.

So the job is done. But you purists are saying "where is the PVC glue?" well I tell you - I figure I don't need any. The slide on joiner is nice and tight and is not likely to slide off. Heck, if it ever looks glue is needed, I can easily go pull the downpipe down and add some glue.

Here are the shots of BOTH downpipes so you can't say I only did one of them!

As usual the chooks were out and about looking to see what the heck I was up to and getting in the bloody way as usual...  Till next time, happy trains.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Business with a Capital B

06:00 Wednesday morning, the alarm went off and I was out of bed like a rocket. Into and out of the shower like a flash (not sure if the water even had a chance to touch me). Cuppa making gadget was then turned on, as was the pooter and the camera found and readied for action for the day. The usual handful of magic pills, supposedly will keep me alive until I'm 113, was thrown down the gullet and washed down with some nice cold OJ. A cuppa was then made - geez those Aldi thingies are great for making the wet black stuff - sooo easy now. 

7:30 on the dot the head Shed Technician arrived, as he had arranged, and got straight into setting himself up with all his tools and bibs and bobs for the day. 

He double checked with the client, that would be me, of where the plumbing, door and window were to go, just to make sure of it all. So I let him be for a while and went back in to my pooter and coffee.

7:50 the second Shed Tech arrived and got straight into it. After talking with the guys a bit, it turns out they are busy as and are putting up sheds every day - no shortage of work they say. They didn't even blink when I said the shed was for model trains - they apparently do a lot of them.

First order of the day was for the wall sections to all be unpacked and stood up loosely around the area close to their final locations. 

While this was happening the other bloke was getting the roof trusses ready. No mucking around here - these blokes meant Business - with a capital B.

I spent the whole day out there watching the guys and taking thousands of photos - you just gotta love these digital cameras. With these photos I have made up some time lapse videos of the shed being built too. If I had a timer for the camera I could have just set it up and walked away and gotten my shots, but I don't so ended up hand holding the camera, so the videos when made up are ever so slightly shaky. But I digress. So the guys are now making the walls.

For the guys to make a wall, they got a number of prebuilt wall sections and bolted them together.

Then they got the colorbond sheeting and screwed that to the wall and then trim any excess off with this electric nibble they had. The blokes had a pile of battery powered tools all setup with the relevant bit already in the tool. This made it so much faster working than spending time removing this drill bit and putting in that driver etc.

For the two long walls, there was also the guttering to put on. It makes it easier to do it all while the wall is laying on the ground. So they screw on the holders then cut and fit the guttering to them.

While this is happening, one of the blokes would be drilling some holes in the concrete slab where the wall would go and place a few bolts loosely in the holes after laying down the plastic water barrier that keeps the steel walls away from direct contact with the concrete.

Why were the bolts only part way in you ask - this is so they could place the bottom of the wall against the bolts sticking up, to stop it sliding off the slab as they stood the wall section up. Once the wall was sort of standing, they lift the wall up and onto the bolt.

Once this was done, they would raise the wall and then move it into place and bolt it down with these fun looking bolts.

The actual hole in the wall the bolt goes through is quite oversized and this is to allow easy adjustment of the walls once stood up. In fact, the bolts were already loosely in the slab and the wall stood up and placed over the bolts - that's how much bigger the hole in the wall is. Hence the need for the steel plates as well as the normal washers. Here is a close up of the bolts, washer, plate, plastic mat and wall section once bolted down to the slab.

So there were four walls, so here they are being stood up in order.

So all the major wall sections were up, leaving just the section that contains the sliding glass door to be done. So the prebuilt wall frame was lifted into place and bolted down without the cladding this time. This is to allow the door to be properly fitted and cladding to line up properly with it.

After the frame went in, they built the door frame and screwed it into position, thereby allowing the remaining cladding to be screwed on as well.

Now it was time to put the glass panels and door into the frame and we now have a door.

The roof trusses were also being installed and all the cross supports for the roof. There was also the usual strapping to keep it all square.

Leaf guard foam type material was also installed int all the gutters. This will help keep them cleaner and not to clog up.

Next on top was the mesh that will hold the insulation blankets up. This was measured up and rolled out over the top of the trusses and supports and then tied down.

Here we see the insulation blanket being measured up and cut to length.

Now it was up, up and away with the roof. The insulation was thrown up and the guy on the roof would roll it out then place the roofing iron over the top and put in a few screws to hold it all in place.

While he was doing some, the offsider was on the ground and getting the next lot of roofing iron ready. One end of each sheet got the channels bent. This would be the end up at the pointy end of the roof and will stop rain from being blown up and over the end of the sheet.

So they repeated these steps until the roof was laid down.

Next up was the ridge capping on top of the roof - the pointy bit. 

While the ridge capping was going on, the offsider was up and adding all the other screws to each sheet of roofing iron. He would mark out where and then go for it with his trusty battery drill/driver and screw in a pile of screws in between where the first guy had held down the sheets earlier. There are a heck of a lot of screws in a shed - a heck of a lot. 

You can see him with his blue line marking down the line the screws must be on. To his left you can see how many screws need to be applied and just in front of him how many were used just to tack the sheets in place originally.

While this is going on, the other bloke has finished screwing down the ridge capping and has started to cut the wavy shape on the capping so it will sit down into the corrugated roofing channels. He had a battery powered pair of tin snips and had the hand movement down pat - looked so easy when he did it - me, I would have easily ballsed it up.

Final item was to screw on the end caps.

11:15 am on the Thursday, hands were shaken and the boys were off after a job well done. And there you have it - one completed brand new Titan shed ready for me to start to outfit and make into my train room.

Since you've made it all the way to the end, here are some time lapse videos of the shed built:

I now have The Shed. I can also now say "off to the bat cave!" See you next time.

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Delivery

Step 1 was getting the slab down. We can now tick that one off. In fact it is now well and truly cured, it having been about 2 months since it was poured. It should be good and solid by now and well capable of holding my shed to mother earth in all weathers.

So here we are at step 2 - getting the shed materials. May as well show a few photos of before the bits and pieces arrived.

So I took the day off work as I really can't get into it after having 7 weeks off for my R&R (only kidding boss, only kidding). I just had to take the day off - who wouldn't want to see all the bits for their shed arrive? So the Titan delivery guys arrived at about 9 this morning. I'd been up since the crack of dawn - it was just like Christmas morning.

Once the truck pulled up out front of the house and the obligatory paperwork done, they started to unload all the components needed to build my shed. 

About an hour later with a cheerio, they were gone and the materials were all here. Yeeeeharrrrrrrrrr  as those Texans would say! So here are the matching photos to the "before" shots.

And now some better shots of the bundles of material that will soon become this blokes man cave - his den of desire, his home away from home, his secret citadel, his cave of convenience, his room of respect, his "shed". These mere piles of metal and such will soon become my shed - buggered if I know what happens then...

So the Titan man reckons that next week they'll be around and start putting this large Meccano set together for me. So boss, if you are reading this, I'm gunna take another day off on ATL, Flex, RDO - otherwise I suppose I could be cough, cough, cough - sick on that day.

So till next episode, I cannot yet say "off to the bat cave!"