Saturday, 29 March 2014

Slab now done

After having the drainage done, we were able to get the concretor in to lay the waffle pod slab. This was a two day effort, with day one involving the formwork and waffle pods being laid down.

The formwork and base gravel and plastic sheeing being laid prior to the waffle pods being placed in to position.

Waffle pods now in place and rebar/reo mesh laid over the top on chairs. Right now it is starting to look like there's going to be a house built here.

The first blobs of concrete get pumped up on to the slab, lots of reo and many more trucks yet to turn up.

A view further up the block, where you can see the base of my amateur radio mast, which was concreted at the same time as the slab.

The slab is virtually finished, with part of the formwork already being pulled away.

Then the rain decided to pay us a visit. Wonderful!

Actually, not such a bad thing as the extra dampness of the top of the slab could help with the concrete curing. Only rained for a short period, so they were still able to run the whirlybird thing (I'm sure I'll be told what it is), to smooth the surface out a bit more.

You might notice the recessed shower pans , as we're looking at a step free bathroom and ensuites.

Next step is to get the worm farm treatement plant put in and connected up.

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Drainage done

After being told by the plumber he couldn't do the drainage until our worm farm treatment plant was installed, due to ensuring levels were going to match up, we got a call from him advising that he'd be here the next Monday to put it all in to place.

That's great news, as it means the slab can be done after this drainage is installed.

Got there early and advised the excavator operator the locations of the agi pipe that runs around the back of house, and assumed he understood the importance of the surveyors pegs. How wrong can one be ?

By the end of the day, he'd managed to dig up the agi pipe at both ends of the rear of the house, and managed to rip out 4 pegs, including the datum point in front of the house ! unfortunately I didn't stick around until they'd finished, as I had to be somewhere else.

Spoke to the plumber after visiting the block on the weekend, and he said he'd speak to the excavator operator about paying for the extra visit the surveyors to peg things out again, and would then credit me on his next bill. The extra surveyors work can to $412.

Next step is laying the waffle pod slab.

Monday, 17 March 2014

Piers concreted in place

The week following the Agi pipes going in behind the house, we got a call from the concretor saying he could do the piers in the next few days, which will be good because the drainage hasn't been done yet, and it should also give them a good chance to set and settle in to the ground, particulary if we got some rain in the meantime.

All the piers went in at different depths, with the one closest to camera only need to go down about 800mm, but the next one along went down 2400mm before it got down to rock.

Whilst they had the excavator with auger there, I got them to dig with the 600mm auger a hole in the position up the hill where I'll be putting my Amateur Radio mast.

The hole goes down a fair way as you can see, around 1600mm, but more on this topic in another blog post. :)

Water and Agi pipes

Been a while since my last post, and have been meaning to update things for a while, but simply forgot about the blog. ;)

Over the last couple of weeks we've had the phone pre-provisioned and the electricity hooked up to the circuit box that will eventually find its way on to the outside wall of the garage.

Logan Council have hooked up the water meter, and I've run the 25mm polypipe up the trench to just near the water tank, and then buried in sand to an appropriate level, taken photos to prove it was done to spec, and then backfilled the trench in. This now gives us water up to the house, which has allowed me to put down some Jap Millet seed, and can then water it whenever I can get out there. If it works as planned, then it will give me some erosion protection at the same time it makes the place look a bit greener.

So now all trenches from the front to the house have been backfilled, so my main concern of flooding rain washing soil through the trenches then out on the road is no more. Just have to get the sloped ground in front of the house greened up or erosion barriers put in place.

A couple of weeks ago I was able to hire a 1.7tonne excavator to bring to the block to dig some drainage trenches behind the house at the base of the batters that go up to the high spot of the block, so that water won't just sit behind the house to soak under the slab (being a P block with H1 character, you don't want water to pool and soak under the house). I put in some 100m socked poly agi pipe in there, backfilled with 20mm gravel and then soil above it.
The agi pipe exits the ground near the side boundaries of the block. Since the sun was going down, we started to pack the excavator down, only to have the neighbour on one side come over to question if we were going to leave the pipe pointing on to his block to 'flood' his block. Politely I advised him that we were not finished yet, and were going to ensure that it wouldn't when finished, poked him back with the comment that what sort of neighbours do you think we are, and that there's no way I would do such a thing to a neighbour.... I might add that my mate who was there helping me, noticed on several occasions them watching rather intently what we were doing all through the day.

Came back the next day to tidy things up, and ensure that the agi pipe was directed entirely on to our block, and cleared along my side of the fence line to ensure no water would end up on his block.

So why hire a small excavator to dig trenches, rather than a trencher ? Both cost about the same as each other, and the excavator digs deeper and quicker, and it also comes with several buckets that you can scoop up the 20mm gravel to pour back in to the trench... a wheel barrow would have taken up a day alone to do it all. The big catch is that a trencher is very easy and simple to drive, the excavator will take quite a while to come to grips with, particulary if you've had no previous earthmoving gear experience. I've driven backhoes and bobcats before, albeit I've never been licenced because of the lack of need/experience.