Thursday, August 23, 2007

This was a great spectator week.
The crew from McDowell Drilling came and drilled 31 auger cast piles. Lonnie, the "pile buck" for the crew said the hardest part of the project was fitting all the machines on our little plot. There was a huge blue drilling rig with a 40 foot boom, an orange trackhoe, a big pump, and several cement trucks. It was like watching a hippo, and elephant and a gorilla all try to change their clothes in the same closet.
To make each of the auger cast piles, the guys would move the auger drill over the spot, set the "foot" and begin drilling. Each of the piles went down between 27 and 33 feet. A geotech engineer would sample the soil coming out of the ground and decide when the depth was correct. Then the drill operator would slowly begin raising the auger while the cement guy began pumping cement, or "mud", through the hollow center of the auger. As the auger came up, the cement would fill the hole, overflowing as it reached the top. Finally a long steel rod would be lowered down into the hole followed by a round steel "cage" to hold the pile and form the "cast". And then on to the next one.
It was fascinating to watch, but definitely the most dangerous worksite I've ever seen! Everything seemed to be either heavy, caustic, sharp, or swinging. If a guy wasn't holding a chainsaw or pickax, he was holding a steel pipe, cement hose, or sledgehammer!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Dirtying the Nest

August 13 -16

This week has been spent excavating the lot, removing truckloads of dirt, and marking the spots for drilling the auger piles.

And every now and then, we look over at the lake and see all sorts of fun things - like this downed floatplane being towed to shore, or this lovely boat cruising past the house.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

For the past week, the big yellow trackhoe T-Rex has been gobbling up the house.

It crunched it into small pieces and loaded everything - all the wood and insulation and windows and eaves - and memories - into dumpsters.

Finally, there was nothing left but the concrete foundation, and one morning even that was gobbled up.

And then it was all gone ----


Thursday, August 2, 2007

Boats, Blue Angels and a big Bulldozer

Today was demolition day, and it also happened to be the first day of Seafair in Seattle. So there were hundreds of boats out on the lake, and an airshow by the Blue Angels right in front of the house!
The demolition crew had the house demolished in a little over an hour; their big bulldozer looked like a giant Tyrannosaurus Rex as it crunched and chewed the house!

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

These pictures were taken today; one in the early morning, and the second one in the late afternoon. Apparently, this is the machine that will take down the house! As Maggie and Walt Carr would say, "let the wild rumpus begin"!
Dear friends,

Paul and I thought that making a blog would be the best way for us to share the experience and progress of our Nest-building with all of you. We'll try to add pictures and stories as the weeks go by.

The "cottage" (as we call it) is scheduled for demolition tomorrow (August 2nd); it should happen just about the time that the Blue Angels fly over the lake to start SeaFair.