Sunday, September 7, 2008

34, The front goes up.

During 2007 I progressed steadily with the front, (south), and east walls. By September the bulk of the walls were raised to window head height, 2.7m, (9ft). The bay windows are to have elliptical arches spanning the openings to support the walls above and I have the springers in place. These I done in two halves and not being one to turn my back on a good challenge, I cut the outside stones in the complex shape seen in the pictures above to have them bond with the bay projections.
The slow progress I had been making on this project was leading to another problem, when the rain was falling and pooling on the tops of the incomplete walls, it was seeping through the mortar joints and causing efflorescence to form on the stone face. To help to alleviate this problem I extended the scaffolding higher to allow me to fix temporary roofing, this keeps the stone dry and also allows me to work on the walls during inclement weather.
The scaffolding planks appeared on eBay at the right time and proved to be a godsend, the only hassle being that they were just shy of 1000km away in Sydney. The $300.00 I had to pay to have the 95 of them shipped down, along with my winning bid, brought the price to about $12.50 per plank
The scaffold framework I have been accumulating, a bit at a time, since starting the project and are always looking out for more.

The East wall features a 3 light window, designed to make full use of the window cills I had procured. The lintel for this needed to be 2640mm long, four times the standard 660mm length of sawn limestone. The supplier reluctantly agreed to provide me stone of this length but warned me of the likelihood of breakage. For insurance I had him supply four of these, hoping to have success with one of them. With my luck usually requiring me to redo things a couple of times until I get it right, I was pleasantly surprised to dress and install this lintel successfully on the first go. It is shown above, upside down, with drip grooves and rebates carved out to allow clearance for the window heads.

The lintel, finished and in position. To maintain the stability of the mullions during construction I cut full blocks to bond these to the quoins three courses from the top. The waste section in the middle of these will be cut out later.

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