Thursday, July 24, 2008

More "Slave Labor"

Location, At home, CA

Work, work, work, that’s all I do. The fence project is progressing but has now taken on another whole dimension. One project begets another project. Oh woa!!!!

On Tuesday I removed the remaining short piece of old fence and the gate. The 2 gate pots required a little persuasion to get them out of their holes. To accomplish this I used two 8 ton bottle jacks and a stainless steel rod to work against. I first drilled a hole in the post with a Forstner bit to accept the rod. By simultaneous pressure on both jacks, the pole was induced to come out of its hole where it had resided for loo these past 40 years.

The holes are too small to receive new 4x4 posts so I will use a 7 foot 2 3/8s round pipe. I have done this before on my other gate and it works well.

On Tuesday I bought the pipes and cemented them in. These will only be 5 foot high as the gate can only be that height so it doesn’t overwhelm the front of the house and also, the gas meter reader needs to be able to look over the fence with his scope to read our gas meter.

Craig had brought up the subject of replacing the water drain line to the street while all the fence construction was going on as the drain gets overwhelmed when we have a large downpour. Fortunately, he has always been here to keep the drain open so there has been no water damage. I guess this would be the time to do it.

We checked the slope from the top of the present drain to the street and we have about 1 foot 3 inches of slope. This is fine if we were putting in a new drain and nothing was in the way. However, 40 plus years ago we planted junipers as a hedge along the property line and the drain is buried under the hedge. There is no way to get the new drain through that hedge.

So, last night the decision was made to remove the hedge. When originally planted, all the junipers were to be of the low spreading variety but somehow a larger Armstrong variety got planted in one place. This was unknown until the plant became mature and grew very big. Each year it required extensive pruning to keep it in check. So….. it was time to remove it.

I started chopping this morning on the low junipers near the street and that went fairly well. The Armstrong was…….very Armstrongish. It had limbs 4 inches in diameter and lots of dead branches internal to the hedge. It finally took Paul’s chainsaw to reduce it to a mere stump. I piled all the cuttings up and reduced them to compost with my shredder. I filled 10 garbage cans with the shredding’s. By the time I finished the shredding, and cleanup with Clyda’s and Craig’s help, I was beat. I feel all of my age tonight. However, 2 Aleve should do the trick as Paul needs help pouring a cement footing for his fence tomorrow.

Making "small chips".

Cutting the stump with Paul's help.

Hedge removed with only the small stumps remaining.