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Masonry - Roads and other networks

The place is done, we are now waiting for the earthworker and then the masons. The start of the work was planned for mid-October, the ropes were drawn on 16 November, and the earthworker began the platform on 22 November, more than a month late... 😭 !


Step 1: excavate a flat platform, a little wider than the surface of the future building, then dig ⛏️ the foundations. The results of the soil study we had to have done indicated that our clay soil may be unstable. The conclusion is that we should have very deep foundations. We are depressed 😓 by the huge amount of concrete that will have to be poured to support our "simple" wooden building. The digger finished the job within the day.

Step 2: rebar and pour the foundations. The masons 👷‍♂️ make a reinforcement that connects all the foundations together and the moulders can pour the concrete directly into the trenches that will serve as formwork. Before the concrete dries, "waits" are laid, which will link the sill to the foundation.

Step 3: pouring the stringers. First of all, reservations must be created by digging into the foundation (not yet completely dry) to pass the TPCs (water, electricity, telecommunications) under the future sill. Then assemble🪢 the reinforcement of the sills and lay out the PVC tubes (reservations) which will allow us to cross the walls under the slab without drilling them. Then comes the making of the wooden formwork🪚and finally it is time to pour the concrete. The next day it is already possible to remove the formwork! The thresholds are made in the still fresh concrete.

The sills are coated with a tar paste on the outside to make them completely waterproof ☂️.

Step 4: Casting the slabs / creating the perimeter drain. First, we have to roll out all our TPCs on the ground, so that they are under the "hedgehog"🦔 (layer of gravel under the slab). Then the masons spread two lorries 🚚 of rolled gravel. We will finish putting it in place around the TPCs inlets, as we still need to arrange them properly and make the sewage disposal. Meanwhile, the masons are laying the insulation on the floor and around the perimeter, then the film under the slab (which prevents rising damp) and finally the welded mesh.The place is done, we are now waiting for the earthworker and then the masons. The start of the work was planned for mid-October, the ropes were drawn on 16 November, and the earthworker began the platform on 22 November, more than a month late... 😭 !


While waiting for the public works company to be available to deliver the concrete, the masons begin the construction of the peripheral drain which is used to evacuate the rainwater around the foundations. But when we come to check the work, we notice that it is not made according to the manufacturer's recommendations 😱😡. We ask them to take back what they have done, as it is certain that in its current state, this drain is of no use. Once all this is finished, the concrete slabs can be poured, they are levelled with a "helicopter" 🚁. Before the concrete is fully set, the expansion joints are cut out. During this time, we dig ⛏️ the trenches that will house the networks that run from the building (drinking water, rainwater, electricity, telecommunication...).

Step 5: The masons have now left (it's the 21st of December) and we can say that they have left us quite a site... 😒 We have a lot of work to do over the festive period 🎄 so that the timber builder can get involved in the next stage of construction. In one month we have:

- Finished connecting the drains so that the water is collected by our rainwater system which leads to the rainwater collection tanks 🌧️.

- Reinstalled our "electrical board palette"⚡ inside the building, disconnecting and reconnecting all the wires that had become tangled from being moved around.

- Widened the earthwork to the north so that the building could be accessed by a wider, flat path, with gravel added to prevent wading.

- Retrieval the North drain (the most important one), as the masons covered it with soil when it should have been gravel... 🤨

- Scrub the soil off on the south side, to get closer to the finished level of the building.

- Small clean up 🧹 washed the slab with a high pressure cleaner, before the walls were put up, it's easier!


november to january 2022

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