Mixing concrete. Pouring concrete. Repeat. Fasten post base. Level post base. Repeat repeat repeat. That's what we did the other day. Did I mention repeat? 12 times. It took all day. It was kind of fun. Kind of.
I had never mixed concrete before. Have you? It was interesting I think. The whole mixing a batter concept; adding water to the dry concrete, a little at a time. Making sure to not get any clumps, making sure you get a good water level. I think the process was slightly appealing. And tiring! We don't actually have a concrete mixer. And I can so see the value of a mixer if you were doing this for a living, or if you just had a ton of holes to fill. It's tough mixing concrete over and over and over. We used a wheelbarrow! And a shovel. You can do a lot with a wheelbarrow and a shovel. You just have to use your muscles more.
In each of these holes we used about two bags of concrete. Or maybe we used up 1 and 3/4 bags in each hole. Something like that. And once we had filled the hole, we carefully put in the post base. Before hand we had made marks exactly where each post base needed to go. Did I mention we did a lot of measuring so far? Well, this project has so far meant measuring, measuring, measuring. In other words, we had our measurements all set out where each post base needed go, within each hole.
This is what it looked like when the concrete was poured in, and the post base secured.
Then before moving on to the next one, we had to level. Level to make sure the post bases were all of equal heights.
We were talking about the building process so far and I was saying how the concrete mixing and measuring reminds me the most of a mix between baking and sewing (whereas digging holes and nailing is just hard work!) It's like we were mixing a batter, adding a little more water, mixing some more, getting rid of air pockets. And then measuring 10,000 times (hence the sewing analogy). I think I prefer this to digging holes or nailing. But like I said, this was tiring. 12 holes actually turns out to be quite a lot holes to fill!
After we were done with each row we made a final measuring just to make sure everything measured straight, so the wood will fit without any issues. Luckily we got perfect fits!
Once we were done we had well deserved gin and tonics and we were so happy we were done. Maybe a career in pouring concrete isn't exactly in the cards for me, but I kind of enjoyed this step of the house building process! Next up, adding wood...