Sunday, September 27, 2015

Outdoor work

We've been taking advantage of the great fall weather to finish up some outdoor projects, including grouting the stone porch.  As so often happens with DIY projects, it took about twice as long as I would have thought (I very nearly suggested doing it one evening this past week...since it wound up taking about four to five hours total, that would have been a very long night).  Of course, a good part of that was drying time between tooling the grout but still - even just piping in the grout was more work, more difficult, and took longer than expected.  We were too busy to take pictures but we took two grout bags (which are an actual thing! which I did not know before this week) and piped the grout into each and every gap.  It was kind of like decorating the world's most solid cake.  Fortunately, the other project - ripping down the back fence - was faster and easier than expected thanks to the bobcat.  We bought the forklift attachment because it came with the bobcat, not because we necessarily were looking for it, but I have to say that it's turned out to be one of the more useful tools in our garage.  Putting the forks through the chain link and lifting turns out to be a very effective way of ripping a fence out of the ground.  And, of course, there's very little that the bobcat can't pull out with some tow chains.  All in all, it made quick work of it.  We may not install a new back fence until next spring but we wanted to get the old one down now so we could assess the situation and foliage and plan out our next move.  So that was a good task to finish up.  And now, for pictures...

I realized I neglected to post an "after" picture of the bathroom tile from a few weeks ago so...better late than never!  Here it is with the white grout.
Installing the capstone on the stone columns.  We used two 36" x 12" pieces of 1 1/2" thick Pennsylvania slate.  In order to get the right amount of overhang, we shaved about an inch off each slab's width and then cut out the wood posts.
Awaiting grout but stone installed 
And from the other side
Now with grout!  To get a slightly darker grout color, we added 1 tablespoon of black cement color to each 50 lb. bag of grout
And the other side
And from the front (complete with our very makeshift "walkway" consisting of the old concrete path, torn up and moved compliments of the bobcat, of course)
I forgot to take a true "before" but here's the back fence when we just started pulling down the old wood and chain link.  The house behind us is about to be demolished for a new build, so they have a dumpster (and we don't have any neighbors and therefore no loss of privacy with the removal of the fence)

Go, bobcat, go!

The quick way to remove a fence...

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