Thursday, October 07, 2021

French apartment renovations, Day 290: Back-breaking work

9,549 steps

Whew! Today was a big work day.

Remember that big beam that we cut down waaaaay back in the winter? We had a system of ropes and pulleys to cut & lower it. That beam.

Well, today we sliced that beam into a board. We have two large leftover beams, actually, and each one will turn into 2 boards. Only 3 more boards to go!

These 4 boards will then be planed smooth and will get mounted onto the walls of Le Catamaran's living room to serve as the attachment boards for the catamaran net.

But boy, was it a lot of work just to cut one board! We didn't have the right tools for the job (short of having a portable sawmill or a professional woodworking shop, no one would have the right tools for this job). Hence my proposed workaround that I drew a few weeks ago. First, cut as deep as possible on both sides of the board with a circular saw, then use a reciprocating saw to cut the middle section.

These boards are old growth oak and VERY dense and VERY heavy. I'd say they are 2-3x heavier than pine.

Then the boards need to be planed down, have the edges straightened, and then everything needs to be sanded and finished. Which meant that today we also bought a big planer. When it comes to tools, my attitude is "Buy the tools. Buy all the tools."

After it took Eric over 2 hours just to cut the first board free with the reciprocating saw, we messaged our friends and asked to borrow their chainsaw 🙂 I think that will be much more efficient. We're going to lend them our cement mixer so it will be a good exchange for both parties.

While Eric was laboring away with the saw, I scraped 23 square meters of flooring, tile by tile, getting off all the accumulated renovation residue off. Then I swept and steam mopped. It is super clean now, ready for the hardwood flooring.

I also did some little paint touch-ups and last little projects on the walls.

And somewhere in there today we fed the kids, went to the park, made dinner, did homework, etc.


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