Weekend Warrior Demolition and Construction

Blog / Tuesday, August 12th, 2014

It’s not that often that I get to do something that really makes me sweat on the weekends. It’s not that often that I want to, but now and then I get to and I want to and it just makes for a really good day. This past weekend, I had one of those opportunities. I got to be a weekend warrior. (Did I use that term correctly? Read on and then let me know in the comments. I don’t know something about it makes me think I need to be running, maybe it’s all those warrior/color/mud runs on the weekends that makes me associate it with ‘weekend warrior’. Hell, I’m not even sure warrior run is a thing. Let me know all this in the comments.)

My parents’ house is old. We estimate it was built somewhere around 125 years ago. It’s old and it is big and sometimes you’re awed by it and sometimes you see its age. Over the past years my parents have worked to update it as much as they can as time and money can be afforded. Sometimes I get a chance to help, I try to when I can because I enjoy that kind of thing. For me, it’s learning experience for when I have a house of my own. The entire time we’ve lived in the house, we not really touched the deck much. It’s always been old and wooden and ridden with nails and splinters. My parents decided this was the year that we redo the deck.

Tearing down the old deck
Tearing down the old deck

Saturday I joined my father on a near perfect day for outdoor work and we set to tearing down the old deck. It was easy and simple work, just tedious. We needed to knock the nails loose by hitting the boards from the bottom and then back down from the top. From there we’d yank the nails. The nails were old, rusted, and long. Not all of them were nicely seated in the wood either and it make them harder to pull. After a few hours of work, we had removed all the old wood. We left the foundation in place because this was still in decent enough condition to hold the new flooring. The picture above reflects this stage of the process.

After the nails were out, we put on a new front skirt for appearance’s sake. We nailed these boards on and I’ll admit, I’m terrible at hammering. I just missed the mark way too many times. And my wrist was tired and sore and the hammer got heavy towards the end. Fortunately, we didn’t plan on nailing all the new boards in place, only the skirt. My father didn’t want to be hammering down nails for the next twenty years as they loosened up due to time and weather.

Finally we made it to the point where we could start screwing down the new floor boards. I was on the power drill, and my dad was on cutting the boards and spacing them. It took a few rows but we finally got a system down. For anyone considering doing a project with a lot of drilling, I highly recommend a drill with a cord. Had we done the same project with a battery, it would not have come anywhere near our level of completeness in a day. The batteries lose juice too fast and there were too many screws to put in.

Here’s where we ended after my six hours of work and my dad’s 8-9 hours:

The foundation of the new deck
The foundation of the new deck

Now don’t get a crazy idea that I want to be asked every weekend for demolition and construction projects. I’m not that kind of weekend warrior. I won’t drop everything to help you remodel your bathroom one weekend, re-side your house the next, and maybe pour a new concrete driveway the following week. I like the projects here and there but boy do they drain me. I spent most of Sunday lying down due to soreness (and a healthy dose of laziness). Before you mention it, I know that if I did these things more often I’d be less sore afterwards. It might not make sense but that is what it is.

Are you a weekend warrior? (Again, no idea if I’m using this term correctly, please educate me.)

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