Sunday, December 5, 2010

Going up - walls

 Now that I've reached an agreement with the county I can finally finish my small barn.  On this frosty day I'm cutting and tying rebar (reinforcing bar) and preparing to set the forms for the wall extensions.  My original plan was to frame the barn using timbers, but in the 3 years or so that I've spent arguing with the county to get the permits I've decided that going up in concrete will give me a lower maintenance building that is unlikely to be damaged in any way by the flood.  So up we go. 
This gadget is my rebar cutter.  I bought it...20?  years ago to help put a foundation under a rental house I owned -- it had a pier-and-post foundation and had settled badly, so I jacked up up, excavated and poured a foundation under it, and used this tool for the first time.  This tool allows you cut and bend rebar, so it can go around corners nicely. 

Concrete is a great material under compression, immensely strong when properly supported.  But it doesn't do well under tension -- when it gets pulled.  So adding steel rebar allows the concrete to resist cracking and spreading.  In this project, the floor is tied to the walls with rebar, and the walls are reinforced with it to allow it to resist any cracking or spreading. 

The concrete walls that I'm pouring are overbuilt for the load that I'll eventually put on them.  they're 8" thick; but the increased cost from 6" to 8" is a couple of hundred bucks of concrete, and  having it be tougher and heavier duty than needed means that there is no chance of damage in the event of the eventual flood. 

1 comment:

Dave said...

I was just wondering how all the issues you have had with the county were working out ?