Archives for posts with tag: padstone

Once the main A frames have been jointed together they need moving off the framing bed onto their padstones so they are ready for the frame raising. They are quite heavy, and a pretty awkward shape, so a well thought out plan was called for.

The plan was to move them using a telehandler (the big green machine you can see in these pictures, which has been kindly lent to us by our collegues at Hindhead). The framing bed had been constructed at an angle to help with the move and above you can see us putting together retaining woodwork for a temporary track that leads around the side of the site. This track allow’s us to keep the machine on solid level ground while it is moving the frame.

Once everything was in place and everyone was briefed on what to expect the telehandler was brought in and lifted the frame off the bed. We arranged the lifting strops so it was held steady and level, and then it was up to the driver to manouver it safely into place.

The temporary track made the job much easier, but manouvering still required some skill to avoid the hedge and keep everything smooth and safe.

Once the frame had been moved to the other end of the site the telehandler had to be lined up so it could drive in to position to drop off the frame without hitting any of the carefully bedded padstones, a bit like threading a needle on a slightly bigger scale.

Then the frame needed to be shunted about a bit so it found the right position on its own padstones.

Once it was in just the right spot it could be dropped off and the next set of timbers were brought in and put on the framing bed to be jointed together. Ben’s team have been doing a really good job putting the frames together, the joints all look really good.

We now have three frames sitting on their padstones and the last one is on the bed being put together.

It still looks like we are on schedule for thursdays frame raise, we are not quite sure what timings are likely to be on the day, so if you are coming along to watch you might have to bear with us a bit, it should be interesting to see though, and I hope everyone enjoys it.

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Over the past couple of weeks a lot of hard work has been going into preparing the foundations our building will sit on. Unlike most buildings these days our aim is if at all possible to avoid using any concrete (other than what we are recycling from the old shed).

The first job was to level out the site. Then the foundation pits were marked out on the ground for excavation.

The field next door to the build is called Clay Pit Field, and you could see why whilst the foundations were being excavated. We hope to be able to reuse some of the clay that was dug out to help make the earth plaster which will be used on the internal walls of the building. The rest of the material will be reused elsewhere on the farm for filling in wheel ruts and levelling gateways.

Apparently Ben usually uses metre square pits of local stone for the foundations of his buildings, but here some of these pits were going to end up so close together we ended up with 4 trenches as well as a number of pits. These holes were then gradually filled with the recycled crushed concrete and topped up using sandstone from a local quarry.

As each layer of stone went into the pit it was compacted to ensure a solid foundation was created.

I’m not sure whether or not the guys here would approve or not, but I’m a bit of a sucker for a gesture to mark such an occasion as the digging of a foundation, and just couldn’t resist putting a coin in the bottom of one of them for good luck.

Once the pits had all been built back up to ground level the site was marked out again and levels were checked. The padstones for the building were then placed on top of a thin layer of sand on top of the stone foundations.

The frame of the building will rest on these padstones. Its been really interesting to see how it is possible to build foundations without a massive carbon footprint, evan if you could tell its not really anyones favourite part of the build! Once the last few padstones have been put in place the focus will begin to shift over to getting the main A frames ready for the frame raise, which we hope will be happening in mid May.

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