(2.5)Monday July 16, 2001 - I met with an excavator and
he said that a bulldozer would not work. The best thing to do is
to get a rock hammer in there to chip away at the rock until the
desired profile was reached. He predicted it would take about three
days of this to level the house site. I am going to check with one
other person before I decide what to do. I also found a place in
Manor that would fix the cylinder that got bent. That was an expensive
lesson learned. I did manage to spend a few hours moving the trees
that were knocked down last week and piled up the stumps and trunks.
I am planning to use some of the large cedars for supports for my
deck so I am trying to clean up the good ones.
(0)Tuesday July 17, 2001 - I dropped off the cylinder this
morning at the repair facility. Hopefully they will be finished
with it by tomorrow afternoon. Since the back hoe is out of commission
I will take care of some necessary accounting and paperwork today.
(0)Wednesday July 18, 2001 - I picked up the repaired hydraulic
cylinder today and visited a friend of mine who just finished building
his house. He gave me a lot of leftovers that will come in very
handy. Thanks, Ken. I also decided to rent a rock hammer on a back
hoe to level my house site. I got quotes from $95 to $120 dollars
an hour to do the work or I can rent one for $1400 for a week. I
should end up spending half the money and I will get the footings
done as well. Neither of them were going to do the footings. If
I have time, I will also dig the hole for the septic tank. This
will save me some money when that gets installed.
(2)Thursday July 19, 2001 - I called and confirmed the rental
of the back hoe and rock hammer for the week starting Friday afternoon.
I spent a few hours putting the cylinder back on the back hoe and
put new kits in the master cylinders to firm up the brakes. I didn't
do any excavation or clearing. Below are the before and after pictures
of the cylinder.
(14)Friday July 20, 2001 - I hired a couple of day laborers
today to help clear limbs and rocks. These guys worked their butts
off moving limbs from the house site into a pile and then they picked
up all the large rocks on the entire driveway. The rental place
delivered the back hoe around 4 p.m. and, to practice, I busted
the larger rocks in the drive way. Patti came out and ran the rock
hammer while I ran my back hoe moving dirt. We worked until about
(14)Saturday July 21, 2001 - I got an early start on the
rock hammer, about 6:30am. Most of the day went like this: Bam bam
bam bam, break, move, bam bam bam bam, break. Move dirt. Bam bam
bam, break, bam bam break, move, bam .... well you get the picture.
I quit about 8:30 today but got about 75% of the excavation done.
Oh, about ten o'clock I noticed that the rock hammer was only hanging
on by a couple of bolts so I had to go to the hardware store and
get some more, that wasted an hour right there.
(3.5)Sunday July 22, 2001 - Sundays I have tried to set
aside as a day of rest but since the rock hammer is on the clock,
I had to do something with it. Kerry, an old friend of mine, came
out that afternoon and ran the back hoe and the rock hammer for
a few hours. Then we grilled some chicken, went to the river to
wash off and then went to the Wimberley outdoor theater to see Shrek.
The only thing interesting that happened today was that the exhaust
pipe on the rental tractor broke. Someone had bent it before and
all the vibration just weakened it further.