Guest Edge: 4/21, Build Day 5

Today, we went about completing several different tasks. We wanted to erect at least half of the wood frames for the trellis and also finish the steps which are connected to the retaining wall. Both of these tasks proved to be much more difficult than expected. When we arrived at the site we divided into two groups, one for each of the tasks. The group in charge of steps had to finish bolting the steel plate steps to steel angles so that they could then be connected to the retaining wall. This was the easy part. Once that was done, we had to measure and mark each step along the wall so that we could drill and bolt the steps. We were faced with several problems when doing this. The walls aren’t perfectly level, so that steps had to either be placed diagonally or according to one side, meaning they wouldn’t match up with the other. We decided to go with our second option and we measured and drilled, being careful to place the steps evenly and straight. Unfortunately, we were only able to complete the steps on one side, and we were missing a couple of steps on the other side. The frames created a whole other set of problems as well. First, we had to find a way to connect the wooden frames to the steel angles so that it would be supported on both sides. Also, we had to make connect the wooden frame post to a section of a wide flanged beam so that these could be connected to the concrete footings. There was much to be figured out in that process so that took longer than expected. Once the frame was connected to its various pieces, we went about erecting it, but quickly found out that the staking was incorrect and the hole for the steel angles was too far. So while some people held the frame up others quickly dug the hole closer to the retaining wall. After all of this chaos, we were only able to raise two of the frames. And we still had to brace them temporarily. We learned a lot along the way! Hopefully next week we will be faster now that we have the entire process figured out.

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