June 25, 2005

Just a quick Bitch-Session

So...On wednesday, it was determined that, due to the slack in work, I was to take off Thursday and Friday, in order to give the driller enough time to finish digging his hole for a new install, so that Ford and I could start putting in the elevator today. I got a call yesterday morning to go over to the job and assist the driller, as he is currently between helpers, and the hole has got to get sunk, and sunk right (Dead straight, plenty of room for the jack, etc.). When I arrived on the job, I was early, so I took a look around to see what was what.

We need a 40 foot deep hole, and we've got one down to around 17 feet. The ground that he was digging through is mostly clay, but at around 12 feet down, he hit a boulder, or more correctly, the edge of one. This rock pushed the end of the drilling hammer off course, and then it came back in line after it passed it, so there is a huge "dog-leg" in the hole. This won't do. We attempted to use some Oxylance's to burn holes through the rock to weaken it, but after using up 300 feet of their burning bars, and punching 3 holes in the top of the rock, we were only able to chip off maybe six inches of the rock. The rock that's four feet thick. (Sidenote: Those Oxylance's are a thing to behold. I have no idea how hot the end of them gets, but once you get a hole started in a piece of granite, it will soon be shooting molten rock out of it. Really, REALLY, impressive!)

It's one hour until quitting time today, and Corey (I swear that's his name. Kinda funny for a person who "Core's" holes into the ground.) and I are burning up the cell phone lines trying to come up with a solution to this big, honking problem. The only thing that we can come up with (other than your's truly going down there with a hammer drill and putting a shit-ton of holes in it) is to pour concrete up over the rock, let it harden, and then set a piece of steel pipe on tope of it, plumb the pipe and backfill around it, and then start the drilling process again. The pipe will start the hole straight, and the concrete will keep the hammer from walking off the boulder again. It's the only (Real) solution.

We made a run to the local Lowe's, and picked up 15 eigthy-pound bags of quick-setting concrete, mixed it by hand in a wheebarrow, and poured it into the hole. After that, we went back to Lowe's and picked up another 15 bags, and mixed that and poured it into the hole. Finally, we are above the boulder, so all we have to do is let the concrete set at least one full day, and we can come back and try to drill that thing again. Drilling will resume on Monday. The elevator is supposed to be completely built by Thursday. Ain't gonna happen.

In the elevator "bidness" you generally provide one week per landing/floor as a rule of thumb in determining how long it will take to put it together. Running three shifts 24/7 still won't get this contraption together on time. There's nothing I can do about that. However...At least today was my 34th Birthday. How did they know that 30 bags of concrete was just exactly what I wanted? They must have consulted a Ouija Board.


Posted by Johnny - Oh at June 25, 2005 09:57 PM

Uh, Happy Birthday...? Hope it got better for you, dude.

Posted by: That 1 Guy at June 26, 2005 01:53 AM

Thanks T1G. I got me a bottle of Jim Beam last evening, and proceeded to "Sip my way to a better outlook". I was in bed, asleep, by 10:30PM, whereas I'm not normally there until 12:30 or 1:00 in the morning. I'm headed to the lake today, so things are looking up.

Posted by: Johnny - Oh at June 26, 2005 08:58 AM

I'm looking forward to Monday's post to see how t all works out. :)

Happy 34th birthday! You're still closer to 30 than 40! ;-)

Posted by: Bou at June 26, 2005 10:34 AM

Ah, but you have now moved out of your early thirties into your mid thirties, as an ex boyfriend was stupid enough to tell me after I had been drinking the cocktail alphabet on my 24th! Oh, the fight that ensued..

Have a great day! :-)

Posted by: Sally at June 26, 2005 10:38 AM

Happy Birthday, and just so you know 34 ain't bad at all.

Posted by: a mom and wife at June 26, 2005 03:15 PM

34...shall I save up my spankings until October? :)

Posted by: TNT at June 26, 2005 06:47 PM

Hey Bou, I'll try to keep you posted on it, but it seems that I'll be down in Chattanooga running one of the freight elevators at the museum for them. I hope I hear how it's going over there.

Sally, I wonder how come he's an EX-Boyfriend? Now that I think of it, it sounds like something I would say. ;^)

Yeah "Mom". I feel just like I did when I was 33. Old, tired, broke-down, used, abused, and gnerally sore. Makes me look forward to the next 34 years. ;^)

Bee-Dubya, Me? Wait? Hell no! I can be there in 9 hours! :^)

Posted by: Johnny - Oh at June 26, 2005 08:00 PM

Happy B-Day man! Sorry your day sucked.

The only advice I can give is the time tested adage:

"There are very few situations in life that cannot be adequately resolved by an excessive application
of high explosives."

Posted by: Graumagus at June 26, 2005 11:32 PM

Thanks Grau, Unfortunately, the stupid City of Maryville has this wierd phobia about keeping entire city blocks actually standing, so they wouldn't let me fill the hole level-full with black powder and touch a match off. Buncha damn wussies!

Posted by: Johnny - Oh at June 27, 2005 06:07 AM

Sitting here waiting to hear how it went with the boulder... *tapping my fingers...*

Posted by: Bou at June 27, 2005 05:50 PM

Sorry I'm late. Didn't know it was your day to be King. Obviously, no one else knew to bow before you either. Seems you spent the day between a rock and a hard place.
I suspect you'll poke fun at me in a few months.

Posted by: Tuck at June 27, 2005 06:50 PM

Happy BD, bro.

Posted by: _Jon at July 1, 2005 02:53 PM
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