Hand-Hewn Log Dairy Barn - Part 2

Yippeeee - Yippppeeeee - Yaaaaay!!!!! The concrete trucks are rolling in again on the Law Family Homestead! But before they got here we had all the prep work to get ready for them.

First order of business was to get a bunch of fill rock hauled in. We are building on a slope and in order to make the floor level inside we had to put in fill and then make sure it was level before the concrete pour.

While I didn't get any pictures of the dump truck delivering the fill rock, I did get some pretty awesome pictures of the rock pile.

The fill we got is small crushed rock with a bit of dust/dirt in it. Dennis (our concrete guru neighbor) told me to get some water on it because he needed to compact it the next day when he put it in the barn. So that evening we put the sprinkler on it and let it run for several hours.


It was getting on towards sunset and the golden sun on the sprinkler had an awesome effect.


And of course, whenever you have rocks and dirt and water, little boys appear like magic!


JW2 and MJW aspired to be king of the mountain, where only the sprinkler reins supreme.


I have many more cool shots but as this is a post about the floor, I won't bore you with little boys and sprinklers.

I do have to share one more though - LOL!


Oldest and youngest shots are always one of my favorites.


Dennis and the heavy equipment showed up the next day to move the gravel to its final resting place.


He skillfully dumped it in each of the sections and then we hand-leveled the two small rooms. Dennis used the backhoe to spread the gravel in the larger two sections, and then those were also raked smooth by hand.

The next step was to run a plate compactor over the gavel and then a jumping jack to compress it as much as possible so it won't settle over time and crack the concrete.

CW is old enough to be fascinated with this entire project and opted to do some apprenticeship during the concrete pouring. He has been Dennis' sidekick throughout the project. Dennis had him take over the plate compacting job and I wish I had a picture of it. It was all the 10-year-old boy could do to turn that thing and keep it moving in the right direction. But the grin he had plastered on his face was priceless!

The next step was to bring out the laser level and start marking lines as to where the concrete was going. Some rooms have a flat floor, but the main milking area and alleyway are sloped towards the center and south end of the barn so when we hose it down the water will naturally run that way to a drain system we will  put in.

Next, some wire grid-work was put in, in place of tying a grid work of rebar. And then the concrete trucks started rolling again.


We poured the floor on two different days, making sure we had ample time to work the concrete and get it finished the way we wanted it.


Hard at it.


Almost finished with side one.

Side two was done a few days later. We ended up being short a set of hands so I was recruited, and mistakenly left the camera within my husband's reach.


The long handled thingy has a hook on the end of it and the idea was to hook the wire grid-work ahead of the concrete pouring off the truck and lift it up so the concrete would flow under and over it, hopefully getting it somewhere near the middle of the concrete pad.


Finished - And it looks AWESOME!!!

MANY many thanks to Dennis and Connie for their expertise in creating something that is functional and pretty to look at.

Great Uncle Peter is here and we are starting to lay the walls! Stay tuned, things are starting to move fast. I will keep you posted in between milking cows, tending garden, fixing meals for extra hands, laundry, and keeping children out from underfoot!