Saturday, November 4, 2017

E36 Adventure Part 1.

With 6” if fresh snow this morning, I am now on a plane headed to Seattle with the intent to buy another old car and drive it home.

Getting to the airport was a bit of a chore, but noww that I am here the next steps are

1. Evaluate car and make go / no go decision.

2. If the car check outs, begin my trek back to Bozeman.

3. If the car doesn’t check out, find s flight home.

Stay tuned.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Labor Day Campingin Hyalite

Chisolm Campground Site 1

Headed up to Grotto Falls

Midday Checkers

Studious Steph

Fishing Obsessed

The ax I chopped my leg with. Yeah, you read that right.

Henry and Uncle J cruising around the lake

Fence Complete (almost)

Bit of a lag on this one, but we finished the fence about a week after we started. The only thing that remains is gate latches. For now we are using the chains that came with the gates.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Fencing Update

We left off with quite a bit of lumber, some gates, and posts in the ground.


On Friday, Steph got the posts and the top board stained. She also picked up the 100' of 48" woven horse fence.


On Saturday my Dad came over and we started to stretch the wire. I read a few DIY articles on how to do this, and they all recommended using a stretcher bar and a tractor or come-along to pull the fence. We ended up building a stretcher bar out of two 2x4s and a few bolts/nuts to hold them together. The idea is that you can grab along the entire fence so it gets stretched evenly. Then you staple it to hold the tension and wrap the wire around the terminal posts for added security.

Not having a tractor, we used Steph's Dad's old come-along to pull and the trusty Toyota Sequoia (5400lbs+ dry) as the anchor. Pics below of the first section with the stretcher bar.

You can see that the fence sags pretty hard, until we add the power of the come-along :)

On Saturday, we got four of the five fence sections stretched and stapled. The fence is damn tight


For Sunday we had to finish one section of fence and install the gates. The last section of fence was tricky for a couple of reasons. 
  1. The section was that butted up against the garage, so we had to notch around a gutter down spout.
  2. Because the post was near the garage it couldn't be pounded it, it had to be hand dug. The issue? Digging the hole loosens up the ground around the post therefore it was less sturdy than the other pounded posts.
  3. The post was screwed to the house for added strength, but
    1. The post was too tight to the house which prevented us from slipping the wire fence around it.
    2. When we backed the screws out to release the post, the post cracked down the middle.
I devised, what I think to be, a pretty nifty solution.
  1. Slip three 6" host clamps between the post and the house and synch them up super tight, thus, mitigating the weakness created by the crack in the post.
  2. Back the screws out with someone helping the post separate from the house with a pry bar.
  3. Slip the wire fence around the post and staple it.
  4. Lastly, sink in three 8" Olylog screws.
This worked very well, and we were able to finish the last section.

Next up were the gates. Each gate gets supported by a 11/16" hardened steel bolt with a washer and nut on either side of the post. We mocked up the gates and found our spots to drill. I started with a 1/4", then 1/2" and then finally 3/4" hole using a big ass old Stanley auger drill. We pounded the bolts through then got everything centered and level. I used locktite on the threads before tightening them down hard. To clean it up, I then nipped off 2/3 of the extra bold length using a grinder with a cut wheel.

I don't have any pictures of this stage in progress, but I do have some glorious "Phase 1 complete" pictures.

North side of the house with the 4' gate

South side of the house with the 6' gate and the 12' gate

Two final things

We had a amazing, end to end, double rainbow to our East.

The gates have also been tested to contain the beast.

Next up, Phase 2.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017


New Fence

The latest project we have started has been inspired by this guy:

Walter is extremely slow moving, but he puts his nose to the ground and wanders. So we need to fence our backyard. Thankfully, our backyard is already fenced on three sides thanks to our neighbors. All that is required is to close it off. In the picture below, you can see how our house is positioned on our lot. The red lines are the sections of fence that we will add.

The fence design will be 6" round posts pounded in to the ground, a 2x4" mesh woven wire stretched across the posts, and some flat rails added to dress it up a bit.

Current Status

This past week we had a fencing company come and pound posts in for us. It took them about three hours to sink in 14 or so posts. The recommendation fro them was the pounding these things straight into the ground is a lot stronger than digger and setting in concrete.

I also picked up the three gates we are going to use:
- 4 foot gate on the north side to walk through
- 6 foot gate on the south side for walking through and for the lawn mower to fit through
- 12 foot gate on the south side for the camper, boat, and any other large vehicle or equipment we need to get through to the back yard.

We also purchased the lumber to do the rails. 
- 2x8x8 (5) and 2x8x10 (4) for the top cap
- 2x4x8 (10) and 2x4x10 (17) for the front rails

Next Steps

Up next is to stain the posts, install the cap boards between the posts, stretch the wire, and install the gates. 

Sunday, February 12, 2017

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