Sunday, April 30, 2017

Electric Update and a Window Walls Part 1

No power by Tuesday.  Big surprise - NOT!

Some of our new neighbors had been encouraging us to call the Oncor rep who used to have this territory.  Because Marvin is also a salesman,  he knows what a hassle it is to try to learn a new territory while customers from the old territory still want you to help them.  So he didn't want to do that to this guy, Jason.

However, on Wednesday, I had reached my limit.  Tuesday had been hot and humid, so of course Tuesday night was hot and humid, which meant the air conditioner ran more and the generator ran out of gas around 5:30a.m, right after Marvin left for work.  So my choices were to get dressed, find a flashlight, and go refill it, or sweat for another hour until there was enough light to see it.  Since the trailer is inside the barn where there is no breeze at all and with a propane heater and refrigerator, it gets warm and stuffy fast.  So I got up.

A few hours later I started calling the neighbors to see who had Jason's number.  Then I looked up the check to see when we paid Oncor to start this whole process.  Novemeber 28, 2016.  Twenty one weeks and two days.  Ridiculous.  When I finally talked to Jason, he was very concerned that it has been so long and promised to look into it.  When I talked to him the next day, he said the order had been turned in on April 21, four days after the last guy said we would have power.  Jason said it could take up to ten days once the order was turned in, but he had sent a request up the ladder to expedite because we are living here without power.  He said worst case, we should have power by May 5, but maybe sooner.  So on we go.

After the beating he took last weekend, Marvin wanted to build Saturday and take it easier on Sunday.  So that's what we did.  We built and stood the last window wall Saturday.  On Sunday, Marvin reworked his plan for the storm safe room (it's getting smaller each time) and thinks it is a manageable size now.  It is just big enough for two people and that's about it.  If we ever have a tornado when we have company, they'll have to draw straws to see who gets to sit on the floor.

South wall
South wall
North wall


Windows and doors should be in next week.  The driveway should be finished next week, and the septic, which was supposed to be installed April 29, should be installed next week.


Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Big, Heavy Walls are Up

Still no power, so things are moving exceedingly slow.  We can use one piece of equipment at a time on our generator, but not the table saw.  As Marvin put it, the table saw will knock it down and stomp all the life out of it.  So we continue building slowly.

Last Saturday, Lonnie came out to help again, and they got the long wall up.  It is a six inch wall with one big header and a smaller one, so it was really heavy.  I helped lift a little but mainly I held it steady while they did all the hard work.  Later, when they put up all the ceiling joists, I held things and took the air hammer from one to the other.


Courtesy of Lonnie



On Sunday, we were beat, but Marvin and I managed to build and stand one window wall where the kitchen will be.  We also began blocking the ceiling joists that he and Lonnie put up Saturday.




According to our Oncor rep, we should have power by Tuesday.  Finally.


Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Slow Building Progress, But We Are Now Living Here Full-time

It look Overhead Door almost two weeks to get out to replace both doors.  We've had a lot of wind since they were installed, but the new doors barely move and are much quieter too.

Since we couldn't do any building while waiting for them to replace the doors, we finished the ceiling joists over the bedroom section, and then moved stuff out here from two storage units.  These were the units with our tools, and while we haven't found everything yet, at least we have enough to work with for now.

However, having all that stuff here made it hard to work and hard to find anything.  So Marvin built a ramp out of three ceiling joists and floor decking.  Then we bought a 12 volt winch so we could pull things up the ramp on a dolly.  It worked well a couple of times during his testing, but the next morning when it came time for me to put all the boxes in the attic, it wouldn't work.  After a long, hard day of pulling the dolly up by hand with a rope, I was beat.  But I had most of the boxes up there.  When Marvin got home from his real job, he worked on the hoist and it worked like a charm after that.



The lease on our duplex was up April 15.  Rather than sign a new lease, and to save time and money driving an hour each way from every day, we decided to move out here and live in the trailer full time.  The Oncor representative said we should have electricity by April 18, or April 20 at the latest.  We thought we could live off the generator a few days.

Have I mentioned how long we have been waiting for electricity, and keep getting promises and excuses from this guy?  Needless to say, we did not have power by April 18.  Maybe by April 20, but I'm losing hope.

Meanwhile, we hoisted to the attic the remaining boxes and few pieces of furniture we had taken to the duplex.






Thursday, April 6, 2017

It's Big. It's Green. It's a Transformer!

When we pulled into the driveway today, we saw that the transformer had been installed.  Marvin talked to the Oncor guy and he said power would be hooked to the barn in just a few days.  Yippee!  We are getting there.