With our concrete foundation work behind us (yay!), the structure of our studio is coming together quickly. Just seven days into building with wood, and we're pleased to say we've got rafters up! The pace and intensity of the project has left us with little time for much beyond building, sleeping, laundry, cooking, eating . . . not much energy left for writing! And thus, we share mostly photos here today, and the musings of our builder, Mr. George Abetti.
"We started this studio a couple of days before Thanksgiving after the intrepid couple did the entire foundation themselves assisted part time by some willing and available friends. I must say I marvel at their courage--with me staying away from concrete with a passion only matched by love for building with wood....hmmmmm...probably an integral connection there somewhere.
Both Becca and Nathan are experienced carpenters and indefatigable workers--which is what allowed us to work out a mutually agreeable arrangement where I would run them and as many willing friends as a crew for a few weeks to get the main shell up with roof, windows and doors and leave the siding to them. We were doubly blessed at the serendipitous timing of two wonderful guys wanting to consider Geobarn careers calling to ask to work for free for a couple of weeks just to experience this kind of work....so yes....be our guests! John and Charles--we humbly thank you. (Yes, thanks, guys! We are very grateful for your help.)
The building is quite creative--timbered with massive hemlock posts, our typical free span floor system--and incorporating both gallery and working spaces on both levels accessible from either below or above. The views are magnificent and even though the weather has turned quite cold--their passion and energy (and high energy parents and home cooked meals) have all contributed to keeping us warm, well fed and filled with energy for the task at hand. We finished the upper beam in spite of some tough site conditions and were overjoyed to have their wonderful excavators back fill the trenches and even hoist a few of the heaviest beams into place that we were otherwise struggling to carry up hill and wrestle into place onto the 7' kneewall....
Nathan and Becca cut all the rafters while I prepped the upper beam with her dad with layout, blocking, gussets and some diagonal framing to stabilize the upper level prior to the roof system....when it essentially becomes equivalent to a large sail ready to fly away in the high winds if not well anchored down--and this is a VERY windy hill as we discovered yesterday when our ladders not only blew over but flew out of the building.... the cold took its toll on us today--we have worked most days into the dark but today when the sun began to set we all looked at each other and agreed that going inside was the glorious thing to do. - George"
We returned to building Saturday morning . . . and in a snowstorm, we began to assemble and hoist rafters! Despite the snow and cold, we had great success.
We are very happy potters!
Stay tuned - there is so much more to come . . . we can hardly stand it.
~Nathan and Becca