Friday, December 29, 2006

How did it go?

Pretty much to plan, actually.
Fifteen foot of six foot high chainlink in and ready, three hundred to go.

All posts in, all straining wire strained and all chainlink attached to starining bars and wire.

However, it all took alot longer than I intended and I ended up doing the straining wires and clipping the chainlink to them in the dark. The nearby streetlamp and a person who always has his halogen floodlamps on allowed me to see reasonably once it was properly dark. One of those silly things isn't it, it has to be really dark for a torch to be of use.

It was just too dark to join the remaining bit of old wire to my new wire, so that can await another day. It is firmly behind brambles to anyone on the outside. Fortunately that six odd feet is in good nick, further along it has rotted away.

Next job is to get some conversion bits from the fencing supplier, they had run out of two way braced, so supplied some corner ones with conversion brackets. Problem is they gave me enough brackets to do one post, but gave me three corners.

It is supposed to rain Friday, when I next have a dryish day, I'll fit another two-way-braced post at the next kink in the line of the fence and then start to fit the plain uprights, as there are a good dozen or so, that will take a while.

Exciting Pictures!

Not really.

This is me arriving with my nice new garden trolley from Coopers of Stortford. That's three nine foot angle iron posts, three bags of ready-mix postcrete, two spades, a bag of hand tools and a post hole borer in there.

Just to the left is the post fitted the other day.

Here is that post in close up, braced across to the original gatepost.

The work plan was to replace the two rusty posts visible to the left and right of the round metal pipe front right. Then to replace the chainlink, leaving a section of the old chainlink running from the original gatepost across to roughly the first rusty post, where it is to be clipped to the new chainlink.

Nice big pile of bramble trimmings, plus some bits of apple tree.
When I took the photo I had intended it to show the fence, but all that shows up are the rusty posts and then only if you look carefully.

This show the composted neolithic burial mound with a spade for scale.

The brambles had scaled the fence and arched down to land about where the spade is, there are occasional roots nearer the fence, but the majority are to the right.

This is a detail showing the scale of rot in the wire, you can see the pig wire patching.

Below is a movie clip of the length of replacement I have targetted. The sound is not galloping horse sound effects, it is a tape measure and some bolts, plus a couple of brackets in my pocket, bashing into each other.

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Steady as a rock.

Did a bit more today. The old bit of fence where I'm working is |\ | /|\ then lots of |. The first braced post has one half of the original main gate on it, so that stays and next to it about ten inches in is my new braced post. Twelve foot along is the next original double braced post and today I removed it's braces, a hacksaw and lump hammer job. Both came out of the ground easily, one had only about a bricks worth of concrete on it! One brace got doctored with hacksaw and brace-and-bit to make a cross-piece between the gatepost and my new post. All manual labour as, doh, I'd not recharged my rechargeable electric drill, amazing how slow drilling metal by hand is compared to electric assistance. Result satisfyingly unshiftable, steady as a rock.

May get some more done tomorrow and take some pictures.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Civil Engineering

Well, I must not let so much time slip by between posts.
Keep thinking, "oh that's not worth doing a blog-post" and before I know it a month has gone by and I'm trying to remember all the little snippets, so here goes.

I measured up for hedging and it did NOT rain on me.

Only thing to happen in the greenhouse is the peppers have died. A whole week of frosty fog has seen them off, not too surprising as I do not heat my greenhouse.

Slugs have been a real problem as all my winter carrots seem to get attacked, suppose I should be used to this by now, but I keep forgetting and trying to keep them in the ground and harvest as needed through the winter.

Apart from that the plot is embarrassingly bare, the winter brassicas have been a failure, I have about ten small cabbages and some very undersized kale plants, together with some really poor red brussel sprouts, markerpen thick stalks and no sign of sprouts.

Two weeks ago the hedging arrived, together with canes and spiral guards. Of course the weather has either been soggy or frosty fog and so I have heeled the whole lot in on the allotment and will await more suitable planting weather.

Thursday my £900-odd worth of chainlink fencing was delivered.

Yesterday I set to with a vengance and put in the first braced end post by Gaynor's plot. More work needed than should have been as her predecessor on the plot had a reather casual attitude to weeds. OK I've pulled up this huge pile of weeds, ah that chainlink looks like a good place to pile them up against. End result the profile of the plot goes ; Main path, ten inch vertical drop, cultivated (not recently) area, then another ten inch higher bit in a gently arching mound, with the original fence embedded in it a full spade deep. It is like an elongated stonage burial mound

The one-peter operated post hole boreing corkscrew is really good, twelve turns, lever it up and pull out with 6-8" of loose soil on top and a plug stuck round the spike. The top of the corkscrew is like a T and I wedge a tool handle end in the old fence and under the T and pull the end up. Saves the back.

Today I cleared ready to start work along two thirds of Gaynor's plot, cut back the brambles and overhanging selfseeded apple tree to allow clear view of the existing fence. Then I dug off the burial mound alnong to where the next braced post will go. This is only about twenty feet as there is a kink early on in this run. To do the rest of the burial mound I'll need the barrow to wheel the spoil to the only bit of the plot that's relatively weed free. Gaynor should benefit as the soil that's coming out is soft and crumbly, unlike the rest of the plot and very unlike the yellow-brown clay that came out of the bottom of the post holes. Just hope she does not freak out at the pile of bramble & apple trimmings, will have to ask the council to take that away in the new year.

Tomorrow will be round the out-laws and the day after will be hitting the sales, so no more posting of either sort for a few days.