To start off, here is a short video walk-through of the job:
Back on August 30th, 2011 (yes, 17 months ago) I framed the floor between containers #3 and #4. Ever since then, every time I have had to walk on or drag the welder on the corrugated metal floor in the space between 3 and 4, I have been aching to pour the concrete floors.
Recently Armando and I poured the smaller hallway and bathroom spaces, but it was the big spaces that I have been drooling over for so long. Finally the day arrived, as did Armando with his friend Dimas in tow. We worked this past Friday and Saturday and got about two-thirds of the big floors poured.
The day before, Armando and I laid out all the rebar and tied it together with tie wire. (Cynthia helped prep those wires for us.) In the next photo you can see burn marks on the far container wall and more burn marks in the foreground. This is where I welded the rebar to give the connection between the two containers more strength. I don’t want the house splitting down the middle if I can help it!
Here is the completed floor in the dry room (this room will have a dehumidifier) in container #3:
Next we poured the little porch off the master bedroom plus the slab on container #4:
Next, the guys had to mix more concrete:
Dimas poses for a photo by Cynthia:
Then we poured the big central area of the floor. I “stomped the grapes” to send the larger rocks to the bottom, making finishing easier:
I also worked the screed, sometimes with Armando and sometimes solo. Need I say that I am tired and way too sore?
The guys arrived this day unexpectedly early at 6:00 a.m. sharp, just as I was waking up. I hustled to get my clothes on and got to the job to do final preparations. At 1:00 p.m., after the floor was all poured and screeded, I had the guys clean the tools and the work area and sent them home. I stayed another four hours waiting for water to disappear and troweled the surface when appropriate.
After screeding and when the water was mostly gone from the surface, I used the bull float to level the concrete. I tried to buy a bull float but I couldn’t find one in all of Panama. I ended up making one myself; it is four-feet wide and has a twelve-foot-long handle:
Here is the big space after bull floating:
After this water evaporated, I worked the floor with a wooden float to yield this surface:
And after waiting yet again, I steel troweled the space to yield the final product, all ready for floor tiles some time in the future:
Monday we will start up again and complete the floors in the laundry room and the second bedroom.
We started today off with pancakes and fresh-squeezed mandarin orange juice:
Here’s Jabo, up on the lift for an oil change:
Cynthia is growing catnip. It is an excellent mosquito repellent, too:
A lone dahlia popped its head in the back garden:
The Banana Report: They are growing:
The flower at the bottom of the banana stalk is really pretty inside:
Here’s a closeup:
An aloe vera plant, going wild:
Everything grows so big and lush here in the tropics. This not only applies to plants, but also to wildlife. The other day Armando and I noticed that some birds in the lot to the west of us were all up in arms. Grabbing a machete, we walked into the jungle lot. After a lot of looking, Armando spotted a large boa, mostly submerged in the swampy undergrowth just a couple feet away. It was about four or five inches in diameter and maybe six- or seven-feet in length. We left it alone to do its business with the birds. Sorry, no photo exists of this one that got away.
Spoiler Allert; Big spider photo next. Spiderphobes turn away now and I’ll say goodbye for this post. Thanks for stopping by.
But we did get a picture of a pretty big spider. Cynthia called me to come home to deal with a dead spider in the bedroom, right next to our bed. Even dead, it was giving her the heebie jeebies. Here’s a photo:
That’s all for now. Thanks for stopping by.