Crunching the numbers and economy of mixing my own concrete led me to the realization that there is a reason why so many people opt for ready-mix solutions. Not only do they save you a load of hard work schlepping gravel, sand, portland and water, which you then have to mix and pour. They can do all that for less than the cost of the components. Even with a rapidly diminishing supply of sand and gravel, the cost of portland (cement) would have been nearly equal to that of the ready-mix quote.
The problem was my ongoing road issues made the thought of bringing in a concrete truck laughable. Regular readers will recall me almost losing the tractor to some quicksand-like mud on my “road” from the dojo tent to the buillding site.
All this just to get the footings poured. It ignored bringing in any further building supplies, or accessing the cabin in the future.
The only viable solution was to extend a proper driveway from where we had left off last summer, all the way to the building site. I managed to get a quick quote from the same fellow who had done such a great job last year (B.J. Kapush Contracting). A few days ago he arrived with his “big machine” – which proved to be exactly as described!
After the first day of work, he had managed to beef up our existing driveway to his own satisfaction. He cut down many of the trees that were leaning out over the driveway, and then laid them across the driveway, burying them under a new layer of gravel. He got up to the sawmill and dojo tent, where he expanded, levelled, and regraveled the whole area into a luxurious spot to park and turn around. We can now have visitors without fear that they will be unable to turn around – or without us having to move our vehicles to the neighbours!
The second day I went to work, and Donna and Kenny went to Mummu’s house to escape from the noise and (slight) dust. But I returned to the amazing sight of a driveway that could likely accomodate TWO vehicles passing one another. It took 12 hours of labour and 29 loads of gravel, but now we were ready to call the concrete fellows to come in and do their thing.
I made the call just as BJ was leaving, and we agreed that they would come sometime two days hence.