ffj's early retirement

Where are you and where are you going?
ffj
Posts: 2173
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by ffj »

@MEA

I wouldn't romanticize them too much. If they didn't have such good qualities as hardworking people, which makes people overlook their other habits, then I could easily see them viewed as a cult. You are either in the group or out, and someone like me who genuinely asks questions is always greeted with a polite but always guarded answer. They believe people like me are going to hell and that they are following the correct path and all others are misled. Rules dictate every aspect of their life, from the language spoken to the clothes they wear, the haircut they are allowed to display, who they are allowed to marry, what kind of transportation they can use, what girls are allowed to do, what boys are allowed to do, and their education stops at an eighth grade level, which is completely in-house and bi-lingual.

They are also business people that capitalize on their homespun image. Much of that is earned but one should never forget that they are there to make money, first and foremost.

With all of that said, I can't help but be impressed by the three guys that have done this in six work days:

Image

This a father, who at 42 years old, has his two sons aged 23 and 21 working with him and they flat out kick ass. They don't talk other than to yell out measurements and they really don't talk much when they break for lunch. They just work, and everybody knows exactly what to do and to anticipate the next step. The father told me he started with his dad who was a carpenter when he was 13 so he has been building for almost 30 years! He's 42 years old, haha. I'm sure those boys of his started around that time too.



In other news I continue to spend a shit ton of money, haha. Having to deal with so many details and orders while still working all day is quite tiring I have to say. Stuff like dealing with windows and doors and lumber orders and different vendors on top of physically working takes a toll but the flip side is that a lot of stuff is getting done, which is nice.


The hay was cut yesterday which makes everything look better and he should bale it up Monday or so.

Image

My goal is to finish the shop next week and I'll get pictures of the siding soon. It's looking good but I've been so busy I just haven't had time to take pictures this last week.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 6104
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am
Location: Clinton River Watershed

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

The Amish guys my BF hired to build his shed didn’t even need to use a level!

To be looking across an open field towards trees with something solid at your back is a hard-wired human preference, because we evolved at the fertile chaotic edge of jungle and savanna. Garden designers make use of these innate preferences even when working at small scale.

ffj
Posts: 2173
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by ffj »

@7

These guys don't either other than to plumb up the corners. They literally sight the walls from corner to corner to insure plumbness. I joked about them not using a level and they said we don't have too once the corners are set. Makes sense.


I do that when I frame my photos before I take a picture. There are views from my property that don't look as good so I don't take those pictures, haha.

My goal eventually is to prune and landscape the entire 8 acres so that all views are pleasing to the eye. It's amazing what pruning a tree into a desirable shape will accomplish or creating a border or transition does for beauty. As well as layering. I love doing that kind of stuff and once all of this building is done I'll be focusing of that heavily.

7Wannabe5
Posts: 6104
Joined: Fri Oct 18, 2013 9:03 am
Location: Clinton River Watershed

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by 7Wannabe5 »

What fun! I wish I could recall title of brilliant book that focused on human psychology towards garden design. You could play at creating settings that promote any number of positive human emotional states. For instance, simple bench by lily pond = peaceful/serene or rope tire swing hung over soft landing space = invitation to play. Hiding places and cubby-holes, very curvy paths through thick high growth that suddenly open into lovely, light dappled, open space , etc. etc.

Igotgoals
Posts: 20
Joined: Sat Feb 20, 2016 2:18 pm

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by Igotgoals »

Unbelievable. I'm stunned at basically a week's worth of progress.
Your house is really taking shape.

theanimal
Posts: 1567
Joined: Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:05 pm
Location: AK
Contact:

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by theanimal »

Wow. I'm also amazed at the progress in such a short span of time. You've done well in hiring. Want to see if they want to come up to AK after they're done with you and help me out? I guess that'd be quite the trip by horse and buggy. :lol:

ffj
Posts: 2173
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by ffj »

@7

Something I am going to have to do at some point is select the nice specimens in my woods and kill off a lot of the understory trees that don't have a chance to ever fully mature. It pains me though to destroy a beautiful young tree thats only sin was to grow in a bad spot where it can never outcompete the mature trees above it. A lot of them contort themselves trying to get to sunlight and they have crazy bent trunks, which can be attractive too but they also aren't healthy a lot of the times. My goal is to create a grove of trees that are pruned and spaced to where you can casually stroll throughout, while still maintaining privacy. The possibilities are endless which is exciting.

@Igot

It's really happening. No turning back now.

@animal

He told me today that in a couple of years he wants to switch gears and build furniture so you had better book him soon. But the catch is that he isn't allowed to use electricity at his home so he is going to have to rig a diesel motor to run hydraulics that will run the machines. Now mind you he uses electricity all day while building my house but for some reason thats taboo at home, even though it would be his business at that point. I really wanted to question some of the logic but I let it go as I am sure he has his reasons. As I understand it, each Amish community establishes what they can and cannot do in regards to electricity and transportation, and that is why you'll see some that ride bikes but others only allow scooters, and some allow electricity for home business such as greenhouses using a generator but like him, others only allow hydraulic motors. Kind of crazy.





I've been siding my shop for several days now and with all of these windows, angles and door openings it has really been slow. And on top of that I have never trimmed windows out before using J-channel with metal siding. I had to watch a Youtube video to learn how to do it, and if you ever build a structure with metal siding, then this is the guy to learn from: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCWXEQs ... jwgGN5HUeQ

He's an excellent teacher and I would have never figured how to perform these corner joints without him. I was happy with the results.

Image

Image

And I am almost done:

Image




The hay was baled today which I missed but I got a picture of some of the machinery. This tool sweeps up the loose grass into fluffy rows that the hay baler picks up and bales. It's called a hay sweeper?

Image



And todays progress. I think these guys may be done by Wednesday which is insane.

Image




I'll leave you guys with a funny picture.

Image



I stopped by the firehouse today and this was laying on the table. I had seen this before and the story goes the guy who had this axe was using it at a house fire and at one point he decided to smash out a bedroom window and when he did, the axe flew out of his hands into the burning bedroom.

Now after the fire was finally out, he went to look for it and apparently when it flew into the room it landed on a feather bed, and the heat melted the handle into the burning bed and the feathers were fused into the handle. It's a great conversation piece, haha.

ffj
Posts: 2173
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by ffj »

I've reached two milestones here recently, the house is framed and the shop is finished.

Image

The builders finished up on Thursday and I finally finished the shop today.*

Image

It took exactly 10 days for the framers to frame the house and it took me 2 and a half months to complete the shop once framing began. :? They say you should never compare yourself to others and this is why. :D In all fairness though I worked by myself and there is a lot of detail work around all of those opening with the siding. I've hired a guy to install the garage doors which should happen fairly soon.

So let's talk about the upside of the last 2.5 months. I tallied the total for the cost of my 1,300 square foot shop and with the garage doors installed I have spent around $19,000 to $20,000. Since I poured the concrete and dug the footers at the same time as the house I somewhat guessed at what share the cost was for the shop but I think I am pretty close. And I'm pretty confident if I would have hired this shop out to a contractor it would have been at least $35,000 so I am going to calculate my savings at $15,000 at a minimum, which more than paid for the Amish guys to frame the house. Not too shabby.

Thankfully now I can walk away from the shop and start working on the house. I am really tired of working with these metal panels but as luck would have it, I need a roof on my house and we are using metal, so no break for me. :x The roof has a membrane on it that is a vapor barrier as well as water proof so I do have breathing room in the install, which is nice.


* like all things, nothing is truly finished as I still have to complete the interior, but I can walk away and do something else as it is weather-tight

bigato
Posts: 2769
Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 12:43 pm
Location: Brazil

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by bigato »

Such a good looking shop, and a nice size! Congratulations for this milestone!

2Birds1Stone
Posts: 1038
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2015 11:20 am
Location: Earth

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

Congratulations, this build has been extremely satisfying to watch since the beginning.

SavingWithBabies
Posts: 659
Joined: Mon Aug 31, 2015 2:50 pm
Location: Midwest, USA

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by SavingWithBabies »

That is amazing how quick the house went up. But also amazing just how much progress you've made overall.

ffj
Posts: 2173
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by ffj »

Thanks all.

I spent all day today mowing and trimming grass as I have been neglecting those chores to work on construction.

I am so ready to move out here in peace surrounded by wildlife and beautiful views. Thanks for your encouragement.

bottlerocks
Posts: 70
Joined: Mon Jul 14, 2014 1:51 pm
Location: Magicant (WalkScore: Pajamas)

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by bottlerocks »

I learn so much from this journal, thanks for the continuous updates.

I apologize if this has come up before and I missed it but could you summarize what kind of permitting/inspections you've had to do to this point, if any? And what will need to be done going forward?

Igotgoals
Posts: 20
Joined: Sat Feb 20, 2016 2:18 pm

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by Igotgoals »

The shop really looks nice, ffj , and your house is all framed.
Big milestone day.

Well worth the money paying someone else to do the house framing I'd say.
Especially these guys. Sounds like you made a good choice selecting them.

ffj
Posts: 2173
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by ffj »

@bottlerocks

No problem.

I had to pay for a permit to build the house. A permit and inspection fee for the temporary electrical service. A permit to install my own water and a fee, and the latest one was a permit for the installation of the septic tank which was $150. Now people do come out and inspect and make sure it is done correctly but I am out over $1000 already for that pleasure.

I'll have to have my plumbing and electrical work inspected once its done as well as the HVAC before I am allowed to install drywall. Not sure what that will cost but everybody has their hand out in the name of safety.

And I'm glad you're learning, that makes me happy.


@Igot

Yeah, I do too in regards to hiring out the framing. Now I can compartmentalize all of the future tasks at hand one at a time without a large looming task ahead of me. And it's also a nice psychological boost seeing an actual house standing there.


Well, I said I was done with the shop, and I am on the outside, but I have hired a garage door installer to put in the doors and he will need to bolt brackets to the ceiling. Now he could do this without a proper ceiling, but that means I would either have to cut around the brackets or disassemble them partly to get my ceiling panels in at a later date, either of which is a huge pain in the ass.

So, I decided to put the ceiling in now before he shows up. I bought these panels several years ago and they have been in my barn for 5 years, and if you will remember my porch addition when I started this journal, this metal was part of that batch. The top layer was pretty dirty but the gunk washed off fairly easily. I just can't seem to get away from all of this metal work.

Image

OTCW
Posts: 424
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2011 12:55 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by OTCW »

That is a great looking shop. Can't wait to see it fitted out with your tools, vehicles, etc.

ffj
Posts: 2173
Joined: Thu Aug 26, 2010 3:16 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by ffj »

@OTCW

Thanks. It's going to look great when I'm done with the interior. I plan on putting up shiplap or tongue and groove wood to balance out all of this metal and soften it up a bit. I have quite the collection of antique tools that I will hang on the walls not only for decoration but for use also.

But I'm moving on to the house after today with the completion of the ceiling. I can't justify working on this anymore when I have a house to finish.




The ceiling panels were 14 feet long and very floppy so I had to rig a system to support one end while I lined the panel up before screwing. This was simply a couple of brackets that I made out of scrap. All of the screw holes were marked with an awl so I didn't have to guess where to place the screw while simultaneously holding it in place over my head. I would put the pre-marked panel on the scaffold, make sure I had a screw in my screw gun, and lift the panel into place with the help of the jig. And then while balancing it in the correct position, screw it into place and most importantly lesson the weight off of my arms. I used to hang drywall so a lot of the skills necessary for that came in handy here.

Image

Image

MEA
Posts: 55
Joined: Sat Dec 28, 2019 9:54 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by MEA »

After your comments on the Amish, I started watching this documentary on their lives. I have to agree, I'll pass on becoming Amish. :roll:

They're too proud of hard work. And it blew my mind that they live their lives according to the Bible -- which they (mostly) no longer understand because it was written in old German.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0V9ifOzQzlc
Last edited by MEA on Sun Jun 28, 2020 2:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

jacob
Site Admin
Posts: 12393
Joined: Fri Jun 28, 2013 8:38 pm
Location: USA, Zone 5b, Koppen Dfa, Elev. 620ft, Walkscore 73
Contact:

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by jacob »

Ahh, some day I plan to have a shop like that. Next house ...

Dumb question. Suppose you want to get a machine tool with a shipping weight of say 5,000lbs in there. How would that work? A friend of mine has his mill/lathe set up just inside the port because that was as far as the truck's crane could reach.

OTCW
Posts: 424
Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2011 12:55 am

Re: ffj's early retirement

Post by OTCW »

A portable gantry crane might do the trick.

Image

Post Reply