Kentucky crop circles

Yikes! Came outside and found crop circles.

Not really! Just kidding, those are Painted Circles, done with an aerosol can of black paint and a 12" circle tool.

The rectangular outline is 4-1/2" x 5-1/2", which corresponds to the end size of three 2" x 6" pieces of dimension lumber - the size of our "posts".

The 2 holes correspond to the back side of a "post" and are used to measure and align jig.

To use it, first establish a "zero" point at one of the string corners and simply work from there by measuring the appropriate distance from post edge to post edge. Use a plumb bob along the string to ensure the back edge hole is at the proper distance from "zero" and drive a 6" spike into the ground. Set the jig over the head of the spike. Then plumb bob the front edge of the rectangle to ensure it's parallel with the string also.

Here's what it looks like with the circles done on one side. They really are in line, but the camera operator didn't get lined up, so the alignment isn't all that obvious.

Why go to all that trouble? Well, I've dug postholes "freehand", by eye before and usually there's one or two holes that are "off" and you've got to pull the pole out and dig again. This method should eliminate that kind of error.


Side View

Side view as submitted to Bldg Insp. One side will have an exterior walk door. But haven't figure out where exactly.


Front View

View from the front, more or less. Always subject to change!


Free delivery, but stack it yourself

I drove 65 miles to Flemingsburg on the 8th of June and purchased $2400 of lumber to begin the lower level. A.W. Graham delivered it that very afternoon. 65 miles, one way, and they didn't charge for delivery! Incredible.

We had to get it covered fairly quickly as storms were in the area. Rather than tarp it overnight and move it on the 9th, we decided to suck it up and move it all into the covered car port that day. Even though the wife had just returned from the dentist and some fairly serious dental work. She's tough, I tell you.

If there hadn't been the threat of rain, I would have taken my time and stacked in order of the build. But, with the rumble of thunder all around us, we just started moving lumber, with little thought of stacking in order. We started at 4:00 and by 7:30 had it stacked under the carport. The old man's muscles are still sore two days later!


Never, ever, say never

Well, after mulling it this way, then mulling t'other way.. hmmm... 9' centers for the columns. It finally dawned on me that at 6' o.c. there's just too many holes and too much lumber going into the ground. I still have to consider all that weight on 9' spans (top and bottom girts), but I'm cogitating a somewhat simple solution for that. More holes, but not 46" deep ones. Instead, approx. 8" x 10" x 30" holes in between the 9' o.c. columns and poured to grade with reinforced concrete. These "footers" will support the middle portion of the two bottom girts. Here's the latest side view.


The objective

We've decided to build a 20' x 36' garage. It will be a "hybrid" pole barn style. Three pieces of 2" x 6" x 12' ACQ (pressure treated) dimension lumber will be built up (laminated) to form 4 1/2" x 5 1/2" wood columns, 12' in length. We'll use construction adhesive between each piece and a combination of 4" galvanized screws and 20d nails, staggered 8" o.c. on each side to build the columns. We've used this method to build outbuildings in the past, and it ensures reasonably straight columns, plus single pieces of 2" x 6" lumber are easy to handle. Something that can't be said when wrestling solid sawn 4" x 6" or 6" x 6" treated posts. Also, invariably, treated lumber arrives from the yard wet and to ensure a straight board (or post) it must be stacked, ricked, and air dried for about 2 weeks before use or it tends to warp. In addition to the wrestling issue, 2" x 6" x 12' boards dry quicker than solid sawn posts.

The laminated columns will be placed in 12" x 46" holes and rest on 10" x 12" concrete "punch pads". The holes are then filled to grade with concrete. The columns along the sides will be set 6' o.c., with 2" x 10" ACQ double bottom girts, 2" x 10" double top girts, and 2" x 6" stud framing between the columns to form 2' bays for R-21 insulation batts. The 2x6 studs also facilitate window and door framing.

The 6' o.c. might seem extravagant, as normal spacing is 8'. But, I tend to overbuild, plus when we decided to go to a 36' length from our originally planned 32', I just couldn't seem to follow the "build in 4' or 8' divisions" principal without doing a 6' o.c. spacing. I certainly didn't want to space them 9'o.c.



Well, I've just about always lived in a house with a garage, either attached or not. Since moving into this small cottage-style house, we don't have one. Just a carport and that frustrates the dickens out of me. Yes, we've got 2 fairly large sheds in the back for storing our "stuff", but that just don't hack it for a tinkerer like myself. We've got this large empty lot next to us, so we finally decided that it'd be the perfect spot for a garage.