The winter sun holiday is now a memory, the summer clothes have been put away and its time to get back to work outside.
As I mentioned in my last post, we came home to a bit of wind damage to our fences, before we went we realised that quite a few of the posts on the stream side of the garden were rotten and would need some work, but we were hopeful that we could do it at our own pace when we returned. Some particularly bad winds a week before our return, put paid to this idea. When we docked at Southampton I turned on my phone to find a text from our neighbour, warning us that we had a bit of damage.
We had originally planned to do the work ourselves, but closer inspection revealed it was far too much work for us, so its being replaced in 2 weeks time, until then it sags sadly at the side of the garden.
So thats the damaged, now on to the new. The summerhouse was arriving on Thursday. The day dawned bright and sunny and we were up early to accept the delivery. Two men arrived, from somewhere in the West Midlands about 9am with our next new building. It took about half an hour to unload and then they were off leaving us with another building puzzle. The instructions this time were on sheet of A4 paper printed on one side!
As I looked at the bits, I had a very brief feeling that something wasn't quite right, but couldn't make out what it was so dismissed it, so off we went putting it together, Of course it was not going to be easy, the building is 10ft by 8ft with a huge roof and there were just the two of us to build it but that didn't deter us.
The double doors went in next, this is where we started to have issues. The first time we put them in, when all the screws were done up, you couldn't open the doors as they were pulled out of shape. So out they came, and this time after lots of adjustments of various screws and nails, they went in almost perfectly.
Now the roof. As you can see from the pictures, the summer house only has about a foot of space between its side wall and the shed. So how were we going to get that roof panel up? Jim came up with a plan that involved putting the other side up first and then sliding the second panel up over the first and then tipping it like a see saw over the apex, onto the other side. Its sounds complicated but it worked rather well. The most difficult bit for me was getting the panel up to the roof height in the first place, being only 5ft 4in it was a struggle, but it didn't take long and only a few scrapped knuckles to show for it.
At this point we decided a quick trip to the garden centre was in order to make sure we connected the roof properly, with all the wind we have been having lately we didn't want to see it sailing off towards the Isle of Wight. As we walked towards the display at the garden Centre, I realised my earlier feeling that something wasn't right, were correct. Can you spot the difference?
The Summer house we saw originally had two full length glass windows on the side panels, ours only had one! Whilst Jim looked at the roof fixing I went in to see the salesman , he was a mystified as me, as far as he was concerned, our summerhouse should have two side windows. A phone call to the manufacturers revealed that since our order was placed in October, they had changed the design and not told anyone. I was a bit miffed as was the salesman, as their display model is now out of date.
The upshot of it all was, as our order was placed when the model had two windows, the company are manufacturing two new side panels with two windows. I did explain that the summerhouse was built and had no intention of taking it down and waiting another 10 weeks. So when the panels are made they are sending a couple of chaps (Probably the same two) to swap out the side panels.
Back home, the roof fix went well and things were looking good.
Now the roof needed to be protected with tar paper. and it didn't take me long to realise that as the roof would only support a small amount of weight, a lot of the hammering, high up would be down to me. I have never been a great fan of heights but we started slowly by me standing on a long ladder and reaching over and eventually I had to climb right on and crawl up to the top, as Jim was helping me, there are no pictures of this bit, but suffice to say it took a while, as I didn't feel very safe.
So thats it for now with the summer house, Friday was spent doing lots of the finishing off bits, and its now ready for Monday when the electrician arrives to put the power in, we will have to have everything attached to the back wall for now as at some point the sides will be changing.
The sun is out now and it looks like another great day, so a quick trip to the shower and then out we go again, the greenhouse floor still needs work and there is a huge pile of earth and grass to be moved so we can start putting in the raised beds. More news soon.