Monday, October 12, 2009

More Maintenance ... On to the Front Walk

The front walk consists (or, actually, consisted) of cement blocks about 3' X 5'. It's 30' long. The blocks were poured by my father about 40 years ago, with help from a friend and my brother. Over the years, they've moved slightly, sunk a bit in a few places and the wood shims between then has rotted away in some places. The yard has been steadily encroaching on the edges of the cenent blocks. All in all, the thing looked crappy.

We decided to take the leap and have the walk rebuilt. We'd get to raise it up slightly to stop the water pooling, put a short wall along the edge to ensure no further encroachment of the yard and improve the look overall.

The first guy who came to give us an estimate is the brother of the woman who cuts Skip's hair. He is semi-retired, had lots of great photos of work he'd done and gave me an estimate for the work that made my hair stand up. We mulled that over for a while ... could this really be what the walk rebuilding would cost? So, then we called the guy who'd repointed the chimney last year, who'd built some walks for some friends, and he gave us a quote 25% lower than the first guy. Bingo! We were in business.

He came on Saturday, with a crew of two guys, and they made huge progress. Unfortunately, they ran out of bricks and, with the Columbus Day holiday, the store that sold them to the mason won't reopen until Tuesday. So, they did a little bit of work on Sunday, but are now just waiting for more materials to finish the job. We're anxiously awaiting their return so we can see the outcome!

On Saturday morning, the first thing they did was to break up the cement blocks. They did this by levering one up with a pry bar, then the other guy slammed down a sledghammer to break it. Wow, brute strength!

The work in progress is looking great so far!


Taxingwoman said...

It looks great My new walk is stalled because of all the rain we've had

Cranky said...

Carole - thanks! We had steady rain today so they brought the bricks but couldn't do any work. We're looking at good weather for tomorrow, so I'm hopeful.

Anonymous said...

Great insight to take a before pic. What a difference! Nice job!


Cranky said...

L - thanks. I can't wait for it to be finished. The masons didn't show today and I'm a bit cranky about that.