Skyfort Playset Installation – Day 20 (4/18)

Sunday again was a (beautiful) day of rest, so I was back on the playset work come Monday evening. Hard to believe I’ve been at this for nearly 3 weeks now! I’m of two minds as to the length of time. On the one hand, I could have had this playset up a lot sooner had I taken some full days off of work (or of course paid someone else to install it). On the other hand, I’ve still been having a lot of fun, and while spending nearly all of my evening and weekend free time on this project HAS prevented me from doing some other things, I’ve had fun working with my kids (who are almost every morning asking if we’re going to be able to work on the playset today!)

I thought that I had finished step 67 on Saturday, but it turned out there was still one part of it left undone, so I quickly finished that off. I also realized that I had made a mistake putting the metal gable parts (big green triangle on the picture below) on the insides instead of the outsides (mistake!)

The tasks for today were installing the porch area in front of the clubhouse. But before we got to that, Step 69 involved walling off one of the sides of the 2nd story. The problem with that is that particular area was the easiest way to actually get UP TO the 2nd story (since of course we don’t actually get a ladder till Step 74). So I got those boards and hoisted myself up for hopefully the LAST time.

Steps 70 and 71 involved creating the porch rafters and roof, and that step was done down on the ground. Since previous steps have let me know what direction the rafters are supposed to go, this didn’t take too long. One problem with Step 70 is that it claims you are supposed to put the 2 “V-shaped” rafter pieces together and then it gives vague instructions of how you’re supposed to run 2″ wood screws through them to connect them. It is not really clear how or where that’s supposed to happen but after staring at it for awhile, I did what I thought was best. It worked out okay but it was a bit tricky when I was trying to put the metal triangular support on the rafters, since one of the screws for the metal base hit this other wood screw that I had put in previously. But it all worked out.

The tricky part was actually ATTACHING the porch roof to the main clubhouse area. And by tricky part, I mean tricky part attaching it by MYSELF. Carolyn had come home while I was putting this on (snapping this nice picture)

She was able to help me get the bolts lined up into the right bolt holes, but it was a bit tricky getting the bolts to catch into the nuts. These “Spike T-nuts” that they give you are nice, but they are sometimes tricky to line up with the bolts. If you don’t have the bolt lined up EXACTLY right, your bolt spins but doesn’t catch. And with all the weight of the porch roof, the bolt was sagging some and not really lining up. It took about 15-20 minutes of me trying to simultaneously support the roof, push it up so the bolt was going in straight, make sure the nut stayed in place, as well as actually ratchet in the bolt with the socket wrench. Good times!

Then I put the gable on the porch roof (correctly on the outside this time!), and started on the ladder. I really wanted to get the ladder up and secured before I quit for the day, but alas, darkness foiled me.

As you can see, I got the ladder built, but it was pitch black by now (after 9 pm) and I didn’t want to risk screwing up the attachment since I couldn’t see in the dark.

Day 20 time: 3.0 hours
Total time: 36.0 hours
Mistakes made: 1 today (14 total)
Steps completed: 67-73 (out of 103)

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