Raven gets a new nest

autokunst

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I am writing with no constructive purpose - just to vent. The crew spent yesterday and half of today hanging the drywall. While at a glance, it begins to make the interior look like a space, upon closer inspection it is a terrible job. I plan to speak with the builder before any joint compound covers up the mayhem that I am seeing. But this really sucks. I can't bring myself to post any pictures.

In Chicago, the drywall crews are second to none. They do far better work, faster, and for less money than any team I've seen in Wisconsin. We've even brought a crew up from Chicago to work on a project in Kohler once. It was less expensive to put an entire drywall crew up at a hotel for a week than it was to use a Wisconsin company. And the resulting work was better.

It is not lost on me the irony that surrounds the quality of work I receive on this garage compared to the quality of work we demand on my studio's projects. Sure, the cost of the project may be slightly lower, but I am still paying a strong wage for this little nest - I feel the work should be a bit better than this.

Sorry to complain.
 

dang

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I do as much of the work myself because of what you're talking about. Contractors are expensive and, with a few exceptions, I've been disappointed every time. I get the "time is money" thing but it always seems like they're in a race to finish the job and it usually shows. I'm slow, I make mistakes, I correct them, but in the end I think my work is at least as good as contractors.

I'm remodeling my kitchen right now, which is slowing down my E3 work, so I'm having to decide how much work I want to do. It's just replacing/updating existing stuff... cabinet doors, countertop, appliances, etc. I sub'd out the doors because they're made perfect on million dollar equipment that I can't duplicate, but I'm building boxes for the drawers, mounting all the doors and faces, I put in a custom range vent (hood liner, remote fan in the attic, custom hood) and I plan on building a new set of cabinets for the dining area. I'll have the countertop installed but other than that I'll do the rest. Spray all the cabinets and doors, flooring (tile or laminate), extend a countertop, under cabinet lighting...

It will take a while but that's okay, it will be the last remodel we do (in this house) in our lifetime so I want it done right. :)

Range hood I'm putting in. This is in the primer/finish sanding stage...
 

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autokunst

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I did some weighing of the time/value equation. In my case - a new, nearly 1,000 sf building with full foundation, 17' tall - was more than I can do myself if I want to park our cars indoors within the next decade. While they are out there working, I have been chasing after various items on my own, and also putting a new hardwood floor down in our dining room.

I'll talk to them about the drywall. And in the end, as my wife has assured me, it will be fine.
 

bluecoupe30!

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It WILL be fine Stephen. Today, no contractor's team-of-the-day will put in a day's work that matches your expectation. Just what I have learned. But often, what is expected may be more than what is necessary. If we do all of the work ourselves, it will become a bespoke homage to customization and perfection that will take many more months. I have resolved to just get the basics completed, then detail the hell out of any project myself until I am happy. Good luck and hang in there. Mike
 

Gary Knox

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Stephen,

For nearly 20 years my wife and I volunteered on msot Saturdays a year at Habitat for Humanity, building new houses for 'God's People in Need'. These volunteer groups do everything except pour concrete and put in the foundation. So, drywall and taping were one of the many activities to be completed before a house could be inspected for occupancy. My wife actually came to love the drywall installation (all 5'4" 120 lbs of her) especially getting the cuts for outlets etc. just perfect. That ,along with vinyl siding installation and using the Sawzall and Chop saw were among her favorite activities. Unfortunately, she retired from drywall work about 7 years ago when she had the first of 5 spinal column surgeries. Otherwise, I'd volunteer her to travel to WI to help out (OH, another problem, she hates cold weather!!!).

Sorry about your complications. Hope it goes better from here on.

Gary
 

CSteve

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Stephen,

For nearly 20 years my wife and I volunteered on msot Saturdays a year at Habitat for Humanity, building new houses for 'God's People in Need'. These volunteer groups do everything except pour concrete and put in the foundation. So, drywall and taping were one of the many activities to be completed before a house could be inspected for occupancy. My wife actually came to love the drywall installation (all 5'4" 120 lbs of her) especially getting the cuts for outlets etc. just perfect. That ,along with vinyl siding installation and using the Sawzall and Chop saw were among her favorite activities. Unfortunately, she retired from drywall work about 7 years ago when she had the first of 5 spinal column surgeries. Otherwise, I'd volunteer her to travel to WI to help out (OH, another problem, she hates cold weather!!!).

Gary
Sorry about your complications. Hope it goes better from here on.
 

CSteve

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We are within driving distance of Lancaster, PA known not only for the Amish but also for the Mennonite communities. There are a number of small Mennonite builders who employ Mennonite workers. They built our two and half car garage in three days. Granted I had it graded, laid down the gravel base for the brick floor that I would install, but still they did amazing work. Showed up by 9 AM, ate a quick lunch in their trucks, left around 5 each day. All the materials came in on a flatbed early the first morning.

Now we are talking a basic structure, NO insulation, sheet rock, concrete, electric, etc. But the cost 25 years ago was $7,000. dollars. Later I added a second floor with pull down stairs. So factor in all of my additional costs and I am looking at $10,000. Total. I would guess that may be the cost of your concrete??



Steve
 

Ohmess

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Just caught up reading this project, & I’m excited for you. Insane what it takes to get contractors to competently complete a garage. I used to enjoy playing barstool architect and planning projects, but I missed so much work having to babysit contractors the last 2, it effectively became an additional cost multiplier. I’ve been putting off diving into a new house b/c of the time & aggravation.

Rant: Same w healthcare—you’ve got to become a freaking doctor to get anyone to focus on anything that’s not in their assembly line. I think everyone wants so badly to find scalable easy business models for everything that we’re getting dumber. The least common denominator has become the ideal because it’s freaking “scalable.” I walked out of a meeting when one of my partners started taking about identifying internal & external stakeholders in scalable legal services. If he’d said “utilize” or “impactful” I’d have punched him. Rant off.
Jay - Funny, isn't it. How many of us, when we need to outsource work on our coupes, opt for the shop that has implemented the scalable easy business model? I'm guessing not many.

Quick story on my e39 - Took my car to the independent shop I use for work I can't do, and the safety inspection entailed removing and then reinstalling wheels and tires. I got the car home, and pulled out my torque wrench to retorque the wheels, which I do every time someone else pulls my wheels off the car. They were all torqued correctly.

So, I called my guy Eddie and said "Eddie, I have some feedback for you." He said: "Oh boy, here we go." "I've owned this car for 15 years now, and this is the first time that the wheels have been properly installed when I got it home. You must do a good job of training the low level guys who put wheels back on at your shop." After "wait, what? You aren't making a complaint?", Eddie says "We don't have those guys here. Our mechanics do the job from start to finish. When you consider the complaints and the rework, we weren't saving any money with the lower level guys."

This problem of the lower level guys gets compounded in the building trades where the subcontractors are separate entities from the guy you hire.
 

CSteve

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Requesting a garage photo update.
That's the rub. A business can only afford to hire people with experience. When was the last time you saw a help wanted sign that read, no experience needed? The old way was called The Apprenticeship. It can be expensive, but I believe in some European countries, yes those Socialist countries that Bernie Sanders probably loves, the government subsides the cost of the apprentice. And employers don't have worry about the tens of thousands of dollars they have to spend on health care.

So a shop like Ohmess's can hire "lower level guys" and be able to spend some time training them. And there is the incentive for them that they can move up to Mechanic level with all the benefits. And that creates a steady stream of trained, professional workers.

I actually started at a national advertising agency in their "Training Program." All the big and many small corporations had them. And weren't there apprentice programs in most if not all the trades? Don't some still exist?
 

autokunst

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Requesting a garage photo update.
Happy to oblige.

Here's the obligatory view from the kitchen. Probably not a lot new on the garage, but a palette of siding staged in the yard awaiting installation.
20191110-kitchen view.jpg


View from the alley access.
20191110-OH door side.jpg


View from the entry side. I've built and added another roof assembly - the one towards the back. It will protect the heat pump compressor.
20191110-entry side.jpg


And here's a view of the interior with drywall installed. From a distance it looks okay. But there are a number of details that need correction before the joint compound and tape arrive. You can see the raised trough in the ceiling for the lift.
20191110-interior.jpg
 

autokunst

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Looking good! Never taped or compounded my garage, I really should. The awnings look great too.
If a garage is attached to the house, compound and tape is required as part of the fire rated separation. But only one coat - typically not pretty. Detached doesn't "require" anything - drywall or taped joints. I chose to do drywall to cover the insulation, plus to provide a nice surface to paint for good light reflection and cleanliness. At this point, the drywall installation is so sloppy, the joints NEED to be taped so it doesn't look so heinous.

Andrew, with as nice as your garage is, I am shocked to learn your wallboard isn't taped. :)
 

dang

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Are there enough screws in the drywall? Seems too far apart, but I'm a low level guy. :D
 

Belgiumbarry

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nice garage build ! you will enjoy it , having your coupe at home .... and yes, same problems here , when i had my garage build , i have seen so many things i would have done "better" myself … or wrong materials , so they placed roof insulation without a white solid back … then they had to cut a plate for every recess between the beams … as it was so agreed in a fix price with te contractor.
I have seen them making materials for "home" ... but that was not my problem.... i found wooden sheets with cutouts as for round tables ...that's not used in my garage :D

I do not understand ….
You can see the raised trough in the ceiling for the lift
 

DWMBMW

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Stephen,

The awning brackets you made to match house look great.

What is the second one for, a covered overhang for trash bins?

Doug
 

autokunst

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Stephen,

The awning brackets you made to match house look great.

What is the second one for, a covered overhang for trash bins?

Doug
That second roof is to cover the heat pump compressor. Since it will also provide heat in the winter, I need to keep snow and ice out of the coils to maintain performance.
 
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