August 4, 2014

Rebuilding the Deck- Part 2

Cliff's Notes Recap: We bought a Cabin up North, added a third bedroom and moved the front entry.  Now we need to build new steps to the new door, so we are going to extend the existing deck around the house.  

The plan was to take up the old deck boards, add the extension, and then place new boards over the entire new deck.  But like in most DIY, things are never as easy as they seem. 

Ants!  We had huge, wood eating, deck ruining ants!
Which brings us to Operation Tear Out the Old Deck.  My Dad took over on this project by himself a few weekends when my family and I weren't able to come up, and my Mom was kind enough to shoot some photos for me. He started by removing the old, rotten ledger boards against the house and cutting out any other damaged wood with the reciprocating saw.

Which was a ton of work, and left the cabin pretty exposed.

You can see daylight through the floor in the kitchen!

Then he spent a ton of time spraying, wrapping and sealing the remaining wood to make sure our little friends were long gone and couldn't do any more damage.  When he was convinced that the last of the ants had died a terrible death (apologies to the ant lovers out there, but we have no love for these home ruining fools), he attached beautiful new ledger boards.

Which left us with this.  A whole lot of work, and very little deck.

He continued the work by digging some new footers, pouring concrete and installing new, ant-free posts.  By the time the Hubs and I got up there, we had missed all the fun stuff (thanks Dad!) and got to work installing the flashing and hanging the new stringers.

This basically got us back to where we thought we would be months ago.  The deck boards off, ready for the expansion. 

Nothing like a ton of work to get you back to square one.  But at least we know now that this deck will last my lifetime, and likely the lifetime of my kids.  You can also see that we went ahead and installed the tracks needed for the hidden screws in our new composite decking.  Because ants can't eat composite, and that's pretty important. 

Hopefully we'll have images for you soon of this bad boy finally coming together.  We're going to need steps that aren't cinder-blocks by the time the snow flies. 

Here's hoping the second half of Operation Rebuild the Deck is a little less eventful than the first!

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