Following the curve
Every project we build has to follow the same building code as everyone else. Sidewalks can’t be steeper than 1 in 12 slope, railings need to be 42” high with a maximum space of 4” between the spindles and we need to engineer many of our components as required. The purpose of following these many rules is to keep people safe, especially important when we distract them with eye candy at every turn. But that does not mean we have to build in the same fashion as everyone else. Far from it. In our book curves are much more pleasing to the eye than straight and over the top fancy is better by far than plain.
Matthew started cutting and fitting the steel pipe for the front railing today. It was a challenging project. First the heavy hydraulic bender had to be hauled rom the shop to the worksite along with lots of pipe of course. This railing would have pleasing curves and also undulate vertically at the same time. This meant studying the required action, taking some notes, doing a gentle trial bend, hauling the railing pipe up to the wall and test fitting it, back to the bender for some more tweaking and then repeat until it matches the existing wall perfectly. Then it needs to be trimmed to length and carefully fit into place, ready to weld. No gaps bigger than 1/8” are allowed as up to that size is easily filled with weld. Five sections of pipe were bent and fit this afternoon. On Monday, Matt and Peter will do the top rail which follows a slightly different line than the bottom. Then they will mark out the spacing and cut and weld in the steel pickets, each with a unique length. It certainly isn’t the fastest way to build a fence but the end result is well worth the effort! Nice job Matt!