Sun Pony Ranch

Diary of novice (clueless) ranch owners

Monday, January 16, 2006

Another weekend

We had another weekend of long days - but we got a lot done! We finished rails on the NW run of fence. All of the fence-wire is up - except one 10 foot portion. The staple gun is a real lifesaver for this. 130 feet of rails to put up and then 3 gates to go. Oh, and another 80 feet of pickets. And 15 feet to close off the passage around the barn.

Saturday our neighbor with the grading company was back to do final grading and then discuss what we wanted as far as gravel around the kennel. We've decided on 3/8" inch chips over the entire flat area north of the barn, and pathways to/from the front and back doors. It will be nice to have a way to keep the dogs out of the mud when things get mucky.

Sunday we actually pulled a couple posts before getting started, just for grins. NOT. One we moved so that we could create space for a 12 foot gate instead of a 10 foot gate. We found that by wrapping a tie-down strap around the base of the post several times, and then hooking the ends to the lip of the tractor bucket, we could put upwards pressure on the post, then rock it by hand to get it to lift out of the ground a few inches at a time.

The second post was right in the middle of a run of 5 un-concreted posts, put in way back when before we understood the toll that the wind takes on the dirt posts. We were reluctant to make more work for ourselves, but I asked if we needed to pull it. Dave went over and shook it a bit, then bent over and started pulling - and it moved. George and I went over and in a very short time yanked the thing out with our hands. That was depressing. At least re-digging that post hole was easy.

George is one of our leasers - he leases Romeo and has totally fallen head over heels for the big appy. It's a bit of another story, but Romeo has gone and made himself lame, so he isn't in shape for riding right now. George owns a roofing company, so he always comes out to see our progress on the fence. Sunday he decided he didn't have anything better to do than come out and volunteer. Thanks George!

With George's help (I'm not sure Dave, Ginger and I could have moved the thing), we also got one of the two hitching posts that Roger had made for us set in place. Our one hitching post isn't adequate more than 2 or 3 horses at a time, so this is a very welcome addition indeed. We dug the holes for the other, so maybe since the snow didn't really come in as forecast we can get that one set tonight. That is if we can manoever the darn thing into place.

Another project on-going is the installation of the plexiglass along the top edge of both long walls in the kennel. There are two layers of plexiglass inside the barn-shell, with an air gap so as to retain heat. The outer most layer went in over a week ago, and we immediately saw the flaw in that design - it shows dust horribly. Dave claims that the plexiglass is so statically charged that it isn't possible to get it up without it collecting dust. That may well be true, but I'm also pretty sure the guys didn't put much effort into cleaning them off. So we already have very visible dust marks on the outside of the installed plexiglass where we can't get to. Second issue is that since the plexiglass is perfectly transparent, it gives us a lovely (albeit dusty) view of the inside surface of the building shell. Not really desirable. So we've been toying with the idea of sand blasting, or sanding, the inside layer so as to obsure that vision. This has been a time of interminable discussions and no decisions. So I went out and grabbed one, sanded both sides, and tacked it in place. I like it - the others haven't commented yet.

And Go Broncos! AFC Championship with home field advantage Sunday 1/22 1:00 MST.



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