Well, as you might have imagined – there have been some changes to the original plan. Apparently, the difficulties lie in the engineering.
Our carport, as designed, was to be a one-car-wide structure. That in itself might not be any problem, but since it’s meant to cover an RV, our carport is quite tall. It’s also freestanding. In the winters, we can get quite a bit of snow and wind, and the load (specifically, a racking moment) on a tall, skinny, freestanding structure can be pretty significant. At least that’s what the results of the engineering analysis said when we finally got it back.
Now, back in the day, I was an engineer myself (Auburn University, Aerospace Engineering, 1989), so I probably could have figured this out before we even got this far. But I’ve gotten old and lazy, and couldn’t be bothered to remember what Dr. Spring said those 26 years ago – so we had to wait for the analysis to come back. When it did, we weren’t too happy.
The first thing they wanted was for the posts to be buried IN the concrete tubes instead of mounted atop them. There was no way I was going to do that with wood posts, because they would rot. So we countered with steel posts (which we would wrap in wood to get a wooden look). The steel posts were accepted, and would result in only a minor cost overrun due to the need to fabricate brackets on them and whatnot.
But the counter punch floored me. The steel posts are fine. But they have to be buried in concrete TWENTY-FOUR INCHES IN DIAMETER AND 6 FEET DEEP! That’s about .7 of a CUBIC YARD of concrete per post. There are 8 posts. So that’s 5.6 cubic yards of concrete. Each cubic yard weighs over 3500 pounds. So that’s about Twenty Thousand Pounds of concrete to hold this thing in place.
Really? I mean, yeah, we get snow here, but it’s the normal water-based snow. Not the lead-based snow they apparently get wherever this guy went to engineering school.
But there are other problems. The first being – I don’t know if we have 24 inches worth of space to work with. Here’s what the west side of the driveway looks like
And the second problem – we can’t find anyone to bore us holes of that size. We’ve tried most all of the fence contractors in Salt Lake City, and none of them can go that deep. Not even the ones that build the fences around prisons, airports, bomb shelters, and the like. Our next move is to call some of those missile silo contractors from the Dakotas…
Well, at least if this carport ever gets built, I can be pretty sure it’s not going anywhere.
More on the drama as it unfolds.