A lot of work got done today, especially with the help of a few brave souls from the other Studio U (thanks guys and gals). With very important guests coming to view our full scale mock up Monday, we’re definitely picking up the pace with such a deadline on our heels – I’d say we shoveled twice as much concrete today as we managed to a few days ago pouring our footer. There is no feeling like hard manual labor to polish off a nice day.
The result? A very beautiful section of our segmented concrete wall, curing as Charleston sleeps. It’s not to say we’ve not had any problems; between shopping for materials this evening (after returning from a field trip at 7:00 PM of course), screwing together formwork [correctly], and hand mixing concrete to a consistent consistency between multiple batches, it’s been a bit of a challenge to piece together these sections of wall.
However, our biggest delay came as we were filling our last wall segment with concrete; so close to being done were we that this last batch of concrete would have filled our mold completely. I’m sure it was actually during our last shovelful of cement that, by some odd stroke of bad luck, a wall of our formwork failed and popped off the frame, letting loose the concrete held behind it (i.e. a blowout). Fortunately for us, most of the concrete was self contained from its own massive weight, but seeing some spilled on the ground, we started to come to the alarming realization that our formwork would not be strong enough to hold such a large volume of material.
Working full force, we quickly set about repairing the collapsed wall as others simultaneously reinforced the entire formwork. The wall segment looks as good as new and, if it weren’t for the spilled concrete on the ground, nobody would even notice our misfortune. Realizing this (can’t we keep our mistakes a secret?), the top priority became to disguise the spilled concrete so that nobody would be able to tell it had spilled. “Water it down into the ground so it disappears”……”Rake some dirt over it”……”Smooth it out some more” were among the suggestions rained out to hide that spilled concrete, and so that is exactly what we did.
Wow, cleverly disguised! I am absolutely sure nobody would be able to tell what happened there!