What the Deck!?

Good afternoon and happy Solid Orange Friday friends of Studio V! As we finish sewing up the last details of the ole Crop Stop mock-up, myself and the rest of the skeleton crew steering this operation out here on the front have found ourselves smack in the middle of a great lesson to be gleaned from the design-build process: the incongruity between what we draw and what we build.

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Throughout the construction phase our studio has relied on a Sketch Up model of the mock up to extrapolate board dimensions and cut lengths et al. Modifications to these plans have been a two way street, with the built product informing the model as the build process goes on and vice versa. We ran into a case of the former this afternoon when we began sizing up our 1 x 4’s for the decking–the model said one length, but out in the yard the tape measure advised otherwise. Even with our fearless leader posted up North and the majority of the studio Westward bound in the Blue Ridge this weekend, we were able to get all this cleared-up and squared away with a few lines of email exchange. Crisis averted–steady as she goes.

A driving factor of my decision to sign up for this studio was to become familiarized with situations like this. The summer before I hit grad school I worked for a contractor back home who, shall we say, did his best to instill a sense of responsibility in me with respect to what you draw in your documents–usually this was accomplished through flourishing tirades of four letter words and utter disdain for the profession as a whole, but I digress. Point being, while the process of designing and construction this mock up has proven infinitely valuable in identifying what’s easy and hard to do, what’s the fastest way to erect something, and all that good stuff, it has also brought into focus the importance with which to consider how we translate our ideas from paper to footing. Thus, as an old classmate of mine once espoused, “the more we know about making, the better we can design.”

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