Power is on its way

ccc_overhead powerGetting power to our building has taken some time. A new transformer was placed next to the building a month ago. Underground cables were strung from the transformer to the front of the property two weeks ago. The final leg – getting power from across the street happened last week. The attached photo illustrates the final step.

This coming week will see lots of activity at the site. Final grading will take place. Wednesday will be a big day – concrete will be poured to complete the ice slab.

What is next?

Well if you have read the other posts to this blog, you will know we spent a lot of time using ties to keep the rebar, the pipe chairs, the chiller pipes, etc., all tied together.  These are basically small wires that are 6 and 8″ in length.  Both sizes have a loop at each end of the wire tie.  You slip the wire around what you want to tie together, and then use a special tool to twist the wires together.

This tool looks like a leather awl, but has a hook shape to it.  It has a very technical and ominous sounding name.  They call it a whirly bird.  Once you hook the two loops, you basically spin the whirly bird, and it twists the wires together.  This keeps all the items that you are twisting together, from moving when the concrete is poured.

So this is like the three bears:  Don’t twist it enough, and the items will move when we pour the concrete; Twist it too much, and the brittle wire breaks, and you have to start over; Twist it just right, and everything is tightly bound together,  the way it should be.

Have I mentioned that we will do about 80,000 of these?  I have?  Oh. Well it is a lot, so I will say it again.  80,000 of these!

So, now that we have the tubes in on top of the rebar, we then are putting the wire mesh on top of the tubes.  Once the wire mesh is down, you guessed it, we have to tie it.  We have to tie it so tightly, that when you step on the wire mesh, it should not sound hollow or anything resembling a ringing.  If it sounds like that, then you need to use more ties.

Really tedious, frustrating work.  But if we want to have good ice, this is what we must do.  Here is a shot of the tubes with the wire mesh just going down on top.IMG_0265

Our youngest volunteer and future heavy equipment operator.

Peter Strickland and his son, Spencer, volunteered all day Saturday, and again all day Sunday.

What a champion Spencer was. He worked his tail off. As a reward, and since Spencer had expressed an interest in the heavy equipment, the Project Manager, Michael, let him sit in the bobcat.

Now we could not let him drive it, cause OSHA would not like that, he did get a feel for what it was all about.

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News Flash, WE HAVE A BAR.

We are going to have a gorgeous bar, that will be over 20′ long.  This is all thanks to two groups of people, very closely connected.  Ronda and Jay Harlow have graciously agreed to donate all the materials.  And Steve and Becky Odom (full disclosure, Rondas’ parents) are going to build it from scratch!  Ronda has talked about having it be a father/daughter project.

Wow, this is going to be great.

OK, so here is the deal, since I don’t have pictures of it, cause they have not built it yet, but I do have an inside track on what it is going to look like.  It is going to be a deep mahogany stain, that will match all the doors that we will have in the warm area.  It is going to have room underneath for future refrigerators, keg coolers and such.  It will have a beautiful wood top, with a clear epoxy finish, like you see in many upscale commercial bars, and if possible, will have our Logo embedded in the bar!

And there will be a lower area of the bar to accommodate our handicap curlers.  Rondas’ Dad even thought of the small details like under the bar accent lighting, and a drip tray on the bar side to catch any spills.  This is going to be so awesome.

And that is not all.  They are also building a 6′ coffee station that will be an extension of the bar, and have cabinets underneath it for storage.

I know that I sound like a game show host here, but we’re not done yet!  In addition to all this, they are building the back bar, which is all the cabinetry and counter on the back wall of the bar.  This will be stained to match the front bar, and will have tons of secure storage for all the things we keep in the bar.

We don’t have pictures, but we do have some hand sketches that we drew on site, when measuring out for Steve.  Take a look, but no criticisms about being to scale, terrible writing, can’t read the numbers, etc. LOLIMG_0228 IMG_0225 IMG_0224 IMG_0226

OK, So Saturday, we owe a big thank you to the volunteers

We made a lot of progress, and it was all with the help of some key volunteers. Dave DeFehr, and Tom, who works at Daveste winery, Pat McKee, Peter and Spencer Strickland, Ronda Harlow, Eric Cable, and Steve McKee. Here are pictures of us hard at work. Earlier in the week, Omar VanRooyen, Carol White, and Wayne Remmel were hard at work too.

So the boring detail is that once the rebar is placed, we have to tie it. If you read the earlier posts on this blog, you know that we will be using almost 80,000 ties. So Much of our day on Saturday was spent doing the ties.

But we did have an exciting part. We started to lay in the tubing for what goes in the concrete, that chills the concrete, that makes the ice!!

Then we found out that we have over 7 miles of pipe to lay, in 150′ increments. Oh, did I mention we have to tie them down too!

More to come in another post about Sunday, and our adventure with the pipe continues. Enjoy the photos.

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Sunday was a great progress day!

We got all the rest of the chiller pipe laid.  This is the piping which will be buried in the concrete, that will carry the glycol, at 20 degrees or so, chill the concrete slab down far enough for us to make ice.

Once again, a lot of hard working volunteers helped make it happen.  Dave DeFehr, Matt, Jordan, and Tom from Daveste Vineyards, Pat McKee, Peter and Spencer Strickland, and Steve McKee, along with the crew from Everything Ice, the ice slab contractor.

So we laid all the pipe.  In order to do this, we had to set up a jig to put the spools of tubing on. They came wrapped and the manufacturer used enough black tape to secure the pipe on the spool, that it probably would have withstood a tornado.  When we unrolled this, we were not able to remove much of the tape as we were pulling it off the spool, and setting it in the pipe chairs (these “chairs” were metal brackets that hold the pipe apart uniformly, and keep it exactly the distance we need from the top of the concrete.)

Sooooooooo………. Once we laid out all the pipe (did I mention we had to lay 7 miles of pipe!!?), and tied it down…………. You guessed it.  We had to go back over that 7 miles of pipe and peel any and all remnants of tape off.  Picture this, you have black pipe, black tape, it is suspended over the vapor barrier by the chairs, and guess what color the vapor barrier is.  Yup, black.  And we don’t have real lighting yet, we only have halogen lights, so the lighting in the place is very dim.

I do not exaggerate when I tell you we used about 30 man hours taking the tape up.  We first went up and down the pipes, pulling everything we could see.  But we noted that we seemed to be missing a lot.  so then we had to walk side to side, combing through it with our eyes to spot where there were bits of tape, and we found a lot.  And then we wound up going side to side in the opposite direction, because we realized even then, that it needed another pass, with different lighting, and yes, we found lots more tape.  We probably filled three 5-gallon buckets with remnants of tape!

Then we started to put down the wire mesh that goes on top of the chiller pipes. The entire surface gets the wire mesh, so that the pipes will be exceptionally uniform, in both their distance from other pipes, and their distance from the top surface of the concrete.  all of this in the name of getting even chilling, uniform ice conditions and good curling ice.

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