OK, ok, not finished, but definitely up!
My friend and I cut the 8 foot long 4×4 posts in half to make the deck posts, using the table saw. I’m still traumatized about the table saw, my finger is still not fully functional and doesn’t bend very much at all, which I am working on.
We then cut notches in the 4×4 posts to fit them to the deck; then we drilled 2 holes in each post for the deck bolts using the drill press.
Of course things never go smoothly, even if you think you have everything you need. The bolts were too long, so I ran to the local hardware store and exchanged them (I even still had the receipts, that was amazing), and we didn’t have the chuck for the drill press. My friends brother has stronger hands than I do and he was able to tighten the thing that holds the drill bit tight enough to work. The drill did stop rotating a few times, we had to drill slowly to not put too much pressure on it, but it worked fine. The drill press is a very cool tool – it had been sitting in my garage and I hadn’t used it yet due to never having done so before and not sure how it worked.
I inherited the drill press from my dad’s garage when he passed away. It is odd that my brothers didn’t grab more of the tools, but I guess they just aren’t interested in making stuff, unless it is on a car.
After drilling 2 holes in each post we then held it on the deck and drilled the holes through the deck beam, while holding a level on the side of each post to make sure it was vertical. Next came the bolts, washers and nuts installation.
Afterward we had a barbecue, and my 86-year-old mom even felt safe enough to come out and sit on the deck with us! It was a great day, sunny and just the right temperature for working outdoors.
So, next is finishing off the railings, and then on to the small deck that will be at the other end of the house!