I got the last 2 of the 5 sections built last week, sans the corrugated roofing. Here’s how I did it, at warp speed:
This marked the first use of my new truck, for 2×4s and small ply panels from Home Depot. What a joy!
As an aside, when I cut this particular 2×4 to length…
...I made a new friend. I think it’s a fat bird.
As another side, whenever I stack up cut 2×4s like this, I get a terrific urge to build a deck, or workbench:
If you need any more asides, read the description I put under this image at flickr as to why so much of the green Douglas fir I’ve been getting from Home Depot lately smells strongly of lemons when I cut it.
Enough asides. On to the updates!
Last week I was all finished, sans the roofing…
Home Depot only had the corrugated plastic I picked up previously in 8’ lengths in 12’ lengths this time. Now I know a bit more about the dimensions of the new truck (12’ from windshield to tailgate):
And there it is with the roofing. It was just not quite long enough after cutting the 12’ into 4 3’ sections, so I used 2 pieces of scrap like shingles in the middle to patch the difference, and nailed everything down. You can’t tell when you’re out there. It just looks like one long solid piece, unless you’re looking for joints.
The keen observer may have noticed this switchbox in a previous image:
This is the first bit of electrical doodadery I’ve ever wired up. I mentioned at the end of the previous (and first) post in this series that I was adding something ‘quirky’ soon, and this is it: rope lighting!
Specifically, it’s 4 24’ sections, which fit rather perfectly across the 20’-wide shelves, with 2’ available at the ends for wrapping around the 2’ depth. Rope lights aren’t too expensive. I thought I’d find nothing appropriate, or something close enough, but not outdoor-rated, or I’d only find 5’ sections, or it would be $50 for 10’. However, it was only $15 for 24’. They had 100’ at a savings over buying in shorter sections. Knowing now what I knew then, I’d go for that, as I redid these to all chain together in one long 96’ rope with a single plug anyway.
The roofing wasn’t in place on the last 2 sections when I did this, but now everything’s hidden on this end properly:
This is also before I zig-zagged things – a decision made when I decided to wire up my own switchbox and use a single outlet and switch to throw all ropes on at once – but it shows that the ropes run along the top edge of the front 2×4 shelf supports, via the included clear plastic screw-in C-clips:
So fun! It’s like a refrigerator, and I admit it… I got a little hungry the first time I plugged these all in and lit them up :)
I’m also reminded of bakery display cases. This is not helping my diet.
The whole thing is such a beautiful mix of warm ambient light bouncing off of warm wood textures that it immediately made me feel calm. I’m a computer nerd usually, inside reading things on the net in a reclining office chair, never going outside. However, the first night, and at least one other night since, I’ve just gone out, flipped on the lights, sat on the ground and just relaxed, petting the loudly purring neighbor’s cat who likes to visit me a few times a day now.
It’s a real joy having these, and shows me how great it can be to add some aesthetics into a project. It just makes you want to be around the creations a lot more, and raises quality of life. This somewhat dreary corner of my yard is now one of my favorite places, and I like to find excuses to go check on things, or shuffle them around, and in that, I think it will help me make my projects everywhere else better, hoping for similar feelings from them.
-- Gary, Los Angeles, video game animator