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We're building a "Deck" that feels like a "Pier", and you can watch!

When you mention a deck in the Northern Hemisphere, the first thing you think of is Redwood (or Fir, Pine, or Cedar), but you never think of concrete, re-bar, and ceramic tile...

Well, down here in Ecuador, there are almost no wooden decks.  All decks are some variation of concrete pillars and poured concrete--many have formed concrete railings.

The flooring in our beach house is wood called Guayacan--Guayacan is naturally resistant to rot, abrasion, weather, decay, and termite attacks.  When we bought our place in 2007, the outside deck was too narrow, so we doubled the size of it using some wood planking that was not Guayacan--now five years later, we are replacing this deck, due to extensive dry rot.

This time, we are building the "Ecuadorean" way.  We will be using Concrete in our footings, pillars, and deck structure.  However, we will use wooden uprights for the railings, to maximize the ocean view.

The following photos will take you through process of building a "100 Year" deck...

We are using the same great crew that built our wildly popular second suite.

Here we are laying out the project for the guys to see...

        

 

 

Alfredo is staking out the project using a transparent hose as a level to get the snap lines straight.

 

 

 After pouring a concrete base to each footing hole, the guys drop in a re-bar grid, then attach a long re-bar column to that, then drop in huge rocks, and fill the whole thing up with concrete...

 

 

These three pllars were built, and then the guys had to knock down our deck...The stairs were made of Guayacan, and they probably weighed as much as a car.  We used one set to give us a set of "backdoor stairs" to our main house.

 

 

 

 We brought in a man with a chainsaw, to eliminate the old deck substructure...he told us he was more "sure-footed"  without shoes...

 

 These are the forms built for the concrete pour...

Although the guys have levels, they all use the "boulder hanging by a string" method to make sure that all the columns are standing tall...

 

 

Once all the pllars are poured, we call in a special company headed by father and son architects, who provide all the uprights and base for the concrete deck pour.  After they get the wooden base in place, our guys will provide all the edges and re-bar needed to make everything super strong.

 

     

  

   

 

 

 

  

 Just some of the many bags of cement we will be using...

 Here you see the new stairway being fabricated with a bunch of re-bar... 

   

  

 

    The deck will be criss-crossed with re-bar--all fabricated by hand...

 

  

Next week, we plan to make a continuous pour of concrete of the entire deck in just one day--for added strength...stay tuned...

Posted on Sun, May 6, 2012 at 03:11AM by Registered CommenterBob & Roxanne | Comments7 Comments

Reader Comments (7)

B&R,
You guys are never still. What a fabulous deck you are creating. Such a nice place for enjoying the fabulous sunsets.
N&C

May 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterNancy & Chuck

Hola Bob and Roxanne,
I am a contractor in California and I can tell you that your people are doing a great job. A monolithic pour on your deck is top notch. Your blog is great. Keep up the great work. George

May 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterGeorge

I always wanted your deck to be bigger!!!!
Cheers,
Shelagh and Peter

May 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterShelagh

Hi George...thanks for the encouragement...The guys will appreciate good vibes from a fellow contractor. As you can see, they fabricate all the re-bar by hand, just to make sure that the concrete never fails.

thanks for reading...

Bob & Roxanne

May 7, 2012 | Registered CommenterBob & Roxanne

Hi George...thanks for the encouragement...The guys will appreciate good vibes from a fellow contractor. As you can see, they fabricate all the re-bar by hand, just to make sure that the concrete never fails.

thanks for reading...

Bob & Roxanne

May 7, 2012 | Registered CommenterBob & Roxanne

HI Nancy and Chuck...glad to hear from you again...long time no see...hope you can find your way to the Coast to try out the new wicker furniture, with a drink in your hand, as the sun goes down...

May 7, 2012 | Registered CommenterBob & Roxanne

Hi Peter and Shelagh...bigger is way better...and a lot closer to the waves, too! Don't forget us when you make your way south...

Bob & Rox

May 7, 2012 | Registered CommenterBob & Roxanne

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