Hey gang! It’s a beautiful Sunday here in tropical
South Florida, and I’m actually going to take the day off and hit the sand! That’s right, no sweating around the house for this redhead today. But before I wedge myself into a bathing suit, I’m leaving you with the third installment of this easy floating deck tutorial from my buddy Michael Reilly of Sylvan Run Wines, who by the way, is flying in today with his lovely wife Carolyn and will be inspecting the progress on my house.
Okay, fine, we’re just going to BBQ.
Here are a couple lessons in cutting your boards. First, I make my own fresh end by cutting an inch or two off the end. It just dresses up an outside butt finish and makes butting board to board perfect. Mills are super fast in cranking out the lumber.... the mill cut is rough and not always square.
The scrap may seem wasteful, but given the fact that lumber is sold in two-foot increments, there will be waste anyway..... might as well take advantage and create the perfect board.
Longevity.... keep thinking down the road a decade or two when all the shortcuts you take now just end up looking like crap. *smiles warmly*
Flip the board, measure and make your finish cut. Little trick I learned when lining up the board against the fence in the miter saw.... Move the saw, not the board... You do this by grabbing the fence and the board in one hand and squeezing to close any angled gap.
As we near the end of the board placement, I find that the final board would end up being about two inches in with. This is simply not acceptable from either a structural or aesthetic standpoint. Solution.... with five or six boards to go, we skip and go straight to the end where we install two runs of full width boards.
We then continue with boards from the other side again until
there is room for about one and a half boards.
Overall width of the opening is measured, divided by two and then boards are ripped to size. Save boards with one bad edge for this part as you will be cutting off the one side of the board and discarding it anyway.
The final boards may need a little planing to fit just right *winks*
What you end up with is a fit and finish most contractors only dream about. *grins*
Always remember... you're doing it yourself not just to save money, but because you take pride in being able to say.... "I did this, and damn-it..... it's AWESOME!"
So.... here's the completed build.... staining will have to wait a few months so the pressure treated lumber cures properly.
Party time? YOU BET!!!
Ok now for the interesting part.... COST.
Total Cost: 1400.00
Man-hours: about 65
Bonding with my sons: Priceless
Contactor estimate: $4500.00 - $5000.00
There you have it! 2 days work between three people and another outdoor room took shape! The flower boxes add a splash of color, and the gravel surrounding the entertaining area keeps it maintenance free with no mowing or trimming. When this guy designs for leisure, he means it!