…getting stronger. (This all actually happened at the end of October…) I ordered two giant 20 foot long pieces of LVL for my ridge beam. If you don’t know what LVL is, it’s laminated veneer lumber that makes for ultimate bad-assedness. They are super strong compared to ‘regular wood’, and much less prone to bowing under weight, and allow me much more headroom in my lofts (and they’re incredibly tough on nails). But turns out they are really hard to find in the size I wanted. I went to tens of hardware stores and they kept telling me to get 2X8s or 2X12s cuz they are cheaper. I don’t care about cheaper! I want headroom, dammit! I finally called Lowe’s on a whim, and they could get them! So, again ‘Depending on the Kindness of (not) Strangers”, I roped Val into driving these behemoths back to the site with her family truckster/mini-van. The office workers at the lumber yard spent some time giggling at me for my choice of transport when I picked them up, but the joke was on them (though they won’t ever know it). I forgot to take pictures, but we were successful in slowly steering these suckers home, front of the boards on the dashboard, backs almost dragging on the pavement. But we got them back alive, and then we went back to get my car and drank at Perrin Brewery for the rest of the day (Life sucks…)
Turns out there are special screws you can get (only at Menards’s) that are built just for screwing two LVLs together. TrussLok… Money… When my house gets carried away by hurricane Wicked Witch of the West, that ridge beam will be the only thing left behind.
My normally able assistant (Melissa) was sick as a dog, but she was able to risk her life with me to get the beam up onto the lofts, using ropes and ladders (sounds like a kid’s board game) and sheer will power.
The next day I used the aforementioned tools and skills (minus my unable assistant), as well as my sweet pulley (worth every cent) and more rope to rastle that bitch into position and nail her down.