I had to build a fence on Saturday. I discussed with the client the type of fence she wanted, where she wanted it, the purpose of the fence and when she wanted it constructed. We were able to set a SMART Goal as an objective for the fence construction project. I created plans and I was updating plans based on client feedback.
I went home, I determined exactly what resources were needed. Then I submitted the shopping list for approval. On the day of construction. I showed up with all the materials and tools needed to build the fence. I listed all the steps to build the fence and got started.
Problem One: The patio area isn’t level
It looked level, but when I was doing the measuring for my laying out, I discovered that sloped 25mm over 5m. This wasn’t a big issue but the client needed to confirm if she wanted a level fence or a fence that matched the slope. She said she wanted it level and confirmed the smallest gap she wanted under the fence. These issues and their solutions necessitated updating plans.
Problem Two: The Big One
I discovered that I had overlooked a drain pipe in my initial assessment. Since this pipe is right where the gate is going. Since I could see where it entered the ground. But I didn’t know where it went from there. And the gate is a fixed width that can’t be moved. Therefore using my Auger was out. So, I grabbed my shovel and dug the hole where the post had to go. Very carefully, and extremely grateful that it was topsoil with lots of sand in it. It did not take long to discover the pipe.
My first solution was, to plant the post on one side or the other of the pipe. The measuring tape laughed at me and said the post had to go on top of the pipe.
As I couldn’t change the location of the pipe or the post, I needed a new solution. I changed the post from an in-ground post to a flanged post. Also, I used the postmix cement we had already purchased to make a concrete pad on top of the pipe. I had to let the cement set which necessitated changing the completion date of the plan.
I completed the rest of the fence for the client and she says it looks great. When the concrete has set, I’ll return and finish the last section. As I wrote in The Importance of Planning my plan original plan was unworkable. Yet, because I had gone through the planning process, I quickly came up with solutions for all the problems that occurred.