Framing the Garage

Back to Work

After a bit of a rest I got back to work.

I had the garage package, a hammer, saw and a large box of 3 ½ inch spiral nails. Why spiral nails and not common nails you ask?
I don’t do common.
Just kidding. Spiral nails hold better than the common nails and when you are building a house you think of things like that. Kind of like the old joke: I’d like some 2×4’s. How long? A long time, I’m building a house.

I laid out one wall, flat on the garage floor (well as flat as the floor would allow), just as the plans specified. I measured and marked the header and footer (the stick on the top and the bottom) and started nailing the studs in place. Two nails top and bottom.
It was beautiful.
It was 24 feet long.
It was too heavy and ungainly for me to lift.

Not only was it too heavy for me to lift, I also did not have a drill (or electricity) to drill the holes in the footer plate to go over the bolts in the concrete (yes I said concrete again) (this is a “how we did it” not a step by step how to).

More Manpower

This required more manpower. And a drill.

As for the “How to” part, you need to plan where to put the bolts or anchors in the concrete. To do that you need to know where the studs and doors will be and not put the bolts there. That’s where the blueprints or plans come in.
We ended up moving the location of the door so I had to cut a bolt out in that location, but, if there is one constant in construction, it is change.

The other thing that was required was a sill gasket. This is a strip of plastic-y foam that separates the wooden footer from the concrete, thereby preventing moisture from rotting the bottom of your wall which would be a bad thing.


The next day I returned with my family and a hand drill. I did not think a cordless drill would hold a charge long enough to drill all the holes I needed. This was the end of the 1980’s. After using the hand drill I wish I had tried a cordless one.

Ruth and our son Matt and I were able to lift the first section of wall and brace it. We then proceeded to frame in the other three walls before calling it a day. It may have been a few days. I always think I work faster than the reality of it.

The Takeaways

Buy a cordless drill and extra batteries.

Wait until the internet is in common use and Google is invented and Google how to stuff.

Wait until cell phones are in common use so you can call for help.

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