Archive for the 'Site Work' Category

Poles and roof

National Grid was at the site today to begin installing electric service to the house. This has been a long journey that started back in May.

Yesterday they came out to check the site and decided to try to install the poles with a regular pole auger. We told them there was a lot of rock and ledge, but it was worth a try. If successful it would be cheaper than their original estimate to install service with a rock drill for all poles.

They were able to place 2 out of the 3 poles, and 1 out of 3 cable anchors. They are going to use the rock drill for the remaining pole and 2 cable anchors. There is apparently only one National Grid rock drilling machine in the state. I hope to be the rock drill paparazzi and snap a few pics for the blog.

Roof-wise, they were 6 or 7 panels shy of finishing the north face today. They ran out of fasteners, but a new supply arrived late in the day. We were hoping to finish tomorrow, but they’re calling for 7-9 inches of snow in the next 24 hours so we may not make much more progress this week.



A window repair person is scheduled to be at the site Monday morning to swap some sashes and glass units, and adjust the remaining units. We’re hoping this goes smoothly and we don’t find any other issues.


We officially own our entire driveway as of yesterday when the final papers were filed. Before yesterday, the center section of our driveway was still on our neighbor’s land. This adjustment has been in the works since April.

Electric Company

National Grid is like any large organization, lot’s of forms to fill out, they never call you back, the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing. I have spared the blog my venom, but this is getting to be a chapter right out of the movie Brazil. I have to report that we still don’t have a scheduled date for electric service to be installed to the house. It could be Spring before we have power from the grid.

Solar Electric

I really wish it made economic sense to go off the grid completely, because so far we’ve gotten a much better response from one of the solar vendors in our area, GroSolar. They came out to the house to do a solar survey and sent us an estimate that same night. To summarize, after all rebates and tax credits, we’re looking at spending roughly $14k for a 6.9 kW system that should bring us to net zero in energy usage. Pretty awesome.


Columbus Day is site rough grading day!

Our excavator Joe made our little house site start to look like a real house site. He shaved the cliff down behind the house and used the cut to fill and level the drop-off in front of the house. He also carved a nice slope to the west berm.

In the Spring he’ll install the septic tank and leach field in front of the house.

Next up… the roof.

Well done.

460 feet. 20-25 gallons per minute. That’s it until we get power to the site (another long story). Then we install the pump. Then we get water.

Drill baby, drill!

I took Monday off to take Bernie to the vet and hand-deliver our building permit to the county inspection office.

When I came back I found that the well guys had arrived and were dowsing the spot where we wanted to place the well. I was a bit nervous because there were not too many other places to put the well, so I hoped this one would be a good spot.

They asked if anyone had dowsed the location. I said no, I can only dowse ledge. After laughing he said he couldn’t have picked a better spot. So they set up their rig and started drilling that afternoon. I had to leave at 5. By then I think they were already 200 feet down and had set casing down to 40 feet.

Gravel for Driveway

They added the top coat of gravel this week. It’s now a smooth drive up to the house site.

Stone culvert progress

As we wait for out building permit, we’ve been busying ourselves with a few small projects. One is building stone walls over the culverts at the road. I thought I could finish the project over the July 4th weekend, but I only got one side finished. Will hopefully have the other side completed next weekend.

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