Saturday, 24 April 2010

Hitting the deck

The decking as it was
We decided yesterday afternoon that the weather was fine and finances permitted it was time to sort out the mess that had become our decking. Our little terrace is what is left of what was once an attached greenhouse. The bit that is left is the slab and about six inches of wall. Several years back we decided to cover the drab concrete with a wooden deck. The main drawback in this plan, we didn't realise until we'd bought the decking and got it home. The decking we chose wasn't framed at the edges but about 3/4 of an inch in from the edge. This meant that unless you trod in exactly the right spots the decking was inclined to tip as you trod on an unsupported edge. Our second mistake was never treating the decking... so four or five years later the nails have dissolved and it was just a bunch of loosely connected planks.

Yesterday afternoon after some brief research I identified the cheapest solution and reserved the decking at B&Q to collect today. Needless to say in the tradition of just about every reserve online and collect experience I have ever had in a UK store they didn't reserve the stock... it wasn't available to collect. We eventually got twenty-four of the twenty-eight (one of which turned out to be broken and one of which irretrievably crooked).

Needs a good sweep!
First job. Take up away all furniture and ornaments and remove the old decking. This in itself was quite a job as we have a table set and countless garden ornaments.

The patio beneath the deck was filthy. Full of leaves and dirt... and four toads who had to be re-housed (much to their disgust!) - we've had to block of the entrance to make sure they don't come back tonight whilst everything is drying out!

So I swept (and swept) and got rid of all the filth... including several bits of fake flower and leaves that had once adorned the balustrade of our neighbours' first floor terrace.

Fine new decking
Next job - laying the new decking. Quite easy for me as Rich had to do the hard work; sawing the bits at the end to size!!!

The finished article (well, nearly - it needs one more coat). Is well worth all the hard work!

The stain has given it (as well as my arms) a lovely warm glow... and hopefully will prolong the life of the wood a few extra years!

One more coat tomorrow and then all the furniture goes back in place.