Today was a huge milestone for our project. Our structural steel is now in place, ready for the hollow core concrete panels.
Preparing for the Day
It was a perfect blue-sky, California day to place our steel columns and beams. Not a cloud in the sky and a faint breeze to keep everything cool and comfortable. Our 35-ton crane, from West Coast Cranes, arrived on time with the truck carrying our steel columns and beams.
Our crane, from West Coast Cranes, arrived on site promptly this morning to get set up.
The team from Larson Steel setting the bolt heights in the pockets for the steel beams.
The truck with our steel columns and beams arrived and is waiting on Winchester Boulevard.
35 ton crane from West Coast Cranes starting to extend its boom.
- Note how the five outriggers are extended to level and stabilize the crane.
Having a large crane in place on a beautiful day appeared to be a trigger for visitors. For example, Wes Wenger (Wenger Plumbing) came by as did Doug Ferannte (Los Gatos Glass). Both had positive comments on our project as it continues to move forward.
Setting the Steel Columns in Place
The eight steel columns were set in place first, on the bolts that Bill Brown’s team embedded in the structural concrete on March 6, 2009. These steel columns will support the steel beams.
First steel column coming from the truck.
Our first steel column being set in place by the crane, with Hector Guerra guiding it.
The last steel column is in place and the bolts are being adjusted and tightened.
Placing the Steel Beams
We have five steel drop beams that are supported by the steel columns and foundation wall. These drop beams support two steel flush beams.
Moving the first steel beam from the truck to the site.
Hector Guerra directing the first steel beam placement over the window well.
Our 54 ft steel beam coming from the truck on Via Sereno.
Pete Larson's team putting our longest steel beam into place.
Hector guides the steel beam over the Wine Cellar into position, taking extreme care not to touch the feature concrete wall in the Atrium.
Moving the first flush beam from Via Sereno into the site.
Flush beam being lowered into place.
Our crane operator worked well with the Pete Larson's team, ensuring that the beams were placed in position gently and safely, exactly as directed. The owner of West Coast Cranes, Lowell Tucker came to our job site for a few minutes to observe the steel placement and ensure the work was going well (it was)..
First flush beam being positioned from the Atrium to the west foundation wall.
Placing the drop beam under the Dining Room and Kitchen. Note the crane operator is somewhat 'blind' as this beam is behind the Kitchen/Garage concrete feature wall.
Hector Guerra directing Pete Larson's on-site team.
John Rider Reviews the Steel Placement
John Rider (Jrider + Design), his wife Jenny, and Joel Lemons came to the site to see the steel beams being placed. John was the focal point on our integrated design team as he ran the ArchiCAD model that was used to export and import DWG files from our design engineers to ensure all the components would ‘fit’ in our design.
John’s offices are located only minutes away on Hamilton Avenue in Campbell, California so they came just before going for lunch today.
We reflected on John’s site visit when the structural slab was poured using the boom pump truck, and smiled.
We had a several visitors come to see the steel columns and beams today.
John Rider (left), Jenny Rider and Joel Lemons watching from the observation deck as the steel beams being placed.
Our Structural Steel is in Place
With all the structural steel in place, the crane operator retracted the outriggers and secured the boom. Then, he left the site. Definitely a milestone event for us!
Securing the boom and shutting down the crane.
Visits by Our Neighbors
After Pete Larson’s team and the crane left the site, we received a couple visitors.
First, Phil Knopf and his wife, Bonnie, came to the site. They have lived in Monte Sereno, on the other side of Winchester, for more than 30 years and have seen significant changes in our community during that time. We know Phil through his continuing leadership with Los Gatos Little League, where both our son, Nik, and daughter, Kate, play AAA and T-ball, respectively.
Although Phil had visited our site before, it had been some time and Bonnie had not seen the plans. They were most interested in our project so Bryan gave them a thorough tour and explained the design features and energy-saving elements. Phil and Bonnie were the first people to walk down the exterior concrete steps into the lower level.
John McLaren, a neighbor that lives four houses away on Daves Avenue, came to the site and walked the property, noting the changes since his last visit. He used our new exterior concrete stair and avoided the water that was soaking our feature concrete walls. Since inception, John has followed and supported our project. He seems particularly interested in our Wine Cellar.
Another neighbor, Kel Marchbank (Marcal Construction), was on his Harley and visited the site. Kel was over yesterday and saw the site before the steel was placed today. He was impressed with the progress today and is looking forward to seeing the hollow core concrete panels being placed on Tuesday.
Our neighbors, Phil and Bonnie Knopf, visiting our site.
Bonnie Knopf liked the steel beams that we placed today.
Kel Marchbank stopped by to see the progress since his review yesterday.
Bryan was smiling from ear-to-ear as he locked the gate. It was a huge milestone today.