As the surveyors finished pinning the outline of the building, Perry moved in to put in the forms for the footings. Perry Rouseau is an ICF specialist and framer. He built my house and we've remained friends since. What I like about Perry is that he's curious and willing to try new things. When building my house, Perry's daughter Jessica was his assistant. Fifteen years later, his youngest son Ethan is now filling that role along with Neal and I. Building footings is pretty straightforward:
  1. 2X10s are overlapped and screwed together to make the sides of the form. Neal and I had to redo a couple joints since we didn't level the studs properly.
  2. Strapping cut to the width of the footing (30 inches in our case) is used to keep the 2X10s upright.
  3. Then a laser is used to level the tops of the forms. This is done by moving the 2X10 up or down until the laser says it’s right. A piece of strapping is then screwed to the side of the 2X10 to keep it from moving.
  4. Gravel is then placed to fill the gap at the bottom of the footing forms.
  5. Rebar is then placed at the bottom of the footing and lifted off the bedrock using a rock or by hanging it from the strapping.

We also had to prepare some concrete pads for the moment frames that will make up the building's structure. These pads have two layers of 20mm rebar tied in a grid pattern. We placed the first grid in the pad forms and the second will be dropped into the concrete during the pour. It took us two days to complete the footing forms and we were ready for concrete on Tuesday. I ordered the concrete from Cavanagh Concrete in Carleton Place. Their bright shiny trucks arrived just after Perry's pumper finished setting up. It took 64 cubic meters of concrete carried by four trucks to fill the forms and pads. Certainly a solid footing. After the pour, Perry put vertical rebar in the concrete for the future walls. Neal and I waited until the concrete had set a bit then covered the footings with thermal tarps to protect them from the cold.



The rebar grids for the pads.


Giving the concrete pumper a try.


A one hand job for Perry.


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