First Light: Installation (II)

Got my ducks in row today and corralled together the necessary parts and tools to move the foundation work for the garden lantern along a piece.

First off I checked the orientation of the lantern head to the post and then the post to the boulder, so as to know which way was which. I then had to decide which direction to face the lantern as it sits at the confluence of two paths. Once I had made a decision, I placed some tape on top of the boulder to outline the post and delineate the two axes:

Unlike a few years ago, where I hammered the holes through the stone by holding a concrete drill in my hand and pounding with a hammer, I now have an improved tool for this task:

This Makita may not be the worlds finest hammer drill, but appropriate to my use, which is occasional, and the nature of the work the tool does argued against dropping more than $1000. This model has SDS MX capacity, which is the largest size save for hex-shank, and with an adapter I can accommodate SDS plus drills as well. Both SDS PLus and SDS Max are readily available at most building supply centers.

I used a transfer punch to mark holes from the boulder to a piece of wood. The center hole was drilled out to fit over 1/2″ PVC conduit, and the other two holes sized for the hammer drill, which is nominally 3/8″ in this case. I placed the block onto the foundation in preparation for drilling:

You can see the two holes are slightly offset, a result of my slightly inaccurate manual drilling of the boulder years ago.

Then it was a matter of standing on the block while guiding the drill through both of the holes. Took but a few seconds to complete:

The holes were then vacuumed clean and i was ready to put the fasteners in. I am using a pair of Simpson Titen Hanger bolts for the main mounting, and four smaller Titen hanger bolts for use as jackscrew locations for post leveling:

The bolts went in straight and with relative ease:

The two hanger bolts were done in a minute or two:

Next I marked out the concrete for the four smaller hanger bolts, which I arranged around the perimiter as best I could, taking into account the irregular shape of the boulder  and the off-center location of the holes in that boulder. Again, out with the drill and the holes were done in less than a minute:

Next I will pick up some stainless hex-head bolts to use as jacking screws and some 3/8″ redi-rod (aka: All Thread) to fasten the post down. I do not intend to use the redi-rod for anything other than obtaining precise lengths though – they will be temporary. I find threaded rod I have used in the past is too soft and weak for what I want here and intend to get some bolts (possibly) custom made in a higher grade of metal and with rolled threads.

All for now, thanks for visiting the Carpentry Way. On to part III.

3 Replies to “First Light: Installation (II)”

  1. Neoshed,

    thanks for the question, and good to hear from you. The fitting of the post to the rock happened back in 2009, and I believe I detailed the process on that build thread (linked above in the blog). I am intending to check the fit of the two again and see if any adjustments need to be made. I hadn't been planning on photographing that process unless, of course, someone wanted to see it.


  2. Chris,

    I'll go and look through the blog to see if I can find it.

    Scribing would be an interesting thing to put in the study group.


Anything to add?

error: Content is protected !!
%d bloggers like this: