Shop Chronicles
Step 1 - Clearing (Taking out the stumps and ugly 'dirt beds')
Before I can bring in the concrete truck, I have to prepare the space. After discussing it with my friend Josh, whose dad is a concrete contractor, he says a truck will only bring 4 yards of concrete or more to a job. But I'm not completely sure my interior slab will be big enough to take that much, so I'm going to extend the slap outside the doors to create a small space in front. This will give me the added bonus of a small exterior slab for setting up a temporary table for finishing and the like (anything that might create fumes) and will also ensure I can use up all 4 yards of concrete. Once I get the space ready and the concrete forms built, I'll get an accurate measure of concrete needed. If its more than 4 yards, I'll order what I need to extend out and fill the exterior 'patio'. If I don't need 4 yards, I'll at least be able to get the extra outside space done while the truck is here. I don't want to have any forms partially filled.

Preparation requires removing the two problem areas from either side of the shop doors. Each has a fair-sized stump in it, so they're not good for anything anyway.
Bed Removal - BEFORE October 1, 2004

Bed Removal - AFTER October 2, 2004
I started with this bed first, using a sledge hammer I picked up at a yard sale for about $8, I think. The beds ended up built from formed, solid concrete walls, not cinder blocks as I originally assumed. This made the removal process considerably harder. After about a half hour of smashing with the sledge, I was nearly ready to give up and pay someone to do this.
Then, the gleam of a big chain in my shop caught my eye. I had used this to remove some hefty bushes a couple of years ago. (Thanks to Josh and his dad's full size pickup.) So, I hooked the chain around a hole in the bed wall and attached the other end to the frame of my 1997 Nissan pickup. A couple of gentle tugs later, whammo! Bye-bye crappy flower beds.
The second bed went considerably faster now that I was employing the chain method. (As you can see by the large corner chunk I pulled out in one whack.) While I was at it, I figured I was on a roll and took a stab at the big hardwood stump in bed #2. No go. After a couple of hard tugs, I realized the rear of my truck would probably come out before that stump did. I'll go ahead and leave that for the stump grinding guy.
Next up, the stumps go to that Great Yard in the Sky.