I had planned to start the day at home.
The intention was to fabricate the fish plates and mounting brackets for the large U beam at home and then head out to site to tack weld them in place.
Amazingly, even this simple task was incomplete at the the end of the day.
I am really starting to discover that working with second hand steel is just not worth the extra labour involved.
I had scored some nice long lengths of 160 mm x 10mm plate off my original purchases.
However, there were still dags along the edges.
Even though I thought I had cleaned these up, they still threw out my alignment when using the cut off saw and I ended up with some cuts that were a few degrees off.
This then wasted further time as I ground them back to square.
I cut two 300 mm lengths to use as landing platforms for the U beam - ie to integrate a 146 mm wide beam on to a 75 mm wide column.
I also cut 4 pieces of 152 x 160 mm for two sets of fish plates.
These I welded together across the rough edge then drilled four x 12 mm holes on the drill press.
The plates were not exactly the same size but I managed to sort them in to two pairs that matched closely.
Using the new cuts as a reliable reference edge, I then proceeded to make two cuts on the sides at right angles shaving a few mm off each side with the cut off saw to reduce this dimension down to 146 mm (and cut off the temporary welding).
I am trying to do this very accurately and square as several of the edges of these fish plates will be visible as you enter in to the garage area.
What I did not count on was the incredible amount of time that it takes to make a 152mm cut through 20mm of mild steel.
Each cut is taking me about 3 hours - I need to proceed very slowly (to avoid overheating the steel and the cut off saw) and I need to take frequent breaks to protect my shoulder and hands.
By Sunday night I was almost through the second cut on the first set of fish plates and I will need to work on the other one gradually during the week.
The cut is obviously taking so long because I am cutting across the face (for accuracy) rather than at right angles to this (where I run the danger of the cut deviating from the true line)
Finally finished the second cut and then managed to do nothing else all day due to pressure of work.
I can see, at this rate, that I still won't be ready to head out first thing next Saturday morning.
I finished the 3rd cut surprisingly quickly and made a start on the 4th cut - maybe there still is hope of being ready by Saturday morning.
First thing in the morning I pushed on with the 4th cut and reached the point where the blade breaks through the bottom surface of the cut. By the end of the day I had completed the cut.
I chamfered all the edges of the landing platforms.