Summer Kitchen Renovation Part13: Dear Ash Tree (aka 2nd half of roof)

The next step was an un-news-worthy disassembling, moving, and reassembling of the scaffolding. However this time the scaffolding was a tight fit because of some obstacles, including an ash tree. We’ve been aware of this ash tree from back when we took down the old roof and started walking and working on the walls. We knew some cutting would be required, but since we couldn’t reach it, we didn’t dwell on it.

Now, while assembling the scaffolding in and around the ash tree I could both reach and look the challenge in the eye. I did not like what I saw. This is the tree coming up from the ground:

This is a major branch growing towards the house:

… and passing directly between the rafters:

… and this was a large, tall and wide branch:

… and I looked at it … and I said to Iulia that I don’t want to take this task on. I asked her to try to find someone from the village who is experienced with a chainsaw in tight/high places to simply make this challenge disappear.

and … no such luck … so … it was … yet again … up to me. I got into the safety gear, added Iulia’s bike helmet to the outfit and took a deep breath.

Iulia was VERY emotional … in tears. I was up in the scaffolding holding a chainsaw … in my mind … talking to the tree explaining what I was about to do … asking for understanding and, if possible, cooperation.

I started moving very slowly … and in the spirit of graduality, I started with a smaller branch that also needed to come down. I got comfortable with the chainsaw and cutting to avoid getting the saw caught by the weight of the branch … and it went OK.

Then it was off to the main event. I started cutting through the large branch until I could feel it start to move. I stopped and let it take its course … it started to lay down on the roof. I assumed that it would go that way and hoped the roof would hold up. I repeated this, cutting and letting it settle a few times … until … the cut went all the way through and the brach pulled away from me as it settled onto the roof:

I then stopped and considered my options. I came up with a strategy of cutting off the parts close to me (near the edge of the rafters) … allowing it to move and settle again … and repeated that … until I could nudge it. And we ended up gradually moving/rolling towards the edge of the building while cutting off more and more pieces and branches as they became accessible to me … until:

… it lay on the ground … and the rafter tails were all exposed and accessible and tree-less:

… and that was the end of that day … the house, myself and the tree could continue to co-exist peacefully:

Anchoring the safety cord turned out to be tricky. We had to find an anchor point that would not apply pressure to the already installed rain gutter on the 1st side. We had to go way across the yard, utilizing the full length of the cord:

… and the next day began a (mostly) repeat of the roof decking process … this time with a tool belt which made a world of difference!

Iulia was able to arrange tools and process in a way that allowed her to provide me again with ground support (cutting and raising planks for me to install) with her arm in a cast:

… and I was working my way up the roof until I reached the ridge from the other side:

… and closed that too:

… and the rain gutter:

… and then the waterproofing layer came on … and flashing:

… and I really wanted to finish the roof by putting on the roofing shingles …. BUT … we arrived at a planned/unplanned detour … more on that next time!

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