Thursday, July 09, 2009


I hired a contractor last week to tear up and replace my old sidewalk. On Tuesday Glenn Vanover and one helper came and pulled up the old shrubs in preparation for the form work. The pour was planned for the next day but a hydraulic hose popped on his Bobcat, so it was this morning (Thursday) before he could get parts and get back to work.

Today was pour day (although I had no previous idea) and the concrete was scheduled early. Glenn Vanover’s crew arrived early, even before I was up (approx. 8AM), and they had the old walk slabs about done by the time I went outside. Glenn carried the old slabs of concrete up the hill to his trailer in the front bucket of the Bobcat. Some of the slabs hung over the lip by four of five feet in one piece. Holding them out over the haul trailer, one of his helpers broke them up off, piece by piece, with a sledgehammer and there was nothing left to pick up.

We discussed the level of the pour in relation to the top of the front porch and agreed on the drain angle and the leveling and forming work continued. Glenn also decided to drill the foundation and insert rebar every 5 or 6 feet. The old sidewalk and flower bed arrangement allowed that area to become soaked during the wet season, and I had started to get some moisture in my basement. This flush to the house foundation idea, along with the proper drain angle, should forever alleviate that problem.

By 11:30 the concrete truck was backing up through the yard, making that annoying warning sound, and the first pour began! I was so excited and started snapping photos right and left…everyone just grinned! I mentioned that I would post them on a blog later, and sometimes I feel like letting a contractor know that makes the work come out a little better. However, with Glenn, he had a plan and was very concerned about the finished product he was selling me.

As you can see, the work turned out wonderfully, being way beyond my expectations. The seams, the edging, and the surface were perfect! If you live in the Roane County, Tennessee area, and need concrete work done, I would highly recommend Glenn Vanover Concrete Finishing! (There ya go Glenn…the rest is up to you!)

Glenn and I watched his crew slaving over the finishing work, and while he worked spraying dirt off the driveway, I mentioned something about an old root ball sticking up down in my yard. A straight-line wind storm had blown down several trees in my yard about 2 years ago, and this one particular eye sore bugged me every time I mowed. So, when he finished cleaning, he hopped into the Bobcat and within 15 minutes had the stump and root ball pushed down in the woods and had made the ugly hole smooth as a baby’s butt!

When we settled up I asked if I owed him any more than the original estimate and he said $75 for an extra yard of concrete. I ordered 7 yards instead of the 6 I told you to compensate for the extra thickness near the front door.

And for the Bobcat work,” I asked.

Nothing,” he said, “nothing to it.

So, I at least paid him back for the extra gas he burned…and more.

From the moment we shook hands on the total deal, I didn’t worry one bit about the job to be done, and now I know my decision was correct. Glenn produced a great product for me and I’m one happy camper. No worries at all…EXCEPT, I sure hope it doesn’t rain tonight!


Jeni said...

Looks very nice -judging by the photos you took and displayed. It's nice when you contract someone to do a job and they do it in a timely fashion and also, to your requirements, isn't it?
Hope it doesn't rain for your sake and here's hoping it stays dry here too for the next couple of days -big yard sales around here this weekend, ya know.

FHB said...

Yep, I thought I remembered them bushes. But that'll be cool with the pots you talked about, and as you said, save you the drainage issue in the basement. Very cool... and very cool that you found a guy who didn't leave you feelin' like you'd been bent over the hood of his truck. That seems to be rare these days. I'd still like to find the bastards that put my fence in and thrash 'em. Useless.

BRUNO said...

Oh, that finishing-work is literally a back-breaker, even for young(er) fellas!

So---when are you gonna start work on the indoor shooting-range, so's me an' Jeff can enjoy it...???

FHB said...

Yea, what he said!

Mushy said...

You know I have dropped that was getting a little damp in that area and now it should clear up. If I could find a piece of 3/4 inch steel about 5X6 feet, I might consider doing it.

Just angle that steel up out of about a foot of sand and have at it!

BRUNO said...


Well, Jeff---guess we'll hafta settle for air-rifles, and aluminum pie-pans at 10-yards, huh???

Hey, I've got a pound of black-powder, a spool of nitro-fuse, and a bag-full of screw-on Rx-bottles---can we make a back-yard grenade range, too...???(Hee-Hee!!!)

Mushy said...

That would work!

I have a couple of acres out back that we can use if we have's going to be tight.

FHB said...

I was gonna say, he can cut loose off his friggin' back porch. Just don't shoot the deer off season.

Les Becker said...

So, did you get rained on? It rained cats and dogs here last night - major storm - I had no cement worries, though.

Hey come back and visit again! My mom is flipping the bird on a motorcycle!

Mushy said...

I visit all the time Les...just don't always mark my territory!

Didn't and hadn't rained yet!

Scott from Oregon said...

Well, I'm no expert mind you, but it looks mighty fine from my house...

Mushy said... simply poured yesterday, almost half the day...the concrete is's ready for the assault of weather for as long as I'll need it!

Debbie said...

Looks like you had some great workers there.

Our last project we ended up suing the carpenters because they would not come finish the job. What a nightmare.


Mushy said...

They took up the forms today...guess I'm left with filling in along the walk...I can do that!