Rancho Construction

We have been working on a new rancho (pics below), to park our camper trailer, since mid-October. There is another use for this rancho, which I will elaborate on in a future post. The design is 6 x 6 meters, or 36 square meters (387 square feet) total. There will be a full bathroom and a small kitchen area.

During the build, we changed the location of the carport from the front to the side. We installed a septic system (the fourth one I’ve done now) and used a rust-proof aluminum roofing instead of the galvanized stuff. That is one area you want to pay extra for, as the roof will be a red rust in less than two years around these parts.

I’ve said before that I don’t like to use wood for construction either as it will rot and is prone to termites. So steel beams and cement are the way to go. Most of the work has been done by my brother-in-law Leo. He has done a lot of projects for us and is very good. I help out when I can but mainly I figure out what materials we need to buy and then go buy them. (I have been known to help mix cement once in a while.)

Buying materials is harder than it sounds as prices can vary widely from store to store. In my opinion, there is no best hardware store either, so I need to shop around. Buying large orders at the hardware stores here in Aguas Zarcas can be a very time-consuming chore.

Delivery of the materials is a whole other thing to figure out. Most places have their own delivery trucks but they may be out for the day and you won’t get your stuff until the next day, so you need to figure out delivery on your own.

Weather can be a game of cat and mouse here as well. It can be blasting sun one minute and a crazy rain storm dumping on your tools and materials the next. Normally we would have put the roof up before pouring the cement floors. But on this project, we had a cement mixer pop up unexpectedly. So we decided to get the floors done first to take advantage of the mixer, which aren’t always available when you want one.

That ended up being a decision I regretted as a major storm system rolled in shortly after and we lost a few days work before we could get the roof installed. As I write this, we are working on finishing up the bathroom walls and it is raining once again. At least this time we can continue working without being too affected by the weather.

I expect to be finished with the main construction in another ten days to two weeks. There will be smaller projects to finish up beyond that but it will be nice to have this project completed and in the books.

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