Digging post holes is the hardest part of building a deck
It’s 95 in the shade and the ground is like concrete. Not the best conditions for building a deck, especially when the first thing you do is dig holes for the footings. I’ve got the easy job, taking photos for an upcoming article (look for it in next year’s special issue on decks). Clemens Jellema and his crew are building the deck just outside of Annapolis Maryland. He’s built in this areas for more than twenty years, and he says the hardness of the ground is unusual. The power auger he rented yesterday has a hard time with it, so it’s day two and they’ve excavated nine out of twenty holes. Of course, the heat isn’t helping. Neither are the roots and rocks that lie about 18-in down from the surface.
But the auger helps, for sure. It takes two guys to hold it, it probably weighs around 75 lbs., and uses either a 16-in. dia. bit or an 18-in. And when the soil is unfettered with obstacles, they can bore a hole in about 5 min. And the holes are clean and round, with straight sides. Very nice, if you’re a connisseur of excavation. Having spent the better part of a day digging four foot deep holes in the rocky stuff New Englanders call soil, to me the $70 a day rental fee sounds like a bargain.
More as it comes.