As promised, photos & narrative re: sleepers
project, attached. As you can see (of course), nobody stole them,
so the early delivery worked out fine.
For several years, we held the flower bed at the front of the house (roadside)
together with some old logs, but eventually these had to be replaced, so we
made a retaining wall/raised bed from railway sleepers.
The hardest part was fixing them together: we used 6"
nails countersunk in a 12mm hole drilled a little more than half way through
each sleeper, but the punch we were using for this bent, and then broke. For
a while we managed with a small cold chisel, which had a shank just under
12mm in diameter, but broadened at the tip, so that it kept getting stuck
in the holes. In the end I sawed the tip off, and that worked extremely well
but I wish I'd thought of it sooner. We made rope slings
to lift the sleepers at each end, and this made it possible for my wife and
I to lift and position the sleepers. The job took us all day, from 8am to
6pm, during which it was raining most of the time!
We didn't know it when we ordered the sleepers, but maintenance work had scheduled
on the nearby railway that weekend - lifting and re-laying track including
sleepers. Our lane was clogged with railway vehicles all week, and the workmen
offered us more sleepers for free (!).
A great commentary and fantastic photos to an
excellent project, that has transformed the entrance to your house. An admirable
10 hour achievement from the two of you !