Single pergola arch
It sounds very straightforward, but the process took me a while and the rest of the day was spent rerouting a gutter and outdoor light fixture.So by the end of day two we had built two braces, but I couldn’t call this step complete since they were neither painted (that happened the next morning) nor hung (which also got done the next day).All-in-all it took about 4.5 days of work (the half day was spent picking up the materials, which we talked about here) but I’m gonna boil it down to one simple post. Most attached pergolas don’t have the column in the equation (they just attach to the walls beside or above a garage door or a french door), but because our carport only had posts on the left side (see below) our first assignment was to add one on the right to add symmetry and create a place for the pergola to attach.To attach a post to our concrete floor, we used this post base which is built for situations like this.It took a bit of finesse to get it all done without attaching something slightly crooked, but eventually we got the job done.Then we had to drive some bolts through two beams (and the portion of the arch that sat between them).
These were by far the most complicated of all four steps, since there were four sub-step when it came to building each one.
It did the job okay, but since it’s sometimes hard to keep the blade perfectly vertical, my arch had a couple of wonky spots (not majorly wonky, but wonky enough that I noticed them) so we sanded the heck out of it to try to smooth things out. It was a tricky system of clamps, temporary nail gun nails, and balancing on scrap wood pieces to get it done, so don’t even try to make sense of this picture (it’s upside down, if that helps).
Basically we had to get both of the beams and the single arch piece aligned (and centered and level) and then screw them to the base using some 3″ lag bolts.
I actually clamped two together when I made the cut so that I’d be sure the beams that got paired together on the same brace were absolutely identical.
With the easy stuff out of the way, I turned my attention to the “arch.” Yes, a dreaded curved cut. To mark my curved line, I tapped some temporary nails into the wood at both ends and at the middle/top of my curve.
While the paint dried I got started on step 4, so it wasn’t until the next morning that we could actually hoist them into place.