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The Wrack

The Wrack is the Wells Reserve blog, our collective logbook on the web.

Farmhouse Facelift

Posted by
John Speight
| November 25, 2013

Time has taken its toll on the ramp located on the north side of the farmhouse (aka Visitor Center). In even worse shape is the wall itself. With generous help from Lang Construction and several volunteers, the ramp and wall are getting the attention they need. This project has many details associated with permits, historical accuracy, and logistics, so please pardon the inconvenience and welcome the improvements to an iconic building.

We'll provide regular updates with photos below (last change May 19, 2014).

November 25: Ramp Demolition

First step: Remove the old access ramp and stairs into the docent room / woodshed. Frank Heller and Jim Slocombe were out early in sub-zero wind chill to take care of this part of the job.

The rail comes downRailing demolition

November 26

By the next morning, the ramp and rail are gone and the weather has become a little warmer and wetter.


November 27

The old footings are forced from the ground.

The concrete footings are removed and the ground is smoothed.

December 5

The concrete ramp is coming out and this secondary entrance will no longer be ADA accessible. With the "new" main entrance to the Visitor Center already accessible, this entry sees less use altogether and the new steps and landing will be less elaborate.

Frank and John, with jackhammer and sledge, team up to break up the obsolete concrete ramp.

January 6

Over the extended break, the old clapboards were removed and a new landing was started. Wicked winds, heavy snow, and some icy conditions slowed progress a bit.

Progress on farmhouse wall as of January 6

January 14

A full crew gets going again, taking advantage of an above-freezing day.

Workers on the scene, January 14, 2013

March 5

Over their day of progress in mid-January, the crew had worked halfway up the wall with new clapboards. Then the weather turned again and the look was "locked in" right into March.

Some progress on new clapboards

March 12

The siding is all up before winter ends

And before winter's out, the clapboards are completely installed!

May 19

The weather is warm and dry enough by May for painting to get done.

The reduced steps and landing were in place in early spring, but we waited a while for the weather to get warm and dry enough for painting to get done. Thankfully, we were awarded an AmeriCorps team this spring and they started laying on the yellow.

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