Start out with a concrete slab about 20 years old.  The pieces aren't even any more, and the expansion joints, made from 2x4's, have mostly rotted out.  Time for replacement.

I rented an electric jack hammer, and busted up about half of the deck.  I just about died.  My back was sore for three weeks.  I still had about 700 square feet to go.  This just wasn't on.

That's more like it.  I hired Bobcat Bob from Davis, and he had it all removed in a day and a half--even with pouring rain.  He also had a load of dirt to help backfill where the slab had been removed.

I brought home a load of 36 cinderblock piers, and Sacramento Lumber Co. of West Sac. delivered the redwood, and I was off.

I rented a power auger and drilled out holes for the piers, for the deck was to be level with the house, rather close to the ground.  I filled the bottom of each hole with gravel, tamped it down, and leveled each pier.  Took about three days.

I laid down 4x4's to act as floor joists.

Finally I began laying 2x6's in a diagonal pattern.  First one side. . .

Then the other.  Took about a week every night after work; a few hours a day.

I cleaned up the area and attached a skirt board around the deck.  Next I swabbed the deck with "deck cleaner", which lightened the wood considerably, and evened out the color.

Finally, I applied a transparent stain/sealer and UV blocker.  Things are looking mighty good.

At last I can celebrate my new deck.  Next project will be to improve the rest of the crappy backyard.  I think I'll get started on the lawn soon.

Using the deck with my telescope on a recent starry night.

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