2014 - Volume #38, Issue #3, Page #25[ Sample Stories From This Issue | List of All Stories In This Issue | Print this story | Read this issue]
Catwalks Make It Easy To Clean Gutters
“The catwalks blend into the walkways,” explains Shelbourn.
Initially Shelbourn and his wife built a one level home using lumber milled from trees on their thickly forested site. When they later added a second floor, he quickly found climbing a ladder to clean fir tree needles out of rain gutters was a pain. He decided permanent catwalks would make the job easier and safer, especially as he was getting older.
Shelbourn used 14-ft., 4 by 6 treated posts for uprights supporting the walkways. He set them on concrete pads at ground level and at a 3 1/2-ft. distance from the house wall. He connected the uprights to the house wall with 2 by 6 treated boards that also support the walkways. He connected the catwalks to the outside of the uprights.
“The catwalks are about 3 ft. above the level of the walkways, and like them, are supported by 2 by 6 boards on edge,” says Shelbourn. “I also used treated 2 by 6’s for the deck boards of both the walkways and catwalks.”
The catwalks’ support boards are bolted to the 14-ft. uprights. Cables stretch from the ends of the support boards to the tops of the uprights. Turnbuckles on the upright ends let Shelbourn maintain taut cables.
“Working on the catwalks requires stepping over the cables,” says Shelbourn. “That is still safer and easier than climbing ladders. I ran cables along the top of the uprights and use a safety harness when on the catwalk. I just detach and reattach as I move from one section to the next.”
“We added picket fence boards along the walkway to let our dog have outside access,” says Shelbourn. “With all of it stained red like the house, everything blends together at a distance.”
Contact: FARM SHOW Followup, Alan Shelbourn, 7570 288th St. NE, Kingston, Wash. 98346 (ph 360 297-3779; email@example.com).
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