can-can canopy

So for the last five years, I’ve been putting up a 10×20 foot canopy on the deck at Libby’s. This is incredibly useful for things like watching Cubs games. Better than Wrigley because you have the lake and no problem with parking.

The first year, I just stuck it out there and it survived the summer without a hitch. I maneuvered a clever way to put it together myself and had a great summer. The next couple of years, with the wind as its partner, it took to dancing. Once, I found it lying on its head in the yard. Last week I watched it shuffle off in the direction of the lake taking several lawn chairs with it.

So, following the “keep doing the same thing expecting different results” rule, I

WENT TO THE HARDWARE STORE

As you know, the hardware store is one of my favorite places, but this trip was especially exciting after four weeks of pandemic isolation.

After drilling 3,465 holes

through the support pipes and adding the bolts and locknuts, I had the thing pretty sturdy. I used a corded drill from Ancient Sears because my cordless was too wimpy to take on this job. I also had to make another trip to the HS to get a new drill bit when the old one wore out. I discovered the amazingness of drill bits that don’t walk. In other words, when drilling into something round and slippery, it’s nice to have a bit that’s disciplined enough to stay in the spot where you want the hole throughout the drilling process.

I also made a contraption for the one leg of the canopy that had to be on the lower deck.

In past years, I’d used the milk can that happened to be exactly the right height. But the leg never wanted to stay on the milk can. Or, it’s possible the can didn’t want the leg standing on its head. Who knows what goes on in the night?

A bit of paint on this pegleg should spruce it up a bit. And it looks like painting the deck should be added to my list of summer projects, too.

Of course, after all the work of bolting this thing together methinks it will spend its winters outside. Without the actual canopy attached, there will be no snow load so it should survive just fine.

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