Yesterday, both Karl and I went babysitting. We spent the entire day at the bar babysitting Demo Guy's apparently mildly inept crew. We were there to make sure the final truss (that should have been installed an entire month ago today) was finally installed correctly and according to the engineered plans.
At first, I was very happy to see Demo Guy on the roof working with his crew to make sure the sign at the front of the bar was re-attached correctly to the roof (like it should have been done a month ago) to help ensure it doesn't fall off the building. (Karl had sort of secured it earlier; they just came back to fix their screw up in how the sign was handled during demolition.) I thought, "Yay! He's actually going to supervise his crew!"
There was a brief disagreement on how the strapping should be done to the final truss. (Demo Guy was still insisting he was doing and had done it correctly; I believe based on a much earlier conversation with the engineer and not at all on what was approved. For some strange reason, Karl and I believe that the installation should be done according to the approved plans I know! CRAZY!) Then Demo Guy said he had to go visit his dad in the hospital and left. I was a bit annoyed at him for leaving but, in the end, I'm glad he did.
His crew, which would have been unsupervised had we not been there, didn't quite know how to do some things and we were there to correct them and answer questions. As best we could, anyway. They didn't speak too much English and we don't speak good enough Spanish. Which is one of the problems I believe Demo Guy has; he can't communicate well enough with his employees to make sure the jobs get done right the first time. And I don't think it helps that these two who came by seem to me to be little more than two stooges with hammers; I just don't think they care all that much.
I also learned why you should both watch and not watch your contractor work. It's much like watching your food being prepared in a restaurant. These guys were using nail guns to nail in the strapping. I believe that the manufacturer of the straps may specifically forbid the use of nail guns for installation but I'm not certain; I do know that I read it somewhere, though. Nail guns can make things go faster but they can also cause problems. Like, perhaps, splitting a vertical truss member in a truss you're trying to install and then having to make a new one to replace the one you broke; it's likely that hand nailing the strapping would not split the two-by-four.
At about 2:30pm yesterday, Demo Guy's crew was done with this job. We think forever. We believe the installation will pass inspection which is scheduled for today and we can finally move on to other things. Like insulation and getting a damn roof on the place.