Monthly Archives: December 2013

Photos of the Finished Bike Parking Rack

Behind in posting as usual, but somewhere between the first and second snow last month we finished the roofed bike parking! Here are some photos, after them I’ll sketch out construction methods and approximate costs:

View from the parking lot, lightly screened against casual viewing from street by old fence boards.

View from the parking lot, lightly screened against casual viewing from street by old fence boards.

There are 5 bike racks and room on the side for trailers

There are 5 bike racks and room on the side for trailers

View back toward the 'plex.

View back toward the ‘plex.

Polycarbonate roofing panels to keep the snow and rain off, let light in and through!

Polycarbonate roofing panels to keep the snow and rain off, let light in and through!

Basic covered structure is: Treated 4×4 and 4×6 corner posts for a shed roof (salvaged from a fence I am tearing down and other sources).  Back 2 posts are the 4×4’s buried about a foot in concrete, sticking up 3 feet.  Front 2 are 4×6’s buried about 2 feet in concrete, sticking up 6 feet.  Treated 2×6’s are bolted across the front and back posts (2 in front, 1 in back – but could have just used 1 in each location).  Approximate floor space dimensions are 8 feet deep by 16 feet long.  10′ 2×4’s are the rafters, spaced every 2′ with salvaged 2×4 blocking at least every 3′ along the rafters to support the polycarbonate 2’x8′ roofing panels (partial panels finish off the 10′ run of the rafters).  Some brass sheeting left over from something was bent to cap each of the upper rafter ends.

Materials (with prices where remembered!):

(3) 20′ treated 2×6’s – $74

(10) 10′ 2×4’s for rafters

salvaged 2×4’s for blocking in between rafters

salvaged treated posts ( (2) 4′ 4×4’s and (2) 8′ 4×6’s)

(12) 2’x8′ polycarbonate roofing panels – approx. $300

wiggly wood (our name for it – the wooden pieces that are shaped like the crenelated panels to support them on the blocking)

special expensive screws with rubber washers to screw the panels down – luckily I was given a bunch left over from a friend’s project

For the bike racks themselves: 5 inverted ‘U’ shaped racks were made from 1.5″ galvanized steel pipe and 90degree elbows. The U’s (or n’s) are 5′ long but 2′ is buried in concrete in the ground with 3′ sticking up. They are 1′ wide and spaced approx. 3′ from each other (as per city of Boston recommendations I found online).  A bike can be locked to each side of each inverted U, for an easy 10 bikes, with plenty of space in between to avoid locking peddles and handlebars.

Materials (total cost for these is about $300)

(10) Galvanized steel 90 degree elbows – 1.5″ threaded inner diameter

(5) 12″ long 1.5″ galvanized steel pipe, threaded both ends

(5) 10′ lengths of 1.5″ galvanized steel pipe, threaded both ends (for no extra cost, the Home Depotarian will cut these in half for you, so that an unthreaded end can be buried in concrete, and a threaded end at the top can be screwed onto an elbow.  Much cheaper than pre-cut threaded sections at the box store)

enough 50lb sacks of ready-mix concrete for use in setting posts.  This was fun because you don’t have to premix with water – you just pour in your hole around the post, spraying with water every 1/3 fill or so.  I think it took somewhere around 15 bags?  That’s the problem with delayed blogging and lax record keeping!

Last but not least – the invaluable help of my friends and fellow ecoplexetarians!  Thanks everyone!