The deck is done! I’ve never built anything like this solo before, and despite a few cosmetic flaws, I’m really proud of this space.
I’ve already held several classes out on the deck and it’s been so enjoyable to practice outside under the redwood trees. Over the next few weeks I’ll be building a canopy to keep rain off the deck, and adding cloth side walls so it can be heated over the winter.
My helper for this project.
The first step was to level the frame with a few cinder blocks. The backyard luckily had a fairly flat area, so there wasn't too much digging involved. Big metal brackets joined the corners.
I underestimated how many joists were needed, initially spacing them at about 22" apart. I ended up getting 6 additinal boards so the joists were only 12" apart.
Lesson learned: don't let the store pick the lumbar for you. I thought I would save some time by ordering the lumber via will-call, and just picking it up. I didn't realize how warped big-box store lumbar could be until it was at our home. I ended up having to get a truck to bring some of the worst boards back to exchange.
The frame and joists were weather-proofed before nailing the floorboards down.
Nailed, sanded and weatherproofed, and ready to use.