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Old 06-27-2012, 06:06 PM   #1
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I'm building an 8X8 shed from scratch and have no prior experience with this sort of thing. I would like to have it up on blocks so as to prevent rot. I've got my blocks pretty level. But one side is about an inch off. If I raise the side that I would need to raise to make the unlevel side level, than a side that is level will become unlevel. If that makes any sense. Do I need to worry about being not quite level or does anyone have any pointers on how to fix this problem? I have my blocks sitting in small holes filled with pea gravel. I leveled it by adding more or less pea gravel and more or less blocks.
Thanks,
Ann

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Old 06-27-2012, 06:19 PM   #2
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You are probably using an ineffective method to determine level, hence the trouble. The simplest, most accurate way to level four blocks would be to use a surveying instrument called, appropriately enough, a level. they can be purchased for $100 or less, or can be rented. The level is set up so you can see the each of the blocks through the instrument, you level the instrument, then you use a graduated pole to measure the height of the instrument above the block. If the blocks are level, each reading will be the same. You can do the same thing using a rotating laser level and a tape measure. When done correctly, you adjust your blocks up or down, and the blocks can be leveled to within 1/4 inch of each other very easily, and within 1/8 inch with a little bit of work.

If you do not want to buy a level or rent one, you can do very good work using a string line and a line level. Alternatively, you can use a long, straight board or metal rod and a carpenters level to achieve good results. The key to any of the techniques is to start by levelling one block in both directions, then adjust the diagonal block so it is level with the first block, then adjust the last two blocks so they are level with the first two.

Is it critical? Well, anyone who has ever built anything will tell you that if the foundation is out of level or out of plumb, it spells further trouble down the line, in the form of doors that do not close correctly, trim that will not install correctly, and other unpleasant issues. Best to get the foundation as close to level and plumb as possible, you will have far fewer problems later.

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Old 06-27-2012, 06:24 PM   #3
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Not the best plan. Even if somehow you did get it level just sitting on pea gravel with open web blocks it's going to sink.
Pea gravel can not be compressed. It's round and will just keep sinking and moving.
The blocks should have been sitting on pored 24" X 24" X at least 4" thick footings or at a minimum #57 stone as a base and solid blocks on top of that.
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Old 06-27-2012, 07:06 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daniel Holzman View Post
Alternatively, you can use a long, straight board or metal rod and a carpenters level to achieve good results. The key to any of the techniques is to start by levelling one block in both directions, then adjust the diagonal block so it is level with the first block, then adjust the last two blocks so they are level with the first two.
Thanks. I've been using a straight board connecting adjacent blocks and using a capretners level with the bubble in it. I have not checked the diagonal yet. So the bubble is between the two black lines on the level on all sides except one side where the bubble is right on the line or just a little past. I will try the diagonal tomorrow when I get a longer board. This is my first attempt. I'm not shooting for perfection because I think I'll make myself crazy. I just don't want to end up doing a bunch of extra cutting later because I'm slightly off now. If the door takes a little extra force to close it, that won't bother me. I consider this a learning experience more than anything to help me with later projects.
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Old 06-27-2012, 08:17 PM   #5
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build it on a level ''pad'' of 3/4'' gravel about 2-3' wider than the base of the shed and 6-8'' deep
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