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My modular home delivery

The delivery of our modular ranch home was an exciting time.   we had to be present!  Buying this modular ranch home was, the second biggest expenditure of our lives, and in one day we are going to go from a foundation to an installed 27' by 56' house.

Deep set concrete block below frost line
First the foundation

In the picture above you see the foundation for the foundation!  Normal footers wrap around 70% of the home location.  We wan't a walk out basement and a sloped property is perfect for this, but the foundation costs more.  You must add "Frost Wall" an even deeper footing with concrete block on top the comes to the same level as the rest of the homes concrete footers.  In the picture you can see the frost wall between the two sections of PVC drain pipe that surround the rest of the foundation.  These pipes then drop to the level of the deeper footer below the frost wall.  Fortunately on our slope the entire basement drainage system can flow using gravity to about 70 feet behind our home.  The basement has a floor drain that ties into this system.  This floor drain actually has a water trap that should prevent radon from penetrating into the house.  I imagine these French drains really collect the radon.

Just some of the equipment involved, there was a lot
The day of delivery

Wow what a production.  Unfortunately the first try at modular home section placement was a failure.  We had agreed at purchase, due to our foundation design, that a crane must be used to install the two home modules.  If the foundation had not had a walk in sliding window it was possible the home could have been "rolled" onto the foundation.  In hind site I am not sure why that could not have been done.  But it is likely they would have had problems with muddy soil trying to park half a modular home next to the foundation.  They decided to pull the crane down the driveway and then swing the home segments from the trailer on the  driveway to the foundation.  The crane had four wheel drive, but half the drive had failed before the crane arrived at our site.  The crane operator / driver got the crane half way down our driveway and then decided it was not a good idea to go further.  In reviewing the photos the driver had missed the center of the driveway and basically was crushing out one side of the stone driveway into somewhat muddy soil adjacent to the driveway.  They pulled the crane back up the driveway with a bulldozer and a loader, as well as the cranes power.

So our house's half's were parked in two locations on our property for several weeks.  We are lucky we have a large property.  But I think during that time one or two mice migrated into our home, probably the attic.

The back of our house
Our house driving up the road

This is the rear and southern half of our house.  Notice a portion of the roof is folded down.  This is, I believe, to meet requirements for transportation on the highway.  One question they should ask you early in the process is; Are there any tunnels to pass through on the way to your property!  They prop up each section's roof before butting the two sections together.  You can see the electrical panel just to right of the windows.  This will drop down into the basement for mounting.  Most of the modular homes wiring is done in the attic and then run down the sidewall of the home.

The crane in place with the counterweights truck behind
The actual day of delivery.

They had prepared a site for the crane

This was a topsoil pad directly in front of the foundation, this was sort of a farce.  It was never used, topsoil is almost always too soft for very heavy equipment.  What they did was pull the crane down the driveway and thoroughly blocked it in place the night before the delivery.  It was probably going to rain on delivery day.  It was a little funny with all the heavy equipment coming and going they had trashed the drainage gully at the street so during the day the home was installed water was pouring down the driveway under the crane.  I really wondered whether they'd be able to get the crane out once the house was in place.

There was equipment and trucks lined up for almost one half mile to our house.

Think about it, my wife and I were paying for all those people and all that equipment.

The crane swings
Moving the manufactured home to the foundation

When they picked up the first section of the home, man, did it swing, the trailer and crane were on a slope so it could not be avoided.  In the picture above you can just make out the sloped trailer they had to pick up the house sections from.  That is a big thing to let swing!

When the home is placed they winched it together then bolted it together in the basement.

Crane driver missed driveway
Crane operator missed driveway center

The contractor doing my driveway would not finish it until the home installer craned the home in place.  He was right they trashed the driveway.  The crane operator missed the center by a lot!  Later the salesman was knocking the stone, "ruble stone", in our driveway.  This is where again you have finger pointing problems with multiple contractors on the same job.  In the picture above, where the fellow with purple coat has his foot, is one crane tire rut and the muddy area to the far right is the other rut.  Had the crane been centered the driveway would have survived and the crane would not have gotten stuck.  Also the crane normally has four wheel drive, but it had lost one of its drives, so it only had two wheel drive.  Also note seven people in this picture 4 of which are not moving.  The dollars were flying everywhere!

Hope this helps with your new manufactured home,


Date created: 13 Mar 2005

Date revised: 10/22/2016









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