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Old 01-03-2013, 11:24 AM
David Gretzmier David Gretzmier is offline
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And Takedow begins in earnest...

We took 8 jobs down last week right after Christmas, but most of my clients don't want it taken down until Jan. 2 or later. so the big rush is on. since my guys were off Monday and Tuesday this week, we are going to run 10 days in a row so everyone can get 40 hours or so in this week thru sunday, and then the next 5 days will let guys get 40 hours for the following week. I hope at the end of 10 days we are somewhere around 2/3 done. but won't know til we get there.

Trying a new takedown method this year. instead of sending 2 guys with each truck and giving each crew 3-5 jobs a day, I am running with all the crews together and all guys attack a house and get it down very quickly. so far it seems it keeps everyone's pace high and motivation high since we seem to get a ton of work done really fast. but I think we are getting the same work done. But it makes the larger jobs seem easier when you get them done with 7 guys in 45 minutes to an hour rather than 2 guys for 3 hours. smaller jobs get done in 15 -20 minutes. also I am having all guys put up jobs in the racks this year rather than having the shop foreman have to put up all 4 trucks.

was 17 degrees when we started yesterday and 13 degrees today. should warm up to 39 though. at least it is sunny and no wind. Got 16 down yesterday. so at 24 down total.
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Old 01-03-2013, 12:06 PM
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Sprinkler Buddy Sprinkler Buddy is online now
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Ouch, that's COLD! I bet your guys really like working together on the bigger jobs when it's that cold. If nothing else, it'll keep the moral high.
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:28 PM
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Birchwood Birchwood is offline
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We started take downs today. We use the same approach 4 guys including myself. 9 jobs down today, its nice to be gone in 30 mins.

Is anyone calling customers to schedule take downs or just go for it. I don't want to call 80 people and also don't want to bounce around. I had one woman upset when she got home and saw here lights were gone. And 2 asked to be up another week.

I think we have 8 working days before the weather turns for the worst with a couple freezing rain and snow events in the forecast.
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Old 01-03-2013, 08:32 PM
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Birchwood Birchwood is offline
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Scratch that just checked the forecast 5 days till 3 days of ice/rain.
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:32 AM
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addictedtolandscaping addictedtolandscaping is offline
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Starting either tis weekend or Monday. Has been brutally cold here, couple of large ones to get down first, but the area is really nasty with the wind. Some of the projects are going to be the end of next week, we got about 18" of snow here right after Christmas, then it turned into the artic. Not at all interested in walking roofs or trying to manipulate a ladder on ice.
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Old 01-04-2013, 08:51 AM
David Gretzmier David Gretzmier is offline
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18 down yesterday, 42 down. yesterday's included a very large job. 13 degrees when we started, but warmed up to 39. strangely, around 26 degrees at 10:30 or so, with 2 pairs long johns, jeans, and t shirt, 2 long sleeve t's top with no coat, and felt ok. I think once the first level of frostbite kills those weak nerve endings near the skin you do start to get used to this. I always forget that. also, if you stay busy carrying wreaths and boxes, then with little or low wind that temp is ok to work. at 34 or so with activity, I went to one long sleeve t. added back the 2nd t around 4:30 once temp creeped back to 29 and we were wrapping up last takedowns and headed to shop.

The all together method of 7 guys attacking jobs is working well for morale and seems to be ok for getting work done. while it seems to be overkill for jobs with only c9's up top, but it is funny, immediately 2 guys grab painter poles and start pulling down lights, 2 guys grab ladders for cords on gutters, and 2 guys grab spool and spooler, and I am already writing tags for c-9s as soon as I get out. I throw out cord box, bundle cords, we all pick up clips and in 10 minutes we are done and on to the next one. will keep you posted, but so far I like this method if you have lots of jobs in close proximity.
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Old 01-04-2013, 05:57 PM
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Birchwood Birchwood is offline
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Tags for lights

Last year I got tired of rewriting the tag, because the paper ones would only last 2 years. So I got a roll of white duct tap and would write the discription on it and fold it over the cord and attach it to itself.
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Old 01-04-2013, 06:51 PM
britelights britelights is offline
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After today we have about 60 down. We were able to get 14 down between Christmas and New Year's -- lots of people traveling this year. But man I tell you -- we have alot of respect for those working in 20 and 30 degree weather with ice and snow. It's been upper 40s with drizzle, wind, etc the past few days and it's so miserable. Of course I get the easy job - I don't have to be out in that weather - but Carlos is dying. Tomorrow is possible sleet in the morning and rain all day so we won't be working and the guys will get a day to rest. Should be mid-50s next week -- praying for some sunshine to go along with it! We hope to have everything down by the 15th -- as long as the weather improves for next week we should make that goal.

Rented a moving truck yesterday and today and that was a HUGE help. We have an area where we have 8 homes on 3 different streets...large homes, ton of displays, two of the homes have front and back decorated (and lights all around the entire house). We were able to attack that with all the crews, the moving truck, our van and trailer...and get it all knocked out in one day. Today, the moving truck came in very handy for picking up alot of the 3D heralding angels and getting the 20' tree down.
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Old 01-04-2013, 07:59 PM
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Birchwood Birchwood is offline
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Yesterday had a windchill of 1 and today it almost made it to 30 but was very windy. Next week should be nice, upper 30's to mid 40's but then rain and ice for the latter part of the week.
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Old 01-04-2013, 08:01 PM
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turf hokie turf hokie is offline
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I envy you guys that can start taking down in earnest already. We will go full out Monday. Most of our customers want to stay up until after little Christmas which is the 6th. Even commercial. We only have 6 down as of today. 3 big ones but not the jump you guys have gotten.
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