Installing a New Furnace with Bob (and Bob)

On Saturday, I headed over to Aunt Cathy’s house in Lemont, to help Bob with installing a furnace. Bob was working with a longtime friend of his (Bob Seymour), and I swung by to help lend a hand where I could.

On arriving, I saw Bob setting up a new sheet metal brake that he had purchased. This thing was incredibly heavy, but Bob had a system set up where he could mostly maneuver the thing on/off his truck solo.

Bob, working on cutting up some sheet metal. The shears he was using were humongous, and when I tried to give this a go… I was slow and fairly inaccurate in my cuts. Watching Bob work was a sight to see, as he was precise and fluid with his motions (which makes sense, as he’s a sheet metal worker by trade).

The old furnace. Bob and Bob S have worked together many times, and it was interesting to watch and listen to them work. Both guys had a certain rhythm to the work, and they passed tools and shifted places frequently, but were very adept at moving around in a small space.

The old furnace, removed. I got to shadow both Bobs at different phases of their work. Some moments, I’d hang out with Bob in the garage and watch him prep sheet metal. Other times, I’d watch Bob S drilling a hole into the side of the house for the PVC vent.

The new furnace, set into place. I’d say my main contributions to the day happened mostly in the morning, as I helped with getting the new furnace downstairs, and helped get the old furnace topside.

Though the new furnace was in place by around 2PM, both Bobs ended up working until around 9:30 PM – getting the electrical vent, and return ducts set up. It was pretty fascinating watching both Bobs work – you could tell they’d done this a hundred times before, and were just skilled at what needed to get done.

// Edit: We had some sandwiches from a nearby place called Sweetwater Deli, and the subs were fantastic.

Helping Bob with the House, in Frankfort


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