once the ground posts are in place, it’s time to put on the bottom boards. some folks put the bottom boards on after they have put up the bows and installed the ridge pole, pulins, and hip board, but i like to put the bottom boards in first.
the reason is pretty simple, when you install the bows they tend to put a good amount of outward pressure on the ground posts, and if they aren’t linked together with bottom boards they will tend to push out more, and lose their square position.
bottom boards provide structure and also are where your plastic is connected, or your roll up sides rest depending on yr setup. bottom boards also help to keep excessive water from coming into the house, and soil from washing out.
if the ground you are working on is not level, start working on the higher end. if you are working with eight foot lengths of material you will need to cut the first bottom board you lay out so it is only 6 foot long, and makes it half way between two posts (no matter what length of material you are working with you will want it be laid out so the connection of boards happens between posts). with the extra two feet of material, cut that into six inch pieces that will be used to join the bottom boards together.
lay yr first board out and make sure it is level and then attach it to the corner post. some systems use carriage bolts, but we used pipe straps and self taping screws. screw the pipe strap to the bottom board and then run a self taping screw threw the strap into the bottom board.
use one of the six inches pieces you cut to join the next bottom board to the one you have already attached. use outdoor deck screws so they don’t rust out. make sure you attached the wooden plate to the inside so it doesn’t interfere with the roll up side later on. level, attach to the next post and repeat.
keep this up until you get the the far end.
next step is putting up the bows, ridge pole, the hip boards – then it really starts feeling like you are doing something.