Old Truck for Custom Fabricated Steel Roof Beams

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I used to live in Guatemala for many years. There came a time when I was building a house there.

The house was almost built. I had spent long months getting everything ready, visiting the house at least once a day to check progress and micro manage the head guy in charge of the workers.

It was a small house, built of block and concrete, on the side of 2 converging small rivers. Very nice property tucked in the tropical jungle of Central America. My little piece of paradise.

Problem was, after I finished the plumbing and electrical installations, it was time to get the roof on. I still had not found someone who was willing to take on that job, despite speaking to at least 6 different people.

I finally negotiated with a family member of my sister in law’s. He was a welder by trade, and had most of the tooling to do the job I wanted done. I wanted the house to be bullet proof, as the area did move sometimes, due to an occasional earthquake and the fact that the ground was only 6 feet above water level.

He agreed to buy the steel and the materials, do the cutting, welding, painting, and install everything. This included the galvanized roof panels, which I bought separately. We had some other business already, with the security bars on all the windows and doors being done now.

The truck was an older 1/4 ton pickup, with bald tires and high miles. Down there, everything is more expensive though, as you always have to pay importation duties and taxes. So the truck was worth about $6k still. Luckily, labor is cheap there, and the same job would have cost at least $25k in the USA.

But the truck ran strong and had hauled tons of materials already, during it’s long life. I knew I would be selling it soon, as it was in the shop frequently these days for minor, but constant, repairs.

The roof beams took longer that I wanted, as is usually the case when someone else has to buy the materials and work on your project. I checked them frequently, so as to not let them “forget” about the fact that I had project waiting for them to finish the roof.

I still had to finish the inside, paint, install doors and windows, etc. So, I needed those roof beams to get done yesterday.

After much prodding, they got done and installed, and the job got completed.

He got a decent truck. I got a roof on the house.

He sold the truck soon after for cash.