31. In inspecting the excavation the superintendent should first examine the lines to see that the building has been correctly staked out, and that the excavation is being carried at least 6 inches outside of the wall lines, so as to give room for pointing or cementing. If the wall is built against the bank it will be impossible to point up the joints on the outside, and the back of the wall not being exposed, the masons are apt to slight that part of the work to the future detriment of the building; and if the excavation is not made large enough at first, it causes much trouble and vexation, as the work cannot be done as cheaply afterward, and the stone masons will very likely complain about being delayed.
The superintendent should also see that the finished grade is plainly marked on some fixed object and caution the workmen not to dig the trenches below the level marked on the drawings. If the trenches are excavated below the proper level, they must not be refilled with earth, as the footings should start on the solid bottom of the trench; as this will require more masonry than the contractor estimated on, he will be quite sure to call for an extra payment for the same from the owner, unless the excavating is included in his contract, in which case he will have to settle with the excavator. For this reason it is a good plan to have the excavating included in the contract for the foundation.
The superintendent should also examine the character of the soil at the bottom of the excavation, and if it is not such as was expected, the foundations must be changed or carried deeper, as previously described. Should water be encountered in making the excavation some provision should be made for draining the cellar, either by laying a tile drain around the footings, or by laying the bottom courses dry and connecting with a stone drain, as described in Sections 6 and 10.
* Prof. Ira O. Baker, C. E., in " Masonry Construction."
The specifications should provide that the contractor is to keep the trenches free from water while the wall is being laid. In places where the water cannot be drained off, it must be removed by a pump, either worked by hand or by steam. When the excavation is made close to an adjoining building the superintendent should see that the contractor has made proper provision for shoring or otherwise protecting the adjacent walls.