I know I have fans of my "duh" category of posts. (You know who you are. :-) Keep reading; this post contains a good duh moment.
I started this beautiful day with a bunch of ladder parts. Ladder assembly day!
It was slow going but, with a lot of careful chiseling, constant checking with a square, and tapping with a mallet, I started fitting the rungs into the cut-outs on the ladder side rails. After working for quite some time, with only two rungs left to go, I noticed some notes I had written in pencil on the side rails. (I'd totally forgotten I'd done that.) I had written "outside right" on the side of the side rail that was now on the inside left. And I'd written "outside left" on the side of the side rail that was now on the inside right. Oops! I sat back and looked at all the rungs I'd carefully worked into the side rails so far. I hadn't screwed them together yet, so...did I want to take everything apart and start over with the side rails swapped? ... Uh, no. I just kept moving forward.
After fitting in all the rungs, I screwed them to the side rails.
This is an inspiring, soothing spot to work--especially when I'm using hand tools and not noisy power tools.
Then I pegged all the holes where I'd drilled in screws.
Next, I attached two boards to the tops of the back sides of the side rails, and pegged those holes as well.
Finally, I sanded the whole ladder.
Now all it needs is some stain and some polyurethane.
No one needs to point out to me that this is a little like putting the cart before the horse--to build a loft ladder before a loft is even built. :-) I figured that since I'd begun the ladder over the winter, and since I don't yet have any lumber with which to build my JayBee, I might as well finish off this project. A bit less interior work to do down the road!