I had a visit from a local sawyer on Monday to help cut some logs. I snapped some photos along the way and wrote up a quick story.
More tools coming later this week!
Thanks for reading,
The freak October snow storm hit us especially hard here in Connecticut. The snow fell fast and piled up to more than a foot at our house. It was a wet, heavy snow that stuck to everything. Most of the trees still had their leaves which resulted in lots of snow build-up. The heavy limbs broke and took entire trees down. The damage was incredible- dar worse than the hurricane that hit less than two months ago. We lost power and utilities for five days. There are still several tens of thousands without power in the towns north of us. Overall we fared very well. We lost several trees but sustained no damage to our home. After the hurricane, which left us without power or water for seven days, we invested in a good inverter/generator so this time we had water, lights, and some basics. Our wood stove, as always, kept the house warm. Again, we were very lucky.
Yesterday I had a visit from a local sawyer I found. Back in August we had some tree work done on our property to remove some of the more hazardous trees that were too close to the house for me to cut myself. I’m good with a chainsaw but I won’t cut any decent size trees within a tree length of the house. We were left with close to five cords of firewood on the ground and six decent logs that I wanted to have sawn.
I’ve been interested in wooden planes since I fell down the hand tool slope about 10 years ago. I have always had it in my mind that I would become a plane-maker some day. Over the past few years I have taken some classes on plane-making and made about a half dozen molding planes for myself and others. Finding good beech for plane stock has always been a challenge. Seven years ago, or so, I bought a beech log, brought it to a mill, and had it sawn into plane billets. If I remember correctly, I got about 80bf out of that log once it was all quarter-sawn. I let it dry in a solar kiln for about a year then moved it to an outdoor pile to finish seasoning. Unfortunately, I lost almost the entire stack after the cover blew off during a winter storm, a fact that went unnoticed, and the pile remained uncovered until the next fall. In the mean time the pile was infested with some sort of powder post beetle. I wound up with some nice, quarter-sawn firewood.
This year I finally received my long-awaited firewood permit from the water authority. We heat our home with 100% wood heat and usually require about 6 cords/year. I was granted a beautiful wood lot only about 5 miles from my house. It is former pasture land so I figure there’s nothing there older than about 60-80 years. The lot was logged once, probably 20 years ago. It is currently managed for both timber and recreation. The forester marks cull trees that are imperfect, unhealthy, or just weedy. It’s a nice mix of hardwoods. The pioneer species like Birch are starting to reach their peak and are dying off, being replaced by mostly oak. There’s also some beech back there, which brings me back to the original point of this post.