Tuesday, December 09, 2003

Lumber update

Three weeks ago when I last wrote, I mentioned that it was warm enough to work outside in a T-shirt. That has all changed now. We have had some real cold weather since then, and a nasty storm last weekend which saw heavy, wet snow blowing horizontally. The wind was strong enough to wreck the raincap of the workshop flue pipe, so I spent a couple of hours yesterday getting that fixed.

The green wood that I was working on is now all stickered in the storage area. It is between the dust extractor and the shop, so returning air is passing over the wood. I am also cracking open the adjacent window so that the woodstove will suck fresh air in too, to help speed the drying process. My moisture meter only gives readings below 20% moisture content but yesterday I found one piece that was just beginning to give a reading. It seems to be drying quicker than I would have anticipated. Before then I was getting an idea of the moisture loss from a block of wood balanced on an old kitchen scale. It has dropped from 4lb 8oz to 4lb.

As well as the sawn lumber, I also bought a lot of the slab wood. This all had to be cut up into smaller pieces, or rough turned on the lathe to make bowl blanks. That all took some time, but it is done now and I can look forward to having plenty of relatively cheap material to work with next year. There are still two large pieces out in the yard ready to be cut up and roughed out into salad bowl blanks. I hope to get that done soon before it starts to split.