Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A New Toy

I have been wanting a new toy for quite a while now and I decided today was that day. I purchased a 28" bar for my chainsaw. I already run a 24" bar for my Husky and Stihl but wanted to make bigger and smoother cuts when I get into bigger wood. Plus I am a guy................. remember Tim Allen in Home Improvement, bigger is always better!!!!

So I purchased a 28" bar for the stihl. I have been wanting to use a bigger bar when I am wood cutting and doing specific tasks. This gives me another quick and ready option. And I wanted it!! A couple of weeks ago the forest became open to wood collecting. My father and I spent two days cutting up a giant oak. The second day we got into the big wood which we spent most of milling into boards with the Alaskan mill. A device used to mill lumber with a chainsaw. It makes a ton of saw dust yet way easier than haulilng massive trees to the lumber mill.

We ended up with eight 30"x 2" x 6 1/2' boards. Perfect for making a coffee table. I cut one section at 4" thick for legs. It is going to be a sweet coffee table!!! At least that's plan. The hardest part is knowing I have to wait over a year before it will be cured and ready to make into a beautiful table. To be honest that is the hardest part of wood working. At least for me. I collect some awesome item from the river, lake, ocean, forest. Do what is necessary to prep the wood for curing. Then the wait for the actual curing. It is amazing how many projects are placed on hold because the wood isn't ready. There are more pieces laying around waiting to be made than actually finished products. I tried to implement the 2.3 policy. If it hasn't become something in 2-3 years, winter time needs firewood. Hard to do when you labor hiking a piece of wood 4 miles out of a canyon. Although I still have a girlfriend, so it isn't out of hand yet.

Yeah I could go out and buy the wood, but the cost would be extreme!! The recent boards we cut, if they don't crack to bad, will be price around $300 retail. Not bad for a do it yourself gig. Although we still have to accommodate the price in gas, transportation, actual chainsaw(s), wood permit, storage (free, yet still have property taxes), electricity for the planner, table saw, sander and all the maintenance for the aforementioned. Yeah there are many costs but still slightly cheaper when it comes to your personal labor of love.

In reality the main reason we (outdoorsmany folks in general) do the things we do is because we want to be outside. Smell the tree's, hear the wind's, feel the soil's. To be honest, most of my unique wood items come from a fishing trip. I see something so cool that I want it. I throw it on the shoulder and I start hiking out. 2 miles with this crazy piece of wood on the shoulder leaves a sore shoulder. Yet in the long run you look at a finished form of beautiful functional art and it is the memories of the whole trip, the making of the item and the use it now serves that is the true beauty. Even pictures of my items still bring back those memories of adventure. The adventure is always as great as the destination!   

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