Thursday, May 14, 2009

Chop Wood

We didn't have to carry water. It was falling from the sky.

It was too cold for Gardening yesterday. A couple of times on our morning trundle we hid under convenient spruce trees to wait out a hailstorm. I am thinking of installing benches to make the sites more comfortable. Maybe stash some rations for prolonged storms.

We decided to cut up the fir tree that had fallen down from the tree building. Most of the wood was fine with only the outside chewed up by ants. The top of the tree was too rotten and the bottom 5 feet had too many nails pounded into it. Makes cutting it with a chainsaw a dangerous and chain filing intensive operation.

I was using an old Stihl chainsaw with a 30" blade. I had bought it second hand and it seemed to be in pretty good shape. Yesterday I found out that the handle had been broken and then glued back together with some epoxy putty. After some hard starting, pulling on the cord, the putty let go. Jeez. Maybe I can find some parts on line. A new saw to replace it will run about $1200. I have three other saws, one electric, great for light jobs, and a small Husqvarna for limbing. It usually stays in the back of the truck in case we have to remove fallen trees on the way to town. A not uncommon occurrence - especially in the winter when the trees get a snow load and the wind comes up. I have another one that my brother Tiny gave me, a cast off from his log building operation, but I haven't been able to get it to start reliably despite adding a carb kit. Off to the saw shop to see what they can do I guess.

I split the wood into pieces suitable for the small upstairs heater which is all we're using right now.

The ants even helped out with the kindling as I gathered a bucket full of ant chewed wood that was all ready ant hewn to kindling size.

We collect bark that sloughs off birch trees in the spring and it makes the worlds best fire starter. A couple of strips, one match, some ant kindling, and instant upside down fire.

Jo-Ann handled the skidsteer and shuffled the split wood to a pile under the balcony, where it will stay dry. After this she used the bucket to clean up the aftermath of the logging operation. All while doing her knitting..

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Watch that those ants don't get into your house. Barb & Frank had them come in from the wood and the exterminator has been here several times.
Please give Cleo a pat for us. Jean & Al

Art Blomquist said...

Good point, especially seeing that we live in a log house!

We only saw a couple of them when we were cutting it up. And I introduced them to Mr. Axe. I think they had the good sense to vacate the apartment before it fell down.

Cleo gets daily walks, kisses, smoochies, noogies, belly rubs, pats, cheeze treats and nuzzles. But today will be Jean and Al day.

When she gets her treats I'll remind her.

She's been asking for a laptop so she can keep in touch with Grams and Gramps but first we have to teach her not to slobber on the keyboard. In preparation, Xenas been showing her how to use a mouse: "See you find 'em over here, in the field and you grabs 'em and flings 'em around like this.."