Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Revolutionary War Maple Part II

This post will be image heavy filled with photos from our day(s) of logging at the cemetery! Because it was such a new and interesting experience, I want to be sure to share with you all the documentation I can get my hands on!

To the left, you can see Rob, Eoin, and me making the first cut into the maple log. We had to use a straight board on top of the log, supported with wedges, in order to make sure the Alaskan chainsaw mill had something level to rest on as we guided it through the log. We were cutting off the top portion of the log so we could try to get the biggest slabs possible from the middle. The top and bottom thirds would later be cut into quarters to come back with us, as well!
Jeff and I high-five in celebration of my first success with the Alaskan chainsaw mill. What a powerful machine! If my arms weren't already aching from unloading, sorting, and stacking the lumber load earlier last week, using this chainsaw did the trick. Although the machine is designed to make your life as easy as possible with the stabilizing bar and two motors to drive the blade, it was still a task to push/pull it through such a massive and heavy log. As I mentioned before, and you can see in the photo, we used a mallet to drive wedges every 8" or so into the cut so that the pressure of the freshly cut wood wouldn't weigh on the blade and damage it or prevent it from rotating.
Also, as I mentioned in the previous post, this tree is a part of our nations history by growing from a ground shared with Revolutionary War soldiers. We were all proud to work amongst the memories of the fallen soldiers. Although we kept our distance out of respect (and to avoid caving in any old pine coffins that are likely to be lacking much strength after almost 300 years), we snagged a photograph with one of the many flags and pendants that mark the headstones of said soldiers.

If I haven't discussed it before, this tree wasn't taken down for our use; it fell on its own from age and rot. And, I am happy to know it can extend it's role in history comfortably in someone's home represented proudly as a unique, beautiful piece of furniture.

The men went back for a second day of logging. Unfortunately, I had to fulfill my role as a teacher on Friday so I had to miss a second day of fun but, they were sure to document their adventures so I am pleased to share those photos with you. I notice a lack of Alaskan chainsaw mill on this second day so I am pretty pleased to know I chose the right day to go logging! Anyway, onwards to the photos of lumberjack men cutting some more cemetery maple to pieces:

Just think, just a few short years from now this beautiful curly maple will be dried and ready to use. The next time you notice a wooden creation in your presence, take a moment to think about how much work had to have happened before this object made it to you. This day of logging really gave me some insight into how much there is to appreciate about wooden pieces, especially those built with real care, thought, and effort. Until next time, ladies and gentlemen, I bid you a lovely Wednesday!

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