Monday, March 15, 2010

More timbering and foraging

With the spring rains holding off, I've taken advantage of the dry fields and hills to pick up timbers I had already cut, and stack them into another staging area, as well as to get some timbers from last year that never made it to the original pre-staging area. On top of these timbers, I harvested another 30 foot hard wood timber which is always exciting to have fall.. Still I successfully got it to the primary staging area safe and sound. The gaining of this timber eliminates the need for any posts in the middle of any room in the house. The design method I am using for the build calls for posts every 8 feet, but the timbers used in his examples are all softwoods, which are notorious for their less than stellar performance as beams given their lower sheer strength.

In my own build I am using all hardwoods for beams and girders, and I am increasing the girth from his suggestions (10") to in some cases a full 24"! Even at 18" which is about as small as these girders are on the narrow end, they can carry far more weight than the suggested 10" pine or cedar timbers.

I am using cedars however, as their compression strength is wonderful, as is their resistance to rot and insects. So all of the posts are cedar timbers, some of these also approaching 2 feet in diameter.

So with that in mind it is easy to see why another massive 30 foot hard wood timber would be cause for celebration!

Along with the tedious gathering up of timbers and staging them, I have had a little chance for some more basic foraging and some gleaning as well. I foraged some wild garlic (which I suspect is some other plant actually, but it tastes more like garlic than anything else..) and hen bit, though not enough of the latter yet for a meal. Then this afternoon after I finished feeding cattle and moving timbers, I checked on the garden where there were a few pitiful looking turnips left over.. which turned into a delightful dish of turnips and greens, with butter and some cajun seasoning..

Another day or so and I will have picked up all of the timbers I can for the time being.. which means back to waiting for the backhoe to get out here to finish up the excavation so the build can finally begin in earnest.

*** I have finally found the cable which connects the camera to the computer so pictures will be forthcoming, though Windoze does not recognize the device, I am sure that linux will..***

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