Snow and finish

Spot the bodgery.

snowy bodgeryWe’ve had about four inches of snow, which seems to be hanging around a bit.  It is not terribly cold, but this brings its own problems.  The snow was a bit soft yesterday and it started sticking to my clog soles.  The wooden, unsoled part in the middle welds to slightly damp snow, and then builds up, in the same way as how children roll large snow balls for snowmen.  Add a few shavings and pretty soon you’re a couple of inches taller, until one falls off and then your limping!

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I believe there is a dialect word for these clods of snow, but I’m blowed if I can find it.  Any ideas anyone?

We had the return of a little sun in the afternoon which was very welcome, it having been rather cloudy for many days.

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The last slab of the oak butt I milled attracted the attention of a cafe proprietor, so I’ve been working that up for a couple of food presentation boards with my usual knife-tooled finish.
SAMSUNG CSCIn the background you can see some progress on the green oak bench I’m working on.  It has a lower back than the last two.  I need to get the trailer down into the woods when the snow melts so I can level the legs in, the front two need taming a bit from their current wild splay.

Felling again today.  I have a new camera that takes pretty decent video – it looks really good on a big TV screen, but this extract is compressed for ease of downloading so quality is just ordinary.  Spot the inattention just before it finally goes down.  Tut, tut!  On this day that was the only tree to fall in one, all other three had to be hand winched down – I’m sparing you the endless video with a click, click, click sound track.

http://vimeo.com/58002252

Not wildly exciting.  Today (it took a little while to load up the video) I’ve been felling on the slopes above where the video was taken, rather more snow now, melting stuff.  Keeping a footing is rather important, and the escape route is vital.  I did a lot of dragging timber to the ride, and left some pieces long to fit on the Landy roof rack, I’m not taking the trailer in until the weather improves.  I got the Land Rover a little stuck last week and ended up winching a rock out of the way so I could get home.

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I leave the brash piles as shelter for wildlife.  Not that all wildlife is the forester’s friend:

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The top of this sycamore had been de-barked by squirrels, the upper one in a full ring and killed the lead growth.

 

 

Upgrades and mishtakes

WordPress

Sunrise reddens a frosty Yorkshire morning

Phew! I can certainly agree with the sentiments expressed by Peter Galbert in a recent post about learning from your mistakes.  I’ve just spent about 4 hours or more upgrading my WordPress blogging software and making a complete hash of it.  (Well some of the earlier attempts are timed at 14:30 yesterday and I finished off at about 7:15am this morning, did get a couple of hours sleep, mind.)

I suppose I knew already that people write instructions to make life easier for me, not just for fun.  I do read instructions, it’s sometimes surprising what you learn.  The instructions I read for this upgrade to a beta version of the software (well a bit more dangerous than that really it is described as “bleeding edge nightlies”.  I mean these guys were not hiding anything.  They also advised doing a backup first (done), and “do not install this on a live site unless you are adventurous”.  Well, sounded like a bit of a challenge really.  I was tempted by the improvements they were crowing about to the media handling, and I post quite a few pictures – have you noticed?

 

Ah well to cut a long story short I didn’t turn off the plugins, contrary to instructions. I think it may have been caused by making guacamole in mid upload, well it’s slow is FTP but still works, the old-timer, as old, if not older than The Internet itself! This failure to click about three buttons caused chaos and much FTP work uploading files, watching slow progress, deleting files, checking forum posts on the issues.  But finally this morning it was working again, even the plugins, the most important of which dams up the stream of rubbish comments from spammers.

Anyway, just to counter my computerish story, here are some seasonal woody photos:

 

Stock for customers.

 

This is an interesting home-made vice or clamp, I can’t decide which.  There are a couple of countersunk screw holes in the back jaw suggesting it has been mounted somewhere.  On the other hand there is no garter to pull the front jaw out when the screws are loosened.  I can’t find it in the excellent Salaman Dictionary of Tools, but I’m sure I’ve seen it somewhere – any suggestions?  My brother bought it for me in exchange for a promise to make him a mandrel for remoulding a couple of brace of 18th century pewter tankards he picked up for a song.

The tankards just fit in nicely with my current Land Rover entertainment from Librivox: Barnaby Rudge by Charles Dickens. The story features The Maypole Inn (based on a real coaching inn in Epping Forest) where I’m sure pots like these must have been drunk from.  Curiously they are assayed as pints but are not modern English pint-sized.  This harks back to before the 1824 Weights and Measures Act which standardised the Imperial Pint across the British Empire at 568 ml whereas formerly the English pint varied and I guess these tankard measures are equivalent to the United States liquid pint (473 ml), I’ll check once the squareness has been taken out of them and some of the bumps.

For info, the rounder plane is still in refinement, getting the blade tuned in is proving not easy!