Glossary

If you don't find the word you are looking for, please email me right now while you are thinking about it and tell me what the word is.

Anchor Hook - (Neither an anchor nor a hook, but that's what I call it.) A loop of half-inch rebar attached near the end of a purlin. These were cheap and easy to install in the purlins before they went up and they have proved to be very useful for attaching tackle to ever since. A three foot piece of rebar was bent in the shape of a hairpin and painted. Then two holes were drilled in the purlin log so that the two prongs of the rebar could go through the log leaving a four-inch or so loop on the underside. The ends of the rebar were then clinched on the top side by bending them over with a sledge hammer. I put two anchor hooks in each end of each purlin. You can see the anchor hooks in this picture and in this one. I also put two anchor hooks in the foundation wall, one halfway up each corner. Of course these were configured a little differently than the ones in the purlins. They are embedded in the mortar and concrete inside the wall.

Bert and Ernie - These are the neighbors' two huge lovable dogs. You can see Bert and Ernie in these pictures.

Boom - The pole on the crane that sticks out. It can swing from side to side and move up and down from nearly horizontal to nearly vertical. In this picture you can see the boom as the pole running diagonally from upper left to lower center.

Cap log - The top log in a non-gable wall. The Cap log also happens to be a purlin.

CBA - (Crane Boom Abutment). The structure that keeps the butt of the crane boom in place and still allows it to swivel. I used a few different CBAs during the lifetime of my crane. You can see a CBA at the upper right of this picture of my brother John.

CB66 - (Column Base 6"x6") A steel fastener made by Simpson that attaches a wood column to a concrete base. It has a 6-inch square steel plate that rests on top of the concrete and the column rests on it; it has two flanges that stick up out of the concrete to attach to the wood; and a loop down below that gets embedded in the concrete. You can see a CB66 suspended in a form before the concrete is placed in this picture.

CB88 - (Column Base 8"x8") A steel fastener made by Simpson that attaches a wood column to a concrete base. It has an 8-inch square steel plate that rests on top of the concrete and the column rests on it; it has two flanges that stick up out of the concrete to attach to the wood; and a loop down below that gets embedded in the concrete.

Chinking - The method of filling the space between the logs in the walls. If round logs are used, both the inside and the outside of the wall is chinked. There are many materials that have been used for chinking, some modern, and some as ancient as moss and clay. I used the method taught by Skip of packing loose fiberglass in the inside, driving galvanized nails into the bottom log and sticking up into the crack, and then troweling brick mortar over the fiberglass and nails.

Choker - A loop of rope, chain, or cable placed around a log in order to pull or lift the log.

Cindy - The name I have given to my loppers. The full name is Cindy Loppers.

Column - A vertical load-bearing member of a structure. My columns are all logs.

Come-along - A small hand-operated winch. One of the top three tools I considered indispensable for this project. Here is a picture of a come-along rigged up to skid a log.

Fell - v.t. To cut down a standing tree. In my past experience, people who cut down trees for a living called themselves 'fallers' and they told me that they fall trees and they told me about trees they have falled. Their business was falling trees. But also in my experience, people who wrote about cutting down trees wrote "fell" instead. They talked about felling trees using felling axes, and so on. Since I actually have cut down some trees, I decided to use "fall" instead of "fell" which I did for many years. I knew that people who only write about the activity would probably say that I was wrong. OK. But recently, I learned that Robert Ferrel uses 'fell'. It was also pointed out to me by Doctor Dick that the dictionary makes it clear that 'fell' is correct. As a result, I have switched and will henceforth use 'fell'.

Gray Jay or Canadian Jay - (Perisoreus canadensis) A naturally tame wild bird of the northern forests and mountains. AKA Canada Jay, Camp Robber, or Whiskey Jack. Here is a picture of one.

Grid - A system suggested by Tom, my structural engineer, for identifying specific locations on my building site. The system uses letters from A to G running one direction, and numbers from 1 to 3 running perpendicular. So I talk about "the Grid B2 column" or "the Grid F purlin". See the Foundation Plan for the complete grid system.

Gwizard - ("Gwizard" is my contraction of "Log Wizard"). "Log Wizard" is the commercial name of a 3 1/4" planer attachment that is mounted on the end of the chainsaw bar. One of the top three tools I considered indispensable for this project. See this picture of the gwizard hanging from its sling

Gwizzing - (I also coined the verb "to gwiz"). The act of operating the gwizard so as to make a draw-knife-like finish on a log or a hand hewn adze finish on a plank. See this picture of me in the act of gwizzing a log.

Gwiz Station - The place where I do my gwizzing. The main requirement of the gwiz station is that it have some means of hanging a sling from high overhead. The gwizard then hangs from this sling during operation. Typically the sling was hung from the end of the crane boom, or more recently, from an anchor hook on a purlin.

Henry - My favorite crosscut saw. It is an old commemorative edition and is engraved with Henry Diston's signature.

Hinge - The part of a stump between the front notch and the back cut. It is also called the "holding wood". When felling a tree, a notch is cut in the front of the tree perpendicular to and on the side of the direction the tree is to fall. The back cut is a cut on the opposite side. The two cuts should be separated by an inch or two of wood which is called the hinge or holding wood. This actually acts as a hinge as the tree begins to fall. The hinge bends but stays intact long enough to cause the tree to begin falling in the correct direction. The hinge breaks once the trunk has fallen far enough.

Jack - My favorite rip saw. Jack, the rip saw, was given to me by a neighbor.

Larry Loop Effect - The name I gave an effect that I discovered myself, although I am sure it is well-known to anyone who has studied hydraulics. I named it after my dear departed friend, Larry Markegard. It is the effect of air in vertical loops of pipe or hose building up a surprising amount of pressure - in some cases enough to stop the flow altogether and effectively plug up the pipe or hose. I describe how I came to this discovery here.

Martin's Differential Hitch - This is a hitch invented by me (as far as I know) which allows a rope to be fastened to a rigid post so that the rope on both sides of the post can be tightened by tightening from one side only. A picture of the hitch can be seen on the insert labeled "I" on this drawing. Examples of using the hitch can be found here and here

Mast - The pole on the crane that sticks pretty much straight up. It usually doesn't move much from one position.

Mother Sow - (A contraction of "My other saw") A Stihl .031 saw that is very temperamental in spite of being in the saw shop a dozen times trying to get it to behave better. Mother Sow and I have sort of come to terms.

OSB - (Oriented Strand Board) A plywood substitute for sheathing. It's nearly as strong and a lot cheaper. You can see what it looks like in this picture.

Oscar - An electric 1/4 ton chain hoist that I inherited from Ellen's dad when he died. He had called the thing "Oscar" after his father-in-law, and I continued to use the same name. You can see Oscar in this picture as the yellow thing hanging from the boom just to the left of where the sheet attaches to it.

Pack Rat - (Neotoma cinerea) AKA Wood rat. A bushy-tailed rodent that looks sort of like a chinchilla. They are very good at finding ways into buildings and they are known for collecting shiny objects. You can see one in this picture. and some more here.

PR - The name -- actually the initials -- I call the pack rat that I hired as a security consultant. I pay him a wad of peanut butter each time he finds a new way to get into my building. I put his payment on the trigger mechanism of a trap. After he collects his payment, I take him outside and put him to work looking for a new hole. You can see PR coming into the building just after finding a new hole above the purlin.

PSL - (Purlin Support Log) A column that helps hold up a purlin.

Purlin - A beam that is parallel to the ridge and directly holds up the roof structure. The ridgepole is a special case of a purlin. Counting the ridgepole, there are seven purlins in my building. You can see all of them as the big horizontal logs at the top of this picture.

Rasputin - My name for a big wood rasp. A rasp is a very coarse file for use on wood.

Rebar - Steel "reinforcing bar" used to provide tensile strength by embedding it in concrete. Rebar has bumps or ridges on the outside so that it sticks better in the concrete. Pound for pound and dollar for dollar, rebar is probably the cheapest way there is to buy steel. That's the reason I made the pins that fasten the logs together out of rebar. The rough outside also helps the pins hold fast.

Ridgepole - The highest log in the building. It is a special purlin right at the very peak of the roof.

Rosie - The name I have given to a nice wild rose bush growing right in front of the front porch. Rosie gets in the way when I want to drive the truck up under the porch, but instead of destroying her, I take a rope and tie her back to get her out of the way of the truck. Tying up Rosie is now a routine part of parking the truck up there.

RPSL - (Ridgepole Support Log) A column that helps hold up the ridgepole.

Scribing - Drawing a line to be followed when cutting. The word "scribing" is not typically used when talking about drawing lines on straight lumber; that can be done simply with a straight-edge. Drawing cutting lines on curved or irregular surfaces, like a log, is a more complicated problem. Scribing is necessary in order to notch logs to mate with other logs, or to cut a flat surface on a log for use as a beam or purlin. You can see one example of a scribed log in this picture, and another one here.

Scruffy - The name I have given to the only gray jay who looks sufficiently different so that I can distinguish him (or her) from the many others who come around. Scruffy has had some obvious health or developmental problems that he has courageously overcome. I give him special attention. Here's a picture of Scruffy.

Sheet - A nautical term meaning a rope (not a nautical term) that is attached to the end of a boom so that you can keep it from swinging one way. You can see a sheet in this picture as the big rope connected to the tree in the foreground at the right.

Springbox - An enclosure required to cover a spring that is to be used as a domestic water supply. I made mine of concrete cast in place. Here's a picture of my springbox -- and Bill.

Winterize - Preparing the trailer plumbing for winter to avoid damage to the pipes from freezing. Most people blow the water out of the plumbing with compressed air. I winterize by pumping RV anti-freeze into the pipes.


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