Construction Journal Entry Week of 11/22/20

11/23-25/20 I went up to Camp Serendipity for 3 days: Monday through Wednesday.

This was a short week because of Thanksgiving. There was new snow at the higher elevations, so the drive over was beautiful. I arrived at noon and had a little trouble driving in to park. The driveway hadn't been plowed, there was another inch or so of new snow on top, and the old snow had turned to deep mush. Even with 4WD I had to back up and restart a couple of times. But I got parked anyway.

I brought my gear up to the cabin in two trips, hoisted the flag, built a fire in the stove, and started on my lunch. Right away, I had a problem I didn't expect. I tried to open a jar of pickled herring and I couldn't unscrew the lid. I am usually pretty good at opening tough jars and have never been unable to do so. But this one was the tightest jar lid I have ever encountered.

After going through my usual tricks, I resorted to heftier and heftier tools. Even big channel-lock pliers were no use. I even tried holding the jar in the vise, but since the jar was plastic, it just gave way as I tried to tighten down on it to hold it.

What finally worked was to clamp the handle of a big Stillson wrench in the vise so that the wrench jaws were sticking out horizontally. I set the jaws to fit the lid and then I was able to grip that squishy little jar with both hands and turn against the solid wrench-vise-workbench that didn't give. I was happy and proud to get that lid off, and I think it enhanced the flavor of the herring.

Just as I finished my lunch, Robert called with the sad news that Dennis had had a stroke and was in the hospital. After we hung up, I had my nap.

When I got up, I practiced on the piano and then called Earl to let him know about Dennis.

On Tuesday, after much thinking about alternatives, I decided on a final design for the loft shelving, at least the first component of it. I had a nice spare 16-foot 2x6 I had bought for use as the loft stair handrail before I decided to buy the nice, expensive, hickory one. I decided to cut the 2x6 into four 4-footers and use them as the vertical supports in the four corners of the shelving. I planned to make three shelves, each one being two of the varnished 2x10s which would make the shelves 18 inches deep, I would place one shelf on top at the 4-foot level, and space the other two between there and the floor with no shelf on the very bottom. That would give me shelves that are 16 inches high which should accommodate most of the boxes that I want to store there. And it would use six of the seven 2x10s that I had varnished.

To complete the design, I will screw horizontal 18" 2x4s to each pair of 2x6s to tie them together and to provide support for the shelves. After it's all screwed together, I'll decide whether I will need any cross-bracing or not and add whatever is needed.

After cutting the six 18-inch 2x4s I decided that the wood I had chosen was in good enough shape that I didn't need to plane any of it. It was ready for varnish the way it was after I had deburred the cut edges.

After lunch and a nap, the light rain had turned to snow, so it was pleasant to watch the snow gently falling as I varnished the ten wood parts out on the front porch.

On Wednesday morning, Dave called first thing and we had our usual delightful conversation. After breakfast, I spent some time practicing the piano, and then I packed up and left for home at 9:30 AM. It snowed most of the way over, but I had no problem getting home.

Go to Next Journal Entry
Previous Journal Entry

Index to all Journal Entries
Go To Home Page

©2020 Paul R. Martin, All rights reserved.