We all (should) know that wood naturally has some internal stresses that on occasion cause the wood to warp in various ways. These stresses NORMALLY tend to surface during moisture changes or sometimes during removal of sections of a board or plank.
Well yesterday wood stress nearly made me cr@p myself.
So there I was, happily slabbing away at some beautiful Eucalyptus (see previous 2 posts). Relief was coursing through me as I neared the end of a cut knowing I could take a few minutes rest and take the pressure off my hands and knees. The end of a slabbing cut is always a little nerve wracking for me as the resistance to the forward pressure is suddenly removed and the hungry, flesh consuming saw chain exits the wood. In a split second I have to change my balance and release the chainsaw trigger. This Euc is seriously hard, so I have to push quite hard to get the Alaskan mill through it, and the pressure release is quite dramatic.
So the chain exited the wood and I started catching my balance when something next to my hip kind-of exploded. I heard a loud bang and felt a small kick against my hip. Well, with the chainsaw shooting out the end of the log, and my balance still only half caught I couldn’t take time to evaluate whet had happened. I regained my balance while stopping the machine, switched it off, and placed it on the ground in front of me.
I tried to identify the problem. I wasn’t in pain so I thought I was ok, the chainsaw had sounded ok before I switched it off, nothing had fallen out of the tree above me – What was it?
I stood up to get a better view point and there it was – the 50mm thick (2”) board had split along 2 thirds of its length.
There must have been HUGE stresses in the log to rip apart such hard wood as soon as the board separated from the log.
My shaking soon subsided, and I slabbed the rest of the sucker before heading home to a well earned rest.
-- I may be schizophrenic, but at least I have each other.