I take different routes on my daily commutes to see if any limbs or trees have come down. Today, taking a road I never take, I hit the jackpot – a full, large, old Jacaranda tree with fungus rot through its base fell over on its own this morning, on a windless, quake-free day, narrowly missing a pedestrian. I knocked on the door and a nice lady answered, holding back her dog. We talked for a half hour, but she had an endless stream of concerns, all of which I tried to answer: ...
This past Sunday I decided to saw a Y-shaped Ficus log in half and get some bowl blanks out of it. I couldn’t fit the 14” section under my band saw’s 12” vertical clearance, so I just cut the first half, up to the Y split. Then I spent about 20-30 minutes sawing through the Y with my 24” carpenter saw. Good workout! I could fit a 10-7/8” circle on each log in the Y area, which I wanted to try turning for the twists in grain and color. I had to...
This is from nearly a month ago. I’m behind on my adventures. Chucking something properly in a lathe takes a little bit of thought and prep work. I only had about an hour after work, but was in the mood to learn a bit more. In this test, I simply wanted to see if I could make a thin, dish-like object in a small chunk of Indian Laurel (Ficus microcarpa). I had recently acquired a ton of it, so I just pinched it between centers and had at it. The test dish I would turn was from a pi...
In early February, 2009, in rough seas 14 miles off the coast of Sussex, England, Russian cargo ship Sinegorsk lost its load of 1500 tonnes of sawn timber, which washed ashore on the beaches of Kent. The police issued warnings, but scavengers came out in force. Daily Mail has several great shots of people braving the icy surf and a high wall to claim the lumber, which is apparently still the rightful property of the original owner, according to law. Police were powerless to stop the lo...
I never posted it, but the day after I got those paperbark branches I went back to the same location to pick up the logs of the tree they were cutting down fully, so the building there could put up a security camera. I had stopped for the paperbark, and they asked if I wanted to come back for a whole tree the next day. Score! Here’s the tree as it stood between the cut-back paperbarks. I honestly never even looked at it, busy with paperbark at the time, so I was glad I had this one blur...
I tried to get in touch with the guy who put the logs out in Canoga Hills to see if there were any of the 5 I had left on my last/first trip remaining, and if it would be worth the 30 minute drive. He never got back to me, but I noticed he reposted on craigslist a few days later that he put 15 more logs out there. That night after work I headed up. I’d wanted to find metal brackets that turn 2×8 or 2×10 planks into ramps that lay on the tailgate, so I could dolly the logs r...
A bit over a week ago I found some logs outside a neighbor’s place down the street while on my way home from work on a Friday night. They were Ficus microcarpa (AKA Chinese banyan, AKA Indian Laurel, AKA curtain fig, AKA etc…). Almost a week later – a few days ago – I found another load of the same logs in the same spot on my way home for lunch. This morning while heading into work, I passed the same spot, and the biggest haul yet was sitting there. I was running a few...
Remember that haul last week of fig logs? I used the new dolly to move them around back: Here’s the load by the light of day: Exactly one week later, running home on my lunch break, I found ANOTHER PILE of them in the same spot, from the same tree likely. Of course, I had to back up, pull over, and load those in, too :) Pretty big! This rooty section had wood chunks that didn’t match. I think they’re Douglas fir, from a fence or garden somethi...
My bones haven’t finished knitting back together, and the gum tree chunks are still in the bed, but on the way back from a fast food run tonight, I saw a log pile on the grass in front of the sidewalk, right on my block! I backed up in front of the driveway there, and loaded one very large trunk piece, and a bunch of other large branch pieces in right on top of the eucalyptus. I have a feeling they were out all day, and people picked through the little stuff for firewood, leaving the la...
Here are some pics of the haul! This one shows a ton of Eucalyptus Longhorn Borer activity, just like the much tinier tree I found awhile ago: with raked lighting here: This log has something like quilting on two faces: Unfortunate checking going on here. I’ll have to see how deep it goes, and if it’s all the way through, I’ll have to learn a little something about filling and stabilizing. It would be a shame to have to turn all of these into ...
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