Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   uneasy relationship with a chainsaw
Monday, November 17 2008
It was a brisk day, the kind where, if one is working outside, one wants to do strenuous labor to keep warm. I was still waiting for the last of the mortar to set in my greenhouse before going crazy with the carpentry, so I turned my attention to a increasingly-pressing and long-neglected task: firewood collection, which always qualifies as strenuous work even when I'm using power tools. At some point in the late summer a large Red Oak sprout (half of a sprout duplex) had cracked off its stump and fallen, so I decided to lug my chainsaw out to it and cut it up. The fallen tree was several hundred feet down the Stick Trail, well within the range from which I'm willing to schlepp firewood using the primitive hauling methods available to me. My cutting method, on the other hand, is far from primitive. I use a Stihl Farm Boss. Unfortunately, it's a temperamental beast. Today the chainsaw kept dying on me and eventually it didn't have enough energy to move the chain even when it was running. I thought perhaps its air filter was jammed full of sawdust, but I couldn't get it clean enough out in the woods to get back to work. Happily, though, I'd already cut up most of the tree by the time this had happened. I've found that about thirty percent of the time when I take that chainsaw somewhere it refuses to work or only does a token amount. Combined with the fact that I'm still a little terrified of it, you can understand why I never look forward to a chainsawing date. I much prefer the lower-powered Remington electric chainsaw back at the house, which I use for cutting up any large pieces of wood I manage to retrieve intact (a fairly common way to retrieve them).

The location of the Red Oak I cut up today.

Back at the greenhouse construction site, the only task I could do was to pile rocks around the outside of the foundation on the north and west walls. I have air ducts penetrating the greenhouse walls allowing air to be blown through these rocks, which I will insulate and bury under several feet of soil. Hopefully they can serve as heat storage, allowing me to save hot air from sunny days to be used during long frigid nights.

For linking purposes this article's URL is:

previous | next