Saving the past
In the late 1700s, somewhere in the forests of Indiana, an acorn fell from an oak tree.
Over the next 100yrs, it grew into a massive tree.  Sometime in the late 1800s, a man cut this
tree down and hewed it into a beam to build his barn.  Over the next 100yrs, it nurtured him
and his family and farm and who knows who else.  Sometime around 2005, the barn was torn
down.  The wood found it's way to some guys in Colo. that buy these old barns and repurpose
the wood for their business.  This and many other beams and misc wood were deemed unusable.

This wood came into my hands as firewood.  Over the course of 6wks,  I took a little over
5 cords of wood off their property.  As I was cutting this stuff up, I was just amazed at this
incredible OAK fire wood.  In Colo....oak firewood is unheard of.  Believe me, it is fantastic fire wood.

Once I got it home and had some time to actually look at what I had,  I was shocked. 
Pinned mortise and tenon joints, created w/hand tools.  Hand carved oak dowels.

 Some of this wood was so hard, I had to leave it.  I couldn't cut it
and it was too heavy to move by myself.  I have 4 chains for cutting firewood. 
It would take all four chains to cut a  truck load.  All had to be sharpened
in prep for the next haul.  This is how I got this wood.
I have hundreds of pieces of this wood.

As this man's adz stuck this wood, over and over, what were his thoughts? 
As the sweat of his brow fell on this wood, did he see his hope and dreams in this wood? 
Did he feel his comfort and security in this wood? 
If only this wood could talk.
 My goal is to try and save some of it.  I have already done that w/boxes like this kitty box and
this yen/yang box. 

I like them, but it does not show the real story of this wood.
What I really want to do is save the wood w/the hewing marks on it.  To me, this
is really touching the true past, the true story of this wood
he not busy being born,
Is busy dying.
--Bob Dylan
  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
I'm in ...................

The Revos apparently are designed to clamp railroad ties and pull together horrifically prepared joints
WaterlooMark 02/9/2020

 When I use the toilet it smells just like fresh brewed coffee!
fredp 02/13/2020

  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
Very cool. I like the wood but I love the idea of saving the story of the wood. I don't have any suggestions but I'm sure someone will. Great job and good luck
I no longer build museums but don't want to change my name. My new job is a lot less stressful. Life is much better.

  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
I've gotten beams from several old barns, it's a challenge to make firewood out of it, at least it stacks well.

I do have a very nice hand hewn black walnut beam stashed away.....someday it'll get repurposed.
It won't be into firewood either.

  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
I just ran into a few beams just like you are describing. When I resales them in have moisture content was around 22 so I put them back on the shelf. Hopefully later this summer I’ll be able to use them on a table project for the current owner of the same barn.
Fill your heart with compassion, seek the jewel in every soul, share a word of kindness, and remember; the people's what it's about.
Capt. Tony Tarracino

  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
Turn it, fill the cracks with turquoise.
  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
Very  Cool justdraftn.
There is no such thing as too much horsepower, free lunch or spare change ~ anonymous

87% of people say their mental health is good to excellent. The rest are sane enough to know they are lying. ~ anonymous
  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
Given the complexity of some of the joints you could probably just mount them on a good base and sell them as art. Even the ones taken partially apart or cut in half will reveal some beautiful workmanship. Just a thought.
Was living the good retired life on the Lake. Now just living retired.
  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
Do we have a "drool drool" smilie???

Color me jealous Laugh
"Truth is a highway leading to freedom"  --Kris Kristofferson

Wild Turkey
We may see the writing on the wall, but all we do is criticize the handwriting.
(joined 10/1999)
  Re: Saving the past by justdraftn (In the late 1700s, s...)
Didn't know this was going to be a build thread, so making some catch-up pics.
Solid pieces of wood look like this in their raw condition.

Working w/this wood is like nothing I have ever experienced.
It has absolutely no moisture content.  Depending on the piece, it has checking
and cracks that are very old.  All those cracks are full of dirt, unknown fibers,
dead, completely dried bugs and other things I have never been able to identify.
I have made a number of attempts to create a box w/the exposed hewing marks.
All have failed.  The most common problem is how brittle it is and it will break if you look at it wrong. 
With the advent of the roll top cell phone station, I took another look in the wood pile.
This box started from what was an ~6x8" beam, 16" long.  I planed the side that only had one
adz mark on it.  Once I had a good side, I cut it in half.  Glued it on the planed sides to make a
block just right for a cell phone box.....a little wide for what I have been doing...
but decided to let it ride.  You never know what's going to happen.
First thing is to cut the outside shape of the box.

Next is cut the sides off.  Did not have a flat side to start, so I used my raw wood
fence and eye balled it square.

And as soon as it was cut it broke on two of the checking cracks....hence, this pic.

I use epoxy and try to hide it.  In this case came out pretty good
Next thing to do is create the tambour.  I want it to be all one piece, so I slabbed off some
pieces off the cut off from the big block.

These are a 1/4" thick.  I very carefully figured how to get two pieces to make the tambour.
These had two big I had to epoxy them....other wise they would never have
held together.  I like the way it came out.  Still needs a lot of very delicate sanding and fitting.

he not busy being born,
Is busy dying.
--Bob Dylan

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