February 11th, 2007

Stram of Chainsaw-ness Weekend

This was the mens workshop this weekend. As usual, the season did not afford me the time to go play in the workshop, as I had a load of housework to tackle. Friday morning I cleaned out the house gutters during a light rain. It was about 200 lineal feet of totally congealed redwood duff made difficult to remove because of the G-D  gutter 'guards' that act more like a sieve: big stuff falls off but the fine stuff goes in to become a paste that blocks up everything. After having ripped out most of the metal screening, I cleared out the mess just in time for the massive downpour that happened Friday evening and all day Saturday. Saturday, I donned rain gear and in the pouring rain I walked the entire driveway and the back fire road. I cleaned out the storm drains, checked the culverts and then touched up the water bars. Unfortunately, a huge fir tree uprooted and fell along the head of the fire road blocking most of it.. On my way back home I also noticed something not quite right with the storage shed, so I hiked up the mountain to find a medium size redwood leaning against shed's roof. The upper overhang took some damage but the roof integrity was not compromised. Another much larger redwood had fallen parallel to and only one foot from the shed (thank the stars for good luck), but the side was covered with branches. I decided to deal with all this the next day.

Sunday was chainsaw workout day. I carefully cut down the redwood tree from the shed. The supper part lifted up and balanced of the shed'd roof, and I climbed up there to cut that in half. Both sections rolled off without causing further damage. The big fir took much longer to clean up, as it had a myriad of branches that needed to be cut and tossed into a pile. I managed to wedge the chainsaw's bar, having miscalculated when the major trunk would twist.  I had to take an axe to the 2 foot trunk to free the chain and bar and then finally cut off all branches and pick up all the detritus. In all it was about 6 hours manual labor.

Meanwhile, the lower gas oven developed a problem: the upper element no longer woorks. A quick inspection shows the igniter is intermittent, probably a frayed wire, but since the temps are too high in an oven, I cannot solder the wires, so I ordered a new element. Thankfully, the WEB based parts store sells these items that would otherwise be impossible to obtain - service shops refuse to sell appliance parts.
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