Sunday, April 19, 2015

Getting to know your hand saws

Sawing up the kerf? That's what Sue is doing here to adjust the ends of the squints of the scarf joint to get a tight full contact fit. To her right you can see the clamps holding the joint together for sawing. After she finishes sawing the kerf she will then hit the end of the timber with a mall driving the joint closed. Once both ends of the joint are tight it can be drilled and pinned together.

John got to "enjoy" a nice day of "old school" cabin building using the rip hand saw to saw the scarf joints in 10 of the bottom chord pieces for the roof trusses. Close to 20 feet of hand sawing!

These sawing skills will be put to the test in cutting the 22 tenons and lap joints that make up the roof trusses.

The ends of the lap joints at the peak will be trimmed off flush after assembly.

And here is the first finished truss. Nice! One down and ten to go.

The roof trusses will sit on the 24 foot long top plates here. The ends will be supported on posts coming up from the corners of each of the 6 foot porches on each end of the cabin. Work now continues on cutting the roof truss parts and notching the bottom chords into the top plates.  

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Squinted half lap joints anyone?

As the cabin approaches full height we will begin transitioning to the task of making the bottom chords for the rafter trusses. These will need to be 18 feet long to provide a 2 foot overhang to protect the log walls. Since Sue only had two 18 foot logs in her group of logs we will need to join two together to get the length we need. Not a problem.

For this joint I think a squinted half lap joint will do the job nicely. A bit tricky to layout and cut but I am sure Sue and John are up for the challenge as they have done very well the 1/2 dovetails for the walls. This first one was made as an example for them to see and put together with screws. We'll see if they want to go with pegs and really get the look of a timber framed truss.

While they were cutting the final wall logs I went to work laying out and rough cutting half of the eleven bottom chords we will need to cover the 24 foot length of the cabin roof (12 foot cabin with 6 foot porches on each end). Sue will be working on laying out the other 11 to match these. Then we'll saw a few by hand with the rip saw to appreciate how it was done years ago, before chainsaws!

Next, we will get down to the business of trimming and fitting the faces of the laps and then sawing up the squints for a tight fit. Again, so there is a real appreciation for that was done by the pioneers years ago. Should be a great experience and a a lot of work, but look what she will have when it's done. Priceless!