Gye Greene's Thoughts

Gye Greene's Thoughts (w/ apologies to The Smithereens and their similarly-titled album!)

Saturday, May 04, 2013

Ripping lumber by hand

As I think I've mentioned before, one of my de facto hobbies is apparently ripping logs into lumber by hand.  Sawing the log by hand isn't the aim -- it's just the way to get interesting slabs of wood.  The logs aren't large enough to pay a portable sawmill person to come over, but the logs are too large a diameter for anything short of an industrial-sized bandsaw.  So, I do it by hand.

The photo to the left shows my set-up -- although I've since replaced the wood-holding device with something beefier.

Notice the saw ("That's not a saw.  This is a saw.")  It's a one-person crosscut saw, which I've re-filed to be a rip saw.  Here's a size comparison with a "regular" rip saw -- which is itself a few inches longer than a "typical" handsaw.

 The "smaller" saw, by the way, is my favorite saw.  And that's probably a sign of woodworking geekery:  having a "favorite" saw.  ;)

I'm certain you want to see some YouTube footage of me sawing a log.  So, here's some of me sawing left-handed -- and one or me sawing right-handed.  I switch arms just to stave off the monotony:  with a sharp saw it's not particularly hard work -- but unless you're feeling "zen", it can get a little tedious.  (When you are feeling "zen", it's meditative.)

And again, it's not about the sawing:  it's about the wood that's generated.  Here's an example of "before":

And here's the "after":

Purty nice, eh?  Custom cut, and some sentimental value as well (comes from my brother-in-law's backyard).  IIRC, I rubbed some oil on it to make the grain stand out.

And, here's a closer look:

Dunno what I'll make from this:  maybe a jewelry box?  First thing, though, I need to store it away and let it dry out for a year or two, to stabilize.


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