Sunday, 28 September 2014

Steam powered saw mill at Bentley Wood Fair

Check out this steam traction engine powering a saw mill!

I saw it at the Bentley Wood Fair, which is always worth a visit. Didn't take any pictures this year, as I've been so many times now, but you can view some older ones here.

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Thursday, 25 September 2014

Winching windblown trees

This week I carried on removing last winter's windblow. I'd already removed the easy trees, leaving these ones to be pulled out. I attached a sling to each one in turn, then hooked the winch cable into it:


At the other end was my Tirfor T516, attached to a tree with another sling:

Without too much effort, each tree was winched into a position where it could easily be cut up with the chainsaw:

A couple of them had an upturned root plate in the way, so I used this little trick I learned some years ago, propping a forked branch under the winch cable to lift the tree as well as pulling it backwards:

By the end of the day they were all out of the way:

There's still a few logs for me to clear up though...

Plenty to get on with next week, and it looks like the weather will hold!


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Sunday, 21 September 2014

Starting this season's coppicing

I started on this year's coppicing work last week, with the help of my Dad. We were working in the area where several trees blew down last Christmas - my plan is to finish clearing up the windblow and then coppice around the naturally created clearing up to the borders with a ride and wayleave. Here's what we were dealing with:


It was looking better already after several hours' work:


There's a few chunky logs in there, like this one:

I decided to see if it would split straight, so that I could make it into two benches later on... If you're wondering why I'm wearing my helmet in this photo, it's for eye protection, in case the steel wedge splinters, and also for ear protection as it's pretty loud!

The wedges didn't quite reach through the log, so I had to do a bit of work on the other side with an axe to finish it off:

And here it is - a nice, straight split! Looking forward to making benches some time in the next few months...

We got some other useful produce out of the work as well, such as these sweet chestnut poles, which a friend of mine may take for fencing work.

And of course a growing pile of firewood, seasoning for the 2016/17 winter...

I've got some awkward stuff to deal with next, I may well use the tirfor winch to pull some of these trees out of the pile to make them easier to get at...

Finally, Tracy picked an apple from one of our fruit trees, and it actually tasted very good!


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Friday, 19 September 2014

Huge lighting storm seen from Rye, East Sussex

Amazing lightning storm just went past Rye in the English Channel, brilliant view from our garden! Here's a video slideshow of the stills, do put it in full-screen and 1080p HD!

Here's one of the stills:

You can view the rest on my Flickr page.


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Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Logmatic 250 log splitter video review

A while ago we bought a Logmatic 250 log splitter, and I thought it was about time I made a review video for it, so here you go...

It's a neat tool, which allows you to precisely position the sharp end to split the log just where you want it. It's not too hard to lift the weight up to deliver the impact either. But it IS slower than using a splitting axe (or maul), and for that reason we're not going to be keeping it. I can see that for people who are unable to precisely use an axe, for whatever reason, would find it useful though.


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