Day four turned out to be a warm day after another night in the 30s. After a hot breakfast prepared by our hosts, who arose at 3:30 a.m. to have the food prepared for a 6:30 breakfast (moving back to standard time cut an hour of daylight, hence the earlier start), the crew got the blood flowing and warmed up. It started out as another glorious, sunny day in a very pretty part of the country, though it became overcast in the afternoon. That cloud cover actually worked well to moderate the heat and glare, and later kept the warmth in after dark, making for a warmer, more hospitable evening and night at the campground.
Rain is in the forecast for later on Thursday, so the crew has continued to work toward a Thursday crane raising day. That's a day ahead of schedule, but the crew has performed the work much more quickly than anticipated, setting us up to succeed. We don't think the crane can get through the hilly terrain up to the site if the roads become a mess again, so these are propitious developments for us. After the rough start last week, I think perhaps the gods have smiled upon us....
We are creating lots of sawdust as we motor on through the work, and a community member has been improving the site conditions by smoothing the ruts in the surface.
Rene Allen, who carved for us on the last three workshop frames in Clearwater, Lake Roesiger, and Sunrise Mill, is leading a carving session with the Maskoke. The words they are carving make up the village name: Ekvn-Yefolecv, which has a double meaning - "returning to the earth" and "returning to our homelands." They are also carving the community logo, a complicated carving and burning drawing on this tulip poplar timber.
Tawna and Ahvlak working on the letters to spell Ekvn-Yefolecv.
Marcus and Ramsey Billiot Sprague join in as well (below, left). Tawna and Ahvlak carving the letters (right). Co-directors Marcus and Tawna contribute their talents (bottom).
Marcus, Evy, and Ramsey. Marcus cut many of the graceful "wind" lines while Evy and Ramsey worked on lettering.
The Maskoke told me they generally would not work this closely together using tools with such sharp edges, but Rene had explained that if they used much force in the carving, they were probably working too hard. Per Rene, the tulip poplar has a hardness (not very) and a grain that made carving a delight.
Rene guiding Nick and Ramsey on the carvings.
Bill Sturm, who (forgive me) makes me think of happy people like Hobbits (don't you think he would have been great in those Peter Jackson films?), might be the funniest timber framer I have ever met. He led a team of first-timers and experienced timber framers in cutting the eight central log posts which will stand like trees at the inner ring of the roundhouse. Here he is signaling the tele in material handling operated by Steve Kuplack.
Al Wallace spending a restorative day fabricating braces for the walls, below.
George Morrison brought his considerable skills and experience as a timber framer to this workshop and is emblematic of the Guild community's commitment to this workshop. Here he's chopping out the mortise for the captured nut of the hip rafter holddown.
Peter Bull and Greg King complete mortises and housings in the hip rafters.
Novice instructor (but not novice timber framer!) Joe Davino brings his skill, quick wit, positive attitude, and good humor to the workshop. Now, if only he could find those safety glasses and earplugs....
Don Hildebrand, from Ontario, sets up a level line for post bottom layout.
Steven Jackyra of ACBA performs housing and mortise layout on the central ring posts.
Bill checking on long-time participant and workshop icon Allan Peoples' brace tenon and housing mortises in the central posts. Allan is another one of those folks who always brings good cheer and strong work effort to the party. Allan gladly helps out in any way he can, never complaining. And, if you are interested in groaner riddles and dad jokes, you can rely on Allan to share a few with you. I look forward to them every time.
Mike Yaker has a new pair of shades (ones with side protection, good move!) for this sunny day, and is just as focused as ever. He claims to have slowed down over these many years, but he still moves with purpose and alacrity as far as I can see.
Here, instructor Evan Taubes, whose easy-going and good-humored demeanor belies a keen timber framing mind for such a young person, is working with Dominic Hosack, a carpenter and developing timber framer. Dominic worked with Blain Snipstal and the Johnson brothers, Randy and Farris, to build the kitchen/dining hall/language immersion building, which is behind the roundhouse.
Dominic employs the 16" Makita like he was born to it.
Connor Wilson, from Nova Scotia and on his third workshop in just over a year, has joined in to work on volunteer logistics with Cassandra all week. His help has been a boon to all of the participants. He also gets time in timber framing and in these two photos is working on the common rafters.
Julie Hildebrand, from Perth, Ontario, lays out common rafters with instructor Kyle Murphy performing the checking function. Kyle has been blessed with a very experienced crew, so he's joined in the fabrication to support the fast-paced schedule.
Ahvlak Harjo, who was one of the community folks who skidded and debarked the logs for the sawyer, is like a sponge soaking up all he can this week.
Drew Scheneman has been working on common rafters, hips, jacks, and various other members throughout the week.
Instructor Sal Wilson discusses layout with Michael Aronoff (center) and Tom Harjo, who is rapidly becoming a committed workshop participant and Guild member. Tom is taking full advantage of all the learning and experience he can glean this week and is thrilled to do so - it will serve him well in the future.
Kurt Rosenberger working on the jack rafters.
Below, one of our sponsors, Craig Pariso of P&C Transport, cutting jacks. He also kindly provided two kegs of beer, a yummy IPA and a tasty blond ale.
Adam has played a key role in helping to complete the center ring posts. It's been great to have him join us here.
Peter Bull advising Joe on his drilling for the pegs.
Big confab among Jordan (right), Bill, and Mark, with Mike Yaker in the background observing. Lots of brainpower here!
Andrew Plumber, of ACBA, reports he has had a great week so far, learned "a ton" of things about timber framing, enjoyed all the hewing he has done, and has now decided he will pursue timber framing at ACBA as a result of participating. This is wonderful to hear - it is one of the reasons we do this. Mike Yaker demonstrates technique for Andrew.
Gene Gift, Neel Reeder, and Jamie Ehlers enjoy a little humor, undoubtedly inspired by Chris Newman from Vicksburg (who rarely misses an opportunity to provide comic relief), as they fit up a wall assembly.
Great sign! Jon Sargent starting to layout the completed posts in preparation for tomorrow's raising commencement.
George and Dominic enjoying themselves as they work. Because everyone is a volunteer, there's always time made for making those connections one will never forget - these are the indelible memories we take home with us.
Joe Nadar, a graduate of ACBA who is starting up a timber frame company, completes the layout on the scribed dragon ties for the upper plates.
Cutting the scribed braces.
Experienced timber framer Meghan Williamson uses an electric chainsaw for a deep, steep cut.
And, laying out the double tenons for the dragon ties, which will prove labor-intensive.
Tom Harjo near the end of the day, finishing the birdsmouth on one of the jacks.