Felin Uchaf is amazing

This place is so cool. I am beyond glad I came here.

the van in situ

On the way in, I coincided with the arrival of one of the volunteers on the train, so she was able to direct me to the place and show me around. I didn’t manage to take pictures today of the roundhouses and other buildings, because I got so caught up in the work I was doing.

the frame

This is the frame Alice built, soon to be roofed and walled. Breathtaking. Awe inspiring. I so very want one of these. I am courting Alice to come and work for me.

tracing the templates

Dafydd, the site manager, showed me and Eleri how to trace the templates for the knee joints for the farmhouse extension that’s being built next.

more tracing templates

Eleri and I then got on with finding appropriate board and fitting as many tracings on them as we could, following the grain and not including too much sap wood. I am learning so much.

the wood yard

The wood yard, where the thirty-odd trees that have been cut up are stored.

first go at the circular saw

After lunch, Jax and I learned to saw the tenon ends of the knee joints ready for chiselling out. Jax was new to the circular saw, but took to it very well.

circular saw

Using a circular saw is fun. Using any power tool is fun. That I think that is probably a good sign for me as a builder of houses…

the mobile band saw

Dafydd used the mobile band saw, because that takes a bit of skill. I desperately want one of these, Elmo would love it, but apparently they cost upwards of £3000.

the piece comes out

It was so quick and easy to cut the curves of the braces. If I can’t find a second-hand one to buy, I’ll have to try to rent one, I think.

marking the depth of the tenon

This depth-gauge-scratchy-tool marked the depth of the tenon, and therefore how much we needed to take off the other side.

setting the saw depth

The circular saw was set to the appropriate depth each time because there’s a fair amount of variation in the thickness of the pieces. The tenon needs to be quite an exact size, so you cut off whatever’s left after that.

making the cuts

The next step was to make a series of cuts, to enable the chiseling out of the excess.

hauling huge timbers

After an afternoon of good progress, we collected and stacked the rest of the pieces we’d traced out and tarped them. Tomorrow’s forecast is not as nice as today’s, but hopefully we’ll be able to make more progress on it. I’m not sure what the wet weather plan is, but I hope it’s chiseling out the ones we did today, so that I can have done one beginning to end.

This is fabulous. I have got to come back here and bring Elmo.

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