Saturday, May 30, 2009

Milling: The Final Report

The posts and some of the beams of our cabin were milled using a chainsaw mill which we set up on the island. Approximately 20 trees were milled altogether.

Local The logs were located just down the hill from us, given to us by a neighbour who'd cut them from their lot
Low-cost We did pay $5,000 for the mill and had to buy a new chain-saw but we still feel that for the quality of wood we obtained, we would have had to pay more if we'd purchased it.
Low-impact ( The logs were re-claimed from fallen trees. Our mill was able to cut pieces a larger mill might not have been able to.
Loveable/liveable: The beams are beautiful!
Long-lasting: We were able to use thicker than essential pieces of wood for most of posts and beams.
Logical: Logical is probably the trickiest one to assess. The milling took much longer than anticipated, and was fairly unpleasant work. Kevin had chainsaw hand (a numbness caused by the vibration of the saw) as well as allergic reactions to the sawdust. That said, there is something amazing and right-feeling about building the house from trees grown right on the island. Does that make it logical? Hmmm.

Monday, May 25, 2009

The Milling is DONE

Keivn and Mike Loading The Final Beam...
And boy was it a big one. And with that beam, the days of milling were finally done. Two years after we started, the logs so generously given to us by our neighbours, were finally milled. All that was left was to move the mill.

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Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Big Build(s) 2009

    Our 7L project is being built with lots and lots of help from our friends. If you'd like to come and leave your mark, here's some info Our list of goals for this year's big build varies wildly depending on the day. But like, probably some floors. And some walls. And maybe a roof? The logistics You can only get there by boat, it's a lovely 20 minute ride from Horseshoe Bay. We provide the boat (and the lifejackets!)
  • Starting in April and May we will be making day trips and as it gets warmer the whole weekend.
  • We will be there full-time for the last two weeks in August.
  • Promise to swing a hammer and we'll cover your transportation costs.
  • The amenities
    • Flush toilet in "toilet shack"
    • Large 2-6 person tent on platform in main camp area
    • Secluded 2-6 person tent on platform with water view
    • Roofed room (in power tower) with water view
    • Solar outdoor shower with spectacular view and variable temperatures
    • Kitchen cook tent with running (cold) water, BBQ and stove
    • Screened in eating area
    • Lots of tenting sites
    • Sunscreen aplenty
    The perks
    • The company of people who understand the importance of R & R
    • Yummy food for vegetarians and omnivores
    • Cocktail hour
    • Granola bars & other snacks
    • Hammock
    • Ocean swimming
    • Wildlife viewing
    • An excellent workout
    • A chance to use power tools
    The to-do list
    • Move smaller rocks off foundation area
    • Power wash rocks for foundation
    • Begin building power tower walls
    • Treat all lumber with oil-based natural wood protection
    • Lay-down platform
    • erect and sheath all the walls of the guest cabin
    • install roof rafters and sheating in the guest cabin
    • Begin building guest cabin
    • Finish installing windows on power tower
    • Siding for power tower
    • Inside details of power tower
    • Cook / Clean-up
    • Build trails
    • Replant displaced trees
    • Build a swing
    • Be a gopher (go-fer tools, water, sunscreen etc)
    • General site maintenance (tents, tarps etc)
    • Set up a croquet set
    • Set up a Frisbee golf course?Dream about future zipline
    • Glass-cutting/recycling project
    • Build things with wood
    • build the decks around the cabin
    • complete the milling of the logs
    • erect and sheath all the walls of the main cabin
    • install roof rafters and sheating in the main cabin
    • install at least some of the windows and doors

Rainbow ride back from Halkett

Spring 09
Big big thanks to Mike who's been a super trooper despite not having received his official Halkett Bay Building Brigade t-shirt yet. Also thanks go to this past weekend's crew of Maddy and Carmen. Maddy worked on a mini-garden (all that land and no food growing was driving her crazy!) and Carmen who scrubbed and painted when she wasn't trying to get pictures of the deer.

a blog about 1 cabin and 7 ideas

local / logical / lots of uses / long lasting / low impact / low cost /loveable

Big thanks to everyone!

Help Gambier Island

Gambier Island is facing numerous environmental threats at the moment when we are seeing a rebirth of wildlife. Wolves, whales, owls and more, all around us we see evidence of an eco-system on the rebound. But that resurgence is threatened by plans to allow clear-cutting, develop LNG plants, sink warships.