Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Final days and nights

This was supposed to be posted on wednesday. Luckily this website saved it for me. More on the winding down of the project later tonight!

Hi All!

This project is coming to a close. All of a sudden. The last day is happening as quickly as the whole six or seven weeks have gone by.
Today the crane comes back to help with the disassembly. He was there on Tuesd
but other than getting tempo
rarily stuck in the mud, he wasn't able to do much. Tuesday was the rainiest day we've had, with a steady soaking drizzle highlighted by significant downpours. Since the ceiling boards are kiln dried, we had to keep them covered and in the dry. So our temporary roof, which is way less attractive than the roof bents, had to stay on. The only thing for t
he crane to do was to lift a roof bent and dangle it symbolically in front of the frame for a soggy photo op.
We had visitors from the Museum of the History of Polish Jews, the future home of our frame. These three people were instrumental in their support for this project, so the raising was set to accommodate their busy schedule. The rain made for an improvised setting, but did little to dampen the spirit of all present. Even the big donor was feeling very humble in view of the building we've created.
The site took a beating as many feet churned grass into mud, all for the sake of cleaning up wood chips and still more wood chips. Not the most pleasant day for a last day on site for the last group of students, but they trooped through it, just as all have throughout the six weeks. All the timber framers were impressed.
We made up for the drag after work with a roaring fire in our gazebo down the hill, and a mad soccer game on the grass between the puddles. There was plenty of beer and vodka, plenty of stories and laughter. The taxis, that have done us a great service over the past weeks took most of the crowd into town for a followup in our favorite hangout in town. Club 'Pani K' was rocking yet again! By now the bar folk have figured out that the american builders don't really care much about weeknight vs weekend, and obliged with danceable music.
Yesterday the final boards went in for the ceiling, while outside pieces and parts started to get removed and stacked for transport. More site cleanup and then plenty of time for reflection.
Today we'll gather up the big pieces and our tools and tomorrow will be travel for most of the crew.
The project continues for the painters. This means a new crew of students, coming next week to start painting the first section of ceiling. This will continue throughout the summer and I'll try to find a blog to follow that progress as well.

Off to breakfast

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

the ceiling gets installed

Like any good builder the start of anything is at the bottom. The ceiling has four different levels and curves. The corner treatments add complexity and challenge. The small four board quarter round starts things off from the log walls. then there is the big dome curve for which you see the ribs. no boards yet.
Next there is another small quarter round, followed by the only convex curve which forms the cupola. This part pokes through the original framing of the roof, which causes major structural issues, but is compensated for by many extra timbers introduced to get the shape of the new ceiling. Only the engineers are concerned. They have much to learn from resurrected history.

Things are coming together

The final push! I can hardly believe, that we're coming up hard on the end of the project!
We seem to have shorted Jim by about two days for the completion of the interior ceiling. All the parts for the frame are just about done.
Here are the rafters. A simple joint that satisfies the never satisfied engineers, but is also so wonderfully simple that it can be easily explained to timber framers and students alike. And it is scribed and easily removed, a process that has to be repeated more often with all the pieces on this frame than is normal in timber framing. This necessitated an adjustment in approach and standard of finish from all of us.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

City of lions

The city

We started our tour at one of three cathedrals. Artem, our very knowledgeable guide gave us a thorough tour through the old center, opening doors to churches and chapels. The building with the three statues on the gable is the opera house.

The tower is on city hall which sits smack center of the old town and is surrounded by a square with many prominent houses lining it. The flag is blue and yellow.

There are little treasures to find everywhere. L'viv has been destroyed many times by fire, but in recent history the ravages of world wars have passed through and over the city quickly and without much damage.


This is a selection of pictures from the road to L'viv.

Rolling hills,

the bus swerving potholes and rolling as well

Little and big churches every quarter mile, it seems,

Mom and Dad, is that Holz shop truck a truck from Wuerselen? I seem to remember that it was a shop up on the Kaminsberg. We all know that German cars and trucks get a second life on the other side of the eastern border. I was nonetheless surprised to recognize one from home!


First the posts and girts, then the bracing then the topplates.
Now it is on to the outshot braces and tomorrow to the outshot rafters. Not to be confused by the gable rafters.
There are so many pieces in this frame that people had to get real creative with naming them.

More pictures tomorrow.


The rafter and Ridge joinery as it interfaces with the box frame.
And how to get the proper angle on the joints.