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First bit of 2024


Well actually this story is ....


... is from the end of last year. On my travels to find timber I visited in south London the yard of a young man called Lorcan who I guess is primarily into sculpture but has a massive talent for producing art in clay, stone and of course wood.


I saw works in progress including a horse's head and some memorial trophies and asked him to create a bird table out of Yew and left the details to him. He is very likely to become successful aka expensive so now was the time to do a bit of a wood plus cash deal !

This is around 6 hours work with chainsaw and routers and unlike a lot of women and of course blokes looks even better close up than in the picture.

A young woman was in her kitchen ...


... a pan of water was simmering on the stove as she was making boiled eggs for breakfast.


He walked in ... their eyes met. " Make love to me here, now," she said.


They made love on the kitchen table. "Couldn't resist me, huh?" he said.


" The egg timer is broken," she replied.


The start of another year is a ...


... good time to big up the band of helpers which has grown from the occasional help of John the magistrate and Brian 20 years ago to a group of skilled geezers who either give their time free or excellent mate's rates.


Most get a mention in the blogs and the two in the pic below Tuesday Dave and Mike more than others as they are usually about every week come rain,wind or snow. To be honest when it's not perfect weather we're mostly sat in the hut drinking tea but we're there!


On this occasion the chaps are figuring out why the drive belt keeps coming off and making the necessary adjustments to cure it - saves a few quid on getting someone in!

A salesman knocks on little Benny’s front door...

... and the conversation goes:


Salesman: Can I see your dad?

Benny: No, he’s in the shower.

Salesman: What about your mum?

Benny: She’s in the shower too.

Salesman: Do you think they’ll be coming out soon?

Benny: No. My dad asked me for Vaseline but instead, I gave him super glue.


In the last edition ...


... I showed some round logs that Erwin told me were Chestnut and various other people told me were Oak. I did think I'd got it sussed as Erwin wisely said put some nails in it - Oak will go blue with ferrous ironmongery like nails whereas Chestnut doesn't.


So, as in the pic I rammed three different nails in and nothing blue emerged. I thought I now had my answer but a customer friend Alistair who is very knowledgeable put up a good argument for it being Oak with the medullary rays and growth rings but couldn't explain away the nail results.


So, when it's dry and on sale I shan't put Oak or Chestnut on it. When asked what it is I shall say it's nice which it is - that should cover it!

Another customer Andy ...


... had a line in play kitchens which seemed exactly what I wanted for our kids camp. It was entirely painless - I just said make what you like and he did, coming to fit in on a very wet winter's day.


The beauty of an arrangement like this apart from not having to think about it too much was I could mix cash with some wood for payment and because it was assembled on site I could add or alter anything I wanted.


The two worktops lift off easily enough so as the family are only here a few times a year I can store them dry in the camp inner keep and they should last indefinitely.

Walnut is what brings a lot of you ...


... off the tarmac drives of places like Surrey Timber and to visit me. It's not that others don't have it but I have one of the best selections, considerably cheaper as I have the connections to sniff them out.


The promising looking beauty below belongs to a farmer called Jon who has been looking at it out of his window all his life until a week ago when realising it looked different after a stormy night found it had fallen over. He knows Mark one of the farmers surrounding my woods, who put us together.


I booked Ant to take his new 3 foot bar and Huskie 390 ...


... to do a cut or two to determine level of rot and shake & the quality of the heartwood. Getting a cut to separate as close to the root as possible takes a bit of skill but luckily Ant has more than a bit and he did it perfectly. The plan is to return in the Spring and mill it on site.

Hopefully in the next edition will be images of some beautiful boards but whilst I'm optimisitc from the biopsy we'll all have to wait and see !

After the very wet autumn ...


... I had a feeling the valley from Hurstbourne Tarrant to Vernham Dean would flood and it did for the first time since 2014.

The spray from the vehicles ploughing through the flooded road froze on the hedgerows to produce a stunning display.


So with Spring about to appear - I hope ...


... it's time for the usual 'come on down' but if you don't, it doesn't matter as someone else will grab that lovely bit of wood you've always fancied using! Snooze you lose.


Not sure what's in the next edition due end of the summer other than some terrible jokes and probably a tale or two of timber that could be yours - for a modest donation to my wealth.