greenhouse design

I enjoy old-school mechanical drawing, drafting and design … with paper, pencil, T-square, triangles and such. Having a simple drawing board, perhaps even a genuine drafting desk has been on my short list every time I end up with a home that has space for it. My new studio may well be the place this happens, but not until we are fully moved in and settled. Meanwhile, I have a lot of projects that really require some planning and drawing… Read moregreenhouse design

splitting station

I am working over the now enclosed breezeway. It is nearly completely sealed from the weather and has significant insulation. I expect it to make a pleasant work environment when I get done working on it. Akin to spending 100 hours setting up a computer to save yourself 5 hours of bookkeeping. Since our cabin is rather small, our woodstove is necessarily small as well. Firewood requires another split or two before it can come in to heat the house…. Read moresplitting station

box fan box

We have been living with a really ugly shroud for our box fan. It started life as a temporary housing for my box fan to vent the smoke from my home coffee roasting out the shop window. I hinged it to the ceiling, then swung it out of the way for the 99% of the time it was not in use. In that application, being ugly just did not inspire change. It made its way here from that house, serving… Read morebox fan box


I just finished expanding last year’s winter heat storage unit and improving on it a bit. With 20-bucks-worth of new lumber, I was able to scrounge the rest of the needed materials. Good thing, because that left me cash to pay someone else to cut and split a cord of wood for us. A neighbor charges $120 for a fat cord of dry lodgepole pine delivered. It is hard to beat a deal like that. Lets me focus on my… Read morewoodshed

handrail from scraps

I have had a number of requests for a handrail. Silly. It is only three steps down. Even an old guy can hop up or down three steps. Still, some womenfolk think they need a handrail for those three steps. Okay. Okay. It is on my list. Just a long ways down in a very big list of things I wanna/gotta do. That is to say, “unlikely any time in the near future”. Well, that was before Mama arrived a… Read morehandrail from scraps

radio, reloading bench

I am more than a little surprised today to discover I never shared my finished product here. Ta Da! One of the endearing bits of me as far as the Missus is concerned is my role as “Shelf-Meister”. I have squeezed just about as much shelf space into this (and prior) homes as imaginable. Of course they are STRONG, but also functional and suit the spaces handsomely for us. The white shelves to the left were TEMPORARY with those metal… Read moreradio, reloading bench

trombone hangers

The best advice serious professional trombone players give regarding storing your horns goes something like this: I have never seen a trombone damaged by falling from inside its case. In other words, the finest trombone stands on the market today are less safe than putting your horn away whenever you are not holding it. But, I play them a lot less if I have to open the case, put them together, then reverse the process when I’m done tootin’ around…. Read moretrombone hangers

more re-purposed hardwood floor fun

I continue to enjoy working with the pickup truck full of oak flooring I salvaged out of Missoula for a hundred bucks or so (as I vaguely remember). I was lucky as all-get-out that I tripped over a great deal on a plastic imitation-snap-together hardwood flooring closeout before I put two months of tedious, dirty labor into making my studio floor out of the real stuff. I fabricated a metal bar into a fixture to scrape the tongues and grooves… Read moremore re-purposed hardwood floor fun

storm door

We have been dragging this “brand new” storm door around and storing it ever since I didn’t get around to installing it in our Grangeville home… That’s three moves and seven years ago. I tried selling it a couple of times, but there is no market for unused storm doors … at least not one that I found. Our old new door found a real home this week. One we both like a lot. It ought to keep the storms… Read morestorm door

porch project

Last winter the walkway from front door to car door was a river of ice. I have done several things to change that for this winter… retaining walls, ditch work, driveway re-grading, the way I shovel snow… The biggest change is still ahead. I want to put 3-4 inches of 3/4″ gravel on top of the old beat up gravel of the pathway, raising it well above the surrounding area. Thus the water and ice will know for darn sure… Read moreporch project

chimney stabalizer

Our new woodstove was not drawing well enough. It was hard to start and the flow inadequate to keep the chimney clean. I had to extend it. That created its own problem as the chimney was now just a stiff wind from being blown down. The ideal stabilizer setup was not available, so I had to improvise. Setting the two struts at 90-degrees from each other would be perfect. But punching holes in roofs always adds risk and maintenance issues…. Read morechimney stabalizer