Monday, September 28, 2020

Fixing the Muskoka chair

 Muskoka chairs are like the Canadian equivalent of the infamous American Adirondack chairs.

The biggest difference? Ours always had the back curved theirs were flat. 

So there you go, don't know who were first but ours are better :-)

Having fanned the flames on line, lets look at why it needed repairs.

The bottom board has rotted and broke.
need to make a new one.  Used old one to trace new one, 
remembering to make each ends longer, were rotted off.

The areas under each ends are rotted also.

This corner board is also rotting.
Was gonna make a patch but too far gone.

Lets carve a new bottom piece with a rip saw, Disston D8.

OK, good enough to move on to chiseling the rest.

After chisel, spokeshave and some sanding, 
check for fit.

Still haven't clued in that my ends are tapered, not square.

I even shoot my ends square on the shooting board...Doh!! :-)

Meanwhile started the surgery on the chair frame.
Excavated until I found solid wood.

Splitting pieces to fit

New patches pieces glued in oversized, to be trimmed later.

While that glue set, start ripping my new corner piece.

Some planing at my bench, followed by rough carving the shape.
Oooh that gouge is in need of sharpening :-)

Finished carving it with my chisel, mostly bevel down work.

Test fit, OK.

Transferring the screws holes.  

New and old side by side.
Took longer to stop and take pictures than to carved it.

Off to my sophisticated paint booth it went.

Meanwhile test fitting the new bottom part.

Carved new patches areas.

Primed spots

Found the left over paint from its original paint job in 2012, never been opened since.
  Its a bit soupy cause I thinned it down for the spray gun.

Mix and work fine.

Painted the primed spots on the chair and gave the two area were vertical end piece 
goes in, a good soaking with a liquid wood hardener.
Once dried, covered with yellow paint.

Which about a month after starting, bring us finally to this day, putting the pieces together.

New and old pieces.

I thought I taught of everything still managed to get wrong bits.
 Grrrr Square drive and Robertson don't play nice together. 

Yes, I still managed to forget the tapering ends on new bottom piece 
and compound angle on top piece is wrong side.
Both will be rectified with a few quick swipe of a block plane in the Spring.  
At which point both chairs would be washed and painted different colours.

Calling this one done and siting down for my drink.
Another off list.  Next...
Old pieces will be burned

Earlier today also completed earth works around front gate posts.

Done until Spring.
At which time I will paint gate black.  Just primer right now.

I am happy on how it turned out.

Still undecided about redoing the front rocks formation, 
had to removed one for post installation.

Another day of completed projects,
Done for the day.  After supper nite cap.

Bob, done for the day, going over his To do (sometime) list :-)

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Garden gate part 3

Since last time, gave my additional hardware a coat of paint on the show sides.   Had to go to the city, so since I was going that far, I stopped at a Home building supply house on my way and found a box of the elusive No 14 screws.  Only need about 20, but got a 100 pieces box. They have 2 left :-)

Meanwhile, Jean took our bracket to a Fabrication shop, to make us two new brackets.

Middleton Nova Millwrights Ltd , about Cdn $71 for both.
Most of it labour and taxes :-)  Very happy, I can finish my job.

Brackets did not show up until Mid Sep, they got painted and I drilled the last holes in my remaining old bracket. 

First with the wrong grey colour, including the top of the fence 
which I saw had some spot missed earlier.  Oups.
That was my first clue.  Humm don't think it will dry much lighter

Then found the correct one, it had a black cap and keep eluding me 
until I read the label...Grey...Duh!

 Then it was time for preparing the yard for Hurricane/Tropical storm Teddy.  I was worrying about my two corner post assemblies awaiting to be installed in the ground, but they were fine.  They are a tad on the heavy side and their corners brackets make them stout.  They survived and did not move

My posts temporarily sitting on rocks and bricks, unattached, just gravity.
Tremendous resistances in two directions, just have to aim them in the right direction :-)

Meanwhile... Tropical storm Teddy pranced around the Maritimes provinces.
He was all talk, not much action...Thankfully.
I was prepared, had my storm beers and chips.  

These last few days, it has been unseasonably warm, forecast 26 C today...
So got around to drive my post in the ground and attached the gates.

In a mostly pictorial story

First I gathered all the tools and supplies, I thought I would need...
Wrong, took a few more trips up/down the steps in the relentless sun...
Where is my Scotch, Ken? :-) 

I knew from previous experiments that these brackets are a very tight fit on the 4X4 post. 
 So shaved off the corners more, chamfered the bottom corners and plane flat the sides.

Then drive them all the way home, until they sat flat on wood.  
Check to make sure you are straight then bolt them down with a 1/2 in wrench.  
I purposely put the bolted flange on the inside of the legs, so less visible.

Took a break from the sun at this point.
Looking at them reminded me of a previous generation who had to storm the beaches in Normandy.
Kind looks like anti tank's defences...
 Ready to be installed, except..

Made a special jig to hold the post level in two directions
 while I pound on top of my 2x4 scrap of wood/jig.
It also keep Jean's fingers away from precision blow of the sledge hammer.
That was also a consideration :-)

Since I knew they would sit at different height on the ground, I dug a about a foot down to bury the brackets a bit down to make up for unevenness of ground.
Pounded into ground, level, back filled with a mixture of gravel and sand compacted around. 

Now to lock the legs in place, I am drilling an angle hole for my piece of rebar.
By toeing in my bar it will resist pulling out better.
It's a tight fit on purpose, pin is driven the whole length, very secured in wood part
Notice that part of my bracket flange is buried and leg is off the ground
Yes there is a hole in my brick.

One done, one to go, but first... supper

I am happy with my first post. Level all around and sturdy.

Layout my gates with their brackets on the ground with a piece of 4X4 on each side to measure my posts spacing dimensions required.  Used a wood paint mixing stick to set a gap between gates.
Came out at 34 inches.  Made another quick jig with spacers 34 in apart to make sure I am driving my other post exactly apart.  Long story short, I learned a few things I would do differently on my next corners posts installs (3 more to come).  Including a better jig :-)
First I was starting my post about an inch too inside, moved it making sure I was at 34 in apart, but did not noticed I move it back about that same inch...%$#@^  Not Coplanar anymore...

It all worked out in end, even with one post slightly back.  The biggest challenge was to make up for the unlevel surface across both gate post.  That is why the inside corner legs are not sitting on the ground at same height, but the top of each posts are level to each other.

Then there are the small (?) differences in hinges, and gate castings, which mean I had to set the first hinge wherever she wanted the gate height, put the top bracket in to locked it in, then adjust the other gate up/down to correct height of bottom bracket.  Did I mentioned those cast irons gates are heavy?? :-)

After supper, completed...almost, our installation

Both posts assemblies are solidly attached/pined.
Not going anywhere, no deflection from opening/closing gates. 

The closer end should be kicked out about an inch forward,
but too bad so sad, it stays.  They still line up and operate good.
Only my hairdresser will ever know... and you my readers :-) 

My view from my favorite spot for my nite cap.
There is a small bistro table and chairs where I sit. 

Come on in.

Done for the day.
Now, all I need is my Voltaren on my back and a stiff drink
in my hand to enjoy the view walking around :-)

Overall I am happy on how it turned out.  Learned I am not getting anymore patient as I aged...:-)
I wanted to finished this and a few other projects around the house before the wedding, so chalk this one as complete as it will get for now.
Today I will finish the earth work around and clean up the site.

Curious to see how it will fare in the Spring with the upcoming freeze/thaw cycle. 
I may end up using cement post in the future, but will see how it fare before next ones goes down.

Meanwhile my new parts for the Muskoka chair must be dry, 
time to return to that project and finished that one off.

Bob, one more coffee and I am getting to work.  Yes Dear :-)