Welcome to my blog, where a 30-something couple from the UK renovate and extend an old cottage, build some outbuildings, raise some hens and grow firewood trees and vegetables on our Acre in Hampshire. It's a bit like a smallholding but without too many animals, so we call it a homestead - living within our means, relying on ourselves and having a wonderful life!


Saturday, 20 December 2014

Oak Framing - Soleplates

Since the last update a fortnight ago, I have made more sawdust than in the rest of my life put together. Quite literally wheelie-bins full of the stuff.

Remember that big pile of oak that was due to be soleplates?

Mostly done!

The weather has been really good for December - I've only lost a day or two this month to rain. The original plan was to spend most of the winter in the workshop and emerge in the spring to do all this work, but the looming deadline of our late June wedding has encouraged me to press on.

The oak is a wonderful material to work with - I'm learning loads and have only made one small 25mm error which I should be able to rectify (or hide). I realise now how much I learned on the Oak Framing Course I attended in the late spring - there is no way I would have attempted this project otherwise...

There are some fairly complex joints (for an amateur anyway!) like this corner tie joint.

There will be an upright post sitting in a mortice on top of this joint, with an oak peg holding the whole lot together.

I bought a huge handheld planer, which cleans the saw marks perfectly and skims away any slight stains which the oak has picked up. It really shows the beauty of the wood as well.

I've done five complete bridle scarf joints as well - these took a lot of head scratching and double checking before I found the courage to cut the first one. Now I have some live models I can rattle them out in about an hour. I think I'm being a bit fussy about the finish and standard of the joints - but it is really satisfying when they close up tightly.

This is yet to be planed - which will clear up all the marks, stains and pencil lines, as well as improving the fit of the joint. These will also be draw pegged together. 

There is a big pile of braces which have been marked out with shoulders cut - but I'm saving these for when the winter weather inevitably arrives.

1 comment:

  1. Good tidy joints! It can be good fun if you've not got to lift it too much!