Visitors to my shop are often curious about where I purchase lumber. And their curiosity ratchets up a notch or two when I tell them that I often purchase logs, have the lumber cut to my specifications, and dry it myself in the old metal barn down the hill from my shop. Then the questions ensue: Do I have a kiln? How do I get it dry without a kiln? Why not just purchase dry lumber from a retailer?
Sawing and drying your own lumber may seem mystifying; however, it’s really not difficult. You really don’t need a kiln to dry lumber; most of the drying is done in a barn or shed, the remainder is done in a corner of the shop. And although there are lumber retailers that offer wide, matched boards, the price of wide matched sets reflects the quality of the log and the work involved in sawing, grading, stacking, and drying the lumber. You can save a lot of money by doing this work yourself. In fact, the savings are usually significant.
Valentine's Day Gifts (Pa. Country Mirrors)
With Valentine's Day approaching I thought I'd take a time-out from the corner cabinet I've been working on and build a few mirrors for the ladies in my life (I'm speaking, of course, about my wife and two teenage daughters).
In a time span of approximately one hundred years, from around 1730 to 1830, craftsmen working on Virginia's Eastern Shore created one of the most distinguished forms of 18th century furniture, the architectural corner cabinet.