Much of my outdoor time is now spent sawing logs. They arrive in metre lengths, and need to be sawn into three pieces in order to fit either in the burner, or the cooker.
My trusty Husqvarna does all the hard work, but there is a certain amount of human effort also involved.
I actually enjoy this daily task. It makes me get outdoors in all but the very worst weather, and it's good exercise. If I had push-button heating, I would soon risk becoming a couch-potato.
I do keep a reasonable amount of ready-cut logs in supply, but it's only for emergencies!
It's the one bit about winter that I actually relish.
I love my wood fire. Even when I was on my own I still kept it going. Luckily I had a log splitter for the larger logs. I would not like to have to give it up.ReplyDelete
There's nothing to compare with sitting in front of proper leaping flames.Delete
Ours come in half-metre lengths....ReplyDelete
but are too big for the chaudiere...
in diameter that is, not length....
so I need to split them...
We have just invested in a hydraulic splitter....
a wonderful "boys-toy"... I need 20 lengths of 10 to 15 cm section...
per burn.... to keep our underfloor working for two days.
A few of the logs are almost right... they go in as is...
but the vast majority are from 40 to 50cm diameter logs...
even when they arrive split in half, they are too big for efficient gasification.
And I split 'em, and split 'em...and if they're the 50cm ones... split 'em again!!
The merlin and hatchet still get their use, tho'...
there's plenty of wood that's easier, and more efficient, to do by hand.
So, like you, I haul timber from one end... the store... to the other... the boiler.
Split them there, stack them high, go and fetch more.... until the wall is filled.
They say that using wood heats you twice... I reckon four times moving and splitting...
and once for comfort from the underfloor...
still, for 500€ per winter... it is way cheaper than anything else...
and keeps me as fit as the potager does in the summer...
If anything, I'm fitter in Winter... it is when I do the tree work...
and the heavy potager digging.
The above picture is my Oak pile, I have another bigger pile of Chestnut. I think our annual wood bill is probably a bit less, but we only have the stove and the oven to feed. I agree about the potager!Delete
Our woodburner takes half metre lengths so Paul just has to cut them in half. Kat helped him cut them when she was out in the summer but the worst part is lugging them up the steps to our first floor living area. That's part of why we become British couch potatoes in winter!ReplyDelete
When our friend L was still living at her lovely chateau (Sermet Loubéjac) is was understood that all visitors took logs up the huge flight of stone steps to her rooms. She would never have managed by herself.Delete
Thank goodness our wood comes in the right length so no chopping. Hauling it from front to back yard is hard enough. Grandkids used to help but they're growing up now and have more important things to do.ReplyDelete
I see it as an essential winter occupation; a bit like swimming in summer.Delete
I have just spent three sessions over three days stacking away my latest load of logs. I now have more room for storage so decided to fill up the vacant space; should have enough now for the entire winter. I have a rule that each time I walk past the wood store into the house I pick up a log to take in. I have my mother's old chopper that I remember her buying 60 years ago and I chop my own kindling from anything I can get my hands on, We all chopped kindling as children as soon as we could handle a chopper. In my previous house I put in two woodburners, one heated the hot water and radiators as well although they never got more than luke warm. Collecting firewood, as well as buying it in, became a way of life. I had no other heating in that house.ReplyDelete
When I was a child, whenever we went for a walk, we ALWAYS had to bring home a piece of wood.Delete
Reminiscent of my own log-burning days, an open hearth with dog basket could take logs up to 2' in length, all collected from the shore as driftwood and hauled home to be chain-sawed into appropriate lengths.ReplyDelete
A job I also enjoyed.
I like the idea of collecting driftwood for the fire. I would have done it in Brighton, but we had no fire.Delete
We can't see the flames of our Rayburn unless we open the door to the firebox. We have radiators in the sitting room / music room, but I must admit that it would be nice to have a wood burning fire in there so I can watch the flames as I crochet and knit. Not worth the money, though, to have a chimney put in, not worth the hassle either, so for the deepest of winter months I shall stay satisfied with leaning up against the Rayburn when I need warming up!ReplyDelete
Turning your back on a Rayburn or Aga is lovely. You hang on to the bar, and stay as close as possible before you smell burning flesh. Happy memories!Delete
I can't see the flames in my Notul, giant Norwegian thing, in the house when I bought it but it doesn't half belt out the heat.Delete
You do keep fit Cro! Also Rachel. Wow!ReplyDelete
Greetings Maria x
It keeps me young-ish!Delete
Reminds me of childhood and keeps my feet on the ground Maria!Delete
I am that Couch Potato - apart from ALL the other jobs that have to be done for looking after the pair of us and the dog walking. We gave up lumber-ing and do The Switch on/off, @ 78 & 70 I think we deserve it.ReplyDelete
I expect that if we return to spend our winters in the UK again, I do will do the same. Actually we'd have no choice.Delete
We so miss having a wood burner.ReplyDelete
However I'll need heating in my workshop......
I nice old fashioned pot-bellied stove in a studio is heaven.Delete
I guess your shoulder is all better?ReplyDelete
Not entirely; it still aches a lot, and I'm having to be very careful. But since it went back into place it's been much better.Delete
I was going to ask the same thing as Jan B. (about the shoulder). We are fortunate in that wood gets delivered in pre cut and pre split, but we don't heat primarily with wood, so our heating costs are still very high (oil). -JennReplyDelete
We do have a few electric heaters, and an oil heater, but the real heat comes from the wood.Delete
We have a wood burner at our cottage at the lake. Starting the fire is the first thing we do when we get there. I wish i had a wood stove here in the city.ReplyDelete
It's lovely aroma too.Delete
Over the past few years we have had some big storms that have downed many trees. We have been able to supply my daughter with enough wood for her fireplace for a few winters. Thankfully, we don’t have to split them for her as she has younger men to do that for her.ReplyDelete
Keep moving, Cro. It is so important for the mind and body. Couch potatoes live short, boring lives.
That's my attitude too; keep active in both mind and body.Delete
Gosh, It will be a high of about 68 today with a low of 47. It is over cased with a small chance of drizzles tonight. There is much happiness at my home today. Summer has lasted to long and we are only starting fall.ReplyDelete
I wish we could say the same. We've had very little real winter for the past few years, but this year we're making-up for it!Delete
Nice looking cords of wood and saw-horse, there, Cro. I'd cut three cords and am already half way through the first. I buck my own trunks to 15 inches, but it's more the splitting that takes the effort. It looks as though you don't have to split once you've bucked, which is an advantage. Time to put the fire on...ReplyDelete
I have a bad arm at the moment. Yesterday I tried to split a particularly big log, but had to stop almost at once as I could feel the damage I was doing. I shall now choose all the medium sized logs first!Delete
As regards making myself go out in the cold weather. I feel just the same about my dog.ReplyDelete
I go out with Bok as soon as it's light every morning. It's a great discipline. I also love the peace and quiet of the early mornings.Delete
You smug bastard... (once again I am envious...)ReplyDelete
Thanks for sharing this blog its very informative and useful for use.ReplyDelete