December 15th, 2017
In the age before heavy logging machinery, longleaf pine logs were skidded individually by horse. The destination? Nearby streams and rivers, where the heavy, incredibly tight grained logs would be rolled into the water and floated to the nearest sawmill. As a result, before the advent of early mechanized machinery, the majority of the longleaf logs harvested in the southern United States tended to be 4 miles or less from a water source that could be used to transport the logs. Heavy with it's natural sap, the "green" log in the picture above likely weighted in the ballpark of 5,000 lbs or more!
It's not uncommon for the reclaimed longleaf heartpine timbers that we handle in our shop here in Texas to weigh 1500 lbs or more. Tight growth rings, and the occassional interal sap pocket creates timber that is far denser, extremely stable and much heavier that modern harvested lumber. Even the toughest guys in the shop are thankful for the forklift when these big timbers find themselves in the shop.
January 19th, 2017
" Therefore, when we build, let us think that we build for ever. Let it not be for present delight, nor for present use alone; let it be such work as our descendants will thank us for, and let us think, as we lay stone on stone, that a time is to come when those stones will be held sacred because our hands have touched them, and that men will say as they look upon the labour and wrought substance of them, " See! this our fathers did for us.” - J Ruskin