What a week!

I had last week off work, burning off my annual leave. We didn’t do any shows this year, and dedicate a lot of energy to the modernisation of the house, so it just never happened, and now I have to take my leave as otherwise it is forfeit.

The idea was to get a few things done around the house and garden, and then make some really nice progress with various bits of turning and general wood working. In the end I got hardly any turning done.

I made myself a list of things to do during the week. We had a broken fence panel that needed replacing, my petrol chainsaw needs some TLC, I needed a new jigsaw, and I wanted to get all the bits required for a new, bigger, steady, so that I could long, hollow, unbalanced pieces. I also wanted to make some progress with a nice wooden lid for the cistern in our new bathroom, and with the wooden signature panel for my niece-in-law, who’s getting married next March.

Not so bad, you say. Just wait.

The jigsaw, various invoices to pay, and a few phone calls, these were all the easy things. Just ordering the wheels for the steady took several hours, because the guys from the website I had chosen, after getting some good advice, just kept on faffing around with their back order.

On Monday, I inspected the fence. I found that only the last 3 panels were actually in a decent condition, the rest were all rotten and just hanging in there for the next storm (or cat). So I decided to replace all the panels. The posts looked a little better, I thought, so I decided to only replace 3 of them. After lunch I went to Lawnswood Fencing, and ordered the pieces, for delivery on Thursday, and then went off to visit Exotic Hardwoods in Staffordshire. What a place! More on that later, in a separate post.

Tuesday morning was spent supporting the guys at work, and the afternoon had some good workshop time. Wednesday was also workshop time.

Thursday morning I started ripping out the fence panels, and the posts marked for replacement. That’s when I noticed that the other posts were actually in no better condition. So I went back to the fencing company and bought another 5 posts and caps. And then I spent the rest of the day fitting the new fence. Looks gorgeous, but by 6pm I was bushed.

Already on Thursday evening, I had the RCB tripping on me several times, but I decided to only look at that on Friday. Phoned the sparky Friday morning, but he was busy and could only give me some advice over the phone. I basically spent all Friday hunting down the problem and in the end I just gave up and decided to leave for the sparky on Monday, I still have 2 working circuits in the shop, so I could always make a plan!

Yeah well, best laid plans and all that. Friday night, or rather Saturday morning we had an almighty downpour at around 3am to 5am. I just recently installed a water butt outside the workshop (it was standing somewhere else in the garden, with no gutter connected to it). This water butt is about 120cm high and about 60cm diameter, so holds roughly 225 litres of water (that’s about 50 gallons in old money). This one downpour filled the entire butt to overflow! Unfortunately it seems it was also combined with a strong wind, and when I got into the workshop on Saturday morning (to fix the electrics), I had 15 litres of water on the floor in the paint/compressor room, most of it actually under the floating floor for the compressor and the two chip/dust extractors.

So I then spent a few hours cleaning up the mess, and then the entire weekend replacing the facia boards with new ones. Which is really fun, as all of them go right up underneath the tar paper, so essentially I cannot rip them off entirely, otherwise I’d have to recover the entire roof. I had to cut them off with the circular saw, lying on my belly (on the wet tar paper), negotiate all the rusty nails (the blade is now proper ruined) and then in a similar fashion had to fix the new ones, and finally caulk the lot. Now I need the caulk to set, and then I can paint it over next weekend.

So: it’s Sunday evening, almost 8pm, I am completely knackered, and got hardly anything done in the workshop. And tomorrow morning it’s back to the dayjob. What a week!

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