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Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: toivo] #23141 03/27/10 06:47 AM
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Ken Hume Offline
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Hi Toivo,

Do you mean those knitted gloves that fit either hand and are coated with squiggles of a glue / rubbery like substance ? If yes I agree with you and have recently taken to using those to swing the axe as well.

REgards

Ken Hume


Looking back to see the way ahead !
Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: Ken Hume] #23147 03/28/10 01:36 AM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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Hi everyone tonight:

Hewing timbers as accurately as possible is quite a challenge, but to also execute the work as it progresses using period tools and methods is another thing entirely.

It always amazed me that the final product usually reflected all those hours of hard work, and then the fun began when the freshly hewn timber was moved to the framing area, and the pressure mounted because each move had to be very accurate because an inaccurate measurement could completely ruin a 30 foot 12 by 12 with many hours of work, especially if it was accidently cut even an inch too short, and it being a connecting girt in one of the frameworks.

We did use measuring poles for all layouts of varying lengths, multiples of which cold be used to come up with any measurement, we found this way of measurement superior in everyway to modern methods to reconstruct old frames.

It was quite interesting because real accurate overall measurements did not really matter, what really mattered was that all the measurements were the same, (if you all are following along on this line of thought)

these measuring poles could vary from accurate measurements by say fractions of an inch due to shrinkage,humidity, or wear, but generally speaking the emerging structure would be quite accurate, and fall in line with some of the odd measurements that the old structures exhibited

HOPE YOU ENJOY

NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #23150 03/28/10 12:17 PM
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TIMBEAL Offline
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That same concept was use in the Geometric work shop with Laurie Smith. Trammel points, or large dividers used to apply lengths and more. A simple stick with pointed nails could be used to walk off long lengths. Or the dividers used to walk off a shorter distance on the rod which could be applied to gain all the repeated sized through out the frame.

In the latest issue of Timber Framing I enjoyed Laurie's article on useful geometries for carpenters. I liked Fig. 6. specifically for more accurately drawn 3 circle daisy wheel, faster, simpler, and more accurate. The ogival arches was a treat as well.

If I don't use a method, learned, I tend to loose the connection. I recently used a long measuring pole or radius to generate the curves cut into the post on my own project, which is based on a two circle layout. I used three methods to achieve the overall building, rods/diivders, tape measure and chance.

Tim

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: TIMBEAL] #23162 03/29/10 02:01 AM
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toivo Offline
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measuring sticks- i like the idea for late afternoon joinery.

Ken- the gloves i've been using are knit with a rubberized palm. there are winter and lighter versions. i prefer them to barehand for tool response. i feel more connected.


Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: toivo] #23165 03/30/10 01:35 AM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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|Hello everyone tonight:

Great responses

The measuring poles that we used were made from 1" square oak of varying lengths some of them were especially made for the different runs of the braces that usually varied even within the same framework.

The use of measuring poles ensured that repetitive measurements would be of a standard length and not vary, and minimized measuring mistakes that might be the case using a modern tape measure.

One of the neat pluses for using measuring poles was the ability to tick off say the mortise placement positions of joist/stud housings along the flat surface of the measuring poles, these little ticks would always be referred to as the work progressed and transferred to the timber surface for the work to begin. We would even make notations by the ticks as a reference to what they stood for

Three of the measuring poles would be of 6', 8' and 10' lengths that were quite handy for squaring up frameworks when the trial fitting began.

The use of measuring poles could be used by those that could not read, but could produce good frameworks, one of these old time framers just happened to be my grandfather who could not read or write but could hew and frame up buildings, (he could also figure money and what things were worth).

These measuring poles were metal tipped to take wear, they were square ended and fitted nice and neat on the pole ends and were drew out to a sharp edge.

Hope you enjoy

NH


Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #23295 04/10/10 12:04 AM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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Hi everyone tonight:

While we are discussing layout techniques using rough hewn timber, and measuring poles to locate accurate locations for seatings and other types of points of interest such as exact final lengths, I always used and was taught to use the 36" Blind Man's rule. This folding wooden ruler was used to locate measurements from 0 to 36", and in many cases the main length of runs for barn braces came in at 36". In this case you could use a 36" measuring pole or the 36" Blind Man's rule whichever you preferred.

The technique that I used for layout usually involved placing a scratch awl at one point and then sliding the measuring pole against it or the Blind Man's rule which ever you preferred, and left it there until all measurements were done and checked for accuracy.


NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #23468 04/28/10 12:19 AM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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Hi everyone tonight:

Exact measurements---this is a topic that needs alittle more scruttiny---

Given a pile of rough hewn timbers for (a three bay barn) of varying sizes both cross sectional, twisted and bowed, and with the measuring and cutting tools available or known of during the early 18th century, which ones would you select or need to carryout the precise layout of all the mortise's and tenons and all other construction jobs dealing with this structure.

List the contents that would be in the timberframer's box(s) if he had more than one box which he no doubt did, don't feel shy lets get the list started

It would be nice also to list the direction you would give to your 2 helpers on the first day of the work (these are going to be hired hands) and will be standing there ready to go to work and will want to know what the work hours are going to be and of course the wages.

Please remember that the owner wants a completed building before he pays you, and what price would you place on the document and maybe your demands as far as payment is concerned.

He is supplying all the timbers, sawn materials, shingles, nails and hardware items

Lets have fun you modern experienced and not so experienced timberframers--lets look back in time------

NH

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #23469 04/28/10 01:35 AM
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Gumphri Offline
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I'm not that familiar with the old ways but, this summer I just did the layout on a 3 bay barn with two carpenters so lets give it a shot.

I don't know much about foundations of the time so I will leave that to someone else.

Ok lets start with the ideal tool kit of the time. Please feel free to add to this or subtract from it as you feel fit.

2 hand saws crosscut and rip
1 brace and bit
1",1 1/2", 2" bits
2 rafter squares
I would say a couple combination squares but they were apparently invented in 1878 so scratch that.
2+ framing chisels
1+ slicks
1 sharpening stone
1 file
1+ string lines
a measuring stick of some sort. (tape measures and folding rulers were invented 1850+)
1 marking gauge
1 draw knife
2-3 mallets if not made on site
1 froe
1 shaving horse if not made on site
2-3 hammers/hatchets with poles
1 awl
1 marking tool or knife(to replace a pencil)

I would also assume he may have the following
-an assortment of axes, one of which being a hewing ax
-an adz
-most carpenters would have had a couple planes too.

I suspect I'm missing stuff but its a start.

I would start by getting the mules ready(probably log ends), pegs going, and then move into knee braces using the worst stock for that first. After a few knee braces the helpers should be fine finishing them off and I would get myself at least a half day jump on the straightening of timbers and layout of the frame.

The first day would be shorter. Kind of an intro. After that I would be leaving for work at dawn and coming home just before dusk. My helpers might show up just a bit later or leave a bit earlier if they had pigs to feed or cows to milk.

Price I will leave to someone else. Although I probably would have the owner pay the helpers directly if he knows them well.


Leslie Ball
NaturallyFramed.ca
Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: northern hewer] #23470 04/28/10 02:32 AM
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I'll give it a shot:

Toolkit:

Cribbing ponies
straps
wheeled device for moving timbers

Chalkline
level
dividers
plumb bob/line
string
framing square
wedges
scratch awl

handsaws
axe
bits/brace
chisel
slick

froe
shaving horse
drawknife

pole
guylines
block
windlass
pike poles
beetle
hammer
mallet
driftpins

food
water
tourniquet
splint

1st day (assuming foundation is done, if not foundation): get an image of the frame in the helps mind. goals to be set at different intervals of the project. inventory timber and designate sticks for placement in frame. crib the plates and place the xframe timbers on top of plates. find flat area to scribe the seperate frames. pay at the end of week according to performance (this colony is an "at-will employment" area).

Re: historic hewing questionnaire [Re: mo] #23475 04/28/10 12:24 PM
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northern hewer Offline OP
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Hi everyone tonight:

Well what a great start you 2 brave souls, a great start to the list

To everyone else lets jump in and help Mo and Gumphri put some finishing touches on this tool list, after all we don't want to get held up without the proper tools and have the hired help standing around do we?

I fully intend to stay out of listing and will moderate from the sidelines--I do see though a few items that would need to be on site that are not listed--

We will be discussing the foundation eventually so you foundation guys think about that aspect from the mid 18th century period.

This barn will not have a full foundation but substantial bearing points

Just a note before I leave to many who will be looking in, now is your chance to jump in even with only one item, it could be a very valuable tool that might be needed and it would be nice to have it available should the need be required by your paid helpers

To you history buffs, you might clarify the type of tool(s)that were available and maybe suggest that they should or shouldn,t be around. Let us keep in mind no later than 1867 which was the year of confederation for Canada, the year of census taking and those wonderful Hardware Catalogues, and to that end should have been listed for sale if they were patented yet.

Thanks again--have fun--lets keep going down memory lane

\NH\

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