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Kat and Kevin Yares
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Oscar's New Home - Part 1
After the first weekend of cutting, we now had enough wood to build Oscar his new home. We had already decided on the place, just below the new driveway and across from the new lumber pad (where Oscar was now). After working hard to get the logs up the ramps (on the ground) onto the sawmill bed, we decided we were going to let gravity work for us.
The first thing we did was get the transit out. By using this, we could figure out where, below the drive, was the best place to fit Oscar so that there would be at least a two to three inch drop. That way, we could put a log-loading ramp that would let the logs roll slowly toward the sawmill.
Once we had the layout, it was time to dig holes. We wanted to have enough support that no matter how heavy the log, what we built would hold it. We ended up digging fourteen holes, seven per side. Anyone, who has ever lived or visited the Ozarks, knows that the dirt here is mostly clay and that digging a hole before you hit shelf rock will, at best, let you go down about two feet.
With Kevin using a pry bar and me with the posthole diggers, four hours later the holes were done. We used oak and hickory logs, which were previously thought of as firewood, and cut them to length. We wanted the sawmill at least twenty inches off the ground. As we looked at the posts, once they were buried, they didn't look too level. But, we knew that could be fixed easily by either leveling the tops or by using shims once Oscar's rails were in place.
Just to test to make sure we had positioned the supports in the right place, we fitted the carriage rails on top of the posts. While not perfect, our posts would more than adequately hold Oscar in place.
We gave everything a few days to settle in, while Kevin worked out a design for the decking. Another week and Oscar would be in his new permanent home.
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