Thursday, July 3, 2014

Structure and Balance

Getting started
Day 12 (7/2/14)
Since it is the 4th of July weekend today is Wades last day this week at Grandpa Daycare. I am sure we will see him over the weekend but it won’t just be the two of us. Today I appreciated the thermometer in Wades pod. It was just less than seventy degrees on the house thermometer when we finally got ready to take off. I decided to put his wind screen down for the first part of the ride because the ambient temperature felt cool. I had to mail a letter at the post office just down the street. After I came out I exchanged a little chitchat with one of the locals and decided to check the temperature in Wades pod. In those couple of minutes in the sun the temperature had risen to almost ninety degrees. Needless to say I rolled up the sunscreen. By the time we got to the trail it was a comfortable seventy five in his cart. I am guessing because of the nice weather and the upcoming holiday the trail was teaming. I was surprised to get any building done but with some stealth and a couple of close calls I managed to have some fun. Structure is one of the major issues that I have been dealing with this year. Structure used to be much easier back when I started and I had a surplus of large, sturdy railroad ties to work with. You could stack them and build them in almost any configuration and except for the occasional human force they would stay standing just by their shear mass and weight. There was also an unlimited supply of copper wire from the overhead lines that could be utilized for binding. Those days are over. With salvaging by both the railroad and private scrapers I am left with small odds and ends. The nice thing about these leftovers is that they develop very interesting constructions when you can keep them standing. The downside is that because of their small size it takes so many more to make a construction that will by visible over the vegetation and each joint has potential for failure. Part of it is my own fault because I like pushing the envelope for aesthetic purposes. There is nothing aesthetically pleasing about a stack of wood so I try to work complex balancing situations into it. Although the balance builds interest into the design it also adds areas susceptible to failure. I am hoping that over the summer as I continue to rework them I will come up with a balance of interesting design and reliable structure.
My Trusty Thermometer

Now if I can get it to just keep standing

"Dead Crane" Build

A Shady Place to Sleep

Complex Balance

Hippy Dippy Weatherman


  1. Great names! And creative building. You have a lot of fun in the good old outdoors.

  2. Hoping Wade will remember when he gets older