Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Slicing eucalyptus blocks into lumber

With the help of a couple of volunteer veternarian students, today we processed enough large blocks of eucalyptus into lumber to build the structure for the greenhouse.  We had lots of people helping in the process, which helped make the work not too heavy, and also gave each one some experience in using the table saw.

In addition to the two volunteer students (Abram and Felipe), we were blessed to have the help of Neider Posada, who is back at the farm for a few days while on leave from the Army.  Neider lived at Granja Peniel, along with his younger brother, Einer, starting in 2004.

Also involved in the effort were Henry Rairan, an IMC staff member who fills in for the caregiving couples on the weekends, among other duties; Gonzalo Osario, a pastor and designated father for the older boys at Granja Peniel; and John Egson Fonseca, one of the program boys who works on the farm during the week and goes to school on Saturdays.

Henry (left) and Neider (light shirt) feeding a block to Abram, Gonzalo, and Felipe.

Left to right, Gonzalo, John Egson, Abram, and Neider.  The saw is a 10" Delta contractor saw with a 3Hp motor.

The saw only cuts about 3" deep, so we had to cut the 6" blocks from both sides. Given that the blocks were cut by a chainsaw, most had problems of un-square sides, varying widths, thicknesses, and other irregularities.  Considering that we were only looking to make rough dimensional lumber, we didn't take the time to run the blocks across the joiner and planer.

We ended up with 10 each 4"x4" posts and about 30 2"x4" members to form the roof trusses for the greenhouse structure.

The only problem that we experienced was that the table saw tripped the 20 amp breaker a few times.  After one such incident, the saw wouldn't start up even after re-setting the breaker.  I later found that the breaker was damaged and wasn't allowing current through on all three phases.  So, I replaced the breaker with a better quality unit and since the breaker hasn't tripped.

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