This past April, we had unexpected visit from the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations. Three Natural Resource Officers (NROs) – in full uniform – drove into our parking lot. Turns out they were looking for agents of logs. How did they figure we dealt with logs? Well, we’re listed in the Victoria Yellow Pages under ‘Millwork’. True story!! They thought we were a mill.
Nevertheless, this prompted us to ask questions and this is what we discovered. Compliance & Enforcement (C&E) is the law enforcement arm of the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations. Its main purpose is to make sure that a variety of resource management laws are being followed on and in BC’s public lands, water and forests and to take action where there is non-compliance. They also have been designated as Special Conservation Officers, Land Officers, BC Parks Rangers and Fisheries Inspectors with the authority to enforce the associated legislation.
Lumber grading guidelines are very clear; however, the expectations of the purchaser and/or the realities of the project can be subjective. We have discovered a wonderfully written article by Dick Burrows on the “art” of buying lumber. It is an easy read, and clearly identifies the important issues for both the casual buyer and the experienced craftsman.
One of my woodworking specialties is the art of cajoling lumberyard workers into letting me sort through their lumber piles, looking for that perfect board for my next project. Sometimes I have to pout and threaten to take my big-time business elsewhere. Usually, though, I get permission simply by promising to restack everything when I’m done.
And so, I’ve spent many a morning working in another guy’s business, lining up about a quarter ton of lumber just to get a few boards that suit me.
I’ve met quite a few fellow woodworkers during these hunts. Some know exactly what they want, be it wood free of knots, splits, and ugly dark streaks, or that elusive “pretty board.” But others bypass all the sorting and just buy the top-read that as most expensive-grade available, whether or not they need it. There are times when the best grade is the best choice, but more often, you can save money and get the perfect wood for your project by using lower grades if you know a few basics about buying lumber.
Finding Diamonds in the Rough
The first thing you need to do is rid yourself of the idea that you have to use top-grade lumber or a perfectly clear board for everything you make. Most furniture makers don’t. They use fairly short or narrow pieces that can be cut from even the lower grades of lumber. You can, too. Just take the time to analyze the size and type of parts you need before you start.
April 30, 2015 – Exploring BC’s Millwork Industry: Beyond the Basics
Seminars, Demo’s and Factory Tour for the Vancouver Island Chapter of Architects
Partnered with Roy Manion, Manager, Specifiers Program of the BC Wood Specialties Group Hosted by West Wind Hardwood Inc Driven by Joel Radford and Shelley Nielsen Attended by 25 Architects and Designers from Southern Vancouver Island
This was both a challenge and a hoot for us. We’d never considered offering an on-site learning opportunity until Roy approached us. He nurtured us; coddled us; encouraged us. And it was a success, as born witness by this excerpt from the Vancouver Island Chapter of Architects’ Newsletter………
Let’s agree that the term lesser-known species (LKS) describes species whose regional forest potential is greater than its current use. As a renewable natural resource, tropical forests are unique. The problem is in the utilization of such a varied and variable mixture of wood species.
Generally the domestic market is less discriminating than the export market and over time a scale of preference develops and the average consumer is generally unaware that thousands of useful wood species exist. Some species are in high demand, while others are merely acceptable. At the other end of the spectrum, however, is a large number of species broadly and variously called “lesser-known species”, “secondary species”, “unpopular species” and “weed species”.
The saga continues with the work on Danny’s old house. This time he’s removing and replacing rotten window sill.
Repaired some insect damage in window jambs with epoxy also replaced a structural beam under the window (original damaged by carpenter ants some time ago.) Making new brackets to be structural. Originals were rotted! Will be coating those with an epoxy barrier coat.
Removed all the sash (5 total) stripped them and will be repainting this weekend. Also replaced all the sash cords for the counter weights.
Our second time going to this show and exhibiting our products (flooring, decking and milling more prominently). We had a great attendance, maybe it was the great weather? But overall we were pretty pleased!
Jan and Joel showed of our new booth display that was milled and constructed in-house. Check it out:
Wayne makes these lures from 2×2 Alaskan Yellow Cedar. He was kind enough to share is technique and a few photos of the “rewards” received in the Cape Cod Canal.
I take 2X2 Alaska Yellow Cedar and turn it on a lathe down to a 6 inch Cape Cod Pencil. Through a drilled hole I insert a stainless welding wire, picking up a swivel half way through and a tail weight. Then comes a Spar varnish and BIN primer, after that comes airbrushing a pattern before epoxy and hooks.
Quite and art form! And they work too… just look at the spoils from a trip to the Cape Cod Canal in 2012, they caught 100lbs of fish but only kept 50lbs.