Jan's Day Off Archives | West Wind Hardwood
Dear Deer: Go Away – Come Again Another Day

Dear Deer: Go Away – Come Again Another Day

We have a never-ending battle with the deer.  Lucy I managed to keep them at bay.  Lucy II didn’t bat an eye and they knew it.  We have a lovely little gateway entrance to our backyard, and over the years, we’ve tried all manner of fencing and barriers for both the deer and rabbits.  Recently, I thought Jan came up with a very clever ‘wood’ solution to repel the deer that is in keeping to the design:  Mid-century meets Asian Infusion.

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Jan’s Day Off: Summer 1997

 
(left: Lucy – the original.  Still very much missed even after 11 years. Right: Nick, our nephew.  Now all grown up with a little girl of his own to love and cuddle.)

No there was no transformation from dog to kid.  This is an outdoor shower that Jan built way, way………..way back in Summer 1997.  It gave us an opportunity to shower off after hottubbing.  In face we enjoy it so much, we sold the bathroom we never installed and use this rain, shine, summer and in the dead of winter when one slips slides along the icy deck.



Yellow Cedar shakes working their way up.

The shakes are of Yellow Cedar and still holding strong although the Douglas-fir joists are giving up and desperately needing repair.  And interesting, the wasps do seem to like stripping the wood for their nests; not sure if it’s the wood species or the damp condition of the wood.

A New Look for Antique Bedroom Furniture

A New Look for Antique Bedroom Furniture

A little something from the archives; and I do mean the story starts a long, long time ago.

We have two bedroom suites.  One we purchased from an estate sale in the neighbourhood of Oak Bay (Victoria, BC) in 1977.  A lovely black walnut set consisting of three dressers (two with mirrors) and bed unit.  Jan and I purchased these prior to our wedding; we were setting up house.  Great fun!!  It was from the 1920’s and with 50 years of living, the dressers tops needed serious re-finishing.  We set about removing the varnish; tops only.  Major ‘newbie’ mistake; hadn’t considered the tops were veneered; edges were poplar – just a bit of a colour difference.  Too late and we left the variation.  We were young, in love, having fun and didn’t care!

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Santa’s Workshop – 1998 Flashback

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Jan’s Shop – Snug as a Bug Winter 1998 – All Photos by Jan T Nielsen

Jan has been censored for having to much fun loving what we do; for wanting to share our passion; for mentoring others who share our desire to work with wood.  So here’s a little blast from a Past Day Off back in the winter of 1998.  By the way, for those who read this and censor, the tools are an accumulation of 3 generations of woodworkers; including the wife’s side of the family. That’s almost 400 years worth!

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Jan’s Day Off – “Yew” Need to Take Care

Jan’s Day Off – “Yew” Need to Take Care

Don’t Ask!  Just let it be known there is another project in the stew pot.  Fairly major and all encompassing.  Furniture is required for this project; the flavour is West Coast.  Jan’s choice of wood is Pacific Yew.  I know it’s one of my favourites.

Jan had forgotten the toxicity of yew wood and felt it was extremely important to remind our readers of the care required.  The dust attacked his respiratory system.  I would liken it to a severe asthma attack; wheezing, shortness in breath, mucus build-up, and headaches.

The leaves and seed are toxic. Sheep and cattle have died as a result of eating these; humans also.  The toxin which causes the problem is taxine, and it is present in the wood.  Yew is used widely by turners, and goodness knows how many yew vessels are used for fruit, or eating and drinking from.

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