Monday, July 18, 2016

norwegian woodstack

When I hastily split and stacked firewood a few weeks ago, the stack toppled over reminding me that one must not work in haste. My wife had wanted me to get the work done quickly so we rented a log splitter and I asked a friend to help.

Machinery can drive you to its own rhythm, and often lacks the tempo of a simpler life. So the toppling of the wood stack gave me the opportunity reverse course and to try the Norwegian round stack method as shown in Lars Mytting's book, Norwegian Wood. My stack is just a bit taller than I am and about 6 foot in diameter.

There are some advantages. The first is that having no end to the stack, no elaborate means of cross stacking is required to hold pieces of wood in place. Secondly, it can be built to close at the top and shed water (or snow) as it forms its own roof where it closes at the top.

Another advantage of work without machinery is that it moves at a more human pace, as illustrated by Drillis in Folknorms and Biomechanics.

There are some disadvantages in using hickory and oak to build a Norwegian round stack. The oak and hickory from Arkansas are much less uniform than the woods commonly used in Norway to build such stacks.

Artistically, however, the round stack might resemble to some, the beautiful sculptures created by Andy Goldsworthy. It will not be an embarrassment to have this standing in our woodlot.

Discovery of a tiny timber rattler nesting among the  toppled stack was one of my rewards for rebuilding. When I disturbed him, by gently dumping him off the log, he slithered off into the newly finished round stack.

Make, fix, create, and extend to others the opportunity to learn likewise.

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