Rural Life in the UP of Michigan Some stories about life on 160 rural acres in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan

January 22, 2023


Filed under: Uncategorized — admin0 @ 10:24 pm

What does a Bomb Cyclone have to do with plywood? Read on.

In December of last year, we experienced a weather event that I’d not heard of, called a bomb cyclone. What it meant for us was a lot of snow and wind. The event lasted for several days. You’d have your driveway looking pretty good one day, and the next morning it was worse than it was before you’d started. It was cold, windy, and the visibility was poor. The woodstoves were hungry.

My woodpiles are west of the house near the garage/workshop. The woodracks I use for the house’s heating fires are all the way around on the east side. I’d carry the wood in my arms from the outdoor woodpiles to the woodracks. I’ve done it this way for years.

The bomb cyclone dropped so much snow on us that I had to slog through the drifts with armloads firewood. After a couple of trips, my 70 year old body cried uncle. I needed more wood to make it through the night however. I came up with a short term solution. I’d carry the firewood to the much closer west entry of the house and pile it on the table. This solution got us through the worst of the weather, but I found that it worked really well. I could make firewood trips twice as fast with minimal drift-slogging. So I adopted the strategy longer term.

Alas, the table in the west entryway of our home had other uses, so my new firewood storage system was causing some tension. I started looking for a better solution, and came up with an idea. We had a small dresser in the west entryway that we used for storing hats, gloves, scarfs, and other odds and ends. The entryway also has a closet for keeping coats, boots and jackets. The closet has a high shelf above the coat rack. I proposed buying some small sturdy totes for the contents of the dresser. These we’d keep on the closet shelf, and replace the dresser with a woodrack. Amazingly, my plan was approved.

A trip to the Habitat Restore ™ and the dresser was gone. I decided to build the woodrack out of 1/2″ plywood, so on the same trip, I stopped by the lumber company and told the clerk I wanted 2 sheets of 1/2″ AC plywood.

“AC?” she asked, looking puzzled.

“Yes,” I answered, somewhat surprised by the question.

“$120,” she said.

“Yikes!,” I thought, as I handed over my credit card. Even the guys that loaded me up seemed impressed by the choice I’d made.

Before cutting, I left the plywood sheets in the workshop for some extra time in order to build up my courage. You can bet I measured twice before I cut once when it came time to process the plywood.

It took me part of 3 days to finish the woodwork, and as of this writing, I’m about to apply the finish. Then I can move it to its new home and fill it up with firewood.

4 shiny Craftsman ™ totes line the shelf in the closet, and they are filled with the hats and gloves that previously lived in the dresser. I do have a few scraps of plywood left over, but I did pretty much use up the whole two sheets on the project. So if anyone asks you what $120 worth of plywood looks like, this is it.

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