Saturday, January 18, 2014

Crazy Winter Weather

December 25th

What a difference in the weather. The first photo was taken about 3 weeks ago  the second one this morning  Three weeks ago I thought, here we go...a long winter with tons of snow and the headaches involved with driving through the stuff.

January 18th
During the Christmas period we had our driveway plowed out no less than 6 times. It was beginning to look like one of those winters that will give us copious amounts of snow and indeed, we have had a few of them. Nova Scotians will always remember "White Juan" which literally paralyzed the province for 5 days in February 2004. This time the snow was piling up everywhere, the front walkway was impassable and shoveling snow off the rear deck was becoming increasingly difficult. Yes, it looked like a long winter.

But after New Years along comes very springlike weather with consecutive daytime temperatures in the low teens at times. Almost T-shirt weather though perhaps I am exaggerating a little.

Today there is a high of plus 5C, so, a little cooler but in the days to come the temperatures will start dropping to typical Nova Scotia winter levels - around -5C to -10C which is to be expected at this time of the year. It is too soon to tell whether this will be a freeze-thaw winter but I prefer this to the mounds of snow everywhere.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Stromberg Carlson stripping

Stromberg Carlson 662
 Some time ago I posted information about an old radio I am trying to restore. It is a Stromberg Carlson console model 662. Well, it's a long and involved process; more than I thought.

From the photo on the left, you might think, that looks just fine as it stands. Photos can be deceiving. First, the finish has faded and the darkened stripes on either side are further accentuated by the sun-faded finish. Next, look at the grill cloth. It is very faded and one side of the cloth is stained. Closer inspection will reveal decals that have peeled off and trim work that is scuffed and chipped. Bottom line, it needs to be renewed.

Top of one side being stripped
Between what you see in the first photo and the second is the process of extensive gluing of the veneer and the frame of the radio. All is solid now.

The second photo shows part of the stripping process. At this point it involves using a lacquer thinner and a plastic scraper to take it down to the wood with a little 120 sanding to follow. There are some stubborn sections that may need a stronger stripper but I will cross that bridge when it comes. When all is said and done it should look like new. Whether I will get the internals to work is a decision I have to make once the cabinet is finsihed.

Monday, January 13, 2014

Winter Doldrums

 Winter is here. There is no doubt about it. The days are short and for many this is a tough time of the year. SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder looms its ugly head as we tend to spend too much of our time indoors. Others call it "cabin fever". No matter how you slice it, it can be a difficult time for some folks.

My wife and I try to get out as much as possible during the winter months but there are days when the weather is poor and the driving is bad and there is little choice but to stay indoors. However, we have a large property and even on those not-so-nice days we can at least spend a little time on our beautiful property either buy walking about through the woods when the snow is not so deep or snowshoeing.

The first photo shows the back yard at a time of the year when there is a lot of snow which would be about now (January).

The second shows an old saw mill about 1/2 hours drive from our home in a stunning winter setting. On that day we did a little picture taking and had some hot cider at a place called Sugar Moon farm. A great day even if it was a little cold.

The last photo shows some snow coming off the metal roof of the main building. A unique effect to say the least. The moral of the story, get off your butt, get out and enjoy the winter weather.