The track steel dropped into the brackets with barely a tap from the hammer.  I was totally surprised that all lined up as well as it did.  We had pulled a string line in the bracket notches after we had bolted them to the barn and there looked like we might have had to make some adjustments.  I guess that we hadn’t pulled the string tight enough because I still had circulation in my digit.


Everything worked as intended.  I mounted the trolleys to the long-side door on Wednesday after work.  With a little leverage from a transfer shovel I was able to lift the monster onto the track.

I was so freaking excited to finally have the doors in place and functioning.  Through out this winter they were screwed in place keeping out the weather, but preventing easy access to the barn.  Unloading Katy’s pig feed became more of a work out than I cared for.

There are still some adjustments and a bit more work to do on the doors.  The track needs to be cut to length and the stops welded on.  The track also needs to be welded to the brackets.  The doors need to be snugged up a bit.  There are a couple of gaps in the joinery that I will have to clamp, glue and screw into place.  I’ve been kicking around ideas for some kind of swing out stop.  A section of rail or as simple as some larger rocks placed to keep the wind from pushing the doors away from the body of the barn.  I’ll also have to come up with some closure securement.

Now onto the loft doors!  Same treatment at a higher elevation.


It’s starting to warm up and I am beginning to crawl out from under the shroud of cabin fever. Thankfully the list of this springs projects is getting off to a good trot. My friend Ray brought out the brackets for the track and trolley that our barn doors will hang from.


Ray’s dandy work

We bolted the brackets on to the barn Sunday afternoon.  Ray was smart enough to make enough for the loft doors too.


Trolley bolted on short side door

I fixed the trolleys to the short side door after work on Monday.


Shortside door


Track brackets installed

Ray is bringing out the flat steel this afternoon. We will see how our Sunday work lines up with something more substantial than a string.



After a bit of debate and a series of voting, we have settled on a name for the puppy. Meet Riley! She seems to have fit right in.   She is very content hanging with Katy’s pigs.  Very playful but gentle.


Katy’s pigs

No Name

No Name

Welcome not named yet, an eight week old Great Pyrenees female.

Shoes To Fill

It’s been over a month since I stopped searching for our Lizzie. There wasn’t even a credible sighting of her to put me on a trail. I’m hoping that someone found her and took her in as their own. She was far too cool a dog for anyone to pass up the chance to get to know her.

Normally I wouldn’t search out a replacement pooch. I’ve always let the dog come to us. I am however a strong believer in letting the dogs we have train any newcomer. With that in mind the succession of good habits may hit a speed bump if it were left to the youngest of our pups. She is a sweet dog with bad habits.

The elder statesman of the bunch is truly getting up on the elder side of things. I decided that instead of risking a break in the lineage of not being totally pissed off at the behavior of my dogs, I would seek out a new link in the chain before it was broke.

Missing Dogs and Small Worlds

Missing Dogs and Small Worlds

Going into the fourth night that this girl is missing. This is the longest she has been A.W.O.L. I hate when bad things happen to dogs, but I have a lump of hope in my throat that she will be all right.

My brother was watching his best friends dog, Finn, while his owners were on vacation. One afternoon Finn bolted from the house and headed for the tree line.

I can’t say for sure what happen next but we guess that the dog followed a series of creek beds leading to a river that runs through a town nearly forty miles from Finn’s starting line.

He was found by a kind hearted man who had come to the states from Great Britain several years ago named Chris. I happen to meet Chris once while making a delivery of reed to him for a friend of mine. My friend plays bagpipes and had made contact with Chris, a reed maker. My piping friend lives right down the road from the dogs owner.

It’s a small, small world.



We’ve not had a good powdery snow with a significant accumulation in a very long time.  The last time I remember having a 10+ inch snow and single digit temperatures was in the early 1980s’.  Getting good sized drifts was just a memory till Sunday.  The fun times of sledding, digging tunnels into snow banks  and building our best interpretation of an igloo came flooding back yesterday.

After spending a couple of hours on the tractor clearing our road I came in for a warm up and rallied the troops for a plunge down the hill.


Today was a blast to hit the hill.  My grandkids are here for the weekend, so the oldest boy and I spent yesterday cutting and hauling wood.  Then we unrolled a round bale of straw onto the steepest section of our sled run.  That section has some exposed rock that don’t feel too good on the backside if the snowfall isn’t thick enough to cover.  As it turned out, we didn’t need the straw.


We made a few good runs ever deeper into the holler.  Each turn down pushing the snow out ahead of the sledder in a mini explosion of powder and giggles.


With or Without

What do you think?

The Doors

Christmas day waiting for the grandkids gave me the unexpected opportunity to finish up the short side of the doors.  The trolleys I picked up from a meat packing supply house.  They will be bolted on a C-channel that will fit over the top length of the doors.  The C-channel will be bolted through and provide a bit of weather protection to the top edge as well.  I’m still scrounging around looking for odd bits of steel for door stops and keepers.

The loft doors should come together much quicker than this set did.  I was having a tough time visualizing exactly what I wanted to build.  When I started cutting up scrap into tests for the joints the plan became clearer.

I stepped back to look at the short side door and thought that a false light grill might look good.  Any thoughts?

White World

White World

A wet couple of inches of snow made for a beautiful morning.

Told Ya So

Told Ya So

I said that I would get the doors hung when the snow flys. Well, I have one door built and screwed in place, less the track and trolleys to hang it on. I started laying out the short side door last night. I should have it finished soon but most likely won’t fix it in place like the other door. The trolleys I have. The track and stops are being made by a friend at a local machine shop.

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