This weekend I finally finished the raised planter. It took a while but I finally got that hang of these joints.
After a week at the Jersey Shore (south jersey so no Snookie – I hate the fact I know that reference) I tried to get caught up on the planter but between jet lag and what appears to be bug I’ve picked up progress in as slow. Working with heavy timbers wears you out so test fitting joints is tough. I have even more respect for timber framers.
Unfortunately, my circular saw blade is not large enough to cut all the way through so each cut requires followup hand work. This is made even worse by the interlocking grain and curly figure in the wood so I can’t pop out large chucks with my large chisel.
Making matters even worse, my foot long 1/4″ drill bit snapped about half way through so the last screws had to be driven in without pilot holes. Luckily I started adding paraffin wax so I only snapped one screw.
The goal was to get one tier installed so I could finish leveling the yard (this tier will be partially buried). Since I have no idea when I will be installing the next two levels, I went ahead and applied deck stain to these to protect them from UV exposure. I went with DEFY Extreme water based wood stain in color Cedar which is supposed to be the best deck stain that is legal in California. Overall I like the color though it does muddy up the grain (something all semi transparent deck stains would do). I will say the timber that spent the week outside getting wet and dirty looks the best so maybe the other boards will darken as they age.
I had trouble finding a sample online for how the DEFY Extreme Cedar would look on Eucalyptus (eucalyptus globulus aka Tanzanian Blue Gum) so hopefully if anyone else out there is curious this will help them out.