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Heavy Metal Weekend Day One

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Relieved that our crazy week and weekend is finally in the books, I can get back to the blog this rainy, windy, Monday morning. Yesterday was fabulous around here, little wind and 71 degrees. The farm is glorious in the summer. The kids drove around in the golf cart, rode bikes, and played basketball while I painted on the north side of the house. I really wanted to mow the lawn but it didn’t really need it, so maybe that can be my tomorrow job. I love mowing the lawn; it’s the only time when I have no interruptions for 1.5 hrs. It’s amazing what I can work through in my mind when left alone. And, I’m definitely needing to work through our housing situation. My husband was down where we’re going to be moving to and looked at a few more things. For the same money as our house, you get a small place in a sketchy neighborhood that needs to be taken down to the studs (no exaggeration, seriously). He said the basement of the house was like a ‘house of horrors’. To get something livable, built in the 90’s, with not one thing updated, we’ll have to spend twice what our farm is worth. This is a very sobering and depressing situation. As you can imagine, I’m just enjoying my peace and privacy and well loved and cared for farm with much more appreciation than ever before!

Back to what I promised, photos from my weekend with my cousin:

We began the project with a photo from a catalog called “Wisteria”. Using the dimensions listed (24′ diameter and 25.5″ tall) we made our own template from cardboard. I don’t think our dimensions were exactly the same as the piece in the catalog, but it was very similar.

making template

making template two

As you can see, the legs have a Greek key design. Once we had half the template cut out, we traced it on the steel, flipping the cardboard design it at the mid point.

template on steel

My cousin used a piece of wood as a straight edge when he cut with the plasma cutter. Unfortunately, we didn’t have a wood template for the curved part of the design. It was difficult to cut a smooth curve freehand. Had we had more time for the planning stage, we would have cut a curve out of wood to use at this point. The plasma cutter was somewhat of a mystery to me. It used an air compressor and had a 220 plug, if I remember right. The contraption literally cut steel as if it were butter. I was really impressed with the tool.

plasma one

plasma two

Once we had the three legs cut out, it was grinding and welding time. We didn’t have quite a long enough piece of steel so we had to make one of the legs out of two pieces, then we had to weld those pieces together. It took a bit longer to add the extra welding step, which meant day one didn’t end until at least 7 that night. I did all that I could with the grinder device but my cousin was much better than I was so I handed it over to him for the tricky spots. Sparks were flying everywhere. Luckily, I didn’t burn a hole in anything.

preview welding

And, here’s a photo of one of the legs:

leg one

Day one concluded like this (FYI: it’s upside down):

end of day one

Since I’m sporting an annoying headache, I’ll post Day Two later in the week, maybe tomorrow if the weather remains cold and windy-

Have a great week, missy.