Surviving the heat (a visit to Dianna’s Pool)

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The boys testing the waters at Diana's Pool in Chaplin CT.
The boys testing the waters at Diana’s Pool in Chaplin CT.

With the humidity somewhere well above 100% (at least in the house this morning) and the temperatures soaring into the 90’s (mid-30’s for those across the pond using Celsius) we decided to let the air-conditioning take a break from its thankless task and head north to find some shade and water to temper the heat.

I did some digging on the Internet and found a listing for Diana’s Pool – a spot on the Natchaug River in Chaplin, CT. We got to the pool in late morning, beating the crowds (and getting good parking).

It was a great place to get a break from the heat. The water was cool, there was plenty of shade, and lots of waterfalls to play around in. The boys claimed that they overheard some of the other visitors talking about how it got its name – the claim was that someone named Diana drowned there. Of course, I’m sure they heard it from the college kids that were playing around (and drinking crap beer – but of course I drank crap beer when I was that age) and a morbid story is always the better option. But an article from the Hartford Courant from about 2003 give many rumors on how the pool was named (and only one of them was morbid). We had fun, no matter how the pool got named.

The crowds picked up around 1pm, and we decided to head home around 2pm.  Now both boys are trying to beat the heat by playing Minecraft (with Ben live-streaming it on YouTube) in their air-conditioned rooms while I wait for the workshop to cool off enough for me to head out there.

Ben playing in one of the waterfalls at Diana's Pool
Ben playing in one of the waterfalls at Diana’s Pool
Will and Ben exploring the swimming hole at Diana's Pool.
Will and Ben exploring the swimming hole at Diana’s Pool.

 

Working on Ben’s Boat

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Susanna and Isabella departed for Sweden yesterday. Will is volunteering as a preschool camp assistant at the Denison Pequotsepos Nature Center all week. So, Ben and I get today and tomorrow to hang out together. Today we put some time into the boat. We are (still) working on replacing the stringers. We had replaced part of the center stringer two summers ago, but we didn’t do a very good job at it. So earlier this summer Ben and I cut out the repair and more of the rotted stringer.

Today we glassed in (partly at least) the new stringer. Tomorrow we will put another two layers of glass and cover the entire stringer.

Ben working the resin into the fiberglass matting.
Ben working the resin into the fiberglass matting.
The new stringer installed. We will probably have to rip out the other two and replace them as well.
The new stringer installed. We will probably have to rip out the other two and replace them as well.

Using the Stanley No. 45 Plane

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I’ve been pretty good at getting back into the workshop. I have the AC installed – and even though it doesn’t completely keep up on a hot and humid day like today, it helps. I’m currently building a case for my new workshop computer. The case will allow me to add filters to keep the dust out of the machine.

Using the Stanley 45 as a plow - cutting a rabbet along the grain on a piece of antique pine.
Using the Stanley 45 as a plow – cutting a rabbet along the grain on a piece of antique pine.

Today I’m cutting rabbets on the rails of the case to allow me to install the bottom and sides of the case. Normally I would set up the router table and use the router, but I need to go get longer bolts to attach the fence to the new table and I’m lazy. Plus, Izzy has been hanging out in the shop at times (in her pack and play), so I need to find ways to do things without power tools.

Which brings me to the Stanley No. 45 Plane. The plane came in a collection of antiques I got from my dad. It is in pretty good shape, though the cutters need sharpening. Last night I started sharpening the cutters.  The cutters are almost at a 30-degree bevel, but not quite and it took me a while to grind the proper bevel. So, after sweating at it for a while, I decided to only grind the 1/2 dado cutter. I’ll work on the rest as I need them (and in hindsight, I should have done one of the wider ones).

How did it work? At first use, it works well. I had to make two passes to get the width of the rabbet I wanted (hence, the wish I had sharpened a wider cutter) which made the finished cut a little rougher than I had hoped. Of course I didn’t do a good job cleaning up the rabbet either, but no worries – the rabbet will be hidden.

Now back to work – time to clean up the rails and glue up the frame. And maybe later to eBay to browse different cutters for the plane.