Ted’s essays

project polishing

riverside entry grading sI finished a couple of little projects today. I had lamented the arrival of hard-frozen ground before I could get the grade I envisioned for my new riverside entry door.

Nature gave me a reprieve and thawed back out long enough for me to get to it. I ran the neighbor’s tractor until it was so dark the only thing I could see was my breath in the frozen air… in-other-words, it was cold and dark when I quit.

This morning I took a rake to it. It was surprisingly close, considering the crudeness of the tractor and quality of the working conditions. Now it can freeze to its heart’s content and I can add the walkway gravel and compost whenever the time and money coincide.

Riverside walkThe way the entry flows now has long been my vision. I am thrilled that it now closely resembles what resided in the back of my head. Now just about anybody can imagine gravel walkways with compost flower beds on either side of them.

The walkway to and from our riverside entry is quite appealing now – something this home in this location really deserved.

A small detail, but I removed the striker plates from where our front door used to be. I puttied those two openings along with the three hinge slots over. It looks a whole lot better in our living room entry from my studio.

It also provided me with striker plates for that door’s new location on the riverside entry. Some chisel and detail work later, the door latches as if it were professionally installed.

Opie Gate latch Gen 5In preparation for the installation of a sally port entry door, I raised up the gravel to the height I want as its final grade, then reinstalled the Opie gate to clear the new level new paint west sideAND to clear a door installed at the in-side of the entry.

That forced the design and creation of a new latch. I call this one “Gen 5”. I didn’t stop to add them up, but I think that’s about how many this gate has had in its various locations since it was designed and built for our Grangeville home.

As with most things I’m doing nowadays, materials existing in my inventory are repurposed and modified to accomplish the task. I have more time than money by a wide margin. Opie Gate latch Gen 5 close upThat makes most of my overall design decisions for me.

Happily, the results please me functionally, esthetically and reward my creativity. Better still, Missy likes them too.