Saturday, February 9, 2013

Snowed in!

My first born should be arriving any day now. So, needless to say, getting the car shoveled out was a big priority. But as the plows kept renewing the wall at the end my driveway, my back started to complain.

By now, I'm used to hearing about and learning about more efficient but almost-forgotten ways to work wood by hand, some of which are as fast or faster than power tools. So I found myself wondering if there was some similar, ingenious, but long lost technique to help clear the snow out of the way.

Then I remembered that they simply used snow shoes and sleighs instead.


1 comment:

robert said...

Congratulations on the impending arrival.

It would be so cool to travel by sleigh - but only on occasion. If you had to do that as regular transport, it would quickly get old (wind-chill, horse in need of a bath, etc.).

I inherited 3 sleighs, in various states of disrepair, that now reside in the hay loft of our barn. Here in the Midwest almost any farm that has been in one family for a while will at least one.

I have examined each of them, from a craftsman's point of view and they are very interesting. Two are constructed using a bent wood forming process that yields sides having curves that have continuously variable and evolving radiuses in two axes. Theses also have some really well done metal work - bird heads with their beaks being formed into rings as attachment points, instead of just simple formed iron rings.

The third sleigh is built of flat wood - not formed into curves - but retaining that familiar "sleigh" shape. The iron work on this third sleigh is more pedestrian.

They each are light in weight and in appearance; I can imagine a horse being able to pull them along at a pretty good clip.


Best regards and congratulations,