How do you go about it? Oh, I know how you’re supposed to go about it, but how do you?
I cheated. I’d previously never cut a straight piece of anything with a saw in my life. A year later, it’s better, but I wouldn’t write home about it. However, my bread cutting has improved!
I knew I wasn’t going to buy a kit. Possibly a little lack of discipline and a lot of fear but mostly due to the cost for what was going to be, after all, an experiment. (Laugh! I must have spent, to-date, enough to buy 5 or 6!!!)
I am aware that a preset design works because it’s already all thought through and has plans and instructions. All this should be reassuring.
For those of us with butterfly minds it’s just setting yourself up for a fall by failing to meet the pre-set standard of the design. You see, instead of concentrating on driving down a particular set of railway tracks, your mind has switched points and gone off on another track all together.
It is a given that every time a kit is built it will be different in some minor detail of build because of the builder. Mostly though, each example will be recognisably the same, up until the builder decorates and outfits the construction, .
I just knew that mine was not going to be recognisable and it would stress me out no end. Sad, ain’t it.
So once I’d made my mind up to take my friend’s hint/challenge, I always knew I was going to work towards a vague Medieval to Jacobean-ish construction. It was going to be a bit more rough and ready around styles, could involve previous periods and not so much worry if out of true on the odd roof.
First thoughts were of something on the lines of a one storey with a half storey, one at each end for sleeping platforms – a shape based on the traditional long house of even earlier times.
I’d lie awake at night planning and trying to
work out the mechanics of it in my head and occasionally use night-time excursions to write down ideas.
However, as I couldn’t cut wood and didn’t want to seek assistance at every turn, I had to find a cheap way to build something.
And one day there it was. An eBay sale of display stock. My cheat. Old room boxes – and as soon as I saw them I knew for certain that this modular way of building was going to suit something late Elizabethan early Jacobean with bits of earlier building thrown in.
Whilst waiting for the boxes, I used the measurements given of the different sizes and tried to make an assessment of the various proportions. From this I made my second ‘plan’ of a building.
I could have carried out a heavily glorified version of my original plan and had some boxes left, which sounded good to me, but I soon realised I would need to be able to use quite a number of wood working tools very quickly to get anywhere.
I had a go with bits and bobs around the store-room and found that I was so exhausted after my attempts that it was not just about stamina as lack of technique and know how. The only way to be able to build up skills slowly whilst still starting the project would be by using my head a bit more and building to the size of the wood I was buying, ie the box dimensions, more or less, and then move on from there.
So plan 3 was born.
Some Kit links:
A Victorian house that looks like gingerbread – Mind boggling and pleasing
A new Tudor building from Maple Street – This shop is varied shapes and levels and covers quite a lot of what I find interesting, but I think I would truly go demented with that level of responsibility.