The weather in Austin has been insane lately. We’ve already had 3 snow days this winter and 2 late starts due to the weather. For all of the 15 years I’ve lived in Austin, we have had a total of maybe 4 snow days until this winter. Anyway, classes were cancelled on Friday so that meant no engineering (boo). I’m not sure if you remember Pam Powell but she’s come to help us with building the furniture. I know that our class would be capable of making furniture but the whole process will run a lot smoother and faster with her help. We’re still working on milestone 2 and there haven’t been any major challenges so far. I was a little rusty with Google Sketchup but now I’m starting to remember all of the features. Although the deadline for milestone 2 is at the end of February, we’re hoping to finish sooner so we will have more time to work on the actual construction part. Also, everyone’s favorite part is coming soon…the interior designing and decorating. Hopefully we won’t run out of time since there is also the electrical part to finish. This will definitely be a busy three months.
I know that Ms. JO and Pam already have an idea of what type of wood we are going to use for the flooring and furniture but I’m going to do some research on the different types of wood in general on the website hoovedesigns.com.
For starters, there are two classifications of wood: hardwood and softwood. This is determined on whether the wood comes from a leaf bearing tree (hardwood) or a cone bearing tree (softwood). There are also two basic wood grades which are based on the number of blemishes/flaws on the wood. The grades of select lumber (in order of least blemishes to most) are B and grade, C Select grade, and D Select grade. For common lumber the grades (in order of least blemishes to most) are No. 1, No. 2, No. 3, No. 4, and No. 5. I would assume that the less flawed, the more expensive the wood is. We are on a budget but we do not want to give the faculty low quality wood. I’m guessing that we may buy the second best kind of wood.
Now starting off with hardwoods. The most commonly used hardwood is oak for things such as American and English country designs. There are more than 60 different types of oak grown in the U.S. and can be separated into red and white varieties. Mahogany (Hunger Games fans know this is a nice wood) is another type of hardwood. It is a great carving wood and is used in a large variety of styles. Other types of hardwood include cherry, maple, walnut, rosewood, and teak.
Pine, an example of a softwood, grows mostly in the Northern Hemisphere and a white/pale yellow lightweight wood. Another softwood is birch of which there are many different species. Yellow birch is the most important commercially and European birch is rare and expensive. Ash, hickory, beech, cedar, redwood, hemlock, fir, and spruce are all different types of softwood, too.