We had an excellent turnout of volunteers to provide material for this watermill blog.. We even had a few visitors bearing gifts.
For the record, the team consisted of Martyn, Colin, John, Headley, Max, Dave, Derek, Richard and Dick. A MAC member joined us mid-morning bringing gifts of horse-hair and a pulley for the line-shaft. His instant reward was a piece of Christmas cake supplied by Mrs Richard.
Other visitors arrived just after lunch to Richard's great relief because they brought the lunch he had left at home. A brief tour of the site left them impressed and keen to see it all finished and working. Aren't we all?
Almost all the jobs today were concerned with wood but in Derek's case this was burning rotten wood on a bonfire. He has also found some bushes that have been killed by ivy and removed those from the hedge to the north of the mill.
At the top of the mill Max and Headley have carried on patching the floor. They are working northwards and have just reached the hatch for the sack hoist.
One half of this is missing and was covered with another piece of wood but the other half is intact and in good enough condition to keep.
The leather hinges for both flaps remain but are very stiff. We will research ways of restoring some flexibility to them so that we can re-use the original leather if at all possible.
Above the stable Martyn and Dick replaced one broken joist and repaired a second. They then boarded over nearly all of the bay. There is enough sound floor in the hay-loft to make it worth moving our table and chairs up there out of the workshop.
At the other end of hay-loft Dave spent the day inserting Helibars across the cracked brickwork and pointing up.
Once the lime mortar has dried out the repair should be invisible.
The top section of the repair is slightly more complicated because some of the bricks around the crack are loose and will have to come out and be re-laid. Next week, hopefully.
Below where Dave was working Colin was drilling bolt holes through the one major beam that has been weaked by decay. The decay was all on the top surface of the beam and has been treated with clear Cuprinol before we replaced the floor boards. As most of the beam is sound we decided to reinforce it with steel plates either side of the weak spot.
John and Richard finished the window repair that they started on Tuesday, finishing the new bottom rail and pegging it into position like the original.
We couldn't save the glass, although we tried, and we will have to buy suitable glass to reglaze this window (and probably the others) when we have re-installed the frame.
The inside of the frame is lime washed, along with most of the mill interior but we are not sure how the outside would have been painted. We will seek advice before we do too much.
All in all a satisfying day with sunshine for most of the time. It was also nice to notice that it was still light as we were leaving just before five o'clock.
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