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Monday, December 26, 2011

Keeping Warm

The major repair on the side of our home is complete. The rot was extensive and I had to do a lot of fancy woodworking to get the log back to a natural appearance. I hope that’s the last major repair I will have to do. The temperature has dropped significantly and I doubt I will have a chance to put a finish coat on. I started framing the foundation for my garage, but that will probably have to wait until the temperature warms up.

Since it’s turning into winter outside, I decided to do some work inside. I started installing the fan in the great room. The reason I made this job a priority is because the wood stove warms the upstairs rooms, but does little to keep the downstairs warm. Since warm air rises, the fan should do a good job of circulating the air. Usually, a fan installation isn’t a big deal, but the fan is 68” wide and it required a step-up transformer (100 volts to 120 volts). The fan is mounted to a very large log that is 20 feet above the floor. I had to wire the transformer to a switch and then to the fan. Japanese wiring doesn’t use a ground wire. I asked an electrician in Japan about this and he said that if something goes wrong the whole thing goes “Poof”. I told him that the electrical storms at this elevation are fierce and a lightning strike isn’t out of the question. He said that a lightning strike is highly unlikely. If it did happen, then my electrical system would go…you guessed it…”Poof”. To wire our house to an earth ground would be cost prohibitive at this time. The down rod for the fan had to be manufactured out of a pipe that I found. The pitch of the roof along with the length of the blades required an extra long down rod…48 inches. This project should be completed tomorrow provided the step-up transformer can handle the amperage draw of the fan motor. I have my fingers crossed.

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