Skip to content

Sawbucks for a Non-Handy Man

Sat, 30 Dec 2023, 09:32 PM (-06:00) Creative Commons License

1. The Need

Was it ten years ago? Maybe fifteen. According to the fair and industrious Trudy, Ben was still in high school, so … 14 years ago. That’s how long ago this was.

There I was standing in our driveway rasumfrassing to myself amidst a bunch of scattered branches. I was tired of cutting fallen tree limbs precariously perched on the garbage can. I needed a sawbuck. 

I once saw a sawbuck made by a cousin of mine. He had slapped it together from scrap in a couple minutes just to make … well, to simplify the cutting of fallen tree limbs. Just what I needed. And I recalled my cousin whipping this thing together as naturally and second-nature to him as  … deriving the Lagrange planetary equations might once have been to me. Ok so perhaps as second-nature as … deriving the quadratic formula would be for me now. QED. That’s how quickly I remembered him assembling that thing.

I had had enough. I needed a sawbuck.

2. Sawbuck v1.0

Remember now, this is 10 or 15 or 14 years ago.

There I was in the driveway with the branches about me. In my rasumfrassage, I determined to make me a sawbuck.

Of course, there were some long-ago scrounged 2x4s in the garage and some oft-used and oft-straightened über-nails. These would have been sufficient, but I had something more in mind. Earlier that day, I had spied a pile of lumber by the curb down the street. Someone was throwing away perfectly good stuff.

I walked down to inspect. And I proudly returned with six long, pristine tongue-and-groove boards under my arms. I set the boards down. Got the 2x4s. Got the nails. And got some screws that many years before I had scrounged from my father’s basement when he sold his house (which would have been like 30 years ago?).

And I proceeded to make me a sawbuck.

3. Sawbuck v2.0

In the years since, the sawbuck has served its purpose well. But that was 10 or 15 or 14 years ago. You remember that, right? (See the opening sentence above.)

Time has passed. The weather has taken its toll, as it will on a sawbuck left out in the elements. Those tongue-and-groove boards have utterly decomposed. So this afternoon I decided that my sawbuck had become a hazard.

The scrounged 2x4s and über-nails from which the business-end of the sawbuck was composed are fine. My father’s basement-stashed screws were still in pristine shape. And there were four tongue-and-groove boards from that years-ago pile down the street remaining in the garage, stacked neatly where I put them them 10 or 15 or 14 years ago. (Ok not right where I put them then, but near enough by.)

Shining sun. Blue sky. Frische Luft. Fast-forward a bit (as you might wish me to do about now), and … I’ve got me a brand-ish new sawbuck. It’s a double doozie. This time I treated the tongue-and-groove boards with Australian Timber Oil, so the boards shouldn’t decompose so quickly, right? They should last … what … 20 years? 

When that time does come, the two remaining tongue-and-groove boards from the pile down the street will be waiting in the garage for Sawbuck v3.0. 

© jumpingfish by David Hasan is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License