I am pleased to be able to bring more news in the from of a second update from Sean Adcock on the progress being made at this year's restoration project going on presently at Opus 40 in Saugeries New York.
"We have hiccupped along logisitically but we are going up, anything electrically powered is still cursed but we have the hoist working manually a godsend for the tie stones. These are going in at around 3 feet centres and every 20 inches or so up the wall. Some (up to 6 feet long) are inserted into holes in-between the slabs we are building against... there is a worry that these cannot settle in the same way as adjacent stones and might tip if/when the wall settles, they might however help to literally tie the wall back, there is no way of knowing so we mix in other shorter (4 feet long, everything is relative) ties which just but against the slabs in the back. "
"However tying is not the only function of these stones, there is another often overlooked aspect of their role, of particular importance in a structure of this height...they also serve as impenetrable barriers to the hearting we place above, reducing the potential for this to settle and any back pinning of subsequent stones to move. We are keeping this pinning to a minimum- mostly only between one building stone and a subsequent one, again so the pin cannot settle. The whole process is about reducing the potential for movement and trying to control any that will occur in the long run."
"We are managing to to tie into the remains of the original wall which overhangs its base by 4 inches or so in 17 feet, in places we have removed hearting and achieved the correct batter by hitting the stones with a length of oak tree... I wonder, is this where the term battering ram comes from?"
"Over the weekend Lydia Noble from the UK, along with Matt Carter and Chuck Eblacker helped get the wall up to staging/trestle/scaffold height. They were followed by a group from the (Vermont) Stone Trust. Brian Post, Seth Harris, Torvin Larson, TJ Mora and Michael Murphy who helped clear and sort the rest of the stone from the collapse which had been acting as a work platform, and rigged up the staging... it then rained, the pond refilled and they spent an inordinate amount of time in the water, moving stone. Their unstinting and uncomplaining effort over two days has helped resolve many of the logistical problems and the site is now set fair for Andre Lemieux, Doug Bell and Menno Bramm who have just arrived from the northern wilds."
"Onwards and upwards." SEan