Saturday, February 4, 2017

The Sauna, and the hilarity

Did a little more sauna work last night, will do a bit more today. I think I'm getting it figured out all right. Toward the end of a pretty long night I figured out the water/heat ratio for that thing. Of course there were the usual hilarious hiccups along the way. First I had to install the dampener in the first chunk of stove pipe. This was a little tricky. See, the dampeners are made for narrow walled pipes. The pipe on the sauna is a piece of Selkirk insulated pipe, so it can be 2" from combustibles and everything is fine. Interior diameter of the pipe is 6", exterior diameter of the pipe is 8". The usual rods that come with dampeners aren't long enough on the 6" piece. So I'm hunting around Big-R and I discover they have both 6" and 8" dampeners. I bought one of each, took the rod out of the 8" and put it in the 6". Of course then when I walked out to the work truck 7 of the 10 studs on the left rear duals are snapped off (probably from the deep snow last Thursday that I got stuck in). The mechanics sent the hook and brought me another truck. Then I'm home putting the dampener in. Pinched the living crap outta my thumb when it finally drove home through the hole I drilled for it. Ouchy. Got it all back together and noticed that I had no idea which way the rotation on the lever lined up with the actual dampener. Had to pull it all back apart to figure that out.
Loaded the firebox on the sauna and started it up. Put a new plug on the light inside so it was safer. (I also got a weather proof switch to add on later. Perhaps today. Then I did my other chores: firewood for the house; lighting the wood stove; bringing in the mail; closing up the chickens for the night; closing up the house. After all that I hauled some more wood over to burn in the sauna and loaded the water into the stove top tub and the water jacket. This is when I learned that: a) I have to clean out the rock tub today and b) the two receptacles are separate. Point taken for later. It's getting cold and dark by now. So I worked on stuff in the house for a while to let the sauna heat up, stocking the fire box from time to time.
I also started drinking some of the beers I got to celebrate, once again, not dying in a flaming wreck because I managed to avoid having the wheels fall off the trouble truck.
Flash forward a few hours, I've put chairs on the little deck I built to keep us out of the mud on the sauna, and I'm into at least 3 of those delicious micro brews. I got a bit hot in the sauna, so I went outside to sit in the chairs on my fancy new deck. Whoops! I missed putting one of the chair legs ON the deck, so over I go backwards, feet windmilling in the air trying to run UP and now fall onto my ass in the sticker bushes. I managed partly. Then my legs are all scratched up, my feet have thorns in 'em and I just barely managed to not drop my balls directly into the gooseberry bush. Thank goodness for small favors.
I limp into the house, and pull out all the thorns I can after I wipe the blood off the sauna. Grrrrr. BUT, I have more beers left, the sauna is still hot and the rending doesn't hurt so much now. I go back out. By this time the heat has finally boiled off all the liquid in the stove top tub. I throw a little water onto the rocks, the temp climbs, the steam hits, it's lovely. Lesson # 3 learned for the night.
Today I'll clean out the rock tub on top, clean out the firebox, perhaps put up the weather proof switch for the light. And I'll try to not fall into the damned bushes again.

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