Prepper Diary April 21: Cold Weather Slows our Outdoor Work

primed coop
The parts of the chicken coop rafters and fascia that will be exposed to the weather have been primed.

We’re heading back into winter for a few days as a system packing cold air punches its way through the region. Forecasts predict overnight temps in the low 20s.

To prepare for cold weather and the possibility of snow or ice trapping us on our mountain again, we went grocery shopping and stocked up on eggs and other essentials. We picked up the mail and ran some other errands. Then I loaded up the largest indoor stack of firewood I’ve had in a month or six weeks and split some kindling. We haven’t burned a fire in the upstairs fireplace for weeks, but we put enough wood up there to cover at least two days.

Unlike deep winter when cold weather could last for days or weeks, this system should clear out quickly and we hope to see warm weather return in just a few days.

Chicken Coop Update

I primed the external parts of the chicken coop’s rafters and fascia that are exposed to the weather after the roof is on. Of course it has to be at least 50 degrees, with 55 being better, to paint, so my painting time is limited. Once the cold weather clears out, I will do some caulking and then paint the exposed areas with a good external paint.

I never liked painting. I have to admit that the new paint sprayer we picked up at Harbor Freight for less than $100 did a pretty good job, but I still don’t enjoy painting. Tip to do-it-yourselfers: Don’t use a paint sprayer in the wind. My problem? The wind doesn’t let down much up here. I guess that’s just Mountain Living.

I also cut out a corner out of two 2x4s and installed them in the coop. This created a slot that will allow me to drop sections of plywood in on top. They will slide down and form a divider, dividing the coop into two parts. That will allow us to raise new chicks in a third of the coop while the adult birds in the other portion.

Inlet Grove
This inlet grove or slot will accept pieces of plywood to divide the chicken coop into two sections.

Using the Table Saw

I have a Ryobi table saw I inherited from my father-in-law who was quite the woodworker. It spent several years in a storage unit with the drill press and band saw. Building the chicken coop has been my first opportunity to use it.

I tuned into YouTube university and after watching several videos on table saws and I could make rip cuts in short order. Then I found a series of videos from the manufacturer on this specific model, and that helped me figure out how to set up the miter table and do cross cuts and miter cuts.

Next, I plan to install and use the dado, but I don’t haven’t found the throat plate for it. I’ve seen them on eBay, so if I don’t turn one up, and I that option.  The dad will definitely help me when I build beehive components.

Prepper News Updates

A jury found Derek Chauvin guilty of killing George Floyd on all three counts yesterday afternoon, a verdict that was not only welcomed by most but seemed proof that the justice system does work, albeit slowly.

I’ve written before how the world seems to moving closer to war under Biden. I believe Trump’s unpredictability scared foreign aggressors, so they kept their heads down. But while Donald might have launched a nuke at someone, Biden doesn’t scare anyone, certainly not Russia. As we can see in this article, it looks like the Ukraine is going to be swamped with Russian soldiers any time now. Biden will probably follow Obama’s play book of drawing a red line in the sand and then backpedaling when someone like Putin crosses it. If that happens, we can expect China and other enemies to be more antagonistic and take actions they would not dare under the prior administration.

Another interesting article points out that Trump was the first president not to get American involved in a foreign war and the Pentagon fought back at his every attempt to withdraw troops, even as Trump strengthened the navy and other armed forces with additional budget and better equipment. Trump was viewed as dangerous by the world. Biden is dangerous to the U.S.