Wheelie Bins Store

Good news, Andrew has finally made a cover for the wheelie bins. The best bit for me is I now know he can do lovely doors, which is something I often get asked about for the Log Stores

He has designed this wheelie bin store to cover two bins without making it hard to fill them. The one in the photo will house two bins and measures approximately 5’6 tall, 5′ wide and 3′ deep.  As with all our log stores, this wheelie bin store will be delivered fully constructed and ready to use.

The double hinged doors are kept closed with a wooden latch on the inside of each door. The decorative outside door handles are hand carved, the doors will only need to be opened on bin day as the bin lids can be lifted up through the front opening. The top opening and spaces between the slats mean there won’t be a nasty smell build up too.

The wheelie bin store in the images is treated with Blackfriars goldstar light brown, the other colour choices are dark brown, cedar and green.

He will do bespoke for a single bin or several bins.

woodstores.co.uk wheelie bin store

For two bins.

Double Wheelie bin store

Double Wheelie bin store

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Buying a Log Store

There are so many things to look for when buying a log store it can get very confusing. Different sizes, different types of wood, delivery options, can you choose a colour, will you have to build it yourself, and so many differing costs for what appears to be the same thing.

We believe it should be as easy as possible to get a Log Store to suit you and your home.

The first thing to establish is the size you want, and the size you need. The size you want will be based on what room you have and where. Some find a larger log store  further from the house and a smaller one near the door works very well. The advantage is, the small one can be used in the summer for the BBQ charcoal and Chimnea wood!

Generally for a single open fire or log burner, about a cubic metre of wood will last you a good long time. It will last longer if the wood is ‘hard wood’ so if you can get hard wood, or a 50/50 mixture of soft and hard wood.  For very large log burners, or multiple log burners, you might need 2 or more cubic metres. As an example, one of our customers with 2 large log burners, has 4 of our Long Log Stores,which he fills up in Spring to season over summer, and burns over winter, that is 4 cubic metres which he can buy when wood is at its cheapest and use when he needs it (yes the wood suppliers do put the price up in winter, because wood gets more scarce!).  Last winter was long and bitter, so he had to buy an extra cubic metre of logs.

Some Log Stores are manufactured in sections abroad and imported by UK companies ready to be sent out in a flat pack, some are manufactured in the UK using imported wood, these will usually be tanalised, or may come untreated and be tanalised or otherwise treated here. Tanalised means chemically pressure treated, often with a poison which can contain copper and arsenic. You should never burn tanalised wood, it is toxic. Extra care should be taken when handling tanalised wood, wear gloves. If sawing or working on it in any way take care and wear protection from inhalation.

Some, like our log stores at Woodstores will be treated by hand.  Some wood has a natural preservative which also protects from wood boring insects, even some pines have this, so when combined with regular treatment (painted yearly) will last a lifetime. Even wood with limited natural preservative will last for decades so long as they  by a yearly coat of preservative. If you grow fruit or veg, or have an organic garden, this is in my opinion the best type of wood treatment to use (if any).  Larch or Pine will last for about 10 years WITHOUT any treatment (so long as it is not in contact with the soil). With treatment done yearly (and it only takes an hour or two)  you can double or triple this life span.

When we say UK handmade we mean it. We are a small family firm, but we get our wood locally,  we mill wood ourselves, plane it, and measure and cut each piece by hand.  We do not mean we nail together already manufactured pieces, or flat pack for you to nail together.  Check with  your supplier how their stores are put together, ask if they have a rigid frame, make sure you are not getting a 4 piece structure nailed together, or cheap wood that won’t look good.

Andrew uses 3 x 2 for the basic structure, 12 sectioned fitted together then screwed in place with 3 inch anti corrosion gold colour screws.  The sides and back are 3/4 inch, each piece nailed on with sheradised corrosion-resistant ringed nails, builders use it for where very strong joints are required. The rings keep that nail in place.  The roof is 1/2 inch overlapped board, has the angle set for maximum falloff of rain, and underneath (out of sight) a sheeting of protective membrane. Keeps the store visually nice without the need for an ugly roof covering because it is underneath.

Delivery, there is no way around it, delivery costs.  Petrol and time costs and combine to make delivery seem expensive, but when you think the cost is going towards making sure a very large log store arrives safely, often hundreds of miles away, in one piece and ready to use, it doesn’t seem so bad. We use Hickmans because they are a local family firm, and we know they will treat our consignments as if they were their own. We have never been let down by them in all the time we have been in business.  We work with our customers, every order is important to us, so delivery is at your convenience not ours; to be able to offer this customer service we do need time to make each log store.

I’ve tried here to cover some of the things we have been asked by our customers, and I am sure there will be other things I think of later to add. If you have any questions feel free to ask, we are always happy to help. You can find contact details on the website. We are happy to talk about wood burning in general because we understand it is a new experience for some, and are happy to share our knowledge.

Sadie

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Log Store Wood Preservative

Until recently we have been using Cuprinol to treat our log stores.  It took us a while when we first started to find a finish we were happy with.  A nice oil finish, a good choice of colours, and easy to treat using a brush which I believe gives a better finish than roller or spray.

Then around April  2011 they changed the formulation. It became a sort of grey sludge consistency which was very hard to brush on, and the colours were slightly different .  The finish we didn’t like as much either, it seemed a bit dull compared to oil.

Back to the drawing board, and trying several other varieties of treatment that are spirit based. Out of all of them the Blackfriars seemed the best for our needs.  So now we use Blackfriars. We get the Gold Star version, it only had 4 colours Light Brown, Dark Brown, Cedar and Green, but the gold star treatment, the end finish, and the ease of use by brush swung it for us.

The colour chart of their website of course bears no resemblance to the colour it actually looks on wood!  But let’s face it,  Light Brown is light, but a  darker colour than it is shown, and Dark Brown really is very dark, which again you wouldn’t guess from the colour chart which shows it as a mid brown.

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In like a Lion

You know the saying. It remains to be seen if March will go out like a Lamb, but it certainly came in like a Lion. I had a busy January and a bit more quiet February, but it did give me time to indulge my other interests, wood turning and wood carving. In fact my wife decided to build another website for some of it, take a look if you have time http:/www.woodtablelamps.co.uk. Block Oak Tablelamp

Now March has brought daily orders for bespoke Log Stores, so it is back to the workshop for me.  It seems some people need a much smaller depth but still with a long width and height to fit in smaller spaces. Obviously this has issues of stability, so for these orders we have adapted the design slightly by adding one thicker back board then drilling pilot holes so the Wood Store can be screwed into a wall.

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Wood Stores

Mid February, thankfully no sign of the cold snap we have been promised this month, so we are on course to finish all orders on time.

We have a slightly new design for the Recycle Bin Stores, and once we have the prototype finished  and photographed we can add it back to the website.

Wood Stores.

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Save Money on Fuel

Fuel efficient woodburning stove

Fuel efficient woodburning stove

Using Logs as fuel is a cheap and eco friendly way to keep warm in winter. It is a renewable and sustainable source of heating.

Buy wood as dry as possible. Dry (seasoned) logs will burn hotter and longer, so keeping the logs in a log store to air dry is very important, and will work out more economical. By storing under cover in a wood store the logs will not reabsorb water. Buy as early as you can. Bring some logs inside to house dry for a few days prior to burning, try to always have enough ‘house dried’ logs for your fire.

You can burn unseasoned (wet) wood, but it will burn quicker and with less heat, and will leave more sticky soot, meaning you need the chimney cleaned more often.

A coal grate is not really suitable for wood, cover it with a metal base plate for best results. Reduce the area of the lowest part of fire with sloping fire bricks to deepen the ash and charcoal bed but leaving more space for logs above.

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Mid Summer

This has been a busy summer, probably helped by the dismal weather across the UK. After the heatwave we went back to the usual damp and grey, so people must have been thinking about their winter fuel.

With July and August orders we haven’t stopped, they do say that a business started in a recession stands a good chance of surviving, and that seems to be the case with us thankfully. People like our designs, and we never promise delivery we can’t make.

Talking about deliveries, we have a new addition to the family, named The Green Goddess! We decided we needed a Pick Up to make local deliveries. We have a fabulous local pallet delivery company for further afield, but the Green Goddess just makes life a bit easier for local.

Bespoke orders account for about a third of the orders so far, which doesn’t surprise me, we all want something that fits nicely in the space we have at home and that looks attractive.

Have a look at the new photo on the front page, we have a cat who just loves to pose, and looks almost as good as Jake does in his pictures.

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