I'm planning to move from Nebraska to Texas in the near future and have a
couple of questions about heat and humidity in the shop. First, are there
special precautions or maintenance regimens to protect machinery? How does
one handle wood movement if furniture is constructed in a shop without air
conditioning and then moved to the air conditioned home where it will live?
Thanks in advance...
It does make it kinda hard to tell. I'm in southeast texas 30 miles from
the gulf and 70 miles east of Houston. I really can't say I have
problems with wood movement. I can tell you you need to invest in a can
of topcoat or a can of Johnson's wax for your cast iron.
Just for the past month ... the shop is like a steam bath during the day.
It's tolerable if I can keep it open, but if I have to close it to go
somewhere (which is ten times a day here lately), by the time I get back,
forget about it.
There are two types of air conditioning in Texas. On the gulf coast,
the humidity can get a bit high, so conventional A/C is used. In
central Texas, west Texas and the panhandle, the humidity is
sufficiently low to use a "swamp cooler" that blows air over
watersoaked fiber mats.
It seldom freezes south of Huntsville, but ice and snow can be found
on I35 around the Red river and going north into OK. If you get into
Dalhart in the Texas panhandle, it can be a might brisk at 10-16
degrees in the winter.
Now, which of the 254 counties in Texas will be your new destination?
Yep... I was in Snyder, up in Scurry County, a few weeks back and one
evening it got plumb brisk for June. Got a blast-from-the-past in how the
folks greet you ... Welcome to Scurry County", not "Welcome to Snyder" ...
as in most of them live out on the wide open spaces thereabouts, far removed
from the town.
And what a great drive ... 290 from Houston to Brenham, then 36, ALL the way
to Abilene. Heart O' Texas drive, for sure.
Saw a still functioning drive-in movie outside of Gatesville, and you'll
find that Hamilton, it not one of the prettiest, is still one of those old
fashion towns that looks like Texas used to look before freeways and
absentee land ownership.
It was most definitely a pause from city life that refreshed.
Here in Austin, ice on the roads can be a problem. But the last couple
years, not much ice.
Texas has five seasons;
Dec. & Jan. winter
Feb. Mar. April, spring
May & June are summer
July & August is super summer
Sept. & Oct. back to summer
Nov. is fall
Depends upon what you call "N. Texas" ... to a Texan, that would be up
around the Dallas/FW, Denton area, and the weather there is often similar to
Now the Texas Panhandle is a different story all together. Those barbed wire
fences between the Texas Panhandle and your part of the country doesn't hold
back much of that Canadian Christmas wind.
That also depends on which part of TX "Texan" you're talking about...up
here in the Panhandle, the two are pretty much synonyms--it's a long
ways to the Red River country down there... :)
I recall as a kid going to grandparents' in "The Valley" (they
farmed/dairy'ed between McAllen and Pharr) -- it was <45 min from the
house out of KS, across the OK panhandle and into TX -- "when do we get
to <Gfandma's???" started soon thereafter... :)
And, invariably, it would be a wet, cloudy spell and we'd be freezin' to
death in the damp where we would have been comfortable at 30 degrees
colder in the dry...
I live in Houston and basically do not worry with wood movement. Humidity
varies from about 35% when it is reeeeeel dry to 100% . No problems moving
from the open shop to a controlled encironment. I use TopCote a couple of
times a year on the iron surfaces and have no rust.
That said there are parts of Texas that are only 300 miles south of Nebraska
and parts of Texas are way farther south than the "Deep South" slightly
north of the Keys in Florida.
I depends on where in Texas you are moving to. I live in the DFW
metro, and I don't have AC in my garage/shop.
I don't have any problems with my tools rusting. Basically wax the
iron a couple times a year - thats all I do and I don't have rust.
East Texas (east of what I call 'the pine tree line') gets more rain,
but I don't think its significantly more humid (but I don't live there
so I may be wrong - ask one who lives there). The gulf coast is more
humid on average, but again, I don't think its more of a problem then
any other costal area. West Texas is very dry so you don't have any
worries there. Again, I speak for DFW only though.
AC does dry the air inside, but most of Texas is pretty dry anyway so
the difference is a few percent. Second, the weather changes so fast
that the impact of a humid spring followed by a dry summer is minimized
to a certain extent. We don't have long months of humidity followed by
long months of dryness - its much more dynamic.
Hot, you bet. In DFW we have had a humid spell, but its between hot
and dry spells. In fact, we have a heat advisory in effect for the
next several days. Dry and highs in the upper 90's/lower 100's.
I tell everyone that like the North, Texas has 3 tough months. Not
Jan/Feb/Mar but instead June/July/Aug. I work in the shop pretty much
year 'round, but in those 3 summer months, its early in the morning or
late at night - whichever the kids decide is better for them :) That
said 95 degrees is my limit so little gets done :( until it cools off
for real in late Sept. Its rarely below 35 in the winter so I work
anytime I like then.
Finally I'll say this - as long as you follow the basic "rules" of wood
movement, you'll be fine. Unfortunately I have not built every piece
of furniture in my house. My bedroom was made in China <blush> and I
have never had a problem, my dining room was made in Vermont (or
wherever Ethan Allen is made) no problems there. You know, we do have
real wood down here. We even have tall buldings downtown! Cars, well
thats another story, I ride my horse to work everyday. I don't know
about the WW in the local saloon though, they made the bar out of wood
(in case you didn't see it)
Sorry, could resist the jab.
When you get here, welcome to Texas.
Oops! Yes, I should have been more specific about location. ;) I will be
moving to Magnolia, a small town about an hour and a half north of Houston.
Plenty humid. Sounds like I shouldn't have problems if I follow my usual
High humidity all the time. Not a breath of breeze. A little cool in
the winter. Fairly close to the Texas Renaissance Festival in
Plantersville (http://www.texrenfest.com /). Piney woods and acidic
soil. Hurricanes now and then. Welcome to Texas.
On Sat, 23 Jul 2005 11:09:54 -0500, "news.central.cox.net"
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