Hot or not - Woodshop News

Hot or not

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Here in the California central valley, we all assume that the summer is going to be hot. We are used to week-long heat waves with triple digit temps.

During these times, you can wake up at 2:30 in the morning and it's still 85 degrees. That's the "evening cooling." After a few days of that, everything is hot. The roads, the buildings, the earth itself have all become a giant heat sink.

And the shop is no exception. We open everything up and run huge fans to move the air but sometimes it’s like a blast furnace because the air is so hot. Climate control is simply not practical in a concrete tilt-up building and even if it was, the cost would be prohibitive.

During these times we try to start work at five or six in the morning and get out of there by two in the afternoon. Around here, the peak temps are hit late in the day. The temp just kind of creeps up all day and we finally have to flee for home where the AC is keeping things within reason. Even then, it seems to take hours for your body to cool down.

But these last few summers have been unusual. We have had a few hot spells but none lasting more than a few days and they have been interspersed with weeks of moderate temperatures. It's a bit unnerving because you can never be sure what you are going to get.

I'm not complaining because I have always preferred to have to figure out how to get warm when it's cold out than the other way around. So I go to work in a tee shirt but I bring a sweater along just in case.

D.D.

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