--Photo by nikki tate
Chainsaws are your primary tool when hollowing a base. So if you don’t know how to use one, you may want to re-consider the hollowed-base method. Chainsaws are dangerous and all proper precautions need to be taken. If you’re inexperienced with a chainsaw, find someone who is who can do the work for you, or properly train you. If you decide to use it, make sure you have a mentor and study the manual for the model you are using. You want to know exactly how to work it and troubleshoot it. Some basic safety rules are to avoid loose clothing and to make sure any long hair is tied up and out of your way. Wear gloves and a helmet, and work in a ventilated space with no clutter or anything you can trip on.
Again, chainsaws are no joke- missing fingers aren’t uncommon and even lethal accidents can happen without the necessary safety measures. Don’t make a hollowed taiko base if you’re not 100% sure about chainsaws!
If you do decide to go through with the chainsaw, you’ll also need fuel and bar-and-chain oil. The chain oil is a lubricant for the chainsaw and is available in DIY or hardware stores. The fuel is a mixture of gasoline and an oil that is specifically made for chainsaw engines. The gasoline you can get at any gas station. The fuel oil should be available in any hardware store. Always make sure the model of your chainsaw correlates with the proper diluting ratios. A common oil to gasoline ratio is 1:50, but consult the manual if you're unsure.
Other than the chainsaw, you don’t need a whole lot in terms of equipment. A grinder, a sander, a chisel and some measuring equipment should be all you need. There might be some other little tools (like drivers and hammers) you need along the way but nothing that isn’t readily available. If you don’t have a chainsaw or any of the electrical equipment, you can rent them at a hardware store or a place like Home Depot.
In terms of workspace, you want something outdoors. You’re going to get a lot of woodchips, sawdust and chainsaw fumes, so it’s vital that the space is well-ventilated. Also make sure it’s a flat space with no clutter- you don’t want be bumping and tripping around with a chainsaw in your hand. Finally, have a way to protect your logs from the weather when you’re not working on them. A roof is ideal, but wrapping the logs in tarp also works. Also make sure that your logs aren’t touching the ground- put them on crates or blocks of wood.
If you’re having trouble finding workspace and equipment, ask around friends, stores and universities- there might be some accessible woodshops with everything you need.
How to Make a Taiko Base (1. Choosing a Tree)
How to Make a Taiko Base (2. Equipment and Workspace)
How to Make a Taiko Base (3. Cuts and Measurements)
How to Make a Taiko Base (4. Chainsaw and Hollow)