Real wood siding is a lot cheaper than fake. The Historical Society met to discuss just how to approach the modest windfall of 2% money* we received from the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community. The consensus was that we don't have a choice, we have to seal the building, so we'll take what we've got and see how far we can stretch it. The treasurer was instructed to research prices and report by via email, and then we'll decide what to do. Which is another way of saying that if we have to we'll dip into our cash reserves to cover expenses that the grant won't.
I had made some jokes about using T1-11 (plywood siding, for the uninitiated. It comes in 4 x 8 sheets). T1-11 would be the cheapest option; it runs about $150 per square, a "square" being the term used to designate 100 square feet of wall area when buying siding. What came next on the price list surprised me. It turned out to be actual wood, the half-round faux logs we'd been contemplating using but that we thought we couldn't afford. They're about double the cost of T1-11 but less than half the cost of truly fake logs, i.e., steel or vinyl made to look like logs, at least from a distance. When it's a foot away from you on a display panel the fact it's fake is glaringly obvious. Really made me wonder why anyone would ever want the vinyl version when it's so glaringly artificial. (Metal I can understand -- it's fire resistant.) For some reason I was thinking that for sure the phony stuff would have to be cheaper than the real product. Nope. You pay more for faux. That strikes me as bizarre, but I am relieved. I'd much rather go with actual wood than with something made from petroleum products.
So now it's basically just a question of measuring the building so we know for sure just how much siding we're going to need. Depending on the total number of squares required, we may opt to just do the two worst walls this summer (the ones we can see daylight through) or we may manage to enclose the whole thing. I can hope. I don't ever want to step into the museum and see water running down the walls again.
*2 percent money = revenue sharing by tribes that operate casinos that were covered by the 1993 Michigan gaming compact.