Epic Hindu Temple Pole!

A 50-foot redwood community emblem

OCTOBER 26, 2023

At Out of the Woods sawmill, we're about more than just cutting wood. We're a part of a community that also values history and tradition. A while back, we took on a unique project that brought us into the Milpitas Hindu community. Sri Satya Narayana Swamy Devasthanam in Milpitas commissioned us to create a 50-foot tall traditional flagpole, known as a Dhvajastambha, out of redwood. This type of pole, with deep historical roots, played a pivotal role in ancient Indian towns, signaling the routine of daily life.

The detailed design of this Dhvajastambha posed a challenge, especially with a historian ensuring every aspect was accurate for this traditional Hindu temple project. Initially, the 50-foot length seemed daunting due to our mill’s 20-foot log capacity. However, by acquiring another Lucas 8-30 swing blade mill, we expanded our capacity to 40 feet, streamlining the process and minimizing log movements.

The custom milling began with shaping an 8-foot hexagon at the base, transitioning to an 18-inch rounded pole for 26 feet with a custom jig we devised. The design concluded with squares at both ends, aligning with the traditional architectural nuances.

But our job extended beyond the mill. Delivering and installing this epic pole was next on the list. Partnering with a local crane company, we spent two days on-site ensuring the pole was securely planted as the cement base cured.

A surprising turn came when I discovered an old friend, now a board member at the temple, was someone I had collaborated with 30 years ago in Silicon Valley. This project transcended a typical job; it was a chance to reconnect and contribute to a significant community effort. We were honored to attend the pole's inauguration ceremony, a moment of cultural appreciation.

We are proud of how we navigated through the challenges and created something meaningful for the Milpitas Silicon Valley Hindu temple. This project extended beyond milling wood; it was about fostering connections and honoring a rich cultural heritage. Now, the Dhvajastambha stands tall in Milpitas, a tangible emblem of community and tradition, showcasing the collaborative and skilled craftsmanship our Santa Cruz sawmill brings to local projects.

We love tackling unique and ambitious projects like this one. Got a cool project in mind? Give us a call, we'd be excited to hear about it!

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