Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Year 16, Week 32, Day One (week 864)

Year 16, Week 32, Day One (week 864)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
08-20-16 Saturday

86 degrees early morning, 95 degrees late afternoon. A nice breeze herded puffs and blobs over the Everglades while blue sky remained over the ocean and us. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.

THURSDAY

I went for the turning club meeting, but was intercepted out in the parking lot. We meet at a school and the school was closing early this evening because it was the start of school so a bunch of us simply gathered and talked while waiting to see if anybody else would show up. One of the officers was calling up everybody he had a phone number for, telling them the meeting was cancelled. A few people showed what they brought. I did not think about it later, but I should have taken pictures of the work. 
I got home early, but still later than I normally get to bed. It was nice talking to everyone that was there, though. 

There was just a glow in the Eastern sky as I headed to Mom’s house. It was not long ago when the sun was already up at this time. 
Right after breakfast, we stopped at a yard sale. It was mostly tools. The guy was getting rid of a bunch of extras he accumulated. While a lot of the tools were stuff I wanted many years ago, the only things that really caught my eye was a very large bench vice I don’t need it) and a transit level (also did not need but would have offered it at work). I did not ask the price on either. At the end of my day I stopped back to the yard sale and both were sold and over half his other stuff was gone too. 

I am still fighting the bug I had last week. Each day it is better, but it is taking time. We got back from breakfast and I laid down and napped for a little while. That helped immensely. Mom showed me some projects she had in mind for me, and then I headed out on the yard sale circuit. I decided to clock the distance out of curiosity.
I headed North from Mom’s house, then went to the other side of the highway and went all the way back down. Where I would turn to go to mom’s house after the upper loop, it was 9 miles. I figure another mile to get home. 
I then headed down to the southern limit of our run , crossed the highway and headed north again. Where the high speed driving started, was at 15 miles. Other than about three miles of fast driving, the trip is at 25 mph or less. When I got back to Mom’s house, it was about a 20 mile journey. That is the long loop. We don’t always do that. I was not planning on it until I decided to clock the distance. Then I was forced to go the whole thing.

As mentioned, the first yard sale was before we got home from breakfast. As I headed out, I passed that one. I found a yard sale where they had big mirrors for sale. I told them that I thought the mirror was haunted. I walked in front of the mirror and some goofy guy stepped in front of me and I could not see my reflection. They got a kick out of that.
A short distance farther, I found another yard sale and this one was where I did some buying. I got a bunch of files, and some clamps, along with a cassette tape set of the bible. This recording is read by Alexander Scourby. He is very good. He pronounces the complex names with ease. Now I have to find out which of my tape decks will work after all these years.  It could also end up being a gift, if I find someone who can play them.
Heading south, I found several yard sales. They always have interesting stuff, but not the right stuff.  One I just drove by as they had about twelve pieces of furniture and not much else.
Just before where the fast traffic starts, I found a yard sale and there I got a cook book. Not that I need another cook book. I don’t use the ones I have, but it was interesting so I got it.This one was on TAPAS. It is Spanish finger dishes. It started out as bread with something on it, set on top a glass of wine to keep the flies out. 
In all, I saw nine yard sales but two I did not stop at. One was a woman who always has them and I have gotten about three things from her in the past few years. I also saw signs for two places I could not find. 

Once I got home, Mom and I went out back to work on one of her projects. She had a tropical plant that had gotten too tall, so she had it trimmed down but decided to have it completely removed. This way, the only plant that is still in the ground on her property is a small Clerodendron tree.She is keeping it small. 
NEWS FLASH: Itinerant wood worker cuts down tree. Falls on neighbor’s house demolishing it. More news at eleven. 
The remains of the tree when I arrived, was about five foot tall. Most of the pieces are about the diameter of your thumb and it is a very soft wood. I used the Saws-all to cut the pieces to half the length and to remove thin pieces sticking out from the base of the main trunk. 
To remove the main trunk, I had to cut at ground level. I am never good on the ground, but am worse bending over while sitting in a chair. I first tried the Saws-all to cut the biggest trunk, but the blade I was using was not long enough. Part way into the cut, the end was tapping on the wood on the other side of the cut. I then swapped to the electric chain saw. Even though the chain saw worked better, it was still not easy as this used to be for me. It took some time to work through the wood. Mom pushed on the trunk to keep it from binding on me. Wet wood, which this was, swells when heated. Once I cut it, there were a couple roots that came out of the trunk a little high and went into the ground. I had to cut that to free the trunk.
I then cut the second one the same way, but I cut the roots first. This one was a little smaller.
Mom stacked the debris to take out for pickup later.
I will say that it took some determination to not grab the big pieces of wood for carving or turning. It is not like I am out of wood or projects to make with the wood. 

I pulled out my lathe to work on the drum sticks I started last week. I swapped ends a couple times with each one as I worked, bringing it down closer to size and then shaping the striking end. The tool slipped and I mess up the ball at the end of one of the sticks. 
When I was done, both sticks were a bit too big in diameter and they don’t need to be that long. They are a lot closer to what I am after, though. Next time I work on them, I might make them shorter so I can get the striking ends of both sticks the same. I kind of wanted to get both sticks finished today, but one was fighting me, the tool dug in and the stick bounced in the middle. I did most of the clean up of my tool marks with my 32 grit sand paper. 
I am not sure if I will use the sandpaper to get the sticks smaller, or use my cutting tools. I should use the tools even it if is nothing more than practice, but sometimes discretion is the better part of valor. They will have to be sanded to a much finer grit in the end anyway.  

I had it by that time. I did not even bother sweeping up the little bit of sawdust I had made. I don’t like leaving a mess but I was at my limit. I could have done more after an hour or so of rest, but I chose to relax and cool down the rest of the day. 

I have no idea what I will do tomorrow.

(Sunday Note) I showed my brother the files and clamps I got and he took some. He then asked if we wanted to stay out in the heat or go into the air conditioning.  That ended my day for any possible projects. 

I will see what I will do next weekend. 
1423

files and clamps. The square piece near the bottom edge is a machining clamp.That is going into my mini lathe box.

Spanish cook book on finger food and Bible on Tape

Showing the tapes with the bible recording.

The remains of the tree I cut down  that flattened the neighbor's house.those are 12" X12" square patio stones. 

The stumps of the tree.

The dark stick is one I am using for a pattern. the other two are the ones I am making.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Year 16, Week 31, Day One (week 863)

Year 16, Week 31, Day One (week 863)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
08-13-16 Saturday

86 degrees early morning 95 degrees late afternoon. Herds of sheep clouds would cross the sky and disappear, only to be followed by another herd. A good breeze kept things cool enough. No strong weather until very late in the day. We had feeder bands from the storm that wandered east along the gulf coast all week, so the weather expectations were horrible for today. I was actually surprised there were any yard sales out, but the weather turned out to be nice all day. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism. 

I fought something all week. Coughing, but not runny eyes or nose. Very, very tired during the day. We were going for breakfast and Mom found her tire low. We decided to use my truck. When we got back, the tire was even lower. I got out my air pump that plugs in the power outlet in the cab (Cigarette lighter for the old folks) and tried to pump the tire up. Well, when I put the nozzle on the stem, air escaped. I thought it might be the core, but then found that it hissed when I moved it. More exploration showed it was a cut in the stem. Mom called someone and got the tire changed and then took the car to the place she had some wheel work earlier in the week to get it fixed. While she was doing that, I went and laid down, because I was having troubles keeping my eyes open. I slept for over an hour solid. 

At Ten, I got up and decided to hit the yard sales. I found one yard sale just a few blocks away. She had a lot of cross-stitch books. She also had children's crafts and toys. 
I later realized that those cross stitch books could be used for patterns for scroll sawing, coloring books and many other things. Anyway, I left there without getting anything.

Several blocks away, I ran across another yard sale that mainly had kids toys. That was also not something I needed.

I then traveled the Northern arc of my long loop and found nothing. I had gotten to Mom's area, where I had stopped last week (which is about a third of the total trip),  and decided to go just a little farther figuring I would go to where I  had seen a sign near the place we had breakfast, but had skipped it then.
Just South of the area, I found an estate sale. I realize now that I never entered the kitchen. The house was a rather nice design. Three story high living room ceiling, two story ceilings everywhere else. There were second story bedrooms which I never went up to. I saw a Samaria sword that was just for looks and was over priced. I saw some stuffed animals and toys. I somehow resisted the stuffies. It helped that my teddy bears on my desk at home won’t let me bring any home.
This house is going to be torn down to the ground and rebuilt in a different design. The house we saw last month, that they were going to take down, was not a design I liked. This one is more a standard design and was nice. 

I followed the big loop all the way to the south end, and back up to the area we had breakfast before I found another yard sale which was the sign we saw earlier in the morning. She was basically sold out. There were a few interesting things, but I had no use for them at this moment. She was a cleaning lady and people give her stuff. She had her yard sale to unload the stuff she no longer had use for.

I was disappointed that I had not gotten anything. Part of the fun of yard sailing is bringing home some treasure - the capture during the big hunt. I was surprised there were even that many yard sales considering what weather was looking at us until morning. 

Once I got home, I decided to stay inside and rest for the remainder of the day. I had been fighting tiredness all week and decided a rest day would be a good idea. 
At about three, I considered strongly to go out and work on some project, but decided that I would never have enough recovery time before it was time to leave. Early in the day, I had zonked out so hard, and I did not want to test my endurance. I ended the day without accomplishing anything other than running around.

I will see what I accomplish tomorrow.



Year 16, Week 31, Day One (week 863)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
08-14-16 Sunday

88 degree mid morning, 93 afternoon. Some wetness early morning as I was getting ready to leave but was completely gone when I got outside and on the road. Lots of puffs and a breeze all day. Some towers here and there, some signs of wetness far west. This weather report is brought to you by the City of Pompano Beach and the City of Sunrise Department of Tourism. 

My brother was not expected to come up, but he showed up because he was between jobs he was traveling to.  He stayed for lunch. We saw some of Mom's pictures as a slide show on TV. Afterwards, my brother and I went outside. He needed to tack up a couple wires that were hanging down and in the way. I helped him by finding some screws, and then handing him pieces and parts as he stood on a ladder and worked. 

I left soon after he did. I needed something, and decided that a Walmart next to The Sawgrass Mall might have it. The Sawgrass Mall is the county's super mall. I have never walked the length of it and likely would need a lift back to the car afterwards. I only stop at stores around the outside. This Walmart is just a block away. 
I found a parking space really close to the building. There are five parking spots where the water does not drain. I am wearing work-boots so parking there was perfect.. Any other available parking spot was a very long ways away. 
This Walmart is as big as any of the biggest stores in the county, which there are half a dozen big ones, but I figured this store would be kept well stocked as there was tight competition nearby and heavy traffic. It had been there for a lot of years, but it looked new inside. 
I found what I was after immediately, but then decided to check around a bit for a few other things. One thing I was after was that spray you put on fabric to make it water resistant. I figured it would be in camping, which was the far end of the store. Well, they did not have any. I did find the liquid gas for camp stoves. I had wondered if I was ever going to see any of that. I had not seen it in any stores I had been in before. I have several camp stoves and a couple lanterns that use the liquid fuel. I wondered if they were going to be just junk. NOPE. I got two cans so I have enough for many uses. After some heavy searching, I found a couple other things. I spent more than I intended, and walked farther than planned, but I got some stuff I needed. 
When I got home, I knew I had walked my limit. I am glad I did not have to park way out away from the building. I need to do that more often as it is good exercise. The bug I was fighting all week appeared to be almost gone. There was no tiredness at all today. I am happy about that.

On Thursday, I have a turning club meeting. I don't have any projects to show as I had worked on roughing platters, not finishing them. 
I have no idea what the weather will be like next weekend. Hopefully I will have a chance to work on one of many projects I have in mind. 

I will see what I do next weekend.

1412

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Year 16, Week 30, Day One (week 862)

Year 16, Week 30, Day One (week 862)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
08-06-16 Saturday

86 degrees at dawn, 96 past noon. Nice breeze in the afternoon. We got some heavy showers at about nine and then that cleared out and the rest of the day was pretty good the rest of the day, until dusk when some more showers passed by. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism. 

We hit two yard sales directly from breakfast. I then went out on my own. I visited three yard sales. I had headed North to start the great loop like I have done previous weeks. While there was nothing heading North, on the way south, I hit a couple yard sales.  When I pulled into the last one, the sky was dripping. I then skipped a yard sale I saw signs for, about four blocks away, becuase the sky opened up. I quickly got back to Mom’s area and headed home.
What I saw the most of was kitchen stuff. I saw several cook books. I always wanted to learn how to cook a microwave or a blender, but have not bothered looking at the recipes. I wonder what a microwave tastes likee.....
One woman had a device that is supposed to heat English Muffins and cook an egg at the same time for a breakfast sandwich. I handled it a little, but realized it was too specialized for my needs. She also had a food processor with two heads. One had a grating blade in it and I think it might have been a juicer. The other head had a chopper. Cute, but I chose not to get that either. There was a French Fry chopper with two sizes of blades. I handled it, then realized I will never make French Fries, let alone that way and I am good enough with a knife to do the same thing with less clean-up. I might even have a fry cutter somewhere. If I do, it was one mom gave me when I moved into my place.
I had seen other interesting devices but walked away without them. 

After resting a while, Mom and I went to Walmart. I visited different sections, like the electronics section for a memory chip for my tablet. I remembered I had one already. In the Grocery sections, the three things I was after, were unavailable. And everything else I considered, I already have at home I ended up not buying anything. It was a good walk. The cart makes it easier.

After a bit longer rest, I finally went out back. I had made a pair of Mahogany drum sticks some time ago. Early this year, I broke one. I decided I would try and make a replacement. I was not concerned that the wood might match, just wanted a second stick What I found was all the sticks that might be used, were too short. 
I did find another piece of wood that was slightly longer than needed. It was also wide enough to get two sticks. I had dug it out for a different project that never happened. If I cut it right, I likely could have gotten four, but I was not that ambitious today so it became only two. More room to correct for errors. 
I cut it on the band saw and was reminded I still have that meat-cutting blade in the saw. The teeth on a normal saw is bent slightly to the side to make for a wider kerf and less chance of binding. The teeth of this blade is not bent to the side as one wants the thinnest cut when cutting meat. It is surprising how difficult it is to cut straight with that thing. The blade develops a wander and does not correct easily. The kerf allows for corrections.
After I cut the board into two pieces. I used my knife to knock off the corners. That saved me about three passes with the tool on the lathe. 
Now the wood is rectangular. It did not fit properly in the chuck. What I did was to find the rough center of the wood, stuck the tail-stock point in place. I started the lathe and rounded the first two inches of the wood. I had learned that even if the piece is at a bad angle, if you round just a tiny bit of the wood on the end of the tail stock, that will be centered and there is not enough angle to throw it off.  I then flipped the piece around I was able to stick the rounded part into the chuck and rounded the whole length, creating a rod. I had to flip it again as there was a part near the chuck I could not get.
  There is a little bit of bounce in the center of the rod, but that will be corrected when I start reducing the diameter and shape it. 
There was a thunder tower over the Everglades that was giving a free watering for people’s plants. It looked very close.  I watched it carefully in case a it reached out to my area. That was also why I was not working with a platter. I wanted something fairly quick and easy as when I take my lathe out, there is a lot of stuff that has to be put back, as they were pulled out to make room for the lathe to come out. 
I finished with both rods roughly rounded. Next time I pull out the lathe, I can make these rods into drum sticks. 

Note on Sunday:
My brother had come up to Mom’s but he had to leave because of an emergency job. A steam pipe on a dry cleaning boiler broke. I was able to give him some tools I got several weeks ago. I had forgotten what was in the bag. There was a double ended crescent wrench. A pipe cutter, a small sledge hammer to be used for drilling (the head is designed to focus the impact through the center of the hammer’s mass). There was a couple items he did not need. I am not feeling at my best so I decided to go directly home after we ate..

I will see what I do next weekend.
1068

The stick cut in half

corners knocked off using the knife.

Rounding the end so it will fit in the chuck

The rough rounded rods soon to become drum sticks.

Year 16, Week 29, Day One (week 861)

Year 16, Week 29, Day One (week 861)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
07-30-16 Saturday

High 80s early morning, mid 90s late afternoon. No wind with high humidity in the morning and the wind only started picking up in the afternoon. I sat with a fan on me, and the fan hit me with gusts of hot air. That is not usual. Towers appeared over the Everglades but did not do anything, other than head west. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Department Of Tourism.

I followed the big loop while yard sailing and stopped at 7 yard sales, saw signs for four others that I could not find, and saw a one-table yard sale that while driving by, I saw that they had absolutely nothing I could use. In some ways, that is not fair for them, as I remembered how I felt when that happened when Mom was doing a yard sale, but I was almost done and was worn out. My preference is to get out and have a look just in case I missed something.
One of Mom's friends had a yard sale and I got a router attachment for a dremmel and an older design dremmel. I paid more than I really should have but decided to get it anyway. The dremmel is not one of the top-of-the-line units, but has several speeds and is quite usable. I have not done much dremmel work as of late as I am doing other kinds of projects. Those kind of projects are in the offing sometime in the future. 
Several weeks ago, there was  a pasta book I almost grabbed.  I had set it to the side while digging through some humor books and completely forgot about it. I had wished I had gotten in as it looked interesting. At one yard sale today, I picked up a similar pasta book. It might even been the same one I almost got. It is similar enough.  This book tells about how to make most pastas, and explains the basis of the sauces, and has a section with just recipes. Not too much information but looks like the right information.
I picked up a "joke" book and a painter's easel. Mom got the easel the moment I got home. There are two kinds of easels on the market. one is for painting where it holds the canvas tight while you work your brushes over it, and the other kind of easel is for display where it just holds the work to be viewed. This was a painting easel that will fold up nicely. I really good quality one.
Several of the people holding yard sales were suffering. No wind, and high humidity is really tough on people who are almost never outside. The vast majority of the people wake up in an air conditioned house, cross the heat to their car and drive to work in an air conditioned car, cross the heat and get into an air conditioned office, then go back home the same way. They almost never really get out into the heat except on weekends. The weather we were having was not even great for me and I conditioned myself for the heat. The act of getting out of and back in the truck added humidity to the cab of the truck and it took a distance to clear it out. There were times, if I had the A/C on high, I would get out and have to wipe my glasses as they fogged up.

Later, I sat out back. I was not really in the mood to do much but wanted to do something.  I was unhappy with how straight the slot in the donation box was. I knew I could do better. I drew along the edges of the slot with a pen to show where the slot wandered, and then used my knife to cut to the line. 
To do this project right, I needed to cut along a metal straight-edge that is clamped to the box. I chose not to do that. When I was done, the slot was a whole lot better than it was. Of course, the box would have been good enough before I fixed the slot but there is a little pride in having it closer to right. The average person will not notice the wandering the way it is. If they do, it will not bother them.

Tomorrow is a memorial for my nephew-in-law. He had passed several weeks ago, drowning in a canal. They are having a memorial service and later a family gathering. I will not be allowed to get dirty tomorrow so nothing will happen.

I will see what I do next week. 
800


The donation box with the cleaned up slot


The dremmel unit

This is the parts for the router attachment for the dremmel

this is the router attachment set up. The rings in the plastic are in case the unit you have is too small. No, there were no router bits with it but I have bits that will do the job when needed. 

The pasta book I got is very good. I got some ideas out of it. 
The book on insults is interesting. It has to explain the situation, then give the insult, then give who said it.. 

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Year 16, Week 28, Day One (week 860)

Year 16, Week 28, Day One (week 860)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
07-23-16 Saturday

78 degrees at dawn, 86 at ten, 94 after noon. Mostly blue sky with towers and streaks around the edges in the morning, a line of puffs suddenly appeared starting just before the Everglades, becoming thicker until thunder rolled at around one. One cloud’s diaper leaked a little at that time, but just a little leak. No breeze early morning, with high humidity, then the wind started picking up as the day bore on, and became almost useful after the thunder rolled. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Department Of Tourism. 

Getting my computer back is nice. It is hard to catch up though. A lot of stuff I do each night did not get done. It ended up being a loose memory card. Maybe I should go to the doctor and see if my own memory card is loose. It would help if I could remember more.......

I hit one yard sale as I left breakfast. You don’t realize how much stuff are out at some of those yard sales until you do a yard sale yourself. The ones that look like there is nothing, is a lot of work. To set up those big yard sales where they almost cover the front yard is a real test of endurance and determination. At this yard sale, I picked up two of those cast iron pans like what Denny’s uses for their skillet dinners. I also picked up a small muffin pan. No I did not need them, but I do like cast iron. I have seen some interesting techniques for non pastry dishes using muffin pans. 
I was driving, so I followed the great loop. I hit all the places I ever normally hit. For all that driving, I did not see too many yard sales. Some areas were vacant of yard sales. There were a few that were interesting to look at. I try to notice patterns in what is in several sales. At first, I saw curling irons at two, then I saw knife block sets at two. In the end, there was no pattern as to what was being offered. 
I did find a handful of ladles. Mom was looking for some last week. I then got a little tub of stamps. This goes with all the ink I had gotten previously.
It looks like the woman who had all the art stuff either has moved, or is about to move. It is always sad when someone runs out of stuff to sell......

I was really tired when I got back so I napped for a couple hours and laid, relaxing for a little longer after. 

I had fed and petted the cat when I got back from the restaurant, and then did it again when I went out back after my rest. She inhaled my attention. 
A year or two ago, I had picked up a chair someone was tossing. It was missing a rung in back and I intended to make a new one. That never happened. Well, the curved wood of the back came loose and several of the rungs were dangling loose because of weathering. 
Fixing that chair became my project for the day. It looked easy. (Usually if it looks easy, it is hard, if it looks hard, it is nearly impossible) It was not as hard as I thought it could be. The way this chair was made, was the tenons of the curved back went through the seat and had a screw holding it in place. The wood that the screw was going into on the tenon broke off. 
I first figured out what the cause of it coming loose which was easy. I then decided it would be easy to run a couple screws through the seat wood and into the tenon. Now they had used a square slot screw. Phillips screwdrivers don’t work on that. Last year I picked up a set of screwdriver bits. There is like 50 or 60 bits in the box running from square, hex, phillips, flat and so on, with different sizes of each. I just had to find the right one. The first one I found, which looked right,  turned out to be too small. The one I thought was way too big, fit right. I had not noticed they are tapered. That got the screw out. I removed the broken pieces out of the hole. I decided that running a long screw into the wood of the seat, up into the wood of the back would be the best way to go. A lot of wood would have to give before it would come loose again.
My original plan was to drill a hole bigger than the screw so as the screw got tight, it would pull the wood down into the hole. Instead, I drilled a tiny pilot hole with a small bit and then drove the screw into it. The original plan would have been better but I got lazy. I would have to dig out more stuff to get to a drill bit the right size. While this chair could be made to look nice, It never will. It is simply to sit on when outside and we let it weather. 
I globbed a lot of water-resistant glue into where the holes the rungs fit into the back as a way to help hold things together. I also globbed glue in and around the tenon of the back. Of course, it dripped. Since this chair will never get a finish, I did not bother to clean up the drips, at least this weekend. Anything can happen in the future. 

That was a quick and easy project. I was surprised at how easy it turned out to be. I decided to accept that as an accomplishment and call it a day. The weather at this time was kind of questionable and I decided it would be nicer to relax. 

I went out a little later to feed and pet the cat. I put her on my lap, which does not happen often, and petted her for a whole eight minutes, which is saying a lot. I think the longest she ever let me pet her while she was on my lap was 12 minutes. She is an outdoor cat and is very flighty. Many times she will dash off with just a wrong move of a foot. 

I have no idea what I will do tomorrow. I am not expecting much. My brother won’t be coming up. 





Year 16, Week 28, Day Two (week 860)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
07-24-16 Sunday

76 early morning 86 in the afternoon. I am not used to this frigid weather we are having this weekend..... Blue sky overhead ringed with clouds early morning, Some puffs with a little leaking out west before noon, then really high feathers and blobs after noon. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.

I was actually intending to accomplish nothing today, but then got an idea to take a Cigar box and make it to take donations. I first had to dig into Mom’s garage to find the cigar boxes I knew were there. I found some, but they were not the big ones I remembered. Two had slide tops and were all wood. Another had latch and lid with hinges, but was covered in paper on top and the corners. I chose that one. The paper on the corners looks good, but on the lid, the paper field with the artwork should be removed.
Since I was going to remove the paper, I first drew on the slot the money would go in. I then used my carving knife to cut into the paper and wood on my lines. I made several passes on the sides and ends, then levered some of the wood off. I saw that this is a fine plywood, not solid wood. Part way through the thickness, I saw that this was going to take some effort, so I pulled out the Dremmel and put a cutting disk on it. It cut the slots quickly, but they were not straight. I do not know if that was from something I did originally or it happened in the process. Likely the idiot doing the work...
Once I had the slot cut, I started removing the paper on the filed. I cut along the border and then started pealing the paper up. It tore, of course because they used a pretty good glue, I got the worse of it off, I searched for an easy way of removing what was left. I tried 32 grit sand paper and while it was going to do the job eventually, it was not fast enough. I then took out the dremmel with aa worn flap sanding bit on it and that ate the paper off. 
The hole was not straight so I used my carving knife to clean up the corners and where one side wandered, thicker in the middle, I shaves with the knife the ends until it was square. It still needs work.
There was paper on the inside of the lid and had to clean that up some while I was at it. Finally I sanded the whole area with 100 grit sand paper, and used it on the edges of the slot to help clean that up.
I cannot remember where I put my varnish, so I gave it an oil finish. Most of the box is varnished. The oil finish can be the final finish, or it could get a can of spray varnish. I will decide that next weekend. 

I decided that I had done enough for today and headed home. 

I will have to see what I do next weekend.


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The loose rungs

the tighted rungs


A look at all the tools and stuff needed to fix the chair.



cast iron pans

stamps. the pictures show what they are

the cigar box as I found it

The cigar box with the slot cut in

The cigar box with paper removed and a light spray of oil.




Year 16, Week 27, Day One (week 859)

Year 16, Week 27, Day One (week 859)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
07-16-16 Saturday

86 degrees early morning, 95 late afternoon, Blue skies overhead all day long, towers and puffs all around throughout the day, some high feathers overhead late in the day. A brisk breeze helped with the heat, but never enough. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Department of Tourism.


Just wanted to report that I had to take my computer in for service last week. It became a NASCAR race car and was crashing on me every time I turned it on. A new computer is not in the works as the new computers won't run the vast amounts of software I have. My software runs on 32 bit computers and the new 64 bit computers won't run them. The newest ones might have something to make them work but I have not heard if that is yet true.
My emergency computer is a WINDOWS 98 computer and the browsers cannot handle a lot of the places I go on line. If I don’t go on line, there is little it won't do, as long as I have some patience. It is slow than I have gotten used to. but that can be easily ignorable. Nice thing is that it has some DOS programs that I can run also.

It is a little disappointing. This year's weather has not followed any normal patterns. We had a really wet winter. Usually, by May, they are complaining about fire hazards. We did not get that kind of fun this year. 
Also at this time of year, I am making fun of how much hotter it is up north than down here. Usually, we drop down into the mid 80s and stay there, while New York and other Northern areas are in the 90s. The different weather pattern down here sure takes the fun out of bragging about how good the weather is down here. 
Another change in the weather is that in the mornings, we have dots of showers coming off the ocean and they really don't stop. Normally we would not get those. It is hard to predict what the weather is actually doing and that makes it hard to commit to projects that can be ruined by weather. 

After Breakfast we hit several yard sales. One was a house in the wealthy district. Everything is being sold, including the air conditioner. The house will be gutted and completely rebuilt in a different design. This is common down here. The living room was bigger than Mom's house and the kitchen was bigger than mom's living room. 
There was a screened porch out back with a pool. The screen area was about the size of Mom's back yard. I liked some of the features in the house such as the living room ceiling being 3 stories high and really helped to add to impressiveness to the living room. I mean really it felt big and spacious. I liked how they used white paint everywhere so your accessories would be the color. For their decor, they had large glass topped tables and coffee tables White chairs with clear materials built into the back was representative of what furniture I saw in the lower floor area.
The one thing I would love to have is a kitchen big enough to have an island. It won't hapen any place I will ever live.  I just like that feature. Cabinets and drawers were everywhere in the kitchen. It ALMOST had enough room for all the stuff I would love to get if I had any room. 
Thinking about the house, I can see why it is being rebuilt. The angles of the walls everywhere made the house look a little strange. Other than the kitchen and screened patio, I did not care that much for the design of the house.

We did hit a other few yard sales. One had great decorator items that I just could not justify bringing home. In one expensive home, they had a bowl of stone eggs. I really wanted to them, but once I got them, what to do with them? I have no place for them or any other use for them other than displaying them. Thinking about them, I decided that I should go through all my various woods and make some wooden eggs. I then remembered years ago I had carved some hatching eggs. That would be an interesting project to do again. It is, though a lot of work if you don’t have the right wood. I walked away without the stone eggs. 
A another yard sale, I did get a kid's guitar. It is missing two strings, which could be easily replaced. I did not need it. I have a guitar SOMEWHERE in my house that is better. Just needs a tiny repair and would be perfect. At that same sale, I got a travel easel where you put the paints in the box and when you open the box, you use the lid to hold your canvasses to paint. Mom snapped that out of my hand when we got home. I have a big one that opens up  legs to stand on. I have never used it. it is usually a choice of working wood or going some place to paint.......

We got back and I had to relax, rest, and cool down. After lunch, I headed out back. I set up to make some more platters. 
Last weekend, I developed a theory. If I worked the inside of the platter first, I might be able to control the bounce of the wood caused by warping while I am working with it. I needed to test this out. 
I knew there were two little problems of doing the top of the platter first and I saw them as I worked. One, it is harder to judge how deep you are going when you are working the inisde. The second is that it is harder to follow the angle of the face as you are making the backside. I am always working to the right of the platter. When working on the inside second, the angle is facing you. Because of the spacing of your eyes, you can see both sides of the platter when looking down the edge. When the platter is flipped around so the backside is facing you, and the edge is away from you. You are looking at the surface you are working with rather than the edge. You cannot as easily gauge the thickness or the angle. In order to get to a position where you can see the angle, it is wrong for making your cuts.
When making the backside first, I simply stay as shallow as possible for the base and then shape up to the rim. When working the inside first, I have to kind of guess, or do measurements, as to how deep I am going. Cutting the inside of the plate first does give challenge, but it is an easy one to deal with. 

By working the bottom second, I also tested my theory about handling the warping of the wood. As the tension is released from the wood, it bends and twists. This causes bouncing of the tool on the wood. It makes it difficult to get a clean surface, but instead creates ripples in the wood. 
It has been a problem when working with the inside of the platter second as there is not a lot of wood to work with at that point and one is trying to work with the final, viewed, surfaces. 

What I found in this experiment is that while the ripples do form while working the backside, like on the inside, the wood warps sooner, while the wood is still thick. It is easier to compensate for the ripples by lightening up the cut and just let the high points pass until the surface is even. The end result is that the final product is not quite as bad as working on the inside last. 
I made two platters, the second one proving the results and I was impressed with the results. 

I plan to make a bunch more blanks before I attempt to finish some of the platters. One thing I want to do is have pieces at each step of the process to show during the demonstration. This will allow me to pass out different stages to the people so they can see what each stage looks like while I do them. I also need to practice every stage to get the process down so they know exactly what is going on. I might not do any finish work during the demonstration, but should have something to show anyway. 

I ALMOST felt like I could make one more platter, but I decided that it would be wiser to clean up while I had a little energy and then rest while I was not hurting bad. Mom was out when I was cleaning up and she saved me trips out to the sand pile where I am dumping my sawdust. That helped. It is not a long walk, but every step makes a difference. I had made a wise decision.

One problem with the wind is that it is sneaky and sly. It will steal some sawdust and hide it in secret places. A day or so later, it will gather up the hidden sawdust and sprinkle it out in the open to make things look a mess. It will also move the sawdust to places it is not supposed to be. It can do this several times after you clean up that little bit each time. It is sneaky in that way. 
Some sawdust got into the sitting area of the awning and we had to clean it up. When Momma kitty lays down there, she gets the sawdust into her hair. Since I was the one sweeping, I had to sweep that area up also. Mom helped me by dumping the dust pan for me. There was still more sawdust there. We really needed a blower or a vacuum to clean the area properly. Not worth the effort. This is outside. 

I don't plan to do anything tomorrow. My brother is not coming up. 

I will see what I do next weekend.

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A demonstration of my centering technique with a regular ruler. I pick two numbers that can be divided by two easily, in this case, 10 and 20, which is 15.


I move the two numbers so the marks inside or outside them come out even, which in this case is close to three lines. the finer the lines of your scale, the more accurate you can become. I visually center the ruler up and down and then mark the center as I measured. 

I turn the disk and set the ruler on that mark and do another center and  this one should be extremely close. One can do that again to verify you have the center. 

The disks I have made to date. the lower right hand disk is one I finished a while ago and one disk had fallen out of the bag in the truck, which I found after I took these pictures. These are the top view of the platters

this is the bottom view of the platters.

Year 16, Week 26, Day One (week 858)

Year 16, Week 26, Day One (week 858)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
07-09-16 Saturday

86 degrees early morning, 96 degrees as a high. Blue ridge mountains with strange growths on them over the ocean at sunrise. They faded away. At about ten, a line of puffs formed at the edge of the Everglades and they stayed, growing taller, then a lot later slowly leaving to the west The blue sky had a slight haze to it so it was not a deep rich blue. This is normal. We get a lot of dust from Africa which is why we could never meet the Environmental clean air regulations. Humidity was thick in the morning but a good breeze picked up after noon which helped dry the air out.  This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach department of Tourism.

I got the idea that each time I see a really good looking cloud figure, I should take a picture of it. I saw a cloud of an old lady on the way to Mom’s house. It was ahead of me when heading North. I had passed one off ramp when I saw it and was going to take a picture when I got to the next off ramp. By the time I went the couple miles and turned the corner, all the details of the old lady was gone. It looked just like a tower of clouds. That was just like three minutes. I have seen such cloud pictures change radically in just a minute. 

Our first yard sale stop was nearby. She didn’t have anything I could not live without. She had several pictures of some goofy guy. It is always embarrassing when they tell me it is a mirror. 
Our second stop was a the woman with the art stuff. Mom was picking through some drawers of a bin and I asked how much the whole bin was. Cheaper than the individual price of just the things Mom really wanted. Mom is holding that for me and someday I might actually get some of the stuff in there...... I got some MAD MAGAZINES. It had been a while since I had read one. I also got some tools I don’t need. 

We hit a couple other yard sales. Nothing memorable at them EXCEPT.
One yard sale had a roll of leather, likely 30 or 36 inches wide. It looked like quite a few yards of it. It was a thin pliable leather, likely for furniture and there were some seams in it. The price he asked for it was a steal. It hurt, but I decided I would rather spend the rest of my life kicking myself for not getting it. It is a trade-off. If I got it, It would likely never be touched. If I don’t have it. My imagination will go wild for all the things I want to do with it. Because I don’t have the leather, I cannot make the bellows for a forge. Because I don’t have the leather, I cannot make all sorts of ornament animals with leather ears and tails. Because I don’t have the leather, there is a whole bunch of other things I cannot make. Of course, that is assuming they would ever get made should I have gotten the leather. I doubt they would, so I am not storing it. 

Even with the car air conditioning, the humidity was oppressive. One problem I run into on days like this is, when we got out of the car, the thick part of my glasses fog up, they being cold and high humidity outside. 
When we got home, we all decided to relax and cool down. For me, it extended until lunch time. After lunch, which was about two, I headed out to get to work. 

I can see an efficiency in my wood turning on these platters. It is not taking near as long to make them as it first did. That helps. 
These boards have that kerf from the saw that cut them. The kerf is off center so the tail stock point I am using (which has a sharp  ring around a tiny center point, so it does not bury itself into the wood as a single point would do) is on solid wood at the thinner part of the board. If the kerf got into the area of the point, I would just use my knife to flatten just at that area. 
My first step was to round the board, removing all corners as it spun, then to remove the high wood on that side. I then looked at the growth rings to decide which would be better as the bottom of the platter. I chose to have this side as the bottom. I made the bottom of the platter, sat down and rested while I marked the center on the other side. I mounted the platter and turned the inside. That went pretty good. 
I was feeling good so I started on the second one using the same procedure. Now when I flipped the platter around. I did not get it quite centered. As I turned it, there was a bit of a wobble and when I got the inside done, I found that there was an obvious thick and thin around the edge. To solve that, I flipped the platter back around again and touched up the backside. 
Both platters are still rough, but I am getting a better feel for making these.

It dawned on me that I am missing some lessons in the process and am making some mistakes as I am working. One can be too concentrated in the act of making to notice things in the process. 
For one thing, when I do the bottom, I thinner than I should. I am left with a only a small room for error on the inside. Each cut, even a very light skim of the surface to clean it up, removes some wood. I think the platters would be better a bit thicker. 
Another thing is that I run into problems with warping when working the inside of the platter. I am thinking that if I do the inside first, any problems I run into on the bottom won’t be as noticeable. One simply does not look at the bottom when using a platter. 
One problem I see with this is that it is very easy to go too deep with the inside. After I do the bottom first, I follow that angle and that dictates how deep the inside is going to be. A much more care will be needed on the depth when working the inside first. 
I want to see if working the inside first will effect how the wood reacts when the stresses are removed.  I have seen that the vast majority of the wood is removed on the back of the platter. The platter is a whole lot lighter when the back is done. The wood that comes out of the inside is nowhere near as much, possibly a quarter of the wood overall.
This is a learning process. So far, I really have concentrated on the shape and the basic process, along with developing muscle memory. Now I need to work on problem solving skills. 
Next weekend, if I do some work, I will be working differently to see how it effects the process. 

After I finished turning I did a rough clean up. One nice thing about working outside, is that a fine cleanup is usually unnecessary. Some of the fine stuff gets into the cracks and gets blown around. Usually to settle elsewhere unnoticed. Also, another nice thing about working outside, is that clean air is not a problem. A breeze carries the fine dust away for the most part. 
I sat outside under the awning with a fan blowing on me for a while. I was not quite ready to go in. Other than the heat, it was nice out.

I went inside and relaxed and cooled down with my feet up and napped a little until it was time to leave.

My brother is not coming up tomorrow and I have some running around so I won’t be doing any projects tomorrow.

I will see what I do next weekend. 

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