Monday, June 28, 2010

June 28, 2010 Did You Write?

June 28, 2010 Did You Write?

Many write every day or several times a week, building up word counts. We like hearing from you. This post is for those of us who might write a few weeks a year, or sporadically each month.
This post is to provide pressure, a prompt, a target one can aim for. You see the note coming and you intend to post even if you did not write, but the desire is to say that you actually wrote this past week. You see the note coming and you open a work in progress and write something, anything, any amount, just so you can say you wrote.
For years, these posts helped me. I went weeks without writing, but knowing the post was coming up, I would try to sneak in a little bit of time to write, even if it was just a little. If you post, report on your week in writing and your life, even if you do not write, you will find that you will work harder on writing, than you normally would.
Lately I have some projects going so the prompt is not much of a pressure for me right now. It may change later.

We all agree that new writing is writing. People forget that editing is also writing. Many times, I write by editing. I will rush out a piece, TELLING what the story is about, then go back and edit it into shape until it is readable. Editing is writing, even if it is the work of others. Critiquing is also writing.
Poetry, blogging, writing assignments, technical writing, character and world creation, are also writing. E-mails can even be writing if they pertain to story or writing, and are very wordy. There are other things that can be writing too. If you have to ask, the answer will be yes.
The amount of writing is unimportant. There have been times where I announced that I wrote a paragraph and called that writing. When you are editing, your word and page count can go backwards, especially when you are making major story changes. Also, one could write the perfect passage and that would be enough to say you wrote. It really does not matter.
The main thing is to develop the habit writing every week. A lot of projects can be finished just by working on them a little each week.

As for me, I have written. One half of my project went backwards with editing, Another half went forward also with editing.. and then I combined the three sections, the original story, the two sections from opposite points of view, together, interlacing them into one again. With all my writing on two sections, I added six pages and about 3500 words. I need to do a heavy edit and there is a few scenes on the end I have to write as I did complete them. I am already over my word count, but I have a lot to cut out.
One day, I forgot my memory stick at home, so I wrote a new scene that the story series needs and that ended 3 pages and 1400 words.
I can say, Yes, I did write.

On the story idea front, I was running two ideas for several days, then one day behind until today. I finally got caught up. I am now in a situation where my story ideas are interfering with my story writing time. I have not brought myself to give up the story ideas except maybe the best ones, but I really need to spend more time on my main project. It is bothersome to deal with this kind of situation.
As it is, I have 58 story ideas, including what I am posting tonight, on my compost pile. I have some good ideas down deep, but I find myself wanting to write the fresh stuff. when I start to dig into the stack, I get more and more disappointed the deeper I go.

I can say


did you write?

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Week 546 Wood Working

year 10, Week 24, Day One (week 546)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
06-26-10 Saturday

94 degrees, some sun, fast moving tower puff clouds, heading from the southeast to the north west, a few dots of sprinkles sneaking along among them. nice breeze that refused to blow under the awning. We got a little dribble while I was working under the awning, and when I packed up and walked into the house for the day, the drops were loud on the roof for a few seconds. It was almost gone by the time I walked out the front door, about ten minutes later. This weather report was brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.

After a couple yard sales and breakfast, I went out and petted and fed the cats. The beast went back and forth several times from wanting attention and not wanting to be touched.

My main project was to work on the face vase. I got my tools out and worked more on the eyes. I think the eyes are pretty good. they are nothing like my imagination said they should be. they are not bad. I worked on more shaping of the faces.
I wear my wood turning face shield, I take off my glasses so I can hold the work real close, and I had a fan blowing on me, which also carried some of the dust beyond me.
I decided the brow ridge, created when first I turned the piece, was too dramatic. I mounted the vase on the lathe and cut that down. When I took it off, I did some grinding to remove places where the tools touched the bridge of the nose. I then took sandpaper to the entire piece, getting rid of tool marks, softening ridge and bumps. I have a lot more to do, but I feel I made a big difference on it.

While I was working, I hitched up my pant leg and the fabric tore on the thigh. I had that happen to a couple other pairs of pants. I dug out an clothes iron we have used in our woodworking. Our main use of the iron was to get a photocopy of something, lay it down on a piece of wood, then use the heat of the iron to melt the ink onto the wood.
Photocopies use an ink that is a combination of plastic, ink and a magnetic material. They use heated rollers to draw the ink onto the paper. If it is fresh, you can re-melt the ink from the paper onto something else. That was what that iron was for. I don't have an iron at home so I located and borrowed it.
I picked up some patching material and patched my pants with the iron on patch, on the inside. I have a few others than will get the treatment.

I also went to Woodcrafts, and after wandering the place for a while, picked up some proper colored filler. I had used white filler to fill some worm holes on the face vase and they stand out. I am going to remove the white filler and use the closer to proper color filler in the holes. I also picked up a couple bits of wood that were about two bucks each. they are pen blanks, but I have some ideas for them.
One thing I am thinking about is to add a tint to the face vase. I would add it over the entire surface, then sand away the highlights so that when I add my final finishes, it will stand out better. I have some tint, but have to stir it up and I am not sure it will mix. It had been settled out for several years. Mounting a piece of coat hanger on the drill should do the job.

Tomorrow, I will do more sanding and carving on the face vase. I have some small projects I can turn, but could also turn some larger projects. I could always turn a platter. Of course I have to pet and feed the cats.
Mom dug into a closet and found all sorts of craft stuff. she got rid of a bunch of it already, but will have some for me to pick through and dig out the stuff I think I can use.

I will see what I actually do tomorrow.

year 10, Week 24, Day One (week 546)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
06-26-10 Saturday

95 degrees under the awning, nice breeze, sunny all day long, clouds on the horizon. The low humidity made it quite comfortable when I had the fan on. When wood turning, the sun itself was hot, but a minute in the shade got me ready for another session at the lathe. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.

I got to Mom's house early. She had dug into her craft closet and was going through a whole bunch of stuff. She got rid of a carload of items already.
Mom and dad used to go to carving seminars during the summers, driving there. Dad would take the classes, and Mom would set up craft classes for the non-carvers, supplying some of the materials they needed for their projects. When Dad stopped going to the seminars, all of Mom's craft stuff went into the closet.
Mom was looking for something that was buried deep in the closet, so she pulled all the stuff out of the closet, got to what she was after, then decided to sort through the stuff, see what she had. She did crochet, quilting, bead work, painting, among other crafts she was involved in. She also had her own carving stuff.
Mom had sorted out some stuff to dispose of, but then showed me some stuff she knew I might be interested in. Her intention was to let me know the stuff was available.
Mom had two small motors for grinding, different brands than Dremmel. One thing I took was her dental grinding bits. these are really tiny cutting bits. They are great for fine shaping, getting into tiny places. Most of these are the size of a SHARPIE Ultra Fine Point pen point. Since they are designed to work on teeth, they are able to really get into places.
Mom had several knives that Dad made. I started making knives of his style, but found a design change made my knives a better design. His knives have a long point. they are great for sticking in between the fibers of your carving gloves. I got poked many times with my knives in the beginning.
While making some new knives, I had s short bit of file left and decided to make a knife out of it. I made it with a square, straight end and found I loved it. For one thing, you don't have a long point to go through your gloves. The wedge end acts like a chisel when it goes into the wood.
I decided instantly that I did not want to mess with her knives so she still has them.
A number of items she had was decorations for wood carvings and other things, like googly eyes, ribbons, bits and pieces.

I went outside and fed the creatures of the back yard. Beggar was acting just like a cat. I have no idea what got into him. Scar face was sweet and I petted him some, but he left after he ate.
I threw a couple bits of cat food to the curly tail lizards that are inhabiting mom's back yard. they were accidentally introduced in Palm beach county and have slowly been spreading. They appeared in the past few years in Mom's back yard. We found out that they eat some cat food bits that are left, so we have been giving them bits of food and have gotten within a few feet of them at times.

I started the day by digging into the shed. I had to pull a whole bunch of stuff out of the shed to get to a box of big bottles of wood dye. The solids had settled out. when I got them out, I took a piece of coat hanger and bent one end, and stuck the other into a drill. I tried to use the wire to stir the solids of the dye, to make it mix up. I spun it quite a bit, but when I pulled the coat hanger out, it had sludge coating it. I decided that reconstituting the die was not worth the effort so I tossed the box of big bottles.
A bit later, I put everything back in and found I had a whole lot more room in there, since I put some stuff that was on the floor, onto the shelf where the box was.

I sat and worked on the face vase most of the day. I used one of Mom's bits to remove the white filler I had used to fill some worm holes when I started, and used some more natural colored filler. I am thinking, as I am writing, that what I really should have done, though it was really not within my effort level, was to make a dowel out of the wood and worked that into the worm holes. When I finish the wood, It will finish similar to the wood itself. I could do that, but will see if I really want to. I have a week to think about it.
One of the bits I got from mom was coiled sand paper. it goes onto a special bit I am guessing that the sand paper grinds down to nothing on the outside, or when the sand paper runs out of grit, I cut the warn sandpaper off to expose the next layer of the spiral
My dremmel decided it did not want to go slow enough for that bit, but worked pretty good. I went over the inside of the piece to clean up some tool marks, and worked all over the outside. It smoothed the surface out pretty well.
I did a lot of sanding and grinding, making corrections here and there. I want to get the surface just right, then I will take my V tools and cut in hair on the faces that need it.
I have some tool marks left by the aggressive grinding tools to get rid of. The lighting was just not right to see them when I was working. I need to get rid of them, and some divots in the surface.

bare faced, mustached and bearded faces of the face vase.

I sorted through all my dremmel bits, mixing the ones I got from mom in with the ones I had in my kit. I was surprised that it all fit together in the dremmel case.

Next week, I plan to finish the grinding on the face vase. I have some little flaws to correct, like where bits I used, burned the wood. I need to sand the faces so the surfaces are even smooth, just right. I have some details to carve in to bring it to the level I can do. After that, I will be able to start my finishing process which includes soaking it in linseed oil for several days.
I am going down to Dania Beach Florida to check in on the antique shop and the Dania Water Gardens. The antique shop is supposed to be moved to the other side of the street. His building is going to be demolished and he did not want to buy the entire block.
I will see how my stuff is doing, re-arranging it if needed. I have some stuff to bring to the Dania Water Gardens and see how my stuff is doing there.

I will see what I actually do Next Week.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Did You write? June 21, 2010

Did You write? June 21, 2010

The real question is Did You Write ANY TIME THIS PAST WEEK. We don't care how much you wrote, though we like seeing that number, but the real question is did you open a work on progress or start something new, during the past week. the hope is that you will post to this note even if you did nothing, and then use the pressure of another NO post, to get yourself to write something, anything so you can say yes.
Many among us will write every day, or every week, with no excuses. Many of us will write one every couple months and then let it go fallow. The purpose of this note is to get you to admit whether you wrote or not, and then use the pressure to be more productive.
There have been many times where I would realize I had not written, having to post this note was approaching so I opened my work in progress and get something written so I could say yes. Lately, I can generally say that I did write
What is writing is up to you. New writing, editing, even if it is someone else’s, critiques, poetry, articles, blogs, writing assignments, world and character creation, and even E-mails if they are wordy and pertain to writing and stories. I have not heard of anything that was NOT writing. We don't even worry about word count as editing can cause word counts to go backwards.
Don't forget to tell about what is going on in your life. especially if you were unable to write.

I did work on my work in progress. I added two pages as I am editing my way through it. I thought I wrote more, and am disappointed with how little time I was able to spend on it. I did, though get through some interesting scenes.

As of today, I am two story ideas behind for the month. I have dug into my compost pile and still have 60 story ideas, including what I am posting tonight, in my compost pile. it does not seem that long ago I had barely 40 story ideas in the compost pile.

On the woodworking front, I did some work, but it does not look like much was done. I hate that. Most arts and crafts run into a period like that in a project. Like the carving on the face vase I am working on, I am evening things out, working on details and can spend a lot of time, and make a lot of sawdust and not really notice any change. I will be working in that period for a while. on this project.

As to the question of the day,
I can proudly say,



Week 545 Woodworking.

year 10, Week 23, Day One (week 545) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 06-19-10 Saturday

96 degrees, light wind that barely moved leaves, Early morning humidity faded by late morning. Towers of clouds early morning all over, but big mass over the everglades moving north. We did get a sprinkle, not hard enough or long enough to react to, rain shadow from one of the towers. Otherwise, sunny with blue sky where it mattered most. This weather report was brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.


I had a turning club meeting on Thursday. I had sanded my square bowl and my crochet hooks to where they did not drag on the yarn. they were not as slick as the metal, but quite usable. I later learned that originally, all crochet hooks were wood.
I forgot that I had won the Bring Back prize last month, so I ended up giving my square bowl as the prize. I then only had to showoff my hooks. I had my crochet, and the original metal hook that I copied along with it.
I also picked up a couple ball so yarn to make wash cloths and to play around with. They were not what I was after but I see they actually are helping me learn the craft.
My first project is getting closer to the end of the string. The ball looks a whole lot smaller, I can actually imagine me getting to the very end of the project in the near future. I used my ball of string and crochet as a backdrop for the wooden hooks.
was not what I wanted to work on today.

After breakfast and yard sailing (spent two bucks), I went out and petted and fed both cats. I actually spent most of the day petting the beast of the back yard. He was so much like a cat that I forgot myself several times. He mainly opens his mouth, as if to bite, to show his displeasure but there is no energy in it. We are slowly learning a language which we can communicate. I am glad he has gotten out of swatting with his claws bared.

I started the morning cutting some orange for some crochet needles. I got a bunch of blanks cut, but decided that
I am planning to get with one of the people in the club to help me on making platters, and later do a demonstration. I will show him what I am doing. He will then show me how to improve my methods, then I will demonstrate what we come up with.
I took the remains of my two by twelve yellow pine board and cut it into square pieces, marked the center by running lines between corners and where they crossed was center. I did this on both sides of the board.
I then used a children's compass to draw a circle as big as will fit on the board. I finally took them to the band saw and cut the corners off outside the circle lines.
I usually keep the corners for carved faces, usually bearded or long haired, but chose to toss them today.
I took my wooden face plates and the blanks I made and wiped them with mineral spirits to clean them. double sided tape does not stick to dust.

I mounted a blank in the lathe with the double sided tape and started rounding it. I had it close, but the tool caught on the wood and it came off the face plate. When I looked at it, there was some tape residue on the wood, which tells me that the mineral spirits had not evaporated fully and reacted with the tape's glue. I will clean that off tomorrow, possibly, and get back to work later.

Whenever I went in side to refill my cup with something cold, I tended to dwell inside for quite a while, even if I had no intention of doing it. Mom had the AC cranked up and it felt good to sit and watch some TV a little bit.
I ended up getting less done than I even considered.

Tomorrow, I need to carve on the face vase, which I never got to, today. I really got to do more work on it. I saw some carved pieces by a master and see I have a lot of work to do on the eyes.

I will see what I actually do tomorrow.

year 10, Week 23, Day Two (week 545) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 06-20-10 Sunday

96 degrees, very light breeze, high swipes of clouds, lower puffs, small towers building in the afternoon. Lots of sun with short periods of cloudy. I had the fan running under the awning and would turn wood for a while, get into the fan for a short time, then go back out to turn wood in the sun. Humidity is still low so the day was not the thick air one gets in the height of summer. This weather report was brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of tourism.

I started by petting and feeding the cats. Scar-face/Tom ate his fill and wandered off. Beggar/the beast of the back yard, hung around. Every so often, he would come out and give me that look of "What, I have to wait for my attention?" He got quite a few sessions, most of them he had enough and went to sleep under the work bench next to the fence.

Mom gave me a little project. She had a cigar box that she wanted to be used for collections. I first cut a slot in the top where she had it marked. I then used the disk sander to hit several of the sides, then used a sanding disk on my drill to do where the latches and stuff were in the way. I did not realize that the varnish already on it had built up as little nobs on my little sanding disks until I had already added a coat of varnish to it. That was when I saw it was so rough. As I was about to leave then, I had no time to fix it.

I sat and carved on my face vase, concentrating on the eyes. I am at one of those stages where you sit and do a whole lot of work and it does not look like I have done much. Every project gets a period like this, carving is worse on this than many other projects. I am mainly defining the design of the faces, working in small details as I go.

I found a piece of wood that I cut off a different project. This was Florida Mahogany. I decided to make a hat for he face vase. the first thing I did after mounting it, was to flatten the surface, then measure where the diameter of the face vase landed on the hat piece. I marked that and then started hollowing. I created the brim, and started shaping the top of the hat.
I got everything near where I wanted it. I then took it off the lathe, put the face vase back on, and then put the hat on the top of the face vase head and, running the lathe slowly, made some adjustments to the top of the hat, without damaging the tenon that the chuck hangs onto.
When I stopped, I took the hat and face vase off and looked at them together. Yuck!!! I doubt I will use the hat, though I might figure out how to make it look good. Will have to see.

face vases three views of faces while checking hat.

Next week I need to work more on the face vase. I still have a long ways to go on it. It is not following my imagination, which usually happens. My skills are not up to where they really need to be.
I need to make arrangements, either this next weekend, or the following weekend, to get with one of the club members to work with me on making platters.

I will see what I actually do next week.

Monday, June 14, 2010

June 14, Did You write?

June 14, Did You write?

It matters not how much you wrote, or what you wrote. the question is whether you wrote at any time this week. This note is a prod for those of us who find it hard to write in any month. the hope is that you report here, even if you do not write, and then use that as an excuse to write something for the next week.
As to what is writing, new writing is, of course, writing, but editing is even more important writing. It matters not whether it is your work, someone else's work, or critiquing the work of another. Editing is writing. I tend to write by editing, getting something on paper, then expanding on it. Poetry, writing assignments, technical writing, blogging, articles, are also writing, along with world and character creation. Even E-mails can be writing, as long as they are wordy and pertain to story or writing.
if you have to ask if it is writing, the answer is most likely yes. the amount to write to be writing is up to you. If you write the right word, then you wrote.

As for me. I have written. I added 650 words to my work in progress. I am editing and am zapping segments while I am at it. Many parts are replaced entirely, but this week it has not be big blocks of text. In all, I added one page of writing. I do feel I made some headway, but this piece is fighting me tooth and nail, plus I have struggled to find extra time to work on it. I have some friends that have been able to go almost full time in their writing. I still have to fit my writing around everything else. I wish I could give something unimportant up for my writing. Maybe sleep? Work? These notes?, ???

On the story idea front, I am one story idea behind right now, and expect to fall another behind because of a meeting this week. including the idea I am posting tonight, I have 61 story ideas in my compost pile. That is with some digging into the top layers during the week, I still gained four. I never know how I do it. I sure is fun, though.

I am teaching myself how to crochet. It is something to do while waiting. One cannot read all the time. I am still working on my first piece, it started horrible, got bad, and now showing signs of developing some minimal skills. Almost from the beginning, I have seen that I should undo what I had and correct a number of things, but I also realized that this is my first piece and when I finish it, I will be on to something a little bit more real. I might as well continue to work with the mess I have until I run out of string or know I have advanced beyond where I am. The great thing is that I can see my improvement in the same piece.
One interesting thing about the crochet for me, is that it is about as concentration intensive as a video game. If I have to wait for a long time, this gives me another option to reading or drawing. Luckily, I have not had to wait for very long since I did the first couple inches while waiting in line at the driver's license.
This weekend, out of a moment of curiosity, I made my own crochet needles. I am really surprised that they do work. I need to polish them some more so they don't drag on the yarn, but they do the job. this effort has taught me something about the tools.
I love the idea of making your own tools. I learned in woodworking that if you can make your own tools, you are not afraid to repair a tool, or to modify it to fit your needs better. Making crochet needles really does not fit in that category, but it does let me know I can make them if I was out in the wilderness with some yarn or string.
Doing this work, I can also see where the skill of crochet could come in handy.

I have always liked the concept of someone who can do just about anything, stuck in a situation where that person must essentially start over. I have used that concept in a number of story ideas. I have found that in my writing, each new thing I learn to do, adds to the story ideas I write. If I can do it, I can use something of it in my writing. I had always wanted to know absolutely everything, but I am learning that to actually DO something, is even more important. Now I have to learn how to write, then I will have it really made.....

As to the question of the week,



Sunday, June 13, 2010

Week 544 Wood working

year 10, Week 22, Day One (week 544)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)

06-12-10 Saturday

96 degrees under the awning, 93 degrees officially. It was 90 degrees at around nine thirty when I got out back and there was little wind, leaves barely moved. I plugged in a fan to get some air moving. The humidity was not bad so the day was quite tolerable. the sky was blue but there were clouds on the horizon, but over head, was blue and sunny. Long after I got home, rains showed up on the radar, but they were over the everglades, heading south instead of east. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.

I petted and fed the cats first thing. Tom got some petting, ate, and then left. Beggar stayed longer and then left. He came back later for more attention and did so three more times.
The last mother cat that had kittens in our area, had two kittens. A female Calico, which my brother ended up with, and a black male with. The boy and the mother were taken to a no-kill shelter
I was looking at some old pictures and ran across that family. the boy had a white spot on his chest, very much like the old tom we have coming around now. They looked so much alike that we discussed whether it might be the same cat. Mom says he is likely from an older litter, possibly by the same mother. It was interesting to see how close they looked.

I was in the mood to do some wood turning. I decided to try a new project. I have seen square bowls, where the rim is a square, raised high above the table.
I started making it without taking the necessary time to do it right. Short cuts tend to create a lot of work in the end. This time, it has not created a whole lot of problems, but I still have some work to do because of it.
I had the chuck closed and the tail stock stuck into the wood. I worked around the tail stock, creating a post of wood that my tools could not get to. I had hollowed it first, then flipped it around. I put the chuck inside the bowl, opening it up to create pressure to hold it, and then turned the back side.
I have to remount the piece on the lathe. I have to reshape the bowl slightly, making it cleaner and a better shaped bowl.
When I turn it around, I have to trim the back side of the rim. I don't have the thickness even. the rim gets thicker as one goes closer to the bowl, and this causes an arc in the thickness of the rim from corner to center.
I need to make the bottom cleaner and better. I started with a good thickness rim around the base, but lost all but a thin edge. I have to make sure I have enough thickness, and do it right.
I also have to remove the posts It would be better to do this on the lathe, but I may have to do it using grinders. Will see how things work out when I make my corrections.

For tomorrow, I will finish this bowl, and then apply myself to some carving. I would like to make a whole lot of progress on the faces. I will work on the eyes. I saw that on one face, I made the nose off center. I got the idea where I May be able to save that face. I will see if I can have him looking to one side. I will see what kind of damage I already done when I started carving the eyes, how thick the wood is there. I am positive I can correct it. I just have to work things out.

Square bowl as I stopped working on it.
Look at the slight change of thickness on the edge

I will see what I actually do tomorrow.

year 10, Week 22, Day Two (week 544)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
06-13-10 Sunday

As high as 96 degrees, blue sky most of the day, light breeze, just enough to make it tolerable. The winds were heading North West so that was where the storms off the ocean was coming. One storm looked like it was going to come by, and it blocked the morning sun, dropping the temps to 86, but it faded out before it reached us. After that, there was no threat of weather. this Weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.

I got to Mom's house early. I petted and fed the cats. When that was done, I got to work by dragging out the lathe, which requires moving other pieces. I took the square bowl and mounted it between centers. It was not absolutely center so I did not correct the rim. I flattened the bottom and built the new rim on the base. I then turned it around and cleaned up the inside. I have a little groove on the bottom that I need to grind out. I did some touch up, sanding the surface on the disk sander. It now needs finishing.
The storm looked like it was brewing, so I had pulled the equipment under the awning while I was working on the finishing of the bowl, removing the posts and cleaning up my work.

"finished" square bowl.

I took a nap, and when I got back outside, I really was not in the mood to work. I picked up the face vase and decided to get a pencil and work on designing the eyes of the faces. After I got the eyes drawn, I took out the dremmel and mounted an hour glass shaped bit, and cut in the eyes. I mainly undercut the eyelids, setting the eyes under the lids. I also did some work on the face itself. I have a long ways to go.

Three faces of the vase.

I got an idea for a project. I am learning crochet. I decided I would see how hard it would be to make a crochet hook. I decided that it needed to be strong, so I took out some orange wood I had. It was shorter than I really wanted, but since it had a nice shrinkage crack in it, I chose to use that piece.
I first cut it down the shrinkage crack. I then cut some roughly square sticks. It was too small for my chuck. I got an idea on how to hold the wood in the lathe.
My tail stock has a live center with interchangeable tips. I took one tip that is hollow so you can run a drill bit through it, and stuck that in the chuck. I then took one that has a pin point center and a ring that also goes into the wood. I put the pin into the center of the piece of wood and it did not touch the ring.
I mostly used the skew chisel to peal away the wood but had to change to other tools. I got them down to the same diameter as my metal hook I have been using. The ends were raw. After I finished the second one, I took both to the disk sander and fixed up both ends.
I then sat down with my knife and cut the angle to the base of the hook. I took the Dremmel with a cutting disk and undercut to create the hook itself. The first one is not as clean as the second one. learning errors.
I tested them and they do work. The wood grabs at the threads so it is rough. I will need to sand it to a polish. I likely will make some new ones using what I learned with this.

My metal crochet hook and two Orange wood crochet hooks.

My crochet project where it is right this instant.
nice stuff on top is my recent work

For a lazy day where I did not really want to do too much, I got a lot done, and have something to show for my work.

I have the turning club meeting Thursday. I will try to get the crochet hooks presentable. I will try to get the square bowl sanded and presentable too.
Next weekend, I do not know what new projects I might work on. I need to work more on the face vase.

I will see what actually happens next week.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Did You write? 06-07-10

Did You write? 06-07-10

That is the question of the week. Did you write at any time this week? tell us how much you wrote, or not wrote, so you get into the practice of writing, even if it is excuses for not writing.
We don't care about how much you wrote, just that you wrote. Writing every week can become a habit. Not all habits are bad for you. I have not heard that the habit of writing has anything wrong with it. Anyway, I can quit any time. I have done so thousands of times....

We all know that new writing is writing. Editing, though, is actually more important part of writing. Few of us can write perfectly the first time, so editing what you created is important. Because of the nature of editing, it is not unusual for your word count to go down, rather than up. When editing, word count is not really that important.
Editing the work of others, or critiquing the work of others, is also writing.
Along with new writing and editing, other forms of word creation are also writing. Poetry, blogging, technical writing, writing assignments, flash fiction, world and character creation, are all writing. Even E-mails can be writing if they are wordy and pertain to writing or stories.
Have you written this past week?

I did write a little. I am editing my work into something that resembles a real story. I added a page and 382 words to my Waxy story I had split part of the story where the things are seen from the point of two characters, so I could write each version out from start to finish, and then interleaf the actions back together when done. I am working on one point of view and making pretty good headway. I wrote out the piece as a story idea and am editing in details and corrections. This is not as fun as the story idea version was.

I have 57 story ideas in my compost pile. I was surprised I had that many as it seamed like I had dug into the pile quite a bit this week.
Last month was pretty good, but wish I had done better. I posted 32 story ideas for a 31 day month, so I am now two whole story ideas ahead for the year to date. I wish it was ten or fifteen, but I have not had that kind of time to do extra story ideas. Near the end of last month, I made a mistake on the numbers, and then worked to get caught up, and then found I was ahead. That allowed me to end up ahead one story idea.
For the month, I wrote Page 52 pages of pure drivel, with a total word count of 31,574 words. I would rather the word count to be around 60 pages, but many of the story ideas were just not worth enough effort to make that many words, and I had times where I just did not have the time or gumption to do them right. Even so, it is not bad production of any kind, let alone for unfiltered fluff.
Other than a spell check when I am done, these are all written in a stream of consciousness method, it goes from my brain, into the keyboard, and onto the screen. I do not go back and edit unless to add something that was missing or changed while typing it, and that is really rare. I have always wondered what a head shrinker would come up about me if he spent time analyzing a whole bunch of the stories. I am still waiting for those nice young men in nice white suits to come and take me away.....

AS to the question of the week,

I can proudly say that YES I DID WRITE.


Sunday, June 6, 2010

Week 543 Woodworking

year 10, Week 21, Day One (week 543) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 06-05-10 Saturday

90 degrees, high humidity, mostly sunny all day long, though clouds started building up in the afternoon. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.

After petting and feeding both kitty cats, mom asked me to help her. We transplanted several plants, un-potted one plant that got waterlogged when the holes in the pot clogged up, and worked hard to get the dirt out of the mass of roots. Dirt is valuable.
We later put a different plant in that pot and put it in the same location. It was good hard work. We were both soaked.

I settled down after petting and feeding the beast one more time. I dug out some projects.
I had the platter I made last week. It needed work I had the center stubs, there were ripples in the surface and it was just really bad. I started grinding with my strip sander and the strip broke and went flying. I did not look for it, but I think I know where it is, beneath the work bench among stuff I have to move out to get to it.
I replaced the sanding strip, 60 grit. It ate through the wood nicely. I got rid of the nubs, then got rid of the worst of the ripples. Of course the strip sander leaves its own marks that have to be worked out. It is better than it was.

I then started working on the face vase. I made big headway. You can now see exactly what it is supposed to look like. I have loads of details I have to do, but it really looks like something. I had ground a while before it dawned on me that I was getting sawdust all through my beard. After I dusted myself off, I got out my face mask that I use for my turning, and closed it so it stuck in my chest while I worked. Surprising how much dust that keeps out of my face. I can even take my glasses off safely to work close to my face if needed.

Three views of the face vase. The left face will have a bare face
middle face is supposed to have just a mustache
Right face will have a beard.

In yard sailing, I got a GAME BOY POCKET with six games, and a duffle bag with plastic trays. the guy said it was a tackle box. I am thinking of placing my decorations (beads, hooks, ribbons, etc.) for my wood projects in there. it will separate them out so I can see what I have at a glance.

Game boy case and games.

Tomorrow, I will work more on the face vase. Getting the eyes right will be tough. The eyes are the knots of the Norfolk Island Pine. They are not perfectly located so I am working with what I have.
I might work more on the platter and do have the option to turn a few items while I am at it.

Laundry allowed me to add to my crochet.

I will see what I actually do tomorrow.

year 10, Week 21, Day Two (week 543) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 06-06-10 Sunday

Officially 93 degrees, 42 percent humidity. 99 under the awning. blue sky with a light haze in the morning, high filaments and ripples a bit later. Puffs built quickly as noon approached. It appears as if the clouds have stayed over the everglades long after I left. this weather report is brought to you by the City of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.

Yesterday was my birthday. We had celebrated it last week. Other than the goodies, I would not bother remembering how old I am. Everybody knows I am only sixteen years old, where is the importance of reminding me about it???

After petting and feeding the beast, I was in the mood to do some light, easy turning.
I had a piece of wood, four three-quarter inch pine boards glued together. I cut two pieces the same length as the width. I mounted the first one on the lathe so the boards were shown around the parameter. that one went pretty good other than breaking a tenon before I had hollowed it out. I made a new tenon and finished it up. to do the bottom, I fit it over the chuck and expanded it inside the mouth of the piece. I then finished up the tail end.
One thing I had to do was to fix the screws on the jaws. I had gotten replacement screws for the jaws and the heads were larger than what I was replacing. they did not fit into the hole properly. There are four jaws, and there are screws inside the jaw, and outside the jaw to hold them in place. The screws outside the jaw was where the larger screws were, and they were side by side.
When I put the piece on backwards, it had a bad wobble. what I did was to swap one of the screws with one of the real screws. the big ones were now opposite the chuck of each other. I was able to center the piece the lip balanced on the screws, and was able to finish up the bottom of the piece.
I then made a second cup with the boards running up and down in the piece. The bottom of both pieces are set in with a rim around the outside. their sides, inside and out, are straight. I used my skew chisel as a scraper, running the point to lead the cut down the side of the piece, using the edges of the whole tool to guide it straight in. Because these were shallow, I was able to use the skew to flatten the inside bottom.
Both pieces need heavy sanding and varnishing, but they won't get them soon. I am right now using them as pencil cups.

After I was finished turning these pieces, I decided I had enough turning for the day, cleaned up and put that stuff away. My plan was to carve on the face vase. I went in as I ran out of drink and when I got in, at eleven thirty, I decided I would cool down a while. then it was lunch time.
After lunch, I planned on at least sitting down and drawing on the faces of the face vase to mark out where I needed to carve next. I took pictures and saw one face has a nose that is well off center. Oh well...
The urge to get covered in dust had left me. I then ended up cleaning up, getting everything away, calling it a day. I did get something done, just not what I really should have worked on.
I had hoped to have the face vase done for the seventeenth, which is the turning club meeting, but now realize I could never accomplish the carving in that amount of time. The faces need a lot of work and even if I worked the best I could, I could not finish it in just two weekends.

Next week, I plan to carve on the faces. I have some projects at Mom's house that need rebuilding, placing them back on the lathe to correct beginner mistakes.
I have other stuff at home that needs heavy sanding, removing the varnish and applying new, better, finishes after the surface underneath is made perfect.
I have a bowl I would love to carve up. I am now questioning whether it will be leaves It might be something else. I might leave the inside like a normal bowl and carve the outside.
I might make something new, also.

I will see what I actually do next week.