Year 11, Week 29, Day One (week 603) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 07-30-11 Saturday
90 degrees when I finally got outside, 96 degrees when I left. A good breeze that got better as the day wore on, moving sawdust around nicely. Blue skies with puffs and low towers, sunny all day long. Because of the wind, the humidity was passably low.
I painted linseed oil on the face vase and the wood soaked the oil up farther than I had hoped. I just started to soak the face vase in linseed oil and leave it at that. I am not bothering to have light areas and dark areas. I will go with the pretty wood.
We went yard sailing today...
I picked up a SUNBEAM stand mixer, with standard beaters and bread hooks for three bucks. Two commercially made quilts for five bucks, and a laptop with no charger for five bucks.
five buck laptop.
I stopped to check on getting a universal charger and found that it uses one more powerful than common now. Most laptops now use 90 watt chargers, the most powerful he had was 120. On line it said that these use 150 watt chargers. I have one computer shop to check on. If I don't find a charger there, I will consider my options. One is to yard sale it, and the other is to pull the hard drive and put it into a laptop that I have that is not working. It will likely go into a yard sale as is.
I had picked up a hand mixer last week, but at this price, a mixer on a stand is something to grab. I just checked something. It comes off the base, and it has a thing on top to power accessories. I am going to have to do some on-line research as to what this machine can all use.
In late evening research on the mixer, I found that the shaft sticking up on the machine is a power take-off for a grinding attachment. I stuck a beater in there and turned the machine on and it spun.
I found out that the motor comes off the base so it can be used as a hand mixer also.
In my research for manuals for the machine, I found they are fairly expensive and free manuals set my anti-virus off as a phishing web site.
Mixer with dough hooks locked upright
Mixer in lower position. Note the shaft sticking up on top. that is a power take-off for a meat grinding attachment.
The beast of the back yard is acting like a cat. I spent about two hours combined, petting him or with him sleeping at my feet. I can basically pet him everywhere and he complains little.
Scarface was there this morning and he had been fighting again. I assume he wins most of his fights, but he has lots of pin scabs all over his neck, top of head and shoulders.
I finished the body of my crochet "oddball" bag. I decided I would use a button-loop closure system. I can make my own buttons.
Later in the day, I stitched up the corners of the crochet bag and also the center of the sides. I am not sure how I did it, but I found they curved and it did not stand up and stay square the way I intended. I have to remove all the stitching I did and do them over. I may let it flop, I will see.
I am thinking I need to find a box about the size of the bag and use that as a guide to get everything straight and square. I have made boxes out of sheet cardboard, which I have so if I got desperate, I could make a box to fit. better to find one, though.
Oddball bag with my seams stitched in. All sorts of errors that were not obvious when doing it
I selected a slash pine branch that looked good. One end had lots of bug trails in it, but the end I chose seemed good and it had a knot in it so that would add to the beauty of the first couple buttons.
I had the basic button made and took sandpaper to the back of the button and it broke apart. That wood went into the garbage. The tree had died a long time before it was cut down and bugs did a number on it. It had lots of checks in the wood. I ended up tossing the pieces of log I had. I did not realize this branch was also from that tree but it had the same nature as the logs.
I dug up a two by two piece of wood. It is a common lumber I keep forgetting the name of. I mounted it in the chuck which was able to clamp down directly on the square wood, not having to make a tenon. I then rounded part of the end, and then shaped my button, cutting behind the disk of the button until there was a shaft. I then shaped the disk and cut a series of rings into the face. I sanded and then drilled a hole into the side of the shaft for the thread. I then parted the button off. I made five buttons from the piece of wood I had cut. I figured five buttons will allow for a set to be left over if I gift these or sell them.
I talked to an out-of-town friend on the cell phone and she suggested that I make some barrel style buttons for loop and barrel buttons. I had a short piece of six inch log that was split in half. It had some checks in it and I had split it at the checks.
I took a hatchet and hammer and split it at a big check, then knocked off the corners of the pieces. I took one piece and mounted it in the lathe. I had a devil of a time trying to smooth out the piece. I kept getting bounces. I then made the wood even smaller in diameter. I ended up about twice the diameter of a pencil.
I used a pointed parting tool to cut in grooves, then tapered the first and third groove, of each set of three. After sanding, I drilled through the piece so thread could be run through it. the drill broke out the back in several pieces.
I finally parted them off at the bandsaw and touched the ends with the disk sander and the broken out part of the drill holes so there is a flat spot. I made five of these barrels.
Post buttons and barrel buttons.
While talking to my friend, I was looking at my lathe and one piece of Osage Orange caught my eye. It splits into two trunks and then is cut off. I decided I am making a dress vase out of it. It is going to be more like a flowing pantsuit.
It had a tenon on the "top" but I needed one on the bottom. the two halves make it rather interesting, but I made a tenon for the bottom. I mounted it into the chuck and then decided I had better pack it up.
I think I need to figure out how far I have to cut into the wood to round it at the waste. I really should drill it out first and work using that as my guide. A couple measurements should take care of getting the hole right.
I am not exactly sure what design top I will do. I have done two strap, one strap, no strap. around the neck with open back. I should examine the wood tomorrow and see if I can be imaginative by having sleeves or something like that. I am going to use the wood to tell me the design I need to have.
side one showing the split in the trunk well.
back side with less slit showing
I have loads of projects I can work on tomorrow. I can make buttons, the dress vase, I have tea pot to make a spout and handle, I have a vase I am supposed to carve flowers on, I will be bringing the goblets I made a couple weeks ago with me and need to clean them up for finishing. I have a number of Christmas ornaments to carve and a few figurines to carve. I would love to carve another dragon. I have all that Norfolk Island Pine and a piece of slab would make for a great adult dragon. So many projects!!!
I will see what I do tomorrow.
Year 11, Week 29, Day Two (week 603) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 07-31-11 Sunday
95 degrees. light breeze that was just enough to scatter the lighter saw dust. Scattered puffs and feathers filled the sky all around but blue sky directly above. More clouds were over the everglades than anywhere else. The sun dimmed when a high shield passed, but the sky went blue again within an hour. This weather report is brought to you by the city of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.
The cats met me at the door when I went out. I gave them plenty of food and attention. Over the day, the beast was rather irritated at him because I was working and ignoring him, and when I did sit down, I did not give him the attention he felt he truly deserved. He purrs a lot more than he used to I was running my hand from the top of his head, down the side, around to under his chin, down his chest and then down his side. I felt his purr with each stroke.
I dragged the lathe out and saw that the dress vase was still mounted to the lathe. I made sure it was tight and I shaped the top slightly, then put the drill into the tail stock and took a spade bit. I bored out the dress with a smaller bit, then mounted my largest spade bit in place and hollowed it out about a third of the way in.
One problem of the spade bits that it will tip and twist which can throw your hole slightly off center. A Forsner bit is a bit more resistant to such forces since it tends to cut all the way around because of the ring.
The larger bit was more centered than the first one since it did not have the center spike guiding it wrong. I used my bowl gouge to smooth the transition between the two sized holes. I did not go all the way through as I will be going fairly deep on the outside and need the room the smaller bore will give me.
While I was touching it up the grip on the end of the vase, it gave and wobbled all over the place. I stopped to correct it, which is never perfect, then it happened again. I decided to give up for now. I need to touch up the tenon to give the chuck a little better grip. I was too lazy to deal with that at the moment.
Dress vase with top worked.
I decided to make some more barrel buttons. I looked at various pieces of wood I could make it from. One piece of log had a short branch section on it. I was looking at that. It then dawned on me that I have some branches laying around. I had gathered several for carving. I was about to get one of the long pieces in the shed, then remembered I had some cut pieces in the work area. I cut a short section off a piece of branch and mounted it between centers on the lathe.
Norfolk island branches are rarely two inches in diameter including bark. They have to be really old branches to get that thick. The branches are flexible and brittle, designed to break off during high winds to save the tree. the top of the tree is soft and hollow and can break off if the wind is strong, but because it will bend, they tend to remain on the tree even if the rest of the branches are lost.
The branch piece I selected was about inch and a half with the bark. With it on the lathe, I sliced off the bark. While evening it out, I realized I have a bowl gouge I have not used more than twice since I got it.
Wood turners use different grinds on their bowl gouges. each has different effects, strengths and weaknesses. I use what is called a classic or standard grind, where the bowl gouge is rotated all the way around on the grinder. The circumference of the tip has the same angle.
I use this grind simply because it is very easy for me to make. I simply set the tool against the grind stone and spin it back and forth. It is also very controllable when cutting as it is not very aggressive.
One really popular grind is the FINGERNAIL GRIND. The sides of the end is cut flat on each side, then the part between them is rounded to meet the two flat sides. There are variations of this, but this is the main design of the grind. It is aggressive, removing wood fast. It is much more difficult to form properly and evenly.
The new bowl gouge has a fingernail grind on it and I figured I would change it to a standard grind.
I have had several good catches with the tool so I held off using it, even though the two bowl gouges I am using is getting near the time they will have to be retired as I have sharpened them so much I ground off several inches of the shaft. when learning to grind, one has to re-grind to correct mistakes.
I decided I needed to learn to use that fingernail grind and grabbed the gouge and got to work. I set the sharpening stone flat on each wing and gave it a few strokes. The grinder causes a slight cove so the stone touches just the edge and heal of the surface, making it very sharp fast.
Bowl gouges note the flat sides of the finger nail gouge on top, while the continuous taper on the standard grind below. Also note how short the flute, the groove down the center, is on the shaft below.
Because of the slight shape of the stick and the way I centered the wood, there was a spot that was set in slightly once I rounded the rest of the wood. The flat of the gouge sheered the wood nicely and I got it round all the way down. I then made a few other adjustments. I stopped the lathe and took out the rule and marked on the wood, dividing it into thirds. I used a pointed parting tool to turn a groove at each of those marks. I then turned the lathe off and divided the spaces in thirds and cut in more grooves.
My pointed parting took can also be used as a skew, using the point to cut. It is only good on small things. I sheered the side thirds of each section on an angle, going smaller on the ends, making barrels. I amplified the grooves, going a lot deeper into the end grooves of each barrel and then sanded them really well, I removed the piece and separated the barrels in the band saw, then disk sanded their ends.
The second set I made, I did not have to do as much sheering to get it even, These barrels are much bigger than the first set. I made two sets of three barrels.
Barrel buttons. I think I will use eye hooks for these
I had brought my goblets from a couple weeks ago back with me. I corrected some of the pieces, the Sea Grape goblet bowl had broke on me last time so I carefully mounted it into the lathe and shaved the surface to get rid of any problems. I could not quite figure out the best way to mount it on the lathe so I could work on the inside, so I used the dremmel with a grinding bit to touch up the inside. I drilled the bowl and the Norfolk stem I made for it and glued the stem and bowl together with a skewer through the drill hole. I set that to the side to dry.
Sea grape bowl, Norfolk base.
On the Norfolk Branch bowl, where I have bits o branches sticking out, I mounted it in the lathe and was spinning it, sanding the inside. It had a slight wobble. I started correcting the inside of the piece and the stem broke. I should run a dowel all the way through it to reinforce it. After it glued for a while, I took the dremmel and ground the inside to correct the shape inside. It is not perfect but good enough. This is a decorative goblet, not really something that should be used.
Norfolk island pine goblet with branches
I had another goblet in Norfolk. this one was made more normally. I had run a dowel through the pith. there is a spot where the pith came to the surface of the stem and so did the dowel. I mounted that in the lathe and learned that the stem has a curve to it. I ran the lathe slowly and sanded outside of the bowl. I really needed to correct the inside but that needed to be with the dremmel. There is a ridge part way down. the thin part is very thin. I mainly need to remove the edge of the transition. The wobble of the bowl because of the bent stem made that impossible to correct on the lathe. I need to use the grinding bit to do that. I sanded the piece all over. I never sand enough, but it is looking better.
I had a cut-off of Norfolk that had the bark still on it. the bark, when went is thick. when it dries, the bark thins out. In this case, the bark separated from the wood as the outer bark was stronger. I found I could slip the bark off and it was strong enough to not break. I took the wood that was from the inside and made it a thin disk which became a new bottom. the piece is wider on the top than the bottom. I almost made a mistake of going too small on the piece to be the bottom. It wanted to slip out the bottom. I made it so it sticks down below the bark with a rim around the bottom. After it was well glued on, I mounted it on the lathe just hanging onto the rim on the bottom and I touched up the top and a light sanding on the inside. It is a useless piece but looks interesting.
bark cup. the base is wood the cup itself is just bark
Yesterday I had stitched the corners of the Odd Ball bag I made. I found all sorts of errors in my stitching. Today I pulled it all out. I am giving some thought on what I should do for the shape. I am going to start working on the handle and decide how to do the shaping later.
The yarn I removed had basically untwisted itself, so I tied the lengths together with another bit of the yarn, stuck one end into the vice and the other in the chuck of my drill. I pulled it straight and stood there spinning it. this was about thirty feet of yarn. It took some time to spin enough to get the kind of wrapping I was after. I made it far more twisted than one would get from the store. It will untwist some when I work with it. When I let the tension off and let it fall to the ground, it started coiling together. I wound it into a ball and put it away. since I combined two bits of yarn, it made one nice long bit of yarn to work with. There are knots in it but for the oddball work I am doing right now, that is not a problem.
Oddball bag upside down with no stitches in corners (actually shot before I added and then removed the corner stitches).
I am going to the Antique shop next Friday. I will check on what is going on down there.
For the weekend, I do have a number of projects to work on. it will mostly depend on what mood I am in when I get to work. I have loads of wood to use up, lots of half done projects to finish, new projects in mind. I have not used the metal lathe in over a month and have some projects there too. New projects appear all the time.
I will see what I actually do next week.