Sunday, December 4, 2011

Week 621 Woodworking

Year 11, Week 47, Day One (week 621) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 12-03-11 Saturday

75 degrees, strong almost constant breeze, fast moving clouds, a couple in the morning were sad enough to sob a little giving just a little mist before we ever got started. Because they were moving fast, it only lasted a minute. Some sun but most of the clouds blocked the sun. This weather report was brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.


I painted the ornaments I made last week, getting them ready to be finished. I mainly had to add beads to the palm trees and varnish all of them. The polar bears just needed one color of paint. the seals got two, where I painted the belly white and the body blue. The palm trees got several colors of green and some brown at the base.
The cornucopia required lots of different colors. I had all six in front of me and I added one color to all of them at the same time, cleaned the brush and then did the next color.
On the second session, I had to touch up some spots on all the ornaments and some of the Cornucopia fruit got a second color.

My newest Christmas ornaments are done.


When I arrived, mom asked me if it was getting light yet when I said yes, she took me outside and asked me if I noticed anything. I had to look a bit before I realized that a palm tree was missing. the tree was in the neighbor's yard and he removed the tree I have needed to trim for over a month. I procrastinated long enough and did not have to do the project. That corner looks bare. The tree did a good job of filling in adding privacy.

We went yard sailing.
At one yard sail, I picked up a plastic drawer unit for small items and it turned out to have some beads in some drawers. that was a good find for the price. In moving it around many places, I lost a bunch of small beads such as when I put it into the car upside down and the drawers moved partially opened, and when it tipped when transporting it.
I also picked up some small plastic kitchen measuring stuff, and some good stoneware dish set, eight plates and six bowls all in a gym bag.

Stoneware plate and bowl set. kitchen gadget set.

beads and a partial view of the unit they came out of.

At another yard sale, I got some quilting magazines, mostly from around 2000. Someone is gong to be surprised when she finds it in her mailbox in a few weeks. There were also some cross stitch and knitting magazines along with a 100th anniversary issue of McCalls. I will hang onto those.

Knitting and 'other' magazines that I will keep. Quilting and sewing magazines that I mght send out later.

After loading the magazines into the car, I went back in and picked up a pair of drill bit / drywall assortment sets with one still in the shrink wrap.
I picked up a Harbor Freight style battery powered drill of a type I have several of and it works. The charger and battery works with all my other equipment.
There was also and a small battery powered motor tool kit that works good. The motor tool has no real guts, but is useable. I used it today when I needed to drill holes to start the eye hooks on my ornament and this tool was perfect for that.
This was a moving sale and they were unloading everything at a good price. A lot of people were there.

Drill bit sets, one still in shrink wrap. Small battery powered motor tool

Harbor Freight drill kit.

When we got back home, I fed and petted the beast of the backyard, and examined the stuff I purchased, taking pictures of each item. I sorted some of the beads I retrieved after they were dumped out. That took longer than I planned, but was fun.

While petting and feeding the beast of the back yard a second time, I added eye hooks to the new ornaments and a couple older ornaments that were missing hooks. I found that the hooks did not want to go in on their own, so I used the little motor tool and one pointed grinding bit to poke a hole so the screws would go in. That cut the time to do the remaining ornaments by three quarters of the time. There were other ways of making the small hole, but this worked out better and I did not have to bother the cat to use it.

I then dabbed white glue on the palm tree trunks, and dipped them in a bag of seed beads. The multi color beads resembles Christmas lights. I let them set for a while, then added glue to the fronds and dipped them again in the beads. I found that white glue works good for this. Most of the beads fall of but enough stay on to look good.
I let the palm trees dry for a while. I dipped all the other new ornaments in wipe-on varnish to protect them and set them on a rack to dry. When I decided the glue had dried enough, I sprayed them with spray varnish to set the glue and beads in place some, and when that dried, I dipped them in wipe-on varnish.
I like to soak my work in wipe-on varnish because it soaks in everywhere, into the nooks and crannies where a spray cannot go. It also gets into the fibers of the wood.
Wipe-on varnish is essentially a thinned varnish. when working on a larger piece of work, one would wet a cloth with the varnish and wipe the work all over. Then one rubs the work all over until the varnish is completely dry. There is no bubbles, no hair in it, no drips or drops. It really should be called a Rub-on varnish. Most people tend not to be that energetic though. I know I am not.

After the ornaments dried enough, I packed up to leave. This was around noon since I had some places to go.

I have some of my wood turning work on display down at the Candlelight Antique shop down in Dania Beach. It is on the west side of US-1 right at the Dania Beach Blvd.
I have had my work in there for about three years now. I have not sold much, but my chances of selling something is better there than being kept in my closet.
I re-arranged my display a little, giving it a slightly different look. It might make someone think that there is new stuff in there. I have not had time to do anything new so far.
I gifted a carved Christmas tree and one of my palm trees to the owner of the place. He is a good friend and he has several of my ornaments.

My display at the antique shop. my stuff has been there for three years now.

I stopped and gifted another Christmas tree at a thrift shop I frequent. I was able to walk out without anything though I saw several items I could use, or think I could use.

During the week, I came up with an idea for a project. I have seen a sort of sunray/fan kind of thing in furniture carving. It dawned on me I could turn a disk as a start to make one. It then dawned on me that it looked like the tail of a turkey.
One popular way to make natural edged bowls is to turn the wood side grained, so the curve of the log is the top edge of the bowl. If one goes wide, one gets what is referred to as a BANANA BOWL which is long lightly curved, sort of like a banana. If one goes close to the center, once can get the sides to really dip low. I used a couple of mine as napkin holders.
My idea for a project is to turn a piece in two directions. Thinking about it, I would first turn it length ways but off center. I would turn a disk that would become the tail.
I would then mount it sideways. I would hollow inside, and form a disk on the bottom which will become the feet of the bird. While the front might be a bit thick, the tail would already be formed and not have to be added. I just have to make sure I don't cut into the tail part when hollowing it.
The disk on the bottom, sort of a saucer, becomes the feet, I cut away the back side of the saucer, blending it into the rest of the work. I call it a saucer as I made one where the disk was whole and that is what it looked like.
I will have to see how easy it is to do, and how it turns out. It will be another project to work on when I finish with my ornaments.

For tomorrow, I will make some more ornaments. I need a bunch more polar bears. I need six more each of seals and Cornucopia. I started on my BRING BACK prize but have more finishing to do on it. I have to sand out some tool marks created by removing some flaws I had.
I have several projects to finish up also. I want to make some more rods for crochet hooks too.
My project right after the Christmas rush is to prepare for the art show I do every year. It was moved up to March so I have less time to prepare. I have two main projects to do. One is a dragon I started carving, and the other is a face vase with five faces on it. I won't be working on them tomorrow unless it is to cut the wood for the dragon wings. They will start out roughly as rectangular blocks and will be shaped later. the wood is out in the weather and needs to be put under cover so they don't weather any more. If I cut them, I will also cut the turkey wood out of the same block.
My ornaments still have priority. I have to make the blanks, and carve as many of them as I can so I can finish them up this week. I am taking my ornaments to work for display Monday and will add the others as they get done. Many will end up being gifted, but some might be sold.

I will see what I actually do tomorrow.

Year 11, Week 47, Day One (week 621) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 12-03-11 Saturday

80 degree, really strong wind in the morning weakened some in the afternoon. I was setting up some ornaments and they kept being blown over in the strong morning wind. Later I was carving and the chips which go in all directions, kept being blown back at me. The morning had lots of thick clouds, almost complete at one point, then the sky became mostly blue as the clouds raced away from us. It became mixed again later. This weather report is brought to you by the City of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.

I left my camera at home so that changed a few plans.
I dug out all my ornaments and cataloged what I am starting with this year. Some ornaments are from the year I first came up with them and others were made again to keep the number up as they were popular.
I have some bells I made in my very first batch in 2003, for example, and I have made Snow Men and Christmas Trees every year since then. Other ornaments have had extra made but mainly I have whatever remains of what I made the first time. AS it is, my total count right now as I type is 108 ornaments to display.

I had an idea of making a turkey bowl made on multiple centers. I realized that a bowl like that would be a bit tough from the start, so I decided to make an ornament to see if some of those ideas would work. I mounted a piece of white pine I am using as my ornament wood into the lathe.
I set the wood off center close to one of the corners and started it spinning. I worked the tail first. I cut in slightly on the end of the wood so the "underside" of the tail would be cupped and curved. I then worked the front of the tail to match the rear, though I had it thicker than it would be in the end. I then shaped the body in a graceful curve.
I stopped to look at it and realized it did not have the shape of a turkey body.
Later, I decided to try again but this time just carving. The other day, I had cut up an eight foot long two by two into twelve inch long pieces. I took one and somehow measured wrong so instead of getting three pieces the same length, I got three different lengths pieces.
I grabbed the shortest one and knocked off one corner as the base so the other corners would give me the most height and width. I then started carving the tail.
The knife does not like end grain all that much so I did not do well on dishing out the end of the wood so the tail would angle in. The front of the tail was easier as I was attacking it from the side and at multiple angles. I got a good angle on that side, but it was thicker where I stopped at the body.
I then shaped the body. I left room for the head at the front which would stick up to the height of the wood. I had a knot at the shoulder and used the bandsaw to cut so the head would stick out in front. I angled the shoulders ack. I also did a couple cuts below the head and angled the chest back a little. I carved the rest of the body to shape and formed the wings against the body. I then shaped the head.
I thought I had something pretty good and showed it to my mom. She wanted to set it on the tail and have me add a tail to the bottom. I had to explain how I had it carved. She explained what I did wrong, showing me an example too.
I did some touch-up carving and then painted it. Once painted, there was no question on how it was supposed to be positioned. It does look like a turkey now, just not a great one.
I can see how to make it better if I choose to make more. I have not decided yet I will see if anybody wants it this week when I put it on display. If it sells, I make a bunch more of them.

Two views of my turkey ornament.

I mounted some sticks of wood in the lathe and roughed out some polar bears. I had one blank to carve so I made two more real quick. I then sat down and shaped and carved them. These are the easiest ornaments to make. The lathe does the worst of the work. I just touch up all the surfaces, and then shape the rear legs and the head.

I had a number of things I wanted to take pictures of, but because I left the camera at home, I never got those pictures
A friend of mine died early this year and They are starting to refurbish his home. He had an art piece mantle and I have a chance to retrieve it for another friend of mine. I loaded the tools to do that into the truck.

My plan for next weekend is to do a few more Christmas ornaments, but now I am thinking of making some presents for Christmas.

I will see what I really do next week.

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