Sunday, March 18, 2012

week 636 Wood Working

Year 12, Week 10, Day One (week 636) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 03-17-12 Saturday

83 degrees, nice breeze that moved sawdust around, blue skies and plenty of sunlight, with white puffs. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.


Had a pretty good day of yard sailing. at one place, I picked up some sand paper, a SINGER sewing machine motor with a buffing unit attached, and a clamp for something like a dremmel. I paid six bucks. I found out later that the dremmel model I have is a bit too big for the clamp. It was later suggested to add a pipe and clamp the work to that. It looks like it was a holder for some piece of equipment anyway.

Singer sewing machine with buffing arbor, and a swivel clamp

At another yard sale, I got a set of five stainless steel bowls. I also got a candle from a woman who makes them. Mine was a small beer.

Stainless steel bowls. One is larger than the other four. Candle made to look like beer.

I picked up a set of knitting needles and some copper molds at a third one.I don't need more knitting needles but this guy did not look like he would get a lot of people who had any interest in yarn art. The copper molds are for a friend.

zodiac mold and grape bunch mold. Knitting needles and exercise book.

On the way home, I made an error and accidentally did a good thing for someone else. I went to a gas station with twenty pumps. I accidentally told the cashier that I was on pump 18 when I was on pump 19. I ended up donating twenty bucks of gas to someone. If you are going to be dumb, you have to be tough...


The beast of the backyard was interested in company and was disappointed when I would not stay seated. Scarface has another scar. He has been catting around again. There is a cut down his cheek.

After taking pictures of my finds, I dragged out the lathe. it was past ten. I decided to make a natural edged bowl. Looking at my collection, I grabbed a piece of Osage orange which was left from another project. It had an interesting shape for a natural edged bowl.
I wanted to turn it sideways, so the ends would fly around. I also wanted to make what is known as a banana bowl. It is a long narrow bowl. It took some time to decide how I wanted it to look, which way was between the centers and what was the sides. I also had to decide what would be the top and the bottom.

Osage orange before I did anything

Decisions made, I mounted it between centers and spun it. I carefully removed wood from the bottom, forming a tenon for my chuck to hang onto it. When satisfied with that, I flipped it around and removed the drive spur, which I stick into the chuck, and mounted it.

Osage orange mounted in lathe but not yet turned. the bottom is at the tail stock

I started rounding the ends. The wood is spinning around like a fan blade, running as fast as the lathe will go. Since the ends are cut flat, I nicked the corners then worked it until the ends were completely rounded. I found two problems in this process. Bits of the wood under the bark split off. As the end passes, the took catches the leading edge and slices off the wood. At the trailing end, the wood is not supported and if there is any give to the wood, it will pull away a little.
I had a couple chips fly off as I worked. It just does not look good. I know how to hide that when the time comes.
I was about ready to work on the inside when I decided I needed to get going to work on a few things.

Osage orange held in chuck after end is rounded, nice bark side, and chipped side

While giving the beast of the Back Yard Beast some attention, I decided to work a bit with my dream catcher. I have this flat yarn I got at a yard sale and was going to use that. I found it won't be the right material. when I pulled it tight, it thinned out. It is sort of like woven yarn and when there is tension, the weave pulled out and it became thin. that was not the effect I was after and I know that would not be good for this project. I could see someone pulling on it wrong and the yarn thinning and stretching out. I will have to look around to see what I have that will work better. I like the flat yarn, but stretching and raving like that is not what I want.

For tomorrow, I want to finish the piece I was turning today. I may do some carving on either the face vase or the dragon. Tonight I may try to practice my arrangement for the display of my work at the antique shop. I have more stuff than I can display, and I also have lost parts and pieces and have to re-locate them. I also will change some of my prices.
My pricing system on my work is quite simple. It is on the idea of the better I like a piece, the higher it is priced. If I don't sell it, I won't be sad. If I do sell it, I won't be sad. Everything else is based on how much less I like the things. I also have items that are priced cheaply, and then work my way up. This way I have prices in all ranges.

I will see what I actually do tomorrow.

Year 12, Week 10, Day Two (week 636) (January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.) 03-18-12 Sunday

83 degrees, blue sky mostly sunny with lots of white puffs. A nice breeze kept things nice and comfortable. I did drive through some mist about the time I got home, but where I was working, it was perfect. If it stayed like that all year, it would be heaven. this weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach department of Tourism.

I started the morning with a flat tire. I have had problems with this tire over the past few days. I pumped it up twice before and it was a slow leak. Yesterday, I made sure all tires were up to pressure. This morning this tire was flat. I have an electric pump that you plug into your cigarette lighter(Shows my age. Nowadays they are called power outlets).I pumped the tire up most of the way and then went to Mom's house. Midway through the morning it was half flat. I considered driving into the nearest canal and watch for bubbles, but decided to change tires instead.
I had changed tires a few times since I owned this truck and just now found out that they had included wheel blocks, angled metal shaped and designed to go under the tires to keep the truck from rolling. I had always assumed they were just to keep the jack in place tight. I grabbed them, thinking they were part of the jack. Only after I noticed there were two of them that it dawned on me what they were for.
I changed tires with no problems but the spare was low on air. Again came my electric air pump. A short time later I was ready to drive off, when I was ready to leave. There is a place near where I work that sells good used tires, and installs them for about a quarter what a new tires costs. I will have my rear tires swapped out later in the week.

When mentioned about my yard sailing yesterday, I had forgotten about some sanding disks an such I got at one yard sale. There were two packs of hook-loop sanding disks, a brand new file, and a knife buffer for sharpening. I paid a whole dollar for all of them. The buffer has the compound and arbor and was never opened.

Sanding disk, power strop and file.

About seven years ago, My mom and my brother built a model railroad layout in her back yard. After my dad died, it stayed covered, and became a home for the cats. Last year, we disassembled the layout and had the plywood hauled away. We had saved same materials from it and mom had them stowed in her shed. Today, she decided to dig the materials out and deal with them. Most of it was wire and the control panels and connection strips. I helped her remove screws and coil up the bundles of wires. We ended up with about eight terminal connector strips and a small bag of wire nuts. We also had loads of wires.
A couple weeks ago, I brought up a pretty, but worse for wear popcorn tin. I had never cleaned it out when I had finished with it and the salt caused surface rust on spots on the inside. We were not sure what to do with it, but tossing it did not sound right. Mom got an idea. She had me coil the wires and place them in the tin. When we were done, the tin was full and all the wire was accounted for.
Mom uses wire to tie up many of her plants. Over the year, we also have projects that involve wire, such as repairs. Mom has more room in her shed and we have the wire available if we remember we have it.

Wires from Mom's model railroad. Tangled wire on the table, coiled wire inside popcorn tin.

Last night, I did a very rough test of a display layout design idea that I will do when I go to the antique shop. I took all my work out, and looked at the prices of all my pieces, and replaced many of the price stickers. I reduced the prices of a number of items so there are more in line with what they would likely sell for. I also made the numbers on many pieces so they cannot be mistaken, a hundred dollars for ten dollars.
For the display, I will be using a folding coffee table as the central holder of my work, and then have boxes on the floor around the base of the table. They will all be hidden by covers and the work will be piled up around them to give differences of height. Many pieces will be on the floor too, and there will be a cover on the floor. I think this will look good.

I have a bunch of folding coffee tables, one I picked up a couple weeks ago that needs some work. Today, I decided to clean up the top of the table. The table had been left where it got wet. It had stains and some water damage. I took out the orbiting sander (could not remember where it was last week when I wanted to sand the cutting board) and hit the surface of the table. Other than being power, it was a light sanding as I saw where the veneer was coming up on one spot. I wiped it down to remove the dust, and then gave it quite a few coats of spray varnish to give it some protection and improve how it looks. The veneer looks like it might be oak.
When I got home, I dug out all my similar tables. I have a matching pair in a light wood, then two that are light wood but not matching, one of which was the one I cleaned up. Then I have a dark table that is painted a dark brown. That dark table will be the one that goes to the antique shop since the dark color invokes age. It also does not match any of the others. I have a set of four metal tables in use around my house so these will remain in storage until needed.

folding coffee table with sanded and varnished surface.

I took my tea pot and gave it the sanding it needed. I removed some drips and runs, and when I made it, it was not well sanded, so I went over all the surfaces well. There were some surfaces that showed scratches and dings so I cleaned that up too. I then gave it a bunch of coats of varnish. It needs another sanding before it gets more varnish as I can see some runs. I will let it dry at least over night before I sand it again. I think I will sand the mouth where the lid fits so the lids will fit a bit better. The varnish built up to make the lid not fit quite right. After next week, I may make a new handle for the pot, and when ready, remove the existing handle and put on a new one.

refinished tea pot.

My brother purchased a set of mechanics rolling drawers from Mom. She got it at a yard sale. I helped him get it onto the truck. I never did get pictures of it. I had been using the surfaces for my stuff while I was working. I now have to keep my stuff just a tiny bit more concentrated when I work. He gave me some tools that were in there and I figured out that they are tools for use on repairing motorcycles. There were cable pulls and clamps and such.

My lathe is on a sheet metal stand which is screwed down to a plywood base. The base has wheels that can be lifted out of the way so the lathe sits on wooden blocks for absolute stability (I should but don't do that when I work). I then have wood and weight lifting weights stacked on shelves beneath the lathe to give it mass.
I also screwed some two by two wood around the upper part of the lathe stand and have wooden skirts attached to keep the worst of the sawdust out of the shelving. I also have a bunch of PVC pipe sections screwed to the wood on the back side of my lathe for my turning tools to hang.
Mom had given me holder for something that was a bunch of PVC pipes glued together. There was a thin PVC bottom to he piece to keep whatever was put in them from falling out the bottom. I had screwed that to my lathe and it has held my tools for a long time. The screw pulled out several weeks ago and I have procrastinated on reinstalling it.
Today I screwed it back on. The way my pipes are designed is that there is a small hole on one side for the screw, which is screwed in from the inside, and a bigger hole directly on the other side which is for the screwdriver to reach the screw.
The first screw was easy as it went through the biggest of the pipes. A pair of plyers could hold the screw in place inside over the little hole.
I then drilled a new set of holes, going through two stacked pipes. That one was a bit tougher as my plyers would not fit into the one inch pipe. I found a pair of wire cutters were smaller and did fit. Then getting the screw aimed right and then the screwdriver.
I always had the problem that the thing tipped. It was good to get tools out of the way, tipping them on an angle, but it was not really good. Now with the two screws, it is not going anywhere. I have it on a slight angle with the handles tipped a little bit away from the head-stock which tips them away from the tail stock where it usually is used.

on the left is the glued up PVC pipes. On the right are individual fittings and pipes holding tools

I showed my brother the tools I got last week. He looked on line and found out what it was. I was right on how it was used, as a depth gauge. It also can be used to set tapers. It is old school tools. Now they use magnets and dials to do the same thing.
The metal pieces that came with it are holders for gauges. Rods are supposed to go into them and then the gauges clamp onto the rods. The problem is finding the right sized rods. If we really wanted to, we could make our own.

I did a little bit of turning on the Osage Orange banana bowl. I was cleaning up the outer surface and kept getting catches. I could not seem to get it to stop. these catches were placing divots in the middle of the ends of the wood. I then sharpened my turning tool again, simply using a grind stone to touch up the surfaces, and it removed the damage without any more catches.
When I was done cleaning up the outside, I cut a tiny bit of wood on the inside. It was then time for lunch and later, I realized there was no way I was going to get the piece finished by the end of the day. I cleaned up and rolled the lathe away with the piece still in the chuck and will work on it next week. There won't be any rush to work on it now, though as I wanted it ready by Thursday.

Osage Orange. Outside done enough, started on the inside by humiliating the surface.

After lunch, we sat and watched some pictures mom took. Many were of the art show last week. For some reason, we always get sleepy when watching our pictures, no matter how interesting they are.

From what I understand, Thursday is our turning club meeting since the school where we meet was closed for spring break last week. I wanted to show off the Osage Orange banana bowl for that, but did not have time. I will just have my tea pot to display there.
At a yard sale a couple weeks ago, I picked up a pair of doggy brushes. I went on line and read about how to use those for CARDING fibers for spinning. At the moment, I am experimenting with cotton which really needs finer brushes, but it will work well enough. A project I want to do in the next few weeks is to make a drop spindle for spinning yarn. From what I saw, they are simple to make and use. That I am carding fiber, I can test my drop spindles to see if they work. That will go good with my crochet hooks. I also need to make more of them too.
I have to get back to carving on my dragon, carving the faces on my face vase, I have ornaments I never finished, wood that needs to be made into something, cats to pet, just to name a bunch of things that I have projects for. That does not include the metal working I want to also do.

I will see what I do next week.

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