(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
71 degrees early morning, 86 in the afternoon, some clouds very early morning, some clouds rushed overhead around new, but they raced each other to the west and out over the Everglades. Mostly a light blue sky all day long otherwise. A light breeze made things nice. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.
I went to the wood turning club meeting. The demonstration was of a ROSE ENGINE LATHE. This is a device for adding decoration to turned pieces. The first one of these was made in the early 1700s.
I have read articles about using them, and seen articles about making one, but I just could not get my mind on exactly how one of these worked. I seemed to be missing a key bit of information.
With a standard lathe, the “head stock” is stationary when in use and it spins the work at a fairly high speed and the tool is set against the wood to cut or scrape away rough wood until you get the object rounded.
With a Rose Engine Lathe, the head stock rocks side to side (the part of the information I was missing) based on a shaped disk that is the pattern to be cut, and the cutting bit is stationary. The rocking head causes the work to bump up against the spinning bit, which cuts into the wood. As the piece goes round and round slowly, the pattern is cut into the wood. The bit is usually on a “cross slide” which will move the cutting bit and motor side by side, front to back. One does several turns of the piece and pattern to get the depth of the cuts one is after, then shifts the motor and bit with the cross slide and then do several more turns.
The pattern is set on the back of the lathe, a bungee cord or spring forces the head with the attached pattern against the “rubber” which the pattern rubs against. The one demonstrated had a little wheel on it to ride on the edge of the pattern. As the work is turned, the pattern forces the work away or into the bit, depending on the design of the pattern. The pattern he was demonstrating had for corners but roughly rounded. What this created was cloverleaf designs when working on the end. I read about a Rose Engine Lathe that had 29 patterns. The guy demonstrating this lathe had made several of his own patterns, a couple would not work because the rubber was not long enough.
The lathe part of this machine he was demonstrating had a crank to turn the work. He said he liked the crank design because he sometimes has the bit dig in too deep and he can feel it as he cranks, while a motorized crank would not stop unless it jammed, doing damage to the piece. The crank turned the pattern and part.
The pattern had a series of holes that fit over a pin that allowed one to adjust the sequence of the bumps and valleys as it turned, so you could have progressive series of cuts, spiraling around the work if desired.
It was fun to watch and learn how the lathe works. There are plans on line, kits on line, completed designs one can buy, and I have a set of plans in one of my buried magazines. I doubt I will ever make one, but if I wanted one, I now understand how to use it
The morning quickly showed it would be a beautiful day. The reports mentioned there might be some weather in the afternoon.
After breakfast, we headed to a community yard sale we heard about. The community is referred to as Mobil Homes, even though they are not mobil. They are actually manufactured homes, not built as well as a normal home, but better than any trailer.
This community has a lot of French Canadians. There is usually two community yard sales here, one in the fall when they all arrive for the winter and are getting rid of stuff they don’t need now, and then in the spring when they are heading back home for the summer, where they get rid of stuff they don’t want to store in their homes.
There was a couple dozen people selling things in this neighborhood. A lot of it was interesting, and fun to have, but I did not need them or had a place for them. We skipped some of the yards that had almost nothing in them and you could see what they were. Without getting out
We hit most of the good yard sales along the way. Many were two and three within a few houses of each other (likely two homes in the space of a normal one) so one could easily walk between them.
We also hit several individual yard sales before and after the community. One was a very big sale, mostly collectables. I did not buy anything but was considering a camp fire popcorn popper. The price was good, and it would be interesting to own, but I have no place for it, based on the past many years, there wouldn’t be any place I could make use of it. Mom convinced me not to get it.
I ended the day with a bunch more yarn in a tub, a microwave steamer kit, and some collectable items that are going to be gifted to a friend. And no, I did not need more yarn, but had to take advantage of it. There are some colors I like and am either out of or low on.
Between my mom and I were wore out. We both took a short nap when we got home.
During the week, I got an idea of something to try. I first made a vest for one of my teddy bears. The shape of the vest did not quite come out like I planned, but for a first try, it went well. I measured it on the bear and then stitched until I decided it was where I needed it to be and then measured again, and ended up with the vest. Matching the left and right side of the front of the vest was a bit tricky compared to the rest of it. If I make another one, I can see things I would do a little different. I did edge it today with another color but since I did not do the edging the way I should, it is not great. It will work for now.
I also started a dress for another teddy bear. With this dress, I started by measuring and stitching the waste band. I did several rows and realized that it needed to flair out. I decided to do an experimental stitch on it. I went with two single crochet, two half double, two double, two half triple and two triple, and then back down again as I worked my way back to the waistband. The stitches at the waist band were the toughest, where I would tie in the new rows, which are at ninety degrees to the band, and I may have made some mistakes there but got results.
The idea of the expanding length the stitches as they leave the waistband was to cause the bottom of the dress to flair out. For this size dress, I likely did not need to do two of each stitch, but did not know that for sure until after it was made. The hardest part was stitching the last and first line of stitches together.
I added the top of the dress after I had the skirt done. I put the skirt on and made the front panel, then started the shoulder bands. Once I got the shoulder band far enough along, I put the dress on the teddy bear and continuously checked to get the strap the right length and connecting in the right place. I then added the second strap. I decided that the front bib of the dress was not wide enough so I added the new strap beside the bib and went up from there.
I ended up attaching the back of the straps after I took the dress off the teddy bear and matching the front and back strap locations together.
After showing off the dress on the teddy bear, I then stitched the edging color around the edges which made the dress pop, and also correct some bad stitches I had at the joints. I would love to do it differently but was not set up to do that this time. I really wanted to use a fine thread and do multiple stitches for each one in the base color, but did not have any of that thread and was trying to get it done. Because of using the needle and spiraling along the edge, it created an interested dotted pattern, that was enough color to help the dress. I did nothing along the bottom of the skirt, leaving it as it is. One thing on the size and design of the dress, is that the teddy bear compresses easily and can be made to fit the dress.
I am proud so far with the clothing I have done for my teddy bears, since I have had no patterns to follow and just winged my design. There are things that could have been done better but I am not complaining.
I have two more teddy bears to make clothing for. I have to decide on the color, and then the style. Deciding whether they are male or female is part of the fun. I think I know on the next two, but will decide that for sure when I make the clothing.
I spent my working project time on crochet simply because the projects were near finished. I hope to do woodworking tomorrow.
I will see what I actually do tomorrow.
Year 16, Week 09, Day Two (week 755)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
Low 70s in the morning, 85 degrees in the afternoon, blue sky and sun with lots of thin puffs of clouds all over except over the ocean which was blue. This weather report was brought to you by the City of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism.
I got to Mom’s house and set up the table. I was kind of late due to some home projects I needed to take care of.
I had one of the partially used skein of the white yarn I got yesterday and decided to make it into a ball.
I’ve figured out an easy method to create a ball of yarn that will allow the yarn to come out the center rather than the outside. The really hardest part of this process is keeping the center end out of the way as one is winding it.
I start out by wrapping the yarn around three slightly opened fingers until I have some bulk in it. I then set my thumb into the center of the loops from the side the yarn will come out. I then start wrapping the loops of yarn next to the fingers and slowly turn it slowly. As the rings rotate, the line builds up by the thumb, but leaves the center open. It develops into a ball with the yarn wrapped top to bottom. I usually, out of necessity, let the bottom finger slip away from the center. It would be better if I left it there but I end up with easier control when it moves a bit from center.
When the ball is done, if you did everything, right, you can pull the yarn from the center without the ball rolling all over the place. One nice thing is that I have worked on a project and ran into problems with the skein I was using and I did this to bring the remaining yarn alone without messing with everything. Having the project on one end makes it easier to keep the pull end from getting buried.
I took my two steak knives that I had been making new handles for, and used the disk sander on them, cleaning up the surfaces first, then rounding the edges. I decided not to shape the bottom of the knives for the fingers, simply going with the slightly rounded corners of the wood, and call it done. I will give them a couple coats of oil to protect the wood a little, then put them to use.
My brother showed up. I had not seen him for several weeks so we started talking. Dad and my brother and I spent the evening talking about all sorts of things. When we finally finished, it was time to leave.
I did not do much of anything else, but it took all the day to do.
I hope to do some wood working next weekend or at least some productive project.
I will have to see what I actually do next weekend.