(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
Super herds of sheep like clouds migrating across the sky. Lows in the high 60s, highs just over 80. Nice breeze to make the temps comfortable. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department of Tourism
Hit several yard sales after breakfast. One was an estate sale where they were selling things out of the house. I saw a spinning wheel. I have no room for it and Mom has my other one in the living room as part of her decorations. I did not even ask for a price. That is the first step of avoiding temptation. If you ask, you might give in and get it anyway.... the same thing for small metal C-clamps.
At another yard sale, I picked up some hot pads for the kitchen, a book on fixing things (oh sure, I will ever use that...) and some solid core golf balls. These golf balls say they are recycled rubber.
Back in the 80s, Dad and I did a period where we would cut half the cover off of golf balls and carve faces in the solid rubber cores inside. The only problem is that most of the golf balls have a rubber-band style winding inside. It takes some skill and effort to cut the core covers straight, clean, and square and not cut into the rubber core beneath it. It is frustrating to do all that work and then find it all windings, which are not usable. We don’t know types of golf balls to know which are useable before we start.
The idea of the carvings inside was, the uglier the face was, the more the ball had been beaten around the links. I purposely carved a number of the faces not looking straight out, but instead to the side or have the top of the head. My story was that dad was a master carver and knew how to cut the golf ball to find the face where it was facing straight out. I had not developed that skill.
Anyway, I saw that these were solid core golf balls and decided to get them in case I decide to carve them.
At the house, one of the awning style windows refused to open. One side just would not budge. I took the screen off and worked with it. I found out that there are little plastic pins that catch on hooks on the mechanism. They are supposed to be able to be slid up and down. Well, these refused to slide. I figured out that I had broken a couple of them on another window. I am going to have to see if I can find those at the hardware store. It is a good security thing, if only I could have slid them down out of the way when needed.
Year 17, Week 08, Day One (week 894)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
I forgot to look at the temps or look up at the sky. I know it was cool in the morning, possibly like 68. I doubt it got over 80. I don’t remember seeing the shade of clouds during the time I was outside, but since I was concentrating, they might have passed in front of the sun from time to time. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach department of Tourism.
I was someplace and saw a wooden drum. It had ropes zigzagging up and down. Their drum sticks were two dowels. One was thin and long, the other heavy and short.
When I got to Mom’s I located a dowel the size of the long drum rod, that was about two drum sticks in length. I mounted it in the lathe and instantly was reminded one of the problems I have with the lathe. I don’t have anything to stabilize a rod. It bent and wobbled badly as it spun. I shaped the drumstick heads in the middle of the rod and they came out oblong. I ended up taking them to the disk sander to correct their off center look. I used the disk sander to clean them up. They are not spectacular. They are “toy” drum sticks, but are better than what they have.
I would have done a whole lot better if I had taken out my knife and carved them rather than use the lathe. I simply thought at the moment that the lathe would make it quick and easy.
I had the lathe out and wanted to do more while I had the chance. I still had the knob of the branch I made the goblets from last month. This tree had been trimmed often so there were a lot of branches coming out of the same place at the end of the branch.
Looking over the piece, I decided to turn it so the most knots would go around the outside. Essentially turning it with the ends of the branch spinning around. It took a few tries to get the piece centered so I could remove the least amount of wood to get it round. I had it between centers, a drive spur in the chuck and a flat point on the other end to hold it in place.
I rough rounded it first, then created a tenon for the chuck to grab it.
The style of chuck you have, will dictate how you create your tenon. Some “teeth” of the some chuck jaws are dove tail so you put in an inward slant. Others are flat so you turn it flat so the maximum surface meets it. My chuck has a ridge at the very end. One is supposed to cut a slight groove into the tenon. I decided to be lazy and turn the tenon so it could be the foot of the bowl and just grabbed it by the chuck jaws.
I did a little more shaping of the bottom before I turned it around and then, after shaping the top quite a bit with the tail stock in place,, I dug into the piece around the tail stock before moving the tail stock out of the way. It became a simple act of hollowing. I would start at the very center, removing the nub, then work out to where the mouth was, then work in from the mouth and work back to the center. Each time going deeper.
As I got near deep enough, I concentrated on the outside walls, thinning them out, then blending the bottom with the sides. Once I got it to where I thought it was thin enough, I looked at it and decided it needed a neck. I had plenty of wood to work with. I am still working thick as a precaution. I am excited just to be able to make something and am not ready to handle a failure.
With making the neck, I would make a pass with my bowl gouge and then check to see how much wood I had to work with and then made another pass until I had a shape of a neck that was acceptable. I sanded inside and out with a course sand paper just to clean it up a little.
I had left some of the bark showing. I am going to let it dry and see if the bark stays in place. I might need to super-glue it in place, but will see how it does when it is completely dry.
I mounted the mouth of the bowl in the chuck, opening the jaws until they had outward pressure on the wood.. One has to be careful. There is a fine line between enough to hold and enough to break the wood. Ask me how I know.....
This allowed me to clean and finish the bottom of the bowl. When it was satisfactory, I sanded a little and took it off.
When I was done, I found that I needed to end my day. I had just enough endurance to clean up and no more. That ended my day.
My tactic at this time is to get things made. I will worry about finishing later. I am working with a balance of time and endurance and opportunity. Since my work shop is outside, I cannot leave stuff on the lathe. It is usually easier for me to bring a piece back and finish it further in another session.
I tried to reassemble those cutting blocks I took part and clean last week. The rods had enough bowing shape to crack the wood case. I will have to glue the cases back together and May have to run dowels or pins into the joint to make sure they do not come apart again. Not this weekend.
I will have to see what I do next week.
bottom rounded and shaped.