Monday, May 29, 2017

Year 17, Week 19, Day One (week 905)

Year 17, Week 19, Day One (week 905)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
05-20-17 Saturday
    Low at 82, high at 88. The sky was mostly blue with some puffs, and a good breeze. there is some humidity but not like it will be in the summer. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach department of Tourism.
    We had a wood turning club meeting. Because we meet at a school, the school will be closed for the next three months and we will not be able to meet there. The club will look into meeting at another site during the summer, but that is not likely to happen. There is a WOOD WORKING club and we have been invited to their meetings during this time, but I am not sure I will be able to go to those meetings.
    Our instant gallery had just a few items. I could not get something together to bring to the club meeting. One of the items on display was a home made chuck designed to hold a bowl backwards so you can finish the bottom.
    It is basically two sheets of plywood cut into a circle. One has slots cut straight toward the center, and the other has slots cut to the spiral. There are twenty holes around the outside on one, and nineteen holes around the outside on the other. These holes are in line with themselves.
    Wing nuts and bolts are in each slot stuck in where they intersect and there is a rubber bumper on each. When the two sheets are turned opposite each other, the bolts move up and down in the straight slots. The two sheets are connected in the center. One of the sheets has a tenon attached so it can be held in the lathe chuck. The piece is placed up against the sheet and one sheet is turned until the bumpers all the way around hold the bowl in place. The wing nuts are tightened.
    Because of the difference in numbers of holes, the holes around the outside has different gaps when looking through them. You simply choose one with just a slit space between them and stick a screw driver into it and apply pressure to tighten the bumpers against the bowl and then tighten the bolts to their final tension.
    Run the lathe on a very low speed and carefully clean and finish the bottom of the bowl.
    In the DOODAD MOMENT, one guy showed a gnarling tool, used to add texture to the work. He said it comes with different teeth for different effects. He also showed that he gets really good results on polishing the insides of vases and bowls using a small buffing wheel on his drill.
    The demonstration was on the many ways of holding work on the lathe.
    Wood is basically fibers glued together. Some woods have strong glue, some have short fibers, some have long fibers and some have weak glue. Also the hardness of the fibers changes between woods Cedar is long fibers and weak glue. Most fruit wood is really strong fibers. Basswood has fibers and glue about the same strength. Oak has really strong long fibers and fairly strong glue.
    Picture wood as a bunch of straws glued together.  When you stick an edge into the straws from the end, the ends move around the edge. When you stick an edge into the side, it resists digging in if it is across the straws, but cuts in easily if stuck in line with the straws. This will help you picture some of the description of how some methods of holding wood works.
    The demonstrator started with different kinds of drive spurs and the techniques of using them. One thing I did not know was that the four tooth spur is used on end grain, while the two tooth spur is used on side grain. Mainly because the teeth going opposite the grain seldom gets a bite on side grain. Another thing is that you NEVER pound on the end of a spur to give it bite. That ruins the end of the spur, making it, eventually where they will not hold within the shaft of the lathe. The pounding deforms the end.
    He pointed to the WOOD WORM screw. It is a screw that generally comes with your lathe. You drill a hole in the work, as specified by the manufacturer’s instruction,, and then fit the head of the screw in your chuck. These screws have really large, sharp edges to eat into the wood. These are at their best with side grain rather than end grain. The teeth slide sort of between the fiber of the side grain wood. End grain requires the screws to actually cut the fibers to dig in and hold. It can pull out easier. 
    He covered many kinds of face plates which are simply plates with holes in them that fit on the drive head of your lathe. The plate is set in the center of the work and many screws are driven in. Face plates can be manufactured to precise machining specifications, or can be home made. Generally, it is best to allow for waste wood where the screws go in. Sometimes you might glue a wood block to the work and use that as the waste wood. One simply turns away the excess wood until you have the finished bottom.
    A Pin Chuck is a small plate that fits into the lathe and has two or four pointed screws. These are used when the initial surface is not quite square to the center of the work. One puts the work to the plate, in line, and then turn the screws in until the points dig in. I made one years ago, and used drywall screws. The screws bent and the work went flying. I needed to get better screws but never used it since. Don’t use drywall screws. They are made of the wrong metal.
    He went through different kinds of chucks, He had a three jaw machine chuck and thought it would be great, then realized that the jaws have only a tiny bit of surface to hold into the wood, and they are designed for round stock, not square or irregular stock. I have one that the jaws are adjusted individually, rather than turning a ring. My chuck can be used to work off-center for special effects.
    The scroll chucks, work like the plywood chuck mentioned about above. A spiral plate moves the jaws up and down in a slot. You can get many different jaws for the chucks. The diameter of the chuck dictates the size of work one can hold. Because of the way chuck jaws are designed, they hold best at about a mid point range of open and closed. Some chucks use a key that you turn, others use rods to lever the ring around. With mine, it takes two rods, and you rotate the ring until it locks on then you apply pressure to fix it in place.
    He explained that a big mistake beginners make is to measure the depth of the chuck and make the tenon that long. He emphasized that at no time should the tenon bottom out on the inside of the chuck. Everything should be in contact and held by the edges of the jaws. There are different designs of jaws for chucks. Some have a dovetail shape, some have just a single edge, and some have multiple edges on the inside. One creates the edge of the tenon to match the type of chuck you are using. He says that with the single tooth design, many beginners will cut a groove for the tooth to fit into on the tenon. One must not do that. The tooth digs into the wood to hold it. The face of the chuck must contact the bottom of the work.
    He showed specialty chucks, for finishing the bottoms of the bowls. Some are commercially made like the COLE chuck. Others are home made like the chuck described above or a “donut” chuck someone demonstrated a few months ago. The demonstrator said he never needs these chucks. He uses a jam chuck or something else described later with his tail stock, to hold the work on the lathe and finishes it until there is a nub. He removes the work and finishes it off with a chisel and sand paper. Vacuum chucks are among these bottom of bowl chucks, their only purpose is to finish the bottom. Break the suction and the piece goes flying. Have the suction too high and the piece will collapse. With all these specialty chucks, they have to be used at a slow turning rate. Many can only go 600 rpm.
    There are many versions of what is called a jam chuck. They can be simply some junk wood that you shape into a cone with a tenon on the other end, and stick it into the mouth of the lathe, with the tail stock on the other end. These are great as you can design them to fit your needs. If you are doing one of many of one design, the chuck can be made to fit exactly. With small projects, many turners will use a jam chuck that is fitted for a “suction fit” where it takes a little force to remove it.
    One jam chuck I like and should make, is a log rod with a pad at the far end, and a stepped ring that slides along it and can be locked down with an Alan screw. The rod applies pressure to the bottom of the bowl, pushing it against the tail stock. The sliding ring fits into the mouth of the work and holds it center. There is no pressure on the mouth of the work so it will not break. The ring simply centers it.
    It is hard to remember all he covered as he mostly touched on many things rather than going in great depth on them. I did learn a lot from them and have some ideas.

    I stopped at four yard sales, getting a salad spinner at one. I don’t fix salads but about four times a year, I wished I had one for something. At this second, I cannot remember what. The price was good and this was one of the better designed ones. It has a pump in the middle of the top, you push it down and it spins the basket. Fairly good mechanism. It has a rubber covered button to act as a brake. There was a switch next to the pump and we tried to figure out what it was for. At first we thought it might activate a gear to change the speed. On a lark, I pushed the pump to the bottom and the switch slide to lock the pump in place for storage. It is fun figuring things out. 
    I also found a book called BUILD IT BETTER. my brother glanced through it quickly, lots of interesting things. Nothing that would pass our local building departments, but someone on a farm could use it no problem.
    There were three yard sales that had nothing that I bothered to even stop for(clothing or they always have the same things), and several signs for sales I could not find. One nicely made yard sale sign had lots of information but did not tell where it was. I am interested on where it is and that it is a sale, not WHAT is on sale.. I will find out what they have when I get there.
    When I got back, I took a very short hap, then went over and helped Mom with getting some data she needed off the web. A relation came over for lunch. Talking with him killed the rest of the day. It was too late to do anything.

    I hope to do some wood working tomorrow.


Year 17, Week 19, Day two (week 905)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
05-21-17 Sunday
    The day started out at 79 and soared up to 84. I was never sure whether to wear my jacket or my swim suit........ It was mostly clear with some puff off and on. A nice breeze helped carry the heat away. This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach department of Tourism.
    I saw one yard sale on the way to mom’s.  I had stopped there yesterday. It dawned on me that this was the one that wordy sign was for. What tipped me off was that they had a couple golf carts there and that was mentioned on the sign. They got rid of a lot of stuff yesterday. They had a box of tiny wooden mallets, ones for children or something on that. I forced myself not to show any interest in them. If I want a bunch of them laying around, in the way, I will make them myself.......(if I ever got around to it)   
    I went out back, and cut the knotted section off a Mango branch. I had shown pictures of it to one of the experts at the club and he gave me an idea of how to turn it. I cut the trunk a little short, but will work with that anyway. This just changes where the center is located.
    I had another piece I was going to make into a "banana bowl" where it is long and narrow. I saw there were shrinkage cracks in it so I decided to split it. I keep forgetting that Mango is a fruit wood, and all fruit woods are very hard and strong. It was a lot of work but I finally split it. It was an epic battle. Me using the wrong tools and it was only pretending to have a crack in it. This might get split up a lot more for crochet hooks and such. Anything that is small and needs to be strong.

    Next week, I have a long weekend. If I can’t make some sawdust next weekend, I might never get any done ever.        

 Most of the chucks and attachments used in the demonstration
 salad spinner

the tree branch before I had trimmed it last week. this was the view he said to turn it on.
 one view of the chuck removed.
 another view of chunk removed.
the split piece of wood. Should have turned it and ignored the crack.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Year 17, Week 18, Day One (week 904)

Year 17, Week 18, Day One (week 904)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
05-13-17 Saturday
    76 degrees early morning 86 late afternoon. Interlaced feather and spilt milk, filled the morning sky. They consolidated into puffs over the everglades,, with blue sky above. The puffs then spread over the sky with lots of blue sky between. Strong breezes built up late in the day, 18 mph with gusts at 26. Radar showed a shockwave-front crossing the state. It should pass tonight by the rate it was moving. This weather report is brought to you by the City of Pompano Beach department of Tourism..
    I drove my normal yard sale route and only stopped at four yard sales. There were three that never have anything different so I did not stop at them. I saw some signs for some sales but could not find any of them.
    There was one yard sale that a guy had several sales and I had a question of him, but am not sure what house his was, so I go through his neighborhood, which is at the south end of the run in hopes he has another yard sale. This causes me to drive the whole route.
    At one I picked up a few necklaces some had owls on them. Another had an elephant and a third had a deer on it. These may end up being gifts.
    At a different yard sale I picked up a cane, which I decided could stay in the truck, and a tree-topper angel that was nice.  I gave that to Mom.
    Once home, I took a nap and then we went to Walmart. On the way there, we saw a yard sale. On the way back from our Walmart trip,  we stopped and had a look at what they had. I ended up getting a dremmel-style motor tool with a bunch of bits, and a Harbor freight mini motor, a paper towel holder and a package of dowels. With what I ended up with, it was a nice deal.
    While driving on my route, I was going at about 25 mph. It dawned on me that it was less than three centuries ago that this was breakneck speed. People would have been thrilled at going this fast. What is more, I did it for most of an hour, which they would never have been able to do. Horses cannot run at full speed that long. They might be able to do it by swapping horses after a distance, but it was work. Nowadays this is irritatingly slow.
    I was involved in some non-project activities so I have nothing to report for the rest of my day.
    I will see what I accomplish tomorrow.   

Year 17, Week 18, Day One (week 904)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
05-14-17 Sunday
    Mostly cloudy. The front passed last night and watered mom’s plants. I forgot to look at the temps. I am sure it was between 75 and 88, This weather report is brought to you by the City of Pompano Beach department of Tourism..
    I laid out my cast iron pans to take a picture, and realize there are many missing I will have to search storage a little more to find them. The big result of photographing my collection, is the realization that I have no need to get any more cast iron, unless it is something special. They were heavy enough that I had to use a handcart to take them in them, in three trips each way, rather than twenty to get these pictures. They add up to being very heavy.
    Family arrived not long after I arrived at Mom’s. We watched HOW ITS MADE and we  talked a lot. My niece  helped Mom with some programs. I later had to help her some more.
    Mom has the problem that she uses the computer about twenty minutes a day and mostly E-mail and Facebook. She has problems remembering how to do things she does once a week or once a month. Part of the problem of helping her is that I like the mouse or trackball, and she loves the touch pad. I have problems with the touchpad. It does not do what I want it to do.
    It is nice to be able to use some of the things you have. A grocery store I go to has developed a section of an isle filled with Arab products. They have a coffee I found I like that is Cardamon coffee. Their dark is like expresso and ground ultra fine. The light is more like a tea almost no roasting to the coffee, with leaves visible and is course. I found that if I grind the light really fine in my coffee grinder and then mix the two, the combination is really good. It ends up as a normal strength coffee with lots of the Cardamon flavor.
    When I use my coffee grinder I dump each batch of ground coffee into a zipper bag. When done, I then empty the zipper back into the container. It saves a lot of mess that way. The grinder has a big mouth while the baggy can be adjusted to fit the container I am dumping into.
    I make the coffee at work in the morning and I make an extra pot of flavored coffee. I think I am up to eight to ten different flavors now.  Some are not great, but you don’t appreciate the really good stuff until you have had some lesser flavors.

    I finished another teddy bear dress. It was too loose for the bear I was using as a model, but I had a fatter, squatter, bear and it fits on that one, with the skirt at ankle length.  These clothes is an easy project to crochet, but difficult enough to be a challenge. I have to locate a pattern I had for teddy bears. The bottom part of the pattern makes for fairly good pants.
    With the turning club meeting Thursday, I should have some ideas for the weekend. I have a piece of wood I need to talk about one of the “masters” about. I want to get the most out of and need recommendations.
    I will see what I do next weekend.

 Part of my cast iron cookware collection. There are pieces missing from this picture.
the motor tool kit. these were all in one purchase, with a few other items.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Year 17, Week 17, Day One (week 903)

Year 17, Week 17, Day One (week 903)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
05-07-17 Saturday
    64 early morning, 81 late afternoon, blue skies as far as you could see. This was a haze free blue sky. Winds with gusts strong enough to tug on hats and knock things over. This is from a front that passed over us at the end of the week which watered our plants well.  This weather report is brought to you by the City Of Pompano Beach Department Of Tourism.
    I headed out to check out some yard sales. I drove the whole route and found only four yard sales. One was all kids stuff, one had a lot of collectibles, which were interesting, but I don’t have room for anything like that stuff. I tend toward usable things. There was a multi family sale where I picked up a tie rack for my dad, who still wears ties. The last yard sale was of someone I had seen before. She had mostly outdoor furniture. Most of the drive was enjoyable.
    I took a short nap when I got back, then started moving around some wood in mom’s back yard. I saw some needed trimming so I headed out to HOME DEPOT. We have two dead saws-alls and I could use one. I decided I would buy one. LOWES has more varieties but when I looked at them several months ago, I had no clue what I was looking at.
    We have a display shelf project that has been looking at us and I decided to pick up some stuff for that.
    I walked part of the store. They had a limited selection of saws-alls and I quickly learned what the differences between them. AMPS is how much power the saw has. Some saws have a switch where the blade can go straight as it goes in and out, or one can have the blade sort of circles, where it will pull with the blade low, and rise up when it pulls back (I have not read the instructions so that is what I assumes it does. This is more aggressive a cut.  One can get a corded unit or a battery unit. Then there is the weight of the machine. Some also are also set up to reduce vibration in the handle, with either a cushion/spring handle, or with a counter weight that goes opposite the blade.  They all now have quick release chucks rather than using an allen wrench. You simply turn a knurled knob around the chuck, and slip the blade in and turn the knob the other way. Some have a lever on the outside that you lift and that moves the quick release. 
    I picked one that was inexpensive, but powerful.
    I then got some hardware and a few shelves for the shelving.
    I got home and showed mom what I got and she said the shelving stuff I got was not right, in any way, shape, or form. We decided to go back. She needed some mulch for her garden anyway.
    We went back and selected peg board and had it cut there for us. We got the brackets for that, and a couple shelves which we will cut in half. We may instead get some one by ten boards as it will be the right blond color, and a whole lot cheaper. We are not quite ready for shelving yet. The shelving we got would have to be cut anyway so getting two by tens might well work better. 
    We got home and using a wheel borrow, I unloaded the truck (the guy at the store loaded the truck). I put two of the bags of mulch in the wheel borrow, over the wheel, and found there was no effort to tip it up. I added two more and then took them out back. Balancing them was no trouble, pushing them was no trouble, but when I got them out back, I was puffing. (They keep telling me to get into shape. I always thought round was a shape). Mom wanted them in several places. I brought the second batch out back and placed them where mom wanted them. When she gets to work, she is going to be the one to be moving them if they need to be some place else....
    I messed around a little bit on some things, then napped until it was time to get ready and leave.
    I had good exercise today and accomplished some things that will lead to future projects. I intended to make sawdust, not move it around. I will see if I accomplish something tomorrow.

Year 17, Week 17, Day One (week 903)
(January 17, 2000 was my first carving day.)
05-07-17 Saturday
    63 degrees early Morning, 80 late afternoon. All sun and blue sky through the whole day. A breeze strong enough to move hair and leaves, but light enough to be comfortable.
    I found a yard sale on the way to Mom’s house.. One guy is a contractor who is shifting his equipment from plug-in, to battery. He had a saws-all at a good price so I picked it up. I am not sure what got into me. I found a bin of Easter stuff there for a pittance. There are some ceramic rabbits and other things. I got it and questioned my decision when I drove away, and as I took it into the house. The bin, itself, is almost worth what I paid.
    When I got to Mom’s I told her about the Saws-all I found. While I was taking a nap, she went out side and played around a little. She took my old saws-all, which decided not to run, and removed the screws and opened the case. She found the armature clocked with my hair! She got her long tweezers and took the hair out and now it works!!!!
    It has never “caught” my hair, so it must have, over the years, sucked in one hair at a time until it was too much to turn.
    It appears that some problems with machinery are easy to repair “IF YOU CAN GET IT BACK TOGETHER” which is not my best skill.
    We now have three working saws-alls. The new one will be Mom’s personal saws-all which she will have put away. I decided that the quick release blade of the last one I bought is nicer to use than the allen wrench of the old one so the old one is set on a shelf for now. I am using the old case with the last unit. The space in the plastic case is not the same, but it closes and that is all that matters.
    After a quick nap, I went out back to do some wood working. I took out the saws-all and trimmed some of the Mango wood I received from the tree next door when they trimmed it. It already has fruit coming on. One large, almost ripe one fell, but most that have fallen are tiny and won’t ripen.
    When they cut the branches, they had no consideration for cutting them straight, and there was pieces near the bark where the wood broke rather than cut. I cut a small piece closer to being square, as I figure I will make a banana bowl out of that. That is a bowl that is longer than it is wide. It ends up more like a wing, than a bowl.
    I had one branch where it was trimmed a number of times so it is a knob with a bunch of branches coming out. I removed the branch stubs sticking out. I am not sure how I am going to turn it. I may have one of the experts in the turning club give me some ideas as how to get the most out of it.
    Another piece had split down quite a ways. They cut below the split so I have a piece that is partially flat on one side. Anyway I trimmed off the split.
    Later in the day, Mom decided she had to do something about the shelving unit we picked up hardware for. It had some long screws sticking out. We used the Saws-all to trim the screws off. They are just long enough to put cap nuts on. I figure we will glue them on as there really are not much in the way of threads holding them on. We fit the cap nuts on and it looks good, almost finished. We discussed how to go about supporting the shelving and finishing it up. I decided I was not up to doing that today. Maybe next week. Will see.
    While I did not do any turning this weekend. I did do some work with wood.
    I hope to be more productive next weekend.

 My old saws-all with the culprit of what had killed it.
 A close up of some of what Mom removed from the motor.

 The pice of wood I started with trimming for a future project
 The saws-all I picked up today.

 Some of the shape of the log after some trimming
more of the trimmed piece.