A place for me to display some of the varied projects that come out of my shop, as well as to "talk" about some of my experiences working with wood.

Monday, 10 June 2013

Knife-making Returns

Shalick Shaman Mask
I know I have said in the past I am not interested in making any more knives (I did not say "never"), but here I am writing a post on making more knives. During my carving course I learned some new techniques that I have already used on other projects. While I have no grand illusions of becoming a carver, there is frequently a requirement where the skills are handy. Just carving an inlay yesterday, the new techniques I learned from Rick Wolcott made it go much smoother.

Original Knives, one already
I have had these Swedish laminated steel knives I bought from Lee Valley many (many) years ago which just have not found a use for me; one had even migrated out to the shed for cutting rope. The handles were just not comfortable for me, so they did not get used. The laminated steel blades held an incredible edge and they needed a purpose. While at the carving course  decided then and there I had a new purpose for these blades.

The blades were promptly removed from the handles and the handles sent to the burn box.

Roughing the blanks with the Daed Mitre
I picked out a stick of walnut which had a figured end on it and cut two blanks. The blanks were rough shaped and split in two on the bandsaw to take the blade, I carved out the inside to take the tang and epoxied them back together and let them cook for a day.

The next step was to do some rough shaping on the belt sander and then final shaping with sander and then sanded up to 1000 grit on the Festool sander.

The finished knives with a couple of coats of Tru-Oil and ready to do some carving.

Tried them out this morning and as good as the ones I used in the carving seminar, a new tool for the arsenal!!

Saturday, 1 June 2013

The Arms Trade is alive and well

Hows that for a cryptic title?

Original Rocker #1, notice how arms
only extend a short distance from leg
After I finished my first rocking chair I was not really pleased with the way the arms looked. This was one of the first times Hal Taylor had sent out his new petite size pattern, and I think some kinks needed to be worked out. The arms did not extend beyond the front leg joint any more than an inch or so; this made things look out of proportion, but since it was my first rocker - what did I know? So I followed the plan.

After finishing my third rocker I knew I could not live with the first one any longer - an amputation was necessary, along with a full upper limb replacement. I used the arm pattern from the small size plans and things worked out perfectly, the wood is darkening up and soon you will never know that major surgery had been performed.

The following pictures document the process, if someone else is crazy enough to try this, send me a note and I will offer a few tips on this.
The amputation is complete, recip saw and then planed
on the exposed joints

New transition block glues and screwed into place, did most of the
shaping on recip sander before gluing

The two arms being glued on, the tops have been coped already.
Here's the arms before grinding and shaping, surprising
little work to this point (5-6 hours)

Finished arms, look like they should, transitions and arm have been carved
with one coat of finish, a few days in the sun and no one will ever know!!!
Thanks for looking,