Saturday, May 19, 2018

Cleaning Up a Small Mess

 The mess, the problem.  That window sill had become a hopeless mess and I couldn't  open the window any longer.

   For several years loose dowels have collected on the window sill in my shop.  Initially it wasn't a big deal and I could still open the window to let in fresh air and/or let out smelly chemical air.  As often happens, a short term stop gap measure becomes standard operating procedure, but eventually  the system breaks down. Not only that, it looked like crap.

  After a bit of planning, measuring, and drawing a plan I gathered together various bits of wood.   This project was not made from the scrap cut off bin, but very nearly.

  I decided to make a three section storage bin from skid wood and some plywood.  The bin is 24 inches, 12 inches, 6 inches tall, 12 inches wide and 6 inches deep.  I made the bin so that it would still sit on the window sill.  


    I find that every time I buy dowel I have a bit left over, that I can't bear to throw away.   The plastic bin on the left contains bits of copper pipe, brass, and other none wood items.  Now this is a useful and organized space, the window can be opened with ease and while I was at it I even  washed the glass.  

   You can see on the right one of four bins containing pieces of wood too large to throw out, but too small to be useful.  I am working on over coming my 'wood' addiction, but it is tough.  I never look at a little piece of wood that I don't think it could one day use it for something.  Ultimately the wood will end up in a fire pit, I just need to accept that reality and get rid of the bits, I might discover that my shop is really quite large and comfortable.  That will be embarrassing....

  cheers, ianw

Monday, May 14, 2018

Carved Rail

  Yesterday I had help to get the refinished table out of the shop and into the dining room

  The table doesn't look fabulous but it is fine as the second table. Interestingly the table sits between my version of the Tripp-Trapp chair and the grand daughter clock upon which I have yet to repair. 


  The first section of the chair rail is complete and installed.  The rail is almost invisible, unless you focus on it purposely which is the plan.

  The next part of this project is.... seven feet long.

    The real challenge with this job is maintaining interest.  I have a timer that I set when I begin carving since it is a sitting down task. I try to only carve for an hour at a time to keep my back pain at a minimum.  This morning I carved for an hour...I think there is 10 or 12 hours of carving ahead of me plus the time for sanding and painting.  I am thinking this is a three week project at my work pace. 


   There are very few tools needed to do this large relief carving. I begin by laying down relief cuts with my straight knife. Second I use a narrow gouge to cut away material near the relief lines and then I move to wider and more shallow gouges to get a smoother and finer finish.  The more careful my carving, the less time will be spent sanding.

  cheers, ianw