Sunday, November 29, 2009

Harvesting & Housekeeping

Nothing makes you feel like more of a man than cutting logs with Dan's new monster rig. The inaugural firing-up of Dan's 6' bar went well, and we were pleased, and we felt like real men. Sliced up a nice wide crotch piece of Manitoba Maple (Box elder) and a Birch. 12 slabs, a good days takings.

I decided to do some housekeeping before xmas, in between working on the panels for my doors, so the shop roof has been insulated, and a drying shed has been built in the backyard compound.
Here's a cool clip about a man whose in the zone after 30 years of dedication to his craft. I like that he's found the zone, and his multi-medium, japanese influence combination, nice work.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

The Jack

A cool print from Brabant "the days last lesson"; makes trying to build a table that's bigger than your shop look like a walk in the park. I like it. Hand planing the western Maple door frames; what a pleasure planing something that actually fits on the bench.
The pleasure was heightened with the newly acquired Lie-Nielson No.62 low angle jack. what a sweet plane! Doing all that hand planing on the walnut gave me a chance to do some soul searching. While wooden planes are a beautiful thing, I've decided to reserve them for things like coopering or compass planes for now. Working in a garage has it's challenges, one being that I need to re-flatten the sole of wooden planes regularly, which opens the mouth. What i like about the bevel-up planes is you can easily change the angle of cut, depending on the angle of the micro bevel. With a bevel down wooden plane, you have to go make another plane with a different bed angle. I'm now using a honing guide & stop block jig to get repeatable micro bevels, and I also have a spare blade prepped with a steep angle for those difficult situations. The mouth on the bevel up planes is also adjustable, so it can be tightened up for fine shavings & less tear-out. I actually thought this plane was going to be on the first truck back to Lie-Nielson, it had a taper on the sole, so the leading edge of the iron was not parallel with the mouth. But I managed to lap it true in the end, & it seems to be running well. It's really like using a big block plane, very similar feel, I like it, I like it a lot.

I'm also really liking the Western Maple. One of my new favourites. It didn't machine that well, but it came to the party with hand planing & responds well to a good burnishing with the plane shavings. Nice to find a good local wood that's not too expensive (~$6/board foot). Hopefully Dan & I can harvest more soon.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Table No. 2

Equally at home in a converted barn loft, or the conference room. Measuring in at 118 1/2" x 40 1/2" x 30". XXL. 8 planks of Black Walnut finished with hand rubbed Kunos, a waterproof all-natural product, clear coated cold rolled steel and acrylic lacquered hot rolled steel.