Looking to the future

It is now over a year since I last posted anything on here, and almost a year since I turned anything. In the last 10 months I have been involved in redecoration and re-modelling of our home, then placing it on the market, house hunting, moving, bulding a new workshop, and making the new place more comfortable to live in.
There are a finite number of hours in a day, and days in a week. There is also a finite number of beer tokens available, to spend on houses and sheds.
I had to replace the brakes on my old car too, so I could continue driving to work.

It’s all exciting though, and it has been a reasonably positive experience. In the first few weeks we were competely snowed in – a brand new experience for me.
Our old place sold, then the sale fell through, then sold again – all in the space of seven weeks. The selling agents were absolutely amazing, and made the experience really easy. There was an issue with an incompetent solicitor, but this is not the place to address that.
The new house previously belonged to an old person, so everything is dated.
Having started on renovations, it makes me angry how some trades people can leave such shoddy work behind, knowing the elderly will not be able to check their work later. Everything in the house has been good quality materials, but so badly installed it just ruins the job.

Going forward, the shell of the workshop is up, and I have temporary power installed. I still need to frame out the inside, and get the wiring in before I can do any serious work in there. I have the rest of my life though, so it feels less urgent.

It’s just a small shed.

My Son refers to is as “the aircraft hangar”

It’s only 20′ x 10′ lol
Once the framing has been done, I can start installing cabinets and benches, then I will be able to start creating things again. My target is to be turning by the first anniversary of my last turning, which is 8 weeks away.
2nd Quaich #1
Oak quaich turned from laminated stair parts, and a new £1 coin embedded in resin.

I will probably have to re-learn the various skills I have learned since 2011. Can’t wait to see how much I have forgotten.


Posted in Woodturning

I’m Still Turning

I have neglected this platform for a while. Mainly due to the horrible “new” editor interface, and Wordmess adopting the same development strategy as Facebook, where adding bells and whistles is more important than customer satisfaction.
I have a free subscription, and given how customers are treated would never part with a ha’penny for the platform.

I have been busy turning and have been thinking long and hard about how to develop my hobby further. We are hoping to move house later in the year, so after I have everything set up the way I want it, I think I will be re-thinking my development strategy.

Watch this space. (I might even post some turning related stuff.)

Posted in Woodturning | Tagged

Candlestick Phone Revisited

I was inspired by a blogger I follow to revisit a candlestick telephone project I did when I first started turning.
The original was a reasonable attempt for a new turner.
Not bad, in my opinion, considering I had been turning at this point for around 5 months.

The second attempt started well enough, using scraps of timber I had sitting around. Laburnum for the microphone and ear trumpet, and elm for the rest.
I feel the stem should have been thicker, but I just had to work with what stock I had.
The components laid out. Well, most of them anyway.
All assembled, waiting for a skoot of clear lacquer.
After the first coat of lacquer.
The finished article. You didn’t expect that then, did you? I just had this idea, and we needed a new lamp for under the stairs.
This is it completely done now, with the flex anchored in the base.

This is the first post in ages. WordPress has become so cumbersome to use, I’m not sure whether I will continue with the whole blog thing.

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Wordmess at it again

Now it seems the old style stats page has gone. I can no longer quickly see who has been visiting my blog. When I open the stats page the fan on the laptop cranks up, and my system resources are gobbled up by whichever Flash process the stats page uses. It is so badly written too, that the only way I can regain control of my laptop is to close the browser and kill the Flash player plug-in.

Total, utter crap

Posted in Woodturning

Out With The Old

As the old year draws to a close we all look back at what a dreadful year it’s been for celebrities. Who would want to be famous?

My turning has been much reduced at the close of the year due to other commitments. I have had 3 turning days since October. I did manage some output all the same.
A friend gave me a cutting from a walnut worktop. He was given it by a neighbour for his woodburning stove. This would be a travesty.
I took half of it and turned a platter.
This was pretty close to the limit of my lathe at 16½” and was quite rough to start off with because of the amount of vibration.
I managed to keep it to ¾” thick. I didn’t dare go any thinner though.
It has since been sprayed with clear lacquer and polished to a high sheen

I had rough turned a hawthorn bowl back in August. It was set aside in a paper bag, packed with wet shavings. I re-mounted it this week and finished it to 6½” diameter by ¼” thick.
This was before finish was applied.
I do like a nice smooth bottom. A couple of coats of cellulose sanding sealer has been applied at this stage, and it was polished using home cooked paste wax.
The rim has been scorched to accent the edge

One of the local dog walkers left a piece of wood outside my shed. I have no idea what it is. Best guess is leylandii, but I simply can’t be sure. The end result is pretty reasonable considering how ugly it started.
The holes are not worm or bug holes, they are teeth marks from a Rottweiler.
Step#1 roughly turn to round.
It’s fairly rough and very punky.
Step#2 start to shape.
Still really rough.
Step#3 roud it off and create a recess.
This was the finish straight off the tools.
Step#4 sand to 320 grit, apply cellulose sanding sealer, and polish with hand knitted abrasive paste wax.
Much better.

The act of turning takes something oddly organic and turns it into something pleasing to the eye.

Most of the time.

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More WordPress “Improvements”

Looks like WordPress have done it again. More changes, with no perceptible gain. There is clearly no point bringing it up with WordPress, as it is apparent from this topic that they take no notice of what customers think.
Yet another style over substance change. The editor took a full 45 seconds to load, just to post this. Anyone in a busy environment simply has enough to be doing to be waiting for sub-standard code to load. The visible stats indicator has disappeared from the menu bar. The indicator was a useful widget to allow folk to see in real-time how a blog is performing. Now, because the new stats page is so bad, I have to load the old style stats page just to see whether I have had any visitors.

Bad show WordPress. You’re really not getting this whole customer focus malarkey.

Posted in Woodturning

Finally! Some Lathe Action

After four weeks of not getting out to play, I managed some turning yesterday. I had to take some time out to help a young couple sort out the electrics in their first home. I have no idea how the place didn’t catch fire. Every time I looked at something the level of horror was ramped up a notch or two.

After putting all my tools back where they belong and tidying the shed, I got a piece of old scaffold board mounted up and turned my first Christmas ornament of the year.
Meet Sid.
OK the painting is a bit shady, I’m too impatient. It’s a great shame that it covers the turning. One of the woodturning masters says if you can get a good finish on pine off the tools you can turn pretty much anything.
Sid was sanded with 320 grit and 400 grit only.

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