Friday, January 12, 2007

To Dye For....

Hi Folks
Friday at last! The weekend has arrived and it's workshop time!
The table mats I've been making are coming along well. I have veneered four of them (two more to go) and have edge banded the last two. It is taking a surprising amount of time for a relatively simple project. I wanted to add a solid lip of walnut around the edges instead of veneer as it will be stronger. This means gluing on lipping in pairs. And again on the other edges when the first pair are dry. Now multiply that by six and you can see how this is taking some time. Especially as I'm doing only one or two an evening.......
The new vise works great - I'm really pleased with it and wish I'd done it sooner. Oh well ;)
Tonights fun has been making up some dye from Van Dyke crystals. I've never tried them before and to be honest I'm not a big fan of stains and dyes. Van Dyke crystals are made by soaking the husks of walnuts. The dark brown dye thats seeps out is dried and sold in crystal form. To use you dissolve in hot water and apply. This appeals to me as it is a natural product. I also love walnut and would be interested to see what effect it has on the sap wood (especially as most of the Black Walnut I buy has a unhealthy amout of sap - Grrrrr!)
So I made up a jam-jar full tonight and applied it to some samples of timber. Walnut, cherry, mahogany and a board of walnut that is almost total sap wood. Tomorrow I'll apply a finish and show you the results.
I picked up the Feb 2007 issue of "The Woodworker" magazine today. Thankfully my picture has not appeared on the front cover (as threatened) but it does show my tool chest. There is a nice covering it's construction and also another Philly article on making a replacement handle for a saw. Thanks to Mike W for inspiration on that one!
So if you happen to be in a newsagent - beware!
P.s. Before anyone says anything, Yes, I do need a haircut ;)


Mike said...

Congrats on the new articles--and just where is my commission? Hah! Maybe you can buy me the first beer if I make it over there.

It seems to me the smaller projects are the easiest to misjudge needed time. I'm sure they'll look nice, though.

Take care, Mike

Philly said...

The first beer?? That's a deal!! And maybe the second one too......;)