Saturday, July 29, 2006

Split My Sides

Howdy Folks!
Been a busy week at work which has left me a chomping at the bit for some workshop time. And today has been a good day. The Missus and little Sophie have been at a birthday party all day leaving me, sob sob, all alone in the workshop ;)
So to business.....
First job-finish the forth moulding plane off. I also had a mass blade temper session. So that concludes pair number two. I also received some letter punches from Tilgear so the planes now have their size and my initials adorning thier ends. So professional............NOT ;)
Next up-steam bending the back for my shop stool project. Not such a success. Three tries and all split out on me. An hour and a half in the steamer for 3/4 inch material should of been plenty (according to all the books I've read) Looks like I'll be laminating up the back, then :( Turned up the remaining spindles so this one is coming on well.
And just for fun (and to keep Norm happy) I've started a drill press/sharpening station. A spare worktop from the day job inspired this project and some MDF and the biscuit jointer pushed it over the edge. Hopefully this will be finished tomorrow, pics to follow.
Time for a quick glass of wine-have a good weekend all!


Anonymous said...

They look great, Phil.

Bummer about the splitting. The wood grain looks fairly ideal for bending too.

The runout where it cracked. If there had been enough length, it looks like had it been shifted counterclockwise in the picture so that where the split begins had been under the wedge a good bit it may not have split. If you have another piece, mark it as to where the grain actually runs out and see if you can capture it well under a wedge...if you get it started in the steamer while having the morning tea, it may save you the resawing and glue up...

Take care, Mike--who apologizes for being an armchair quarterback...

Philly said...

Thanks Mike-The first two were from some straight grained cherry. They were even worse, so I gave up and went for ash as it has a reputation for being a great steam bending timber. Must admit, I spent last night wondering on where I could get a nice green log of ash. But I really don't want to go down that road. Yet....;)

Alf said...

Now that's why I don't want to try steam bending... Did you have a strap of metal, or JB used thin ash iirc, round the work when you bent it? Wonder if that'd help? I wonder also if the very dry weather is a factor?

Nice planes; looking forward to when you're taking orders for half sets! :~)

Anonymous said...

Ah yes, forgot to mention the metal strap. With a piece of old saw blade cut down, you can make good bending straps. That too may have prevented the runout from cracking.

Using straps, I've even steam bent Ebony into small radii...The pic at the url below shows a small piece of Ebony 1/8" thick--so it still is thin, but is s amll radius.

As regards the strap material...see. Y'all being in the land o' cheap you know what to do with 'em.

Take care, Mike

Philly said...

No strap, I hoped I wouldn't need it. It was my first steaming session (ha, ha)so I was lucky to get as far as I did.
As you placing your order in advance?? ;) No, I'm happy to knock some out for myself but I'm not ready to follow "The W" down that road yet. I'm having a lot of fun coming up with different ways to do the bits I didn't do too well-By the time the half set is finished I'll be half-way proficient. Maybe....
Nice box Mike-what is the red timber? The land of cheap saws LOL The grass is always greener, huh?
Sorry to say I ripped a load of cherry strips this afternoon to laminate the back. I just want to sit on the thing not spend the rest of the year splitting pretty bits if hardwood ;)

Anonymous said...

The red timber is Bloodwood. This bit I bought is irridescent when finished and the light hits hit. The panel is Camphor burl.

There's another one of Bloodwood at the index page and has a curly Maple panel:

The brown one there is curly Makore.

To be honest, I gave up bending solids quite a while ago. Bent lamination if one keeps the pieces in order and are thickessed smooth [I use a drum sander] are hard enough to tell are laminations. And besides. It is a lot easier...and I don't burn my hands anymore.

Take care, Mike

Anonymous said...


What glue do you use for laminating?

Anonymous said...

Hi Nick,

Usually I use System Three epoxies. Messy, and hard on tooling once dry, but the long open time for positioning laminations is well worth it.

For general veneering, I often use plastic resin glue or epoxy. Smaller panels are almost always hide glue for the convenience.

Take care, Mike