Posted in Uncategorized, tagged Blackbird Creek Fall Festival, Delaware, Dover, For Woodness Sake, Killens Pond, Mennonite Festival, Old Dover Days, Rick Schuman, Spring Fling, springpole lathe, woodworking demonstration on April 22, 2010 |
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Well, here we go into another season of moderate weather, getting out and about, and enjoying the reawakening of nature. The pole lathe stood its ground through all the snow and cold. Unfortunately I was unable to do the usual woodworking that the winter allows because of the weather. Even today it has gotten chilly enough to need a jacket and something on my head.
Today, I am getting ready to take my “shop” on the road again to demonstrate green woodworking with the lathe, shave horse, and related tools and techniques I have gathered. I’m reassembling my tool kit which has become somewhat scattered because of the different locations I have been working because of the weather. Don’t get me wrong. I loved the snow we had this year which reminded me of the sort of snow we used to get in Delaware regularly when I was a boy. Well, a younger boy. But, just as in the times my woodworking represents, adjustments have to be made in order to keep a it.
First up and out this year is the Spring Fling at Killen’s Pond near the camping area by the pavilion on April 24th from 11:00 am to 2:00 pm. This is the first time they are having this event so I hope if you see this you will be able to make some time to come out and support the effort. This event is part of the “No child left inside” program at Killen’s Pond.
Next, I will be at Olde Dover Days for a second year. The craft demonstration area is behind the old Court House at the west end of the Legislative mall. A little blacksmithing, spinning, and this year a live traditional musician playing period music on period instruments, maybe with a good pole turning tune.
I will be returning to the Mennonite Spring festival on May 15 from 8:00 am to about 4:00 pm at the Central Christian School, 220 W. Denney’s Road. Lots of crafts, good food, and an auction featuring handmade quilts. Proceeds benefit the school.
Finally, so far, I will be at Blackbird Creek on Oct 23. Not sure about the times yet. Stay tuned for updates.
Hope to see you, whoever you are. Thanks.
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At our second outing/craft show/demonstration, there were not so many people due to inclement weather and a fairly secluded location. Also, the local newspapers were not very cooperative with their advertising. All in all, we had a pretty good time. The Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve hosted the event and did a very good job of providing us with facilities including a huge tent for shelter and several food vendors.
Special thanks to Kim Cole who managed the whole affair. Once again, Tish kept shop and managed to finish a bracelet she had been working on. I sold a few flowers and tree hooks.
As I worked on the spring pole lathe, a number of people made comments and asked questions. One on-going discussion was about muscle over development which I said was not a problem as I switched legs often enough either due to fatigue (mostly in my standing leg) or to get a better position to hold the tool. Also, as with any regular activity, muscle development reaches a point where it is simply enough to do the work. I think people have an image of Arnold Schwarzenegger (I got the spelling from a copy of The Terminator) with his bulgings and svelteness. Body builders build their bodies. The rest of us “build?” only what is necessary for what we do. So, even though one arm might be more developed for a carpenter who swings a hammer all day, there is a limit to how much development will take place.
The main question was of course, what is this and what are you doing. My answer usually starts out that I am making a mess which I follow with a little history of tool and simple machine making. It all begins with spinning a stick between the palms to make a hole or to cause enough friction to start a fire. Add a bow to increase the number of rotations and speed things up. So far, the stick is a tool. By mounting the stick between centers but still using a bow to rotate it, a second stick/tool can be used to shape the stick into a third product, perhaps a stool leg or a handle. Finally, a large frame with a spring pole can produce larger objects. The principle- reciprocal motion- remains the same. One woman actually called the lathe primitive although most people were fairly amazed at the effectiveness of the whole thing.
Later in the afternoon, several elementary school aged kids got to “help” me. While they worked the treadle, I did a bit of turning near the the waste end of the stick. I shall have to get a box for them to stand on so they can better see the effect of what they are doing, but a good time was had anyway. Later, it started raining again. At this, I remarked that it must be time to pack up and go home, and that we did. On the way home we stopped at the Hartley firehouse for two chicken and dumpling dinners.
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Some photos from the Blackbird Creek Fall Festival, by Life On The Edges. For full album (20 photos) click here.
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