Archive for February, 2012

stand-up work holder

Hey look! Pictures. I was working on an oddly shaped artsy piece this afternoon and I needed something with 360 degree access. I tried the picninc table bench it is attached to the table which kept getting in the way. Not so traditional either. So, a spanish windlass with my new chopping bench were the next stop. I was thinking I should drill a couple of holes through my chopping bench to put dowels or a rope through but I decided to just wrap the rope around the whole thing. I had a nice piece of maple dowel which was a drop from something I had turned and about 8 feet of 1/4 inch braided nylon rope. It all worked really well. Its amazing how much tension/pressure you can get from a stick and a string with a twist in it. Anyway, I was able to use a gouge and mallet as well as just push cutting with the gouge. The bench, half a sugar maple log about 3 feet long and 14 inches wide, stayed in place and the work piece was held to the bench with only a little slippage, mostly because to the fit between the bench top and the piece. I finished the piece and moved on to other projects.


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So, its been 10 days since I decided to center on green woodworking as a means of livelyhood. First, I moved my “shop” from the middle of our yard to behind our shed in order to get it out of public view. This makes my wife happy as this sort of full time activity is not popular with the managers of the mobile home park we live in. (Don’t tell anyone.) I had qualms for a few days but I work lots of hours every day, I am sleeping better, and I have lost 11 pounds (body weight not sterling). Inventory is growing as is the list of events I will be attending. I have adapted my pole lathe t be able to turn small bowls and up to 10″ plates. I am also doing for-pay work: furniture repair, boat fittings, hanging wall board, and such. Best of all, I am adjusting to and becoming comfortable with my decision; less qualm, more hope.

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This year I have come to a sort of tipping point with regard to my pole turning and green woodworking “business”. As I am getting to an age when climbing ladders and such has become less and less fun, I am going to be concentrating more on this green woodwork. After 5 years of going around to public shows and doing demonstrations, I am looking at also placing my wares in “regular” retail places. I have developed a following and an interest in the sort of work I do and I hope to be able to make the most of what I can with it. Along with continuing to do shows, I am also finding opportunities to teach some basic green woodworking skills. So, here I go, doing what is dear to my heart.

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