Thursday, August 31, 2017

An Oldie!

This is a story cross I did way back when I was starting out using the scroll saw. I am at my mother-in-laws and she is the one that has this. I painted the front and left the back natural. I need to cut another story cross but after doing this I really did not want to use spirals anymore. I have lost my dislike for spirals and I use them more often. They have a purpose and I have worked that skill somewhat into my abilities. I have had requests for more of these from other family members but I really did not like spirals at the time. The predates my blog so why it was never on it. I don't even remember when I cut it but before Oct 2009. The straight lines are not straight. Just overall it has a beginner look to it. I was bad at getting the fuzzies off of it. I still dislike sanding but now I put the time into it since when you do it looks so much better. Sanding what everyone hates but means so much to the finished item that you really need to do it. I used a Craftsman 16" scroll to cut this. A good beginner scroll saw but not as nice as my Excalibur I use now. Just a piece of history for me. I do like to see my older works now and then.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Day 2 Learning Frame Building No Pressure

Well, I spent the latter part of the day putting what I learned yesterday into practice. This is not the frame I will ultimately use. But I like the way it came out. I still would make changes to some of the design but this actually works pretty well.

My father gave me two of these clamps a few years ago. They are simple and work great.

I actually thought why am I using the dremel to cut out part of the frame. I am using it as a router but this is a rather large project and using the Dremel is a rather hard way to do what I want. I just figured why not use the dado blade to do what I want. Plus I can cut the dado out before I cut the 45-degree angle thus making everything a nice square corner.

So this is what came out today. It is not what I am going to use for the state fair. But now I have the confidence that the wood I choose I will be successful with.

Front of frame

Back of frame

Close up of inside where the glass and project goes

So today was very productive now I just need to select the wood and get it sent to me.

Thanks for looking!

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Frame Building

Hmmm, today was productive in frame building for my state fair project.  At least in ways not to make the frame! I was not too thrilled with the idea of doing 45-degree angles as this is for the state fair. I figure anything you build for your entry will be judged accordingly. It is only fair. I also don't think you should use a store-bought frame for a judging contest. So I am building my own frame. Let's just put some really awesome pressure on me.

Well, I thought why not make a frame that is slightly different. I have seen these half lap frames and they seem interesting. They are harder than you think to build. Who would have thought using a dado and getting the width would be so hard? I made a few attempts today and none of them panned out. I tried even miter half lap joint with no success.

So I went back to the basic 45-degree joint. Turns out this is going to be easier than all the others. Now I just have to figure out the best way to route the frame now for the glass and project. I did build this very small frame which would work for a 4x6 photo. But I was using my Dremel since this is what I have and I did build a "router table" for it seven years ago. But I was using the Dremel Chuck which makes changing bits out simple. But it appears that it does not hold the shaft of this very securely. As the bit was slowly coming out. Which really messed up the depth of what I was trying to do.

So I put it all down and left for a while. Then it dawned on me to go back to the original collet system and yes that is better at securing the router bits in the tool. So Back on track to play with this some more tomorrow.

Sorry, no pictures today as I was making firewood all day. But some days you just have to go in and know that it is just a try this out day and not intend to build the final product. I call this an idea day. A day where you intend to make mistakes and not to really build something day. If something comes out at the end of the day so be it. But if nothing worthy but just firewood that is fine also. I still have seven weeks till the project gets dropped at the fair.

WOW, seven weeks. Not much time is really left. I need to get this stuff worked out in the next 2 weeks so that I can build the frame!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Commission Finished

The purpleheart as been finished with the oil based gel satin finish. Let's just say I am always leery when doing any finish other than Danish Oil. I struggled with this one. After I had done a couple of coats I did not like the way it had come out. So I spent a few minutes sanding it off and then redoing it.  The fingers are fragile and sanding the finish off was nerve racking but it survived.

Now that this is finished I can get back to my entry for the NC State Fair this year.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Commission work

A guy at work is having his engagement party in a couple weeks and he approached me to come up with some ideas for a present he wanted to give his fiancĂ©e. So he had a couple of ideas I create some patterns then once he saw them he had some other ideas I combined them with some parts of what I had already had done and this is the one he liked

Now I decided to use my last piece of purpleheart. It is really the only thing I have other than pine or poplar both of these are 3/4" while my purpleheart is 1/4". It does matter the thicness. I can plane down the thicker wood but it is still just common wood. So with that said and looking at what I created for the hands?

I was in a rush when creating this and did not look at it overall for weaknesses just for possible floaters. Well, some of those look rather fragile and I figured I better test cut this on something to see what issues I will be facing. Sometimes when you design stuff you can actually design a very fragile pattern that can be really hard to cut. This is one of them! So the first test cut many things broke while trying to cut the hands. Which let me know what I needed to cut first and which side needed to be cut. The next one went better but still, I made poor choices on the cuts. So the third cut was better but still problematic. So with no choice left I put the pattern on the purpleheart and cut all the surrounding cuts first since I did not want to break anything on the hand while spinning the piece to make all those cuts.

I did not break anything on the hands!

But I'll tell you those hands are one continuous cut from start to finish. and that is not what I did. I broke that cut into sections rather than do it all in one run. That way I only had to hang onto one fragile piece at a time. I almost think this was harder to do than the Bully was. Well, here it is without a finish on it yet. I'll work on that over the week. I think I am going to use gel satin finish on this to make the purpleheart pop.

I only used a Flying Dutchmen #3 Scroll Reverse blade this made the cleanups on the fuzzies on the back just a small job. Unlink the bully which took me hours to get the fuzzies off since I was using a spiral that was not a scroll reverse.

What is a scroll reverse blade? Glad you asked. Normal blades cut on the down stroke as the blade exits the wood it leaves little tiny wood fibers that look like fuzzies. A scroll reverse blade has some teeth towards the bottom of the blade that point in the opposite direction and cut on the up stroke. So as the blades come back up those teeth cut the fuzzies off. The eliminates 90-95% if not more of the fuzzies. A huge time saver when you are cleaning up the cuts when you are done.