Sunday, December 26, 2010

A Brief Reprieve (from holiday joy)

I don't know about you, but after 3 days of eating and merriment, this is how I felt.


It was actually a great relief to get back outside and get my bones moving, and with an approaching storm, there was no shortage of chores. First, my brother Andrew wanted to split out some hickory for some more firewood carriers. By the way, the full instructions on these is in the Fine Woodworking compilation book "Bending Wood" which I recommend for a number of good articles.

 

I haven't forgotten about my promise to make a video about froe usage and splitting, but frankly, it was cold out there!


Here he is getting reacquainted with the froe. I split out a bunch of white oak for a crested rocker that a student will be building in February as well as some for a clients birdcage armchair. I thought that it would be better to get it all done rather than digging it out of 10 inches of snow tomorrow.

 

I've started setting up my blacksmith shop under the shed next to the shop. I have a lot of work to do to get it up and running, but just seeing all the equipment in one place is inspiring. I fed my brother a huge meal before asking him to help me move the anvil bolted to the stump 75 yards, ah family...



Here are a couple of my xmas presents, blades from Pinewood Forge! Del Stubbs makes amazing tools, beautifully shaped and tempered to hold a razor edge. I honestly don't think that I'd be as motivated to carve spoons if it wasn't for his blades. I like to put on my own handles, which saves $12 and gives me lots of options. My handles tend to be ugly but they feel great in the hand. The oblong holes can be a little tricky, but epoxy covers a lot of sins. If any one shows interest, I'll show my technique.


 

And Tee in Atlanta would never forgive me for neglecting the animal photos. Here is Maggie with her chubby kids. They have a toasty barn to retreat to when they so desire.




These handsome fellows are thriving, but like the rest of us at the holidays, they are looking a bit swollen!


8 comments:

Herman said...

Love the blacksmith shop. I built one last year but I still have a long way to go towards mastering the craft. Just have to keep practising.

Where do you source your coal? Here in Ontario there is only one supplier for smithing coal.

Herman

Tee, Kerry's wife said...

You know I'm always interested in Maggie and the kids. I hope they will weather the storm I see is approaching your area. Maybe the extra weight and a little extra hay in the barn will keep them warm. We even had snow in Atlanta on Christmas Day. That hasn't happened since the late 1880's.

Tom said...

I am interested in your technique of handling those nice spoon carving blades. I would have to agree that the rougher more crude handles are preferred to something smooth and round.

jaupnort said...

Herman, doesn't charcoal work as good as or better than coal. Many craftsman make their own charcoal. Don't have a recipe but must be on the internet.
Del does make some of the best spoon knife blades on the planet.
Would be interested in a close up of your handles as Del's have worked great for me but always looking for an improvement.
Peter, I imagine you are digging out as I write this. Still doing it here in MN and our biggee went through 2 weeks ago.

Peter Galbert said...

Herman,
I get my coal from Montegue blacksmith and farrier supply house in New Jersey. It's owned by a friends family, so I've never bothered to look any further!

As far as the snow goes, only about 2 inches fell and that ain't nothin'
thanks for the comments!

Bud said...

I'm also interested in your handling technique.

Peter Galbert said...

Bud,
I'll definitely document my handling technique and post it soon, thanks for the response,
Pete

matthew said...

i would also love to see that handling technique