Sunday, December 31, 2006

Last Blog Of The Year

So as another year draws to a close I just wanted to say a big "Thank You" to all my readers for popping by and reading my rantings. 2006 has been a great year-moving house, my daughter starting school, the "Big Bash" and numerous highs and lows.
I feel I could be a lot more productive and there has been a certain amount of frustration on my part-my day job has changed to a more physical, hands-on role which has left me physically and metally tired at the end of the day. But I have achieved a lot and when I sit back and consider my roles as Father, Husband, Woodworker, Band Member, Businessman, etc. it is a wonder I got anything done at all ;)
So-here's to 2007! Enjoy a glass of your favorite tipple on me!
And watch out-I aim to be "Mr. Organised" for 2007........
Best regards

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas To You All!

Hi Folks,
Yup, it's Christmas Eve and the Big Day is just hours away. My little girl is very excited (going to a long time getting her off to sleep tonight!) the wine is flowing and bad Christmas music is playing on the radio. So a Merry Christmas to all my fellow woodies, and thank you for popping by.
Best regards

Friday, December 22, 2006

Woodworking Competition

Hi Folks
Meant to mention this one earlier (not keeping it myself so I have a better chance of winning, honest!) Lumberjocks are holding a woodworking competition. If you've not taken a look at the Lumberjocks site yet do have a look, its a great place to share your projects!
All you have to do to enter the contest is to post one of your projects-simple! And there is no judge, as such-the winner is chosen by the most votes it receives from fellow members. There are prizes too!! Take a look here for details.
Good luck,


Brrrrrrrrr! All of a sudden the Great British Winter is here! Overnight the temperature has dropped below zero(ish) and it really FEELS like Winter. Why is it such a shock? It is the end of December, isn't it? ;)
Ventured out into the workshop. Checked thermometer, double checked thermometer and then checked the heater to find out why it was so flipping cold. Unplugged...........that explains a lot!!! So not a lot got done in the workshop. And I truly must replace the garage door ASAP-all the heat goes straight out through it. A project for after Xmas, though.
Some new tools have arrived (thank you Axminster sale!!!) A chop saw is not something I realy have much ise for but it will come in very handy at work. And it can live in the workshop when it isn't needed. Induction motor and a brake make for a very pleasant experience. Managed to sneak in some L-N card scrapers, too. Mine are a bit on the rusty side and they were conveniently priced.......;)
Meant to glue up some picture frames I made for a friend. Glue bottle says not below 10 degrees you won't. Maybe tomorrow-or I'll bring them into the house.
I've done a little updating of my website, hopefully it is getting better?
So a weekend of Xmas panic awaits before the big day. Enjoy,

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Xmas is coming.....

Managed to spend a little more quality time in the shop. Had to steal it, though! Xmas is a stressful time and the Wife is not the calmest of people ;) The thought of me in the workshop "playing" is disturbing to the Missus when there are pressies to be wrapped (and a million other things) . Luckily I have a mission-the "gift" project!
So I have been busy dovetailing a small box. And what fun it has been. Pretty much straightforward-a shock, I can tell you. It has been a while since I cut some dovetail but they came out well. Accurate layout and preperation is the key (and a little bit of luck). I also used a block of wood as a guide when chopping the baselines, a new one for me. I have seen this in Krenov's books and thought it a bit silly. But no, it certainly prevents the chisel pushing back through the line.
Another mate popped by for me to make some picture frames. Me and my big mouth ;) But two frames later, a happy mate! Somewhere in between I managed to stain the panels for the bathroom cabinet doors (remember that?) and a bit of sharpening. A nice pile of sharp planes and chisels. Definitely worth 15 minutes of your time.
Merry Christmas,

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Fun, fun, fun...

Watch out! Another Philly blog! Just when you thought it was safe to switch on your computer...;)
Had a productive little afternoon yesterday. Veneered up a couple of panels to complete the doors of the bathroom cabinet. The end is in sight (Thank goodness!) I do enjoy using my Airpress-such an amazingly simple and effective tool.
Also had a go at making a scratchawl. Came out well, and I had a couple of visitors at just the right time. Tony and Bill (Bean) had popped in after raiding Yandles woodmill of all their quality timbers. Bill was kind enough to demonstate his grinding method and made a cracking job on finishing off the tip of the awl. Cheers Bill! As a reward I let him rip down a board of Bubinga on the bandsaw-and boy, that was some tough timber!
Tony (as usual) went straight for the #9. Caught drooling on the shooting board again........It was interesting to compare notes on my prototype skew shooting plane. The grip thing just doesn't work and most people revert to the usual grip position. Back to the drawing board on that one, then ;)
Sadly the hours dissapeared and I had to kick them out of the workshop (the trip to Leicester is not a small one!) Thanks for coming by, Gents, let's do it again!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Sweat Over

Apologies for the delay-my camera socket has snapped off so I have been unable to download pics. And you want pictures, eh?
The sole sweating went well-doesn't look too pretty in the picture but a tight clean joint was made. I've filed off the excess material and it looks pukka. I'll be making some serious progress on this one over the next few days so hold tight for more pics.
Rob (Woodbloke) from the UK Workshop forum popped by Sunday afternoon. We had a lot of fun nattering and drinking tea. Thankfully he is as mad about woodworking (and handplanes!!) as me as we spent the hours trying out various tools. Thanks for bringing your Infill down, it was interesting to give it a whirl. I know have a few ideas for my future infill project ;)
I also have an other couple of mates popping by this afternoon as they pass by following a visit to Yandles. Looking forward to that!

Saturday, December 09, 2006


First up, please welcome back to the world of woodworking..........ME!

Managed to get a wee bit done today. The bathroom is nearly done, just two doors to finish. And I've run out of 6mm MDF to make the veneered panels so that can wait til tomorrow.

So I've been doing some work on the thumb plane.

Texts read like this. "Sweat the steel sole onto the casting." Easy then? Just sweat it on?

So what the heck does that mean??

Cue me, a spare hour, some solder and a Mapp gun.

After a few tries I have succesfully soldered the steel sole onto the bronze casting. It wasn't particular difficult it was just getting the right approach. Tin both pieces then heat and apply solder. Then put the sole onto the body and apply heat. Solder starts to melt, great. Except you really need to apply pressure to ensure a minimal film of solder. Oh, and to make sure the sole stays where it should be.

So a little filing remains to clean up the sole and then we can move onto nicer stuff.

Tomorrow on eof the UK Workshop members is popping by the workshop for the first time. Wish him well :)


Friday, December 08, 2006

Friday Feeling

Nooo..Another week has gone by without blogging. Bumped into a Mate in B+Q yesterday and he said "you given up blogging? I keep checking and you haven't updated it".
So another embarressed apology. I have been busy and there have been some interesting developments this week.
First up, the bathroom. No it's not finished-but I'm darn close! This weekend will see it complete. And about time.....
Next, I had a visit from a certain woodwork magazine in the week. Expect my ugly mug on the cover if the January issue. And a certain tool chest, too ;)
I've given the workshop a major cleaning session and it look real good in there. Surprising how a tidy up seems to double the size of the place. I'm about to take some photo's of the 'shop so expect a little "Shop Tour" soon.
And thank goodness it's Friday!!!