Who knew that Bolt-action pens would be a hot item? I sold all of my first set, and my second set and about half of my third J Deer antler is pretty popular here, and I’ve added an optional dear head pocket clip too. In a hunting community like this one, people are practically chomping at the bit.
I also carved my first pipe out of aged and dried briar. I guess a lot of people stain them to make them dark, but I left it natural. It was a fun little project, but, as usual, forgot to take pictures. These pictures are courtesy of www.johnzeuliphotography.com/ .
My wife and I collaborated on our first clock – I can’t say I had to do much: Some wood, her laser cutter, a little sanding, drilling a hole, and installing the mechanism. But it looks pretty cool.
I also turned a nice little bowl out of figured maple. I tried a spalted piece first, but it split along the spalting L I am not very proficient at bowls yet, and need a couple of accessories to get the inside right, but I’ll get there. Eventually. So I worked in Manzanita next. Manzanita has lots of gaps, which I filled with powdered Turquoise, and powdered Copper – I think it went pretty well. I enjoyed it enough that I bought 4 more pieces to turn: Osage orange, Lacewood, Honduras Rosewood, and Chechen. Erica really likes this shape so I haven’t branched out much. Unfortunately I can’t make anything particularly large – 5 inches in diameter is probably about my limit.
Knifewise, I don’t feel like I’ve made much progress. I quenched and tempered a tanto (tried the clay technique to make a fancier hamon) but didn’t seen much development in the polishing process. With the judicious application of acid, I discovered that the hamon – though present- was really close to the edge. I tried again with the other Tanto, and managed to pull it back just about the right amount, not to fancy, but a nice wavy line. The little hunter – which was a lot thicker, managed a little bit of a line towards the point, but not much along the edge – but I did have some issues with the clay falling off. More practice is needed.
I also just received another rusty stockman’s pocket knife to clean up (see Autumn, Crazy Horse, Uncle Jed and Rust (2011)). I intend to have a little fun with it once I have it moving again. It’s not too old (scales are plastic), but it doesn’t take too much to get a knife all rusty and full of crud.
As I mentioned a few years back in “Pictures from the lathe (2009)” some people think its offensive to clean up a knife. Removing character is one thing, but restoring function – to my mind- is another. It’s interesting to see how knives survive the years, but when “character” destroys the knife for all practical purposes, some of the character needs to go. We’ll see if I can fix this one without breaking it like the last stockman. To date, it is making progress, but not there yet.
Oh yeah, I also made a couple letter openers – One in Ancient Kauri, another in Maple – it was supposed to be birdseye, but apparently I missed all the eyes. Oh well.
But none of that is REALLY news…