Full Chisel Blog

February 1, 2014

Walking Wheel Spindle Head restoration

After discussing the work via email, the owner sent me the mother-of-all for a walking wheel [wool wheel, or spindle wheel] for restoration.  It is an unusual spindle in that the corn shuck bearings are tied to the maidens, rather than being fixed through a hole with wedges.  It was missing the whorl [head or flange], the small pulley was damaged and one of the maidens was a replacement.

spindle head1

Here is a drawing of what the whorl will look like.

spindle head4

The owner insisted that the pulley be repaired rather than replaced, a person after my own heart, so turned up a piece that can be cut up for the repairs to the pulley.

spindle head2

spindle head3

Should be a fun little restoration project especially that tiny repair to the pulley.

Stephen

 

 

January 9, 2014

Distaff design

While I should be working on the Black Beauty leg [which I intend to do later today], but I want to work on the design of the distaff for the wheel I am restoring for myself [and will be for sale].

distaff

The original part is all that is left, so I will have to turn the other two pieces that hold this as well as turn the finial and make the 4 ribs of the birdcage.  Made of birch the part remaining also has a peg [cut off now] that holds a donut cup for water to help lubricate the flax during spinning.  I am having the water cup made by a local tinsmith.

What do you think of the design I came up with for the finial?  I copied the profile of the lower part, but not sure if it should have a lower pendant or not?

Stephen

November 27, 2013

Spinning Wheel leg[s] repair

This is a wheel I have been working on for a while, it is a painted lady, base coat of green paint followed by a coat of black paint and lots of grease [lanolin] on some parts.  It had suffered from powder post beetle infestation and the bottoms of the legs were in bad shape.  The legs and other parts are made from beech.

I needed to replace a large part of one leg and add on to the other two legs.  The long repair took place after I removed the damaged portion of the leg, this included the hole where the treadle axle pivots.  The damaged axles had rinded out the pivot hole and will require replacement and repair, this I will show in a later post.

I posted about the turned leg part here.  Here is the photograph of the cut being made; the turned leg is held in V-blocks held in my patternmaker’s vice.

leg repair1

I actually got a fairly square cut considering I was eye-balling the cut, it took just a little work with a chisel to get a good joint.

leg repair2

There is still some worm damage in the leg but the wood is not as punky as the lower part of the leg.

I used the V-blocks to hold the leg upright so I could drill a 1/2″ hole down the center {I wish I had my new doweling jig}, using my Fray & Pigg coachmaker’s brace.  I eye-balled the hole by sighting down at 90 degree angles.

leg repair3

Then a little chisel work and it came out fine.

leg repair4

The replacement part is extra long and will be cut off later.

 

leg repair5

When gluing up some of the Fish Glue came out one of the worm holes.  Also note that the new part is a bit proud.

leg repair6

I took care of the proud part of the new turning with a chisel, it was easy working down the grain, I smoothed off the chisel marks with a card scraper.  I will do a bit of sanding before painting, which I will do when all repairs have been made.

leg repair7

I used my miter block to cut off the damaged ends of the other legs and will scarf on new pieces of beech on the bottom of each leg, the angle worked out at 45 degrees.  If you look closely you can see the thin wafer of wood I removed to get to sound wood.  Note the rinded out axle hole from the treadle.

leg repair8

This photo shows how the scarf joint will look, the piece is longer than it needs to be.

More later.

Stephen

 

November 4, 2013

Repairing worm damage on Spinning Wheel leg

This European spinning wheel has seen a lot of use and some neglect over the years; the current owner is interested in having her [I think all spinning wheels are female, I could be wrong] put in good working order.  Already have made two additional bobbins to match the original, now some work on the structure itself.

tm wheel

The original leg is marked with a white pencil where it will be cut off to receive the new foot.

Made of beech the legs have some wear to them, I will scarf on some beech on the other two feet of the legs; however on one leg the damage and wear is too great and must be replaced.  I will use hide glue to attach the new foot after I drill the hole for the tenon.  [I wish I had my new doweling jig!]  Once it is in place I will determine the proper height and cut it off and drill a new hole for the foot treadle axle.

The original is painted green then black and the new part will be painted to match.

Stephen

October 23, 2013

1805 Turning Bench [Treadle Lathe] Hardware

 

treadle lathe parts

Hardware for the 1805 Turning Bench has been difficult for those people building this treadle lathe to find, so after repeated requests I am pleased to offer the complete hardware package for sale at a very reasonable price.

treadle lathe mandrel1

The hardware made to the specifications of the plans and include the headstock mandrel with a slight variation from the old plans, newer sets of plans will include the change.  The center part of the mandrel is 1 1/8″ in diameter; 1″ on the original, this change gives a shoulder for the bearings.

crank1

The flywheel crank is as specified on the plans and can be keyed to secure on the wheel and is 3/4″ in diameter.

tailstockcrank1

The tailstock crank and locking nut are also the same as on the plans and the square nut is inlet into the wood of the tailstock to prevent it from turning.

Now people will be able to easily complete their own foot powered treadle lathe with this quality hardware.  You can order it from the Full Chisel Store.

Stephen

October 7, 2013

Spinning Wheel Flyer – grain orientation

This is my first order for a custom made spinning wheel flyer, mandrel, whorl, and bobbin[s] for an existing wheel.  The owner sent photographs with a measuring tape and confirmation of the distance between the leather bearings.  They can be ordered here.

first order flyer3

While it may look like this is just using up some useless scraps of maple with nasty knots, this wood was chosen because of the knot and the way the grain runs in the board.  The grain runs around the knot in such a way as to follow the pattern of the U shape of the flyer.  It is also a great use for useless scraps.

first order flyer4

The wood, in this case hard maple, for any flyer should be flat sawn and not quartersawn for proper grain orientation for maximum strength; no short grain as would be presented if the board was quartersawn.

first order flyer5

A hole for the mandrel is drilled in the end of the board, a corresponding hole is made in the opposite end, and are used to center the wood on the centers of the lathe.  Excess wood is first removed with a saw then it is turned on the lathe.  This can be a harrowing experience as the flat board flies past ones knuckles at an alarming and distracting manner.

first order flyer6

Because of the unusual grain around a knot the finished flyer off the lathe has some nasty splits along a couple of edges, but because the ends of the flyer are tapered thinner, this can be ‘easily’ planed off, then scraped with a card scraper.

first order flyer7

After raising the grain with water, I scraped it again and it is ready for the mandrel being made by a machinist friend of mine.  Now it is on to making the hooks and the soft metal nut in the whorl.

Stephen

September 20, 2013

Extrapolating Furniture Parts from Photographs

I first received an email with a photograph of a walnut table leg, early nineteenth century [client said 1860’s, I think it is 1840’s] dining table from Virginia and was asked if I could make one as the 5th [center] leg was missing.  I said ‘yes’ and got a couple more photographs with a tape measure in the photograph.  Another email or two and I had other dimensions I needed.

walnut table leg7

I then made a scale drawing of the leg and worked on that until it looked correct and then proceeded to make a full size paper pattern of the leg.  With the help of Richard MacDonald [Master Wood Carver, who loves to turn] turn the leg from the pattern.

I then ripped the waste wood on the taper of the octagonal part, to a square taper.

walnut table leg9

Next I layed out the octagonals with a white pencil, easier to see on walnut than a graphite pencil.  I planed the first one by hand then decided to use a chisel to quickly remove the excess then my two small coffin smoothers [one set coarse, the other set fine] to smooth out the rough chisel marks.

walnut table leg8

A card scraper finished up the flats and it is ready to go.  Yesterday when the client called I had just finished up the work, it will be picked up today and be on its way to Texas.  They have a furniture restoration guy there that will cut it to length and do the finish work.

A fun project, the rendering took a bit of time but was well worth the effort and the customer was happy, just picked it up.

Stephen

August 9, 2013

Wood Turning On the Foot Treadle Lathe

Always a good idea and in 1922 William Fairham published this book of the same title.

wood turning on the foot treadle lathe

And in 2013 Gary Roberts at Toolemera Press has reproduced this fine English volume on turning on a foot treadle lathe.  The book has some great stuff, good illustrations with patterns of all types of turnings including square turnings.  The square turning is of particular interest, must give it a try.

This book also goes well with the plans for the Wooden Treadle Lathe available at the Full Chisel Store.  Get the book from Gary and the plans from me and you are all set.

Stephen

May 14, 2013

Double Hacksaw – 1749

turning1

I have posted about this hacksaw before during a workshop with the Nevada WoodChucks, and thought I would post the original influence.  Charles Plummier’s L’art de Tourner published in 1749, this is a photograph of an original edition in the collection of Ray Wilson of Indianapolis.  I shot the photograph in 1977.

double hacksaw

I have made and sold several of these including a couple of replacement arms, it is remarkably easy to break the end by overtightening the tension.  An iron version would not have this problem.  Very handy tool which I find I use on a regular basis.

I used the shape of the iron version on the upper left as I liked the looks of the arms, the wooden version is on the upper right.  Did you know the paint on hacksaw blades is actually a lubricant?

Stephen

 

January 11, 2013

Shepherds’ Compleat Early Nineteenth Century Woodworker – First Review

bookcover2

This is the first book review of my first book that was originally published in hardbound in 1981.  This review appeared in Smithsonian Magazine April 1982.

smithsonian1

smithsonian2

 

 

I found this while doing research at the University of Nevada, Reno at their excellent library.

Now I need to find the reviews in Workbench Magazine, Soldier of Fortune Magazine and Museum of the Fur Trade Quarterly.

Available at Tools for Working Wood

and The Full Chisel Store or from Amazon.  Amazon also has original hardbound editions for sale.

Stephen

« Newer PostsOlder Posts »

Powered by WordPress