Full Chisel Blog

October 17, 2014

Pre-publication Sale of The Spinning Wheel Repair Book

I am offering a pre-publication sale on the Spinning Wheel Repair Book which is going to the press soon.  I will be delivering these by the first week of December 2014.

Here is a mock up of the cover, color being added as we speak, original artwork by Tim Burnham.

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For the first 25 orders I will include an 8.5″ by 11″ hand impressed copy of the hand set title page by Lauri Taylor of Loose Cannon Press, along with your order.

lauri title page3

The book is 8.5″ by 11″, 77 pages with 160 illustrations and 25 photographs.

The book can be ordered here at the Full Chisel Store, the price is $20.00 plus $6.00 domestic shipping.  International shipping charges apply.  The book will be shipped by early December, 2014.

Thanks to all of those who helped with this publication.

Stephen

August 21, 2014

Spinning Wheel Maiden repair

This is a maiden from a Canadian Production Wheel and had been previously repaired.  It was repaired with hide glue but the small bamboo skewer just wasn’t big enough to reinforce the joint.

maiden1

I had to remove a nail holding the stub of the tenon on the end of the off-side maiden.  Instead of making a new maiden, I decided to use a shouldered tenon and make it match the original.  With the nail removed I could remove the stub tenon.

maiden2

I cut the maiden off flush at the shoulder for the end of the maiden, then drilled a 1/4″ twist auger and then enlarged it with a 3/8″ duck bill spoon bit.  I fit the new birch tenon into the hole, applied hide glue and clamped it together.

maiden3

I also drilled a hole with a gimlet bit for the wedge and made a new one of birch to match the original

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The next day I applied pigmented shellac to match the original finish on the parts exposed.  The customer was happy.

Stephen

 

February 19, 2014

Walking Wheel Spindle Head Repair II

I started talking about this restoration here.   I made a drawing for making a new maple whorl [head or flange] on the spindle.spindle head4

This is the whorl temporarly fit to the metal spindle, I will later roughen the spindle slightly, etch with garlic and glue in place with Fish Glue.  spindle head7

Here is what the mother-of-all looked like when it arrived, I discussed replacing the obviously newer maiden with a proper one.  My client said that would be fine but insisted as much of the original should be maintained, music to my ears.

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Here is the new replacement in birch to match the original.

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In order to get the finish to match the original it took several steps, the first is a mixture of Moses T’s St. John’s Oil and yellow ocher dry powdered pigment.

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The next step is a coat of shellac with some burnt umber dry powdered pigment.

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Then a bit of black iron oxide dry powdered pigment with shellac to get near the final color.

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Then some abrasion of the shiny finish and a coat of wood ashes makes it a good match to the original, there is no way to do this in one step to match the old finishes.

Here is the damaged pulley on the shaft together with the replacement part and the pattern that matches what is remaining on the original.

spindle head8

Having fit up the two pieces, I etched them with garlic and glued them in place with Fish Glue.  It was impossible to clamp so I held it in my hands for 10 minutes then set it aside to cure.  A little work with a chisel and I gave it a coat of shellac with burnt umber pigment.  I will add a bit of black later.

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I still need to braid up a couple of corn shuck bearings and tie them onto the maidens.  This is an unusual method of attaching the bearings, most are secured through a hole and fixed with a wedge.

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I was able to fit the pieces back together to determine just how they were tied on.  This job is nearly complete.

Stephen

 

January 22, 2014

A Nail does not a good repair make.

As I have said before and will say again there is nothing wrong with nails used in the original construction of furniture or other wooden objects, but in no instance is a nail a good choice for repairs.  Nails do not help and in most cases make the future restoration much more difficult.

Here is the previous work I have already done on the foot treadle for this spinning wheel.

It took about a half an hour to take apart a simple pegged joint on the foot treadle for a spinning wheel.  Instead of carefully removing the peg and sliding the dovetail joint apart, I had to carefully work the nail loose in order to get the joint apart so it could be cleaned and glued back together.

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The nail was particularly stubborn but with a few drops of alcohol on the shaft of the nail, it came loose, there was also some cursing.

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Once I had removed the 6 nails from previous attempts at repair, I cleaned off most of the old hide glue then re-glued the pieces back together with Fish Glue, clamped them and allowed to dry.

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I then noticed that the end of the treadle where it connects to the pitman was worn and not much wood was left.  I made a dovetailed Dutchman and glued it in place.  After the glue dried, I used a sharp chisel to trim down the birch Dutchman.  A little staining and it will be good to go.

Stephen

November 18, 2013

Turned my Peg Board into a finish drying rack

I made this several years ago for clamping odd shaped object using pegs and wedges for tension.  I also have a couple of threaded pegs that allow screw pressure.  I have used it for restoration and repair work as well.  It is 16 1/2″ wide, 36″ long and 1 1/2″ thick yellow poplar with one inch holes spaced over the surface.  I can also use holdfasts in any of the holes.

Recently after finishing with Moses T’s Gunstocker’s Finish some curved stretchers for a table I am working on for a friend, I needed somewhere to place the pieces for the finish to dry with good air circulation.  So I stuck a couple of 1 inch dowels into the holes and they worked to hold the pieces spaced apart.  The weight of the pegboard was sufficient to hold the weight of the stretchers, even set out on the ends of the dowels.

pegboard

An already handy tool has a new ability as a drying rack.

Stephen

September 2, 2013

When you can’t take the chair apart…

because of nails in all of the joints.  Nails do nothing to increase the strength of the chair, but do weaken the wood where the nails were used.  This chair belongs to a friend, it was ‘unfinished’ furniture, table and chairs in oak.  Why the original manufacturer used nails is beyond my comprehension.

davis side chair1

Not being able to disassemble the chair to deal with the break or perhaps replacing it, it was necessary to repair in place.  I clamped the stretcher then cut a small mortise across the break to receive a loose tenon to strengthen the fracture.

davis side chair2

The depth of the mortise is to the end of the cross stretcher.  This is an inherently weak joint, exacerbated by the through nail weakening the joint even further.  The above picture shows the break spread open to receive hot hide glue.

I used 192 gram strength ground hide glue from Joel at Tools for Working Wood, high quality ground hide glue; 1/2 teaspoon glue, 1 teaspoon distilled water.  This is the smallest batch I make, put it in the glue pot, the pot on the stove and when the water jacket boils over, the glue is ready in minutes.

davis side chair3

I used a tourniquet and a couple of wood end cam clamps as well as a wedge of pine between the front legs to close up the fracture, not the easiest clamping job, but I accomplished the task.

Using a flat chisel I pared the excess oak away to bring the tenon down to the curve of the stretcher.  Then some shellac with yellow ocher and burnt umber to get the color match and a bit of beaumontage to optically hide the fracture and joint around the loose tenon.

davis side chair4

Cursing the inappropriate use of nails.

Stephen

 

August 9, 2013

Wood Turning On the Foot Treadle Lathe