stevenbunn Sat, 04/23/2016 - 08:47

Tracy Carved Knuckle Hand Rest (Cont'd)


Turn the hand-rest over and round over the corners of the glued-up block.
stevenbunn Fri, 04/22/2016 - 07:49

Making a Tracy Carved Knuckle Hand-Rest (Cont'd)


Clamp the arm bow to the bench. The chop and pare away the waste to start forming the round knuckles.
To do this, I set the arm on a spacer made from scrap to help clamp the bow firmly to the bench. I am using a 3/4 inch wide chisel and mallet to chop out the waste quickly. Then paring the block down to meet the mark out lines drawn earlier.
stevenbunn Fri, 04/22/2016 - 07:34

Making a Tracy Carved Knuckle Hand-Rest (Cont'd)


Sketch in the shape of the volute on both sides of the hand-rest.
The volute is drawn with a black marker for the sake of clarity. Pencil lines are fine. I  marked the centers of the ends of the block with a cross, then carried the lines around all sides of the block. This will help keep the barrel of the knuckle body symetrical as you round it.
stevenbunn Fri, 04/22/2016 - 07:19

Making a Tracy Carved knuckle Hand-rest (Cont'd)


Trim the over-sized lower block to match the profile sketched on the hand-rest using the bandsaw.
stevenbunn Sun, 04/17/2016 - 19:30

Tracy Carved Knuckle Hand-Rests


Glue on the third block to form the carving blank for the knuckles.
To the underside of the hand-rest blank glue on a third block of wood. This piece is 1-1/8 inches thick and 1-3/4 inches long. I leave it's width over-size and trim the waste off after the block dries. I take time to plane and sand the underside of the two piece top assembly to get a good glue joint when the bottom block is glued on.
stevenbunn Sun, 04/17/2016 - 19:20

Tracy Carved Knuckle Hand-Rests


After fitting the arm to the arm-post, go ahead and cut out the shape of the hand-rest marked out earlier.
stevenbunn Sat, 04/16/2016 - 18:58

Tracy Carved Knuckle Hand-rest (Cont'd)


Back in March I started posting a series of pictures showing the creation of a pair of Tracy pattern carved knuckle hand-rests. I set that series aside while I completed two chairs, and instead posted a number of photos taken when I built a second Shaker work-bench. With those chairs delivered, I am now working to complete one of my large Sack-backs. This chair has hand-rests based on those of Ebeneezer Tracy. As I work on the hand-rests I will continue to post photos of my progress.

The arm bow drilled and fitted to the chair's arm-post.
This picture compresses several steps required to fit the arm bow to the partially assembled chair.
1. A 5/8 inch diameter round thru mortise must be drilled in each hand-rest blank. This chair requires a mortise drilled at 15 degrees to the side and 17 degress to the rear to fit the angles of the arm-post in the seat.
2. I use a tapered reamer to widen the mortise on the blank's underside to help the arm rest fit the curve of the arm-post baluster as it settles in at the height above the seat that I want.
3. As I trial fit both rests, I pare down the tenon and the upper end of arm-post balusters as needed, using a small carving knife. Lots of on and off trial fitting to get everything right.
The hand-rest pattern was drawn on the glued up arm bow earlier. I leave the glued up blank uncut until after I drill the thru mortise. The extra width and length gives me more meat to clamp on too when drilling the mortises.


stevenbunn Sun, 04/10/2016 - 09:20

Just Thinking Out Loud...


Saturday, the mole stuck his nose out of the burrow and traveled to Concord, MA to deliver two chairs. An enjoyable trip all in all. I downloaded written directions from Mapquest. But, I much prefer a real map. The phrase "Maple Street becomes Brook Street" isn't really helpful when you are in the middle of a state forest and the roads are the size of goat paths. Road signs? Good luck with that! I guess the locals still want to confuse the British. After an inadvertant tour of the state forest, I found River Road and all was saved. River Road becomes Monument Street, leading directly to the National Park in the center of Concord. The park is beautiful but I didn't hang around. The trip home to Maine was smoother since I was wise to all the wromg turns made on the trip down.


At home a severe case of the lazies struck. I put my feet up an watched the Masters. Watching the players, I was thinking how lucky these golfers were to be doing something which to me is a hobby. The lucky bastards are playing a game and getting incredible amounts of money and attention. My thoughts, yes even moles have the occassional thought, drifted to "what if sports commentators breathlessly commented on, well, how about woodworking?


Brent: Well Bob, this upcoming rabbet is a tough one.


Bob: You're right Brent. Steve has been working with his push stick coach all week on his new grip. I think its coming together, but this cut is a real challenge!


Brent: Steve steps to the tablesaw. (In the background the crowd hushes.)


I could go on with the fantasy. You can easily string a bunch of sport cliches together and keep this going for quite a while. For someone who works by himself in a woodshop, praise and public attention are rare things.


The Masters starts at 2 PM. But she-who-must-be-obeyed wants to go shopping for a laundry sink this afternoon. Oh Well...


Have a great day. Thanks for stopping by. STB

stevenbunn Fri, 04/08/2016 - 21:02

Goings on in the shop


Things have quieted down a little this week. With two chairs drying after being varnished I stepped out of the shop for a day. No point creating more dust in the air. Instead I came in and wrapped up posting pictures on this blog taken when I built the new Shaker Work Bench several years ago. You are in luck, no more pictures of a partially completed bench. Tomarrow I drive down to Concord, MA to meet and deliver the chairs I just finished. Then on to the next order.

Back in January when I built the long-bed lathe I quickly realized that I needed a new home for my lathe tools. The new lathe sat further away from the wall. My lathe tool rack on the window ledge was harder to reach. And, with a longer lathe, the trip back and forth to the tool rack to grab a new tool became quite a hike. I needed a new way to store the lathe tools, and it would be really great if I could move the cabinet and keep it beside me as I turned. Nice looking, mobile, cheap, did I mention cheap, and oh by the way I was really supposed to be working on paying work.

For the rolling base I decided to make a smaller version of the outfeed table I built to use with the jointer. I liked the outfeed table's turned column legs, and the trestle construction. Considering how fast I throw that project together, the results appealed to me. I wanted a cabinet large enough to hold all the lathe tools and other accessories. On the other hand, I  didn't want the cabinet to be too deep. The cabinet also had to have doors. I like to close the doors and hide the mess. The cabinet had to look nice but not cost an arm and leg. I laid out the lathe tools and took some quick measures. Then I kept the project in the back of my mind as I worked on the important stuff. Here and there over the months since January I built the mobile base, cabinet carcass, spent the odd evening in the shop fitting molding to dress the plain box up, finally building the doors. Today I mounted the doors. There is still stuff to do. I plan on storing items like the lathe tool rests, drive and tail centers, when not in current use, and other tools like a dead-blow mallet and my calipers in the new cabinet. In other words, all the things I reach for when working at the lathe.

The cabinet body was built of 1x6 pine, using what we call here Finish Native, a cheaper grade of pine. As much as possible I used left over material from other jobs. This is readily apparent when you look at the door stiles and rails. There isn't a grain match to be found.


The new  tool cabinet for my lathe tools.
As always, thank you for dropping by. STB


stevenbunn Fri, 04/08/2016 - 07:54

Build a Shaker Work Bench


Done, Finally!


The completed Shaker bench. Almost to pretty to mess up. On to the next thing.
Thank you for stopping by and visiting. STB