Sunday, December 25, 2016

Gift Wrapping

I made this box thing for a Christmas present. It is made from a square of heavy manilla paper. A thinner piece of paper would have been easier to work with.

I drafted the pattern directly onto the paper using the drafting machine and compass. While drawing the dozens of arcs, I discovered that my 70's(?) Alvin Speed Bow has slop in it! I had previously assumed it was moving due to operator error. You can see the resulting double lines in the image below.

A really good compass is hard to find, especially now. Ebay is ripe with vintage ones, but few look inspiring. The Starrett 92-6 looks nice with the exception of its threads. It might just be the sort of tool I have to make myself. I just want one that's quick to adjust and SOLID when set.

Maybe like this. I already want to re-draw it... the side view is ugly. Important parts are: Big ol' sharp knurled thumb nut to lock adjustment, mated with shoulder screw going through a tight slip fit in the arms. Greasy O-ring to provide some resistance when adjusting. Thoughtful clamps to lock the graphite and center point in place, maybe only one per side, but not with the standard pathetic 0-80 locking screw. While we're dreaming, the arms should be hardened tool steel with the sliding surfaces ground.

Sorry, I got distracted.

Wish I would have figured out how to make it hold itself closed, some sort of interlocking flaps. Maybe next Christmas.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Waterstone Holder, Snowflakes

I've gotten a lot of sharpening work recently, which is why I haven't been posting much. I do most of the sharpening with waterstones and oilstones. I have a makita wet grinder which is great for jointer knives, but it is less aggressive than a coarse 'unpowered' stone.

It's been a test of patience to take nicks out of hundreds of knives by hand, but a belt grinder is finally on its way. Although it will take me a while to put together, it'll be dressed right up with a VFD, coolant mister, and purpose-built stand. I may sort out some dust collection as well.

I just made this adjustable waterstone holder to hold the stones properly above a tub of water.

Also made some paper snowflakes:

Below, a part of a wooden prototype done on commission. I'm making prototype parts out of wood, which is a really great material for low-budget design testing. The rejected designs work great as firewood, unlike plastic or aluminum.