Wednesday, 22 July 2009

Pottering

My tiny balcony, yes, Iam on the 6th floor but it still floods.
Spoons, the one on the left has yet to be oiled, usually with olive oil. Left hand one cherry, the other two olive.






It has been over a week now since surgery. only a fairly minor op but it took a while to settle down. Knowing I was going to be stuck in the flat for a week or two,I went on the net to search for some cheap wood suitable for spoon carving. Found a couple of nice bits going cheap; however, the sizes where in metric which I did not really take in. Poor postie, he was a bit out of breath when he called with the package. It was little wonder really, the wood was a tad bigger than I realised; a piece of rough cut lime board, some three foot long and over a foot wide, plus an inch and a half thick; the other bit was smaller, a piece of cherry. Working in my tiny flat presents a few difficulties, I have no other work space apart from a small balcony, which floods when wet . The first job, after cutting a length of wood to the appropriate size, is roughing it out, hewing it somewhere close to the shape I want. This is done sitting on the floor with the wood on a chopping board and using an axe to shape the wood. To be honest, I am not too happy using an axe for this; it gets kind of close to the fingers at times. What I want is an adze, a short handled small one; so folks here is quick appeal, if anyone knows of a fairly decent adze that needs a new home and is willing to let it go fairly cheap, please contact me, I would really appreciate it. After the rough work comes hours of work with the knives, shaping, cutting, shaving until finally a spoon takes shape. This is carried out either with the rough work clamped to a shelf, for example when I am using a draw knife, or sitting on a chair with wood chipping piling up around my feet. Finally the wood is ready to be oiled, sanded again and oiled once more. All this work is done by hand, I have a variety of knives, again I need a special spoon knife, a left handed one because I work left handed mainly and also because it easier to work with both left handed a right handed knives. An added headache is that I am constantly having to clean the flat; it is just as well I have no carpets. These spoons are quirky, working spoons, nothing fancy.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

I like seeing this. Didn't know you had to oil, then sand, then oil, etc to make spoons.

j.

Dawn said...

Oiling help preserve the wood as well as polishes. Obviously for items like spoons it must be a vegatable oil. The oil I normally use is olive, although grape nut is supposed to better. If I am making knife handles I use Danish oil.To make a rough spoon requires less work but to add a bit of glamour as it where, requires more work, using fine knife strokes with a very sharp blade smooths the wood out and then the elbow grease has to be applied.

Anonymous said...

Damn Dawn, where you at?

I like seeing your trip reports, and look forward to them.

I hope you manage to enjoy one soon.

J.