The summer months are a particularly busy time for me at work so I tend to push the mini making to one side. I've learned from experience that being tired or stressed is a sure way of destroying anything I'm working on. However my employers are pretty cool in that they actively promote having a break away from your desk. So August hasn't been a complete write-off. I took my lathe with me and set it down in a quiet little corner of the workshop so that I could work during a lunch break.
Ordinarily you would bolt the lathe to a table to stop it moving but the solid block of oak underneath mine works fine (even if I do need a burly bloke to lift it for me). I've turned to the lathe because I need to make multiple, cylindrical objects to fill the shelves of my miniature workshed. Rather than buying or making ten silicone tubes, I intend to make a mould of one and then cast as many as I need.
I'm making masters of the shape out of dowels...
The reason is a simple one. Dowels are cheap, really cheap. I bought a bag of a 100 in 6, 8 and 10mm for less than £2. The other thing is that dowels tend to be made of Ramin which is easy to work on a lathe.
I can't remember if it was the very talented Linda or the equally very talented Karin who mentioned making your own tools, but I needed some rather fine chisels to get the shapes I was after. I used a set of spectacle repair screwdrivers and shaped the metal with a grinding stone to get different profiles.
This will be a tub of Polyfilla
This is a couple of weeks worth of lunch breaks - solvent/cement bottle - a mustard bottle - tub of Polyfilla - wood glue bottle and a tube of silicone. The mustard bottle, though it won't appear in the shed, was a practice piece =0)
I'm a little aprehensive about casting these because it's not something I'm practised at. But, I'll never know until I try. Wish me luck!
Apart from that I've jumped back onto another project which I started over two years ago (eek) My Dear Hubby bought me a kit shop as a Birthday present and I shamefully put it to one side when I couldn't think what to have inside. I'm still no closer to deciding what the shop will sell but at least it has a brick exterior, roof tiles and upper floor windows.
I didn't like the windows that came with the kit because they looked very 'play-school' to me. I think these mimic the curves of the larger first floor windows much better. I really need to make a concerted effort to bring this project to a conclusion. Inspiration will hit me in the face eventually...it always does.
Have a wonderful day