Monday, January 26, 2015

Day 66: Almost There

I have completed the rounding of all naturals except for keys 20 and 51, both of which need replacement tops; I sliced them off because I ruined a corner of 20 and 51 was a mess from the beginning. I can accomplish this very quickly, get them rounded off and move on to finish sanding them and then installing the quarter sawn red oak key tops on the sharps. Once I decided to go ahead and manually round the keys, it came together in no time. As you can imagine, it got easier and my accuracy increased with each one. I enjoyed the process and am looking forward to the next instrument when I can do this again.

On an unrelated note, I was able to recently procure some white oak and cedar logs in the raw. By raw, I mean dirty-moss-growing-on-them raw. As you can see in the photos below, the cedar was less raw than the oak.

My wife said the oak in the first photo above looked like sticks when I posted them on the project Facebook page. This cracked me up because they are about five feet long and weigh around 300 pounds each, and they're just branches from a tree that took a dive in someone's front yard. I was excited to find them on Craigslist and then considerably less excited loading and unloading them. The second photo above is a mix of white oak and cedar chunks that my father brought over. The cedar was a bit knotty, but I went ahead and made a test cut with Big Bertha, anyway.

Not only did I slice the log in half, I also cut a 1/4" piece from it as a way to test my resaw capabilities. I must say it is a challenging process that requires me to cut pieces thicker than my intended final thickness so I can plane them down to dimension. As I cut them, I used a Kreg Resaw Guide to adjust for blade drift. Yes, even a 1" blade will drift a bit. The resaw guide is the blue gadget in the photo below.

The guide is rounded and allows me to angle the wood moving through the blade as I cut. There's definitely an art to it and I'm going to need a lot more practice to become really proficient at it. Ah, the rigors of learning something new.

Until next time...

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