Sunday, December 28, 2014

Holiday Whittlings


These are the whittlings I referred to in my last entry, I actually got them done in time to wrap them for Christmas morning.  A little outside my comfort zone, never tried a wineglass (or any drinking vessel) before.  The cat was finished first, after two false starts this one almost went to the burn barrel too- did not like the way she was turning out, looked un-saveable.  It was late, I was not happy so I put her down and went to bed,  Next day, I picked her back up and figured a few more minutes might teach me something, so away I whittled, and whaddya know- little Christmas magic musta been in the air, or in my knife, and I was able to save her.  My FP attitude is to use as few facets/surfaces as possible to suggest whatever I'm trying to show- I love the front legs on the cat- four surfaces only, no vee cut between the legs, yet you still know they are two front legs.  I sont tell you i did that in four cuts- it took dozens, but the last four cuts covered the entire four surfaces.  Biggest problem with the cat is the neck- head joint- the  glass piece has a short stem glued into a hole in the top of each piece, the hole extends past the throat of the cat- I was terrified of cutting through, and insistent on getting a slender tall cat.  I'm pretty sure there is only a sixteenth of wood left in some spots there.

The Stack of elephants is not new to me, I've done several single elephant bottle stoppers and one stack of four or five as a knife handle.  My daughter is particularly fond of elephants so here is another for her collection,  My other daughter collects nutcrackers- not functional ones, the ones from the ballet- hence the toy soldier.  I thought for a moment about making a working nutcracker, but the glass stem got in the way again.

Bases are an end slice from a 3x3 inch basswood block, round on the band saw, beveled on the lathe then textured with a gouge.  Each stem blank has a hole in  the top for the glass stem and a dowel cut into the bottom.  Dowel fits into the same hole I used to mount the base to the lathe.  

Everything is epoxied together- stem to base, glass to stem.  I roughed up the glass stem a very little bit with 220 grit sandpaper to help the epoxy grab.  Finish is water based urethane topped with beeswax, paint on the soldier is acrylic mixed with water based urethane topped with beeswax.

They are not dishwasher safe  ;)

Glasses I bought from Craft Supplies USA online- they have a couple projects there that might interest you whittlers out there.

Hey, thanks for looking.  it felt reel good to spend some time whittling again.  Gotta go- took orders for more glasses over Christmas dinner.

Keep your fingers out of the way-
Buffalo Bif

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