October 29, 2012

a bowl in 45 seconds part 2

Filed under: projects — howarth frank @ 7:23 pm

i have done the second turning to the bowl that was first tuned in the video “a bowl in 45 seconds”.  i did the first tuning 5 years a go, i did not mean to let it go that long. tuning dry walnut is very nice, it cuts very easily.  i hope to have a new video out shortly.


October 21, 2012

making bowls making music

Filed under: film,projects — howarth frank @ 12:55 pm

tying to have a little more fun with the wood tuning videos

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I am making maple wood bowls and making music from the sounds of that process. I had more fun with the sound on this one. These are some of the larges pieces I have made.  They will need to dry and I will do a second tuning on them to make the final form. I made three bowls in the piece

October 15, 2012

more maple

Filed under: wood — howarth frank @ 3:37 pm

special thanks to my friend Roni for getting me more huge maple chunks from her neighbor’s yard.


October 12, 2012

toy tractor

Filed under: film,projects — howarth frank @ 9:31 pm

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How I made a toy Tractor inspired by the Porsche-Diesel Super Tractor. I like this design as it can be abstracted to a very simple form; a body, a rear axel, and four wheels. I start by making the body from a pattern I drew, this is made from a piece of cherry wood I salvaged from an urban tree.  I joint and plane this piece on my old Porter jointer and Powermatic 180 planer.  I cut out the shape for the body first on a Powermatic 141 band saw than a Powermatic 95 scroll saw for the finer work.  Then I sand everything first with a Max 24 inch disc sander then a Mead 1 inch belt sander.  I made the wheels by first cutting up a piece of walnut I also salvaged from an urban tree. I cut this on  my 36 inch J. A. Fay & Egan Co. Band saw, with 1 inch wide blade.  i love this saw more every time I use it.
I made the two big wheels in a set of 4 and the two smaller wheels in a set of 2.  I turn the axel housing and cut a flat spot in it where it can be glued to the body of the tractor.  The wood for the axels I salvaged from an old crib I had taken apart, they are 5/8 inches in diameter.  The finish I use is a mix of linseed oil and beeswax. This is very safe and has a nice flat finish.  when the glue had dried the kids get a chance to play.

I have posted the shape image here:


I printed it 8 inches long.  The body width is 1-1/4″. The width between the rear wheels is 3-5/8″.  The rear wheels are 4″ in diameter and the front wheels are 2-5/8″ in diameter.

October 1, 2012


Filed under: film,projects — howarth frank @ 10:48 pm

the garden bench is done.

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This is the story of making this bench, from a piece of sequoia log.  Two summers ago my friend Brian and I milled a sequoia tree into lumber.  I took one of the leftover pieces thinking I would make it into a bench.  The time has come and I need to get the bark off.  The wood has dried so the bake came off easily with just a hammer and a little effort.  After the initial bark removal I had to scrape off the remaining bark, and then sand the uneven surface.  This gave me a nice clean natural surface.  I trued up the ends on the band saw.   Next I worked on the top.  I really should do this with a hand plane, but I am more skilled with the belt sander.  With a very ruff 36 grit it worked great.  Then I went over it with the orbital sander.

The body of the bench was ready at this point, I had to think about the legs.  First I tried making large chunks of wood for the legs but there was no way I was going to get them to fit the irregular surface of the bench.  Then I thought about casting concrete legs formed to the underside of the bench,  this seemed like a lot of work.  In the end I decided to try shoving steel formwork stakes into the bench for legs.  At the skinny end of the bench I had to add some material for the legs to attach to.  I cut a slot in the bottom of the bench to receive a second piece of wood.  The first piece of wood I made I decided was not going to be think enough, I cut a bigger piece.  I glued the new wood piece into place. with a lot of glue, and let it dry.  After a little sanding it was time to mount the legs.  the legs are friction fit, like big nails.  There, one bench.  I hit the edges with a round over bit in the router, this will make it a little more comfortable.  Now we are outside for some finish.  and there we have it, one garden bench.