Monday, June 29, 2015

Koshikake Kamatsugi Fail

I'm 42 minutes late chilean time, the wood split with the last hammer blows, and a migraine is starting.

First bad idea, leave the joint for the last day.

Second mistake... well, everything else. I didn't take pictures, didn't document the process and didn't finish on time.

At least I blog it to not break all of the rules.

I'm gonna sleep, get something for the migraine, and try it again tomorrow morning.

It was ca 2 hours wasted. It was a 35mm wide piece of rauli I had laying around, the small size didn't help either. I did try to think a la Jason and cut as slowly as possible and see the saw as small little knives or plough planes. Kinda helps. And my favourite saw is dull, I need to make a vice.

See you tomorrow.

EDIT: I made this today for the second try of the joint.

 A 9mm wide stick. I call it sashi, since it's half a sashigane. Maybe just sash since it's also 9mm and not 15.

Here was my attempt to make the tapper. As I banged more later, I managed to break the right side of the neck in the female side.

This is how I lay out the head with the sash. 

Start with the centre line and a perpendicular to that. 
 Then put the sash and mark one side
 Make the line and move the sash to the other side
 Then mark the line and two vertical more at "a" distance from each. 2a = d (width of the piece)
 Put the sash one side touching the upper line and the top of the mortice, and the other side touching the same line at the origin of the mortice.

 Trace that outer line and that's the side of the head
Repeat with the other side. 
And you have a hammer head. 
My sash was 9mm since my timber was 2in and not 3. How did you guys get the slope for the head?

To cut the mortice you saw along the channel first, if you use an azebiki you can go quite deep. Then you chisel the channel out, and the sides of the head are pared away. I need to get myself some decent clamps and start using paring blocks. A real sashiagane and a bottom cleaning chisel are in the list of stuff to bring from Germany next time.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Clases de Carpinteria Japonesa en Chile

According to blogger, there were 45 views from Chile last week, so somebody must be reading this from chile.

Yesterday, I put an ad in our local craigslist about woodworking lessons and already got 3 replies. That's like 3000% more than what I have expected.

The course is an intro to japanese woodworking and it will focus on sharpening, set-up and use of kanna, nokogiri and nomi, and simple joints: dovetail, mortice and tenon and a splice. Plus some info on where to get your tools and the like, and plenty of tea.

The course will be 3 saturdays in July, 4 hours each one.

Here more info if you want to join, the course will be given in spanish but translations to english and crappy german sind mogelijk.

Materials, tools and some refreshment will be provided. And you will be able to try that sweet girl of the picture.

Hopefully next summer we can get some shoji maker with real skill to teach us something (I'm looking at you Gabe) but for the winter, this crappy chilean will do. I will most probably also enlist Julia's father to teach some violin making when he's visiting us and bring mein freund Fabian Oettel for some humour and up-cycling.

As soon as I'm back home I need to make a saw vice and a sharpening pond... and finish that roubo bench once and for all.

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Sumitome hozo sashi, review

Friday night around 12 in the night I remembered there was a piece missing in my joint. I needed to make it there and then since saturday was picking up a Walker Turner bandsaw and then eating lamb for the whole afternoon, before putting the saw down in my porch and taking a bus to Valdivia, place where I am right now. 

Here is 11 hours in bus from Santiago, green, wet and full of trees. Beautiful. There's a river, mountains and sea. One of the options is to move here in the future. 

First of all, here's the finished joint:

I added a kaneori mechiire for the sake of practice

again gappy... me not so happy

I guess in 6 months or so I will come back to it and see if I have improved. 

One of the lessons is not want to be done. " This puts me in the mindset of wanting to be done" says Jason and I totally can relate to that. Instead of living in the now of cutting the line, marking or chiseling whatever needs to be done at the moment, you are taking by your mind into the I want this shit DONE. NOW. And then you are done, the lines wanders, your mind wanders and things stop flowing and errors accumulate.  

Concerning the dynamics of the cutting, I guess Gabe nailed the cutting order and that's what I will follow next time. Also, I need to lay out all the pieces at the same time and not try to transfer marks as if they were dovetails. A sashigane would be nice too, or just spend a bit more time getting real square timber on the first place. Paring blocks also sound like a good idea but I need to arrange some clamps first. 

I forgot the memory of my camera today so no pictures of Valdivia yet. 

Congrats to all, I'm pretty sure we all learnt a lot and we are looking forward to the next one. Who's gonna post the next drawing? 

I brought a kanna, 2 chisels , one hammer, a square and a disposable saw without a handle. Let's see what I can do with em. 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Joints around the globe

So, we are all struggling.

Struggling with the joints, the lay out, ourselves, or way of thinking and all that.

But we are moving, and that's the important thing.

First, some tryout in Hawaii

Now some cherry in NY

 Back to Hawaii

Note how this guy got professional with the saw.  I'm jealous of those mitres. 

And last, Chile

That's an ugly out of plane. It can be planed though

That one, the inside of that haunch, what a pain in the ass, hands and mind was it.

These americans are using far too small pieces... so Jason is making the mortice for the column and the dado relatively bigger than the drawing.

I started with not so square pieces and "thought" (yeah right, hoped like a girl for a pink prince) that I could "fix" that by the layout. The shit ended up out of plane albeit square in the inside. The haunched tenon took me for ever, like 1 hour. I was totally lost on how to do it. You need ORDER Sebastian, ORDER. I had to increase the side if the female part because I left it oversized.

Man, I'm pissed off. With myself. Stupid joint and stupid me trying to take shortcuts.

Anyway, we are getting there. Tomorrow I have free from joints and think of making another. Perhaps not.  The joint is amazingly strong for how gappy is my tenon. Like it doesn't move at all. Makes me want to make a failure test...

Maybe I need a shooting board.

I know Rauli is an awesome wood to work with, but you got to give me some credit by the sharp paring chisels I got.

Anyway, I already learnt something. Doing something in a group is way better than do it alone.

Monday, June 15, 2015

ca. 2 hours

So, I started today my joint and thanks to hero wood (aka Rauli) everything is coming nicely. 

First, lay out. 

My wood is not square so I wanted to take the centre as if it were, thus the diagonals. This took 30 min or so. I was trying to be precise, something I'm not really friend of.

Then, started cutting. My idea is: cut everything that won't delete lines you still need.

This was the easiest to find out.

Then the dado. A large chisel is sweet for this.

 After I knife marked the dado lines I realise I broke my own rule, that mortice was missing part of the line. So started to make the mortice.

Enters small mortice chisel and leg.

30min later I was seeing through

Paring time. 30 min more. I should get closer and straighter with the hammer and chisel, I spent far too much time paring.

Once the mortice was done, I did the other part of it. And it was saw time.

Again, wide chisel being useful

I cut the tapered part first, then the mitre, that I leave for tomorrow. I was thinking of doing it with my paring chisel so I gave it a try.

Not so bad, needs to be straighter.

I broke a bit of the wood in the edged of the mortices.. no biggie but need to be more careful next time. Lovely thing of rauli is that pares beautifully on end grain, so I guess tomorrow will be faster since there are no mortices to cut.

Joint No 1: Sumitome hozo sashi

First joint of Project Mayhem.

I want to use in the corners of my future workshop and I guess Jason can use it too in the near future. 

You also need to put the numbers to the drawing depending in your pieces of wood. I would say that the size of the features is not critical but they all need to be there. 

Check the centre lines, they are useful (it seems).

We have 7 days to finish this. 

In case you didn't read the rules, go here:

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Project Mayhem

We start monday at 12:00 GTM and there are 7 days to finish the joints.


No electric tools.

Document the process.

Document the tools used.

Time it.

Discuss it.

Blog it.

I will post only the drawings of the joint, no indication whatsoever how to make the layout or the cutting order, we need to find out by ourselves.

If we manage to keep it going for a year, we will have 52 joints of experience. Think how many chicks will fall for you like that.

For the sake of simplicity, you chose the size of your timber and scale the joint to the wood you have. The drawing comes for a 120mm piece.

The next joint will be chosen by one of the persons who finished the first joint before the deadline.

The next joint will be published the following monday (one week to "rest" and discuss the exercise) and the same rules apply. (I hope this can continue for a few months at least, so you need to take your tools if you go in vacations.)

When the drawing is post next monday, you sign your entrance to project mayhem by sawing "I'm in" in the comments. Once you are in, you cannot get out.

After completion there will be a "grading" of the joint, by yourself and your peers. By pointing out each other our mistakes we will learn and create something beautiful. Like linux, ya know.

Western tool can be used save ugly saws with blue plastic grips.

See you monday.

Over and out.

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Holding Kanna

Short one today.

Alamo (Populus nigra) for the horizontal pieces morticed into rauli. Very wabi-sabi using salvaged wood with marks of it past life. My dad told me the axe marks in the rauli are to put wire and then plaster on top. Never seen that, but seems plausible. The alamo looked a bit burnt, but may be the disgusting air of Santiago. (I square the wood by flipping it and rotating it, no squares are harm in the process. I've never seen that explained but for me it's too trivial, you just need 2 pieces and understand what a square is.  I'm using my jointer for the rough work.)

Full size. Maybe a tad to tall and definitely needs another rauli on the top to close the whole thing up. I'm thinking of more practice with yesterday's joint for the top.

After writing the post yesterday, and already in bed, I started to think of how to cut the inner part... and a small chisel along the grain making progressively deeper grooves could work. And it did.

The tenon is ready with no drill and no bottom cleaning chisel. I did mark quite a lot the end grain to break the fibres at the bottom but seems a fair price to pay for using only chisels.

Tomorrow I will be working on the last comments of my star-shaped paper, so it's computer day. After like 2 years is finally accepted in Phys Rev E while I'm jobless destroying a kitchen in Chile. I was asked by one of my coauthors what brings me to chile. Somehow the answer is that I sleep better here. Despite everything, the pollution, the corruption, the rampant neoliberalism (cause of the previous two) the place forces you to soberly face your conditions. If the problem is the solution, then the possibilities are endless here.

Everything under heaven is in utter chaos; the situation is excellent.