Thursday, April 23, 2009

Work! Thistle hinges...

Drawing of hinges ...
Well as I have stated before things around here have been..well ...slow. Dan still has his historical/living history empire , axes, fire strikers etc... that always trickles in, but big ornamental jobs not so much. This of course has caused us much grief, since we have bills to pay.
Student loans, start up debt. etc... Like so many we have debt that grinds on us, and unlike some, I do not have a spouse who has a decent paying job outside of this work to lean on.
It's both of us in the same boat...
Being a sensitive and moody arteest it all started to get to me...bad. Winter did not help.
The Hubby had taken to calling me Denethor...brrrr.. not good!

So I have been making a concerted effort at being more optimistic, reaching out to freinds, and trying my damndest to not get mired down in fear.
As Churchill said "If you are going through Hell, keep going!"

That said with the warm spring weather and fragrant blooms of the green, growing things I feel more hopeful ...AND we have some new jobs. That helps , alot!

One is for a historical site here in Portlandia;
The Lone Fir Cemetery, the oldest cemetery in Portland. We were contacted by the Friends of the Lone Fir to build some gothic hinges for an old utility building belonging to the Mclay family..
seeing as how they are a Scottish family, I proposed a thistle theme..Sometimes my job is so cool...this kind of project is why I don't just run off and become a hermit...:)

More of the drawings and the template...
I started with the smaller drawing for the clients aproval, and then blow it up to actual size on the steel. I used tracing paper to transfer over the other half of the hinge.

Drawing on 1/4 inch thick plate

First hinge plate cut out with plasma torch.
Now I have to clean up the slag on the edges, give the thistle flower some detail work with a chisel, and hammer texture the entire piece. We are cheating and not making the actual hinge part, but welding on some pre- made ones...I know,...I know.... not very traditional, but niether ws using an electric torch to cut it out... To be pure and true I should have forge welded the arms onto the body, or split and the pulled them out, using a hammer and chisel...However this is not even pretending to be a piece made with only 19th century methods, I didn't charge enough for that..
Can't wait to show you what they loo like all finished!

Also, as Mayday is fast approaching, and being a huge folky nutball, I wanted to remind everyone to go on and get up before dawn on May 1st. to celebrate the coming in of Summer with your local Morris men and women!
The above hot link will take you to a great site to check out Mayday/Beltane events in your area, ours is with the Renegade Rose and Bridgetown Morris, at the Rose test Gardens..
It's great pre-dawn fun.
Check out this article allabout our local event, a certain fruit growing lady blacksmith is interviewed in it...

1 comment:

Dan Kay said...

Sweet!!! One more reason for us Scottish Folk to really like you! I have to come up sometime and show you guys my new kilt - Gary (Big Gary, from the Reaves) is building mostly modern kilts now, and made me one from the three color desert cammo like I wore in the Sand. Way cool, and it goes with my boots!