May was a diverse month, both in weather and in items coming out of the shop. May is also the start of tourist season and we had out share of visitors. One of my first projects this month was a set of two library display boards, delivered to Edmunds, ME. That’s near Eastport, about a stones throw from the Canadian border. Quite a trip.
Next up was state of Maine plaque, laser engraved and carved.
The most time consuming and challenging job was a restoration project, a rocking horse. It was in really bad shape, left out in the rain, in a barn, and generally neglected and falling apart. The body consisted of a piece of 1 1/4″ thick hardwood, with a sheet of 5/8″ plywood on either side. The wood was rotting and required extensive splicing and filling. The rear hoof looked like this:It took a pint of bondo, new paint, and new leather straps and saddle, to bring it back to its original glory.Then it was vacation time: MCA weekend at Haystack. This year I again took a blacksmithing course. On a cold Maine night, there is nothing better than to stand next to a furnace, beating hot metal, and shaping it, accompanied by an occasional drink of Laphroaig.
I made a few hooks, a towel rack, two candle holders and three pendants from previously made Damascus steel. The pendants await two jump rings and a silver chain.The first candle holder was made from a 12″ bar of 1/4″ steel, hammered drawn out, spiraled and shaped. the drip cup made from black pipe.The second was made from a piece of 7/8″ black pipe, shaped, and welded to stems, all three mounted on a scrap piece of walnut filched from the woodshop.Then, our usual volunteer work for a few days. We made tables, display cases, sharpened chisels and plane blades, oiled, de-rusted, and even added a sliding table to the Sawstop. This has been a tradition of Maine Woodworkers for over 20 years.
Back in the shop, the month concluded with a two day photo shoot for three articles to be featured in upcoming issues of FWW. I made a Shaker sewing stand, and we shot photos for methods of drawer stops and two approaches to half blind lipped drawers. The sewing stand was all cherry, the first I’ve done in a few years. A timeless design. The drawers are accessible from both sides, and I included small magnets to act as drawer stops. Weather-wise, we went from snow in late April, to weekly lawn mowing and fully leafed-out trees in May. In my trips through the woods, I found a white lady slipper. The pink ones are pretty common, but the white ones are quite rare. The first one on our property.C. H. Becksvoort © 2016