Sunday, March 28, 2010

Photos from Mexican Woodworking Shop

In January we went to Mexico and had the good fortune to visit a town not touched much by tourism. Our host took us to a woodworking shop where his chairs and tables were made.  The shop was not running, but we did get a chance to see the work areas. I'll let the pictures speak for themselves:

Perhaps the most striking fact to me is that the table saws (there were two of them) were obviously shop made and neither had anything like a fence in evidence. Notice the chair in the last picture: this is one of the primary products and I find it hard to believe that they do all that ripping without a fence. Looking at the table saw tables I notice there is a lip on either end that could easily be used as a clamping surface: in production I'll bet they have a piece of wood clamped there as a rip fence.

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Monday, December 3, 2007

Mystic Seaport Shipwright's Shop Tour

A few days ago I posted about our trip to Mystic Seaport. Even though the shop wasn't running, I found it thrilling to walk through the observation deck of the shop and see a tall ship being built (or repaired?) right there. You might also have gathered that I was amazed by the Ship's Saw: a giant bandsaw on which the table remains level and the saw itself is adjusted to create the desired cutting angle.

If your mouth watered at all during that short photo tour, then you'll find a feast at Tom Daniel's blog, A Shipwright in Training, and especially in his blog entry about leaving Mystic Seaport, where he worked as a full time ship wright this past summer. The bandsaw shown above is another ship's saw in the Mystic workshop. The photograph is part of a verbal and visual tour Tom gives of the work space at Mystic. Enjoy!
photo copyright and courtesy of Tom Daniels

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Sunday, December 2, 2007

Beautiful Old Lathe

A friend picked this up at a yardsale for ten dollars.

It's a nice little Goodell-Pratt lathe with good bearings and almost no rust. Sadly, it will not be used in his shop. Too nice. Too old. Happily, it will not spend time unloved in a leaky barn. Welcome to retirement, little guy.

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Saturday, November 24, 2007

Woodworking Field Trip: Mystic Seaport

I went to Mystic Seaport with friends today and had a great time. If you are interested in boat building or early-American history, I recommend it. I wish more of the shops had been running, but what can I expect on a Saturday? We did get to see the shop space without the shipwrights, and the blacksmith was up and running (though I was out of memory on the camera by that time).

Long straight logs waiting to become masts or planking

Giant bandsaw: The whole saw is on trunions!

Wooden lobster trap in progress

Working steam box for bending the lobster trap frames

Winch and huge all-wood block, to pull ships onto their sides

Tools of the trade: old on the left, new on the right

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