Thursday, July 31, 2014

I Hope You Like Jammin', Too.


Ooh, yeah! All right!
We're jammin':
I wanna jam it wid you.
We're jammin', jammin',
And I hope you like jammin', too.


Ain't no rules, ain't no vow, we can do it anyhow:
I'n'I will see you through,
'Cos everyday we pay the price with a little sacrifice,
Jammin' till the jam is through.


We're jammin' -
To think that jammin' was a thing of the past;
We're jammin',
And I hope this jam is gonna last.

No bullet can stop us now, we neither beg nor we won't bow;
Neither can be bought nor sold.
We all defend the right; Jah - Jah children must unite:
Your life is worth much more than gold.


We're jammin' (jammin', jammin', jammin')
And we're jammin' in the name of the Lord;
We're jammin' (jammin', jammin', jammin'),
We're jammin' right straight from Yah.


 
Yeh! Holy Mount Zion;
Holy Mount Zion:
Jah sitteth in Mount Zion
And rules all creation.

Yeah, we're - we're jammin' (wotcha-wa),
Wotcha-wa-wa-wa, we're jammin' (wotcha-wa),
See, I wanna jam it wid you
We're jammin' (jammin', jammin', jammin')
I'm jammed: I hope you're jammin', too.


 
Jam's about my pride and truth I cannot hide
To keep you satisfied.
True love that now exist is the love I can't resist,
So jam by my side.


Wednesday, July 30, 2014

The Fashioning Hand of Fisher

Photo Credit: Nicole Lawton

Saturday’s lecture went well. I had to drive down from the campsite two hours each way so it was kind of a bummer to have to do that much traveling to a museum that is five minutes from my house. 

I started with a thirty minute talk overviewing Fisher’s furniture production. I discussed his tools, bench, and workshops as well as discussing a few of his pieces.  After the talk, I gave a 45 minute or so tour through the collection. The attendees were very engaged and asked many great questions.

Photo Credit: Nicole Lawton

Turnout was good. Including a few staff, there were just under thirty or so attendees. Pretty decent attendance for such an obscure topic in a rural coastal town. The 200th anniversary of Fisher’s house being raised is pretty significant in his legacy so I am honored to have been invited to present at this event.  

Photo Credit: Nicole Lawton

Photo Credit: Nicole Lawton

If you missed this one and were interested, I will be at the Wilson Museum in Castine, ME on August 13th at 1:00 (more info here) presenting on furniture making in pre-industrial Maine. I will be referring to some of my Fisher research as well. Hope to see you there.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Last Call

This is a detail shot of the Fisher property from an 1824 landscape. His yellow 1814 house is on the far right. Photo: Brad Emerson

My family and I are heading out to go to a church camping trip today so this is the last opportunity to remind you all of this Saturday’s lecture at the Fisher House. The official write up says, 
"On Saturday, July 26th Joshua Klein of Klein Furniture Restoration will present his research on the furniture produced by Jonathan Fisher (1768 – 1847) of Blue Hill. The talk titled, “The Fashioning Hand of Jonathan Fisher: An Inside Look at the Parson’s Furniture” will begin at 1:00 pm and will be followed by a guided tour of the collection.

This exciting new research has uncovered a rare look into the productive life and mind of this farmer-artisan of 19th century Maine. The surviving body of furniture, tools used to produce them, and diary entries recording their creation are a uniquely comprehensive record unparalleled by any other chair or cabinet maker of preindustrial Maine. Klein will discuss how a close investigation of Fisher’s furniture reveals to us insights into the complex relationship between the parson’s religious devotion, intellectual pursuits, and craft skills."
Yes, somehow my wife and I double-booked this Saturday. I will have to leave the campsite and drive a couple hours to the lecture only to turn around to go back to camping. Oh well. It’s all fun stuff anyhow.

As an aside, I’ve made a little bit more progress on my tool chest… Bottom boards, plinth, and becket cleats. Next up is the interior storage. Oh and I was playing around with some paint yesterday. I decided to grain paint this chest like the mahogany graining so common in Maine in the early 1800s. I’ve not done that before so I am making up some sample boards. 

The Chest in the white

The dovetails are reversed on the plinth (for added strength)

Becket cleats of poplar I had laying around

This is the 'mahoganized' sample board sitting against the chest.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Each Such Occurence



“Furniture, created for utilitarian purposes in a living environment, predictably undergoes strains, dents, burns, and assorted abrasions, and each such occurrence is a record of the object’s use. The eighteenth-century infant who pounds his spoon on a tabletop and the mother who, trying to keep warm, moves her chair too close to the fireplace are adding to the surface of that furniture an interpretable record of its use. I believe that sanding or scraping away such dents and burns destroys forever an important part of any wooden artifact; and from a baldly economic point of view, a zealous finisher intent on removing clear evidence of a family's usage is also reducing the monetary value of the object, as well as destroying palpable history.”

 - Robert F McGiffin, Furniture Care and Conservation p.6

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Building a Double Screw Without a Tap and Die


This is an experiment. I was recently putting in a materials order and I noticed in the ‘odds and ends’ department they had ¾” threaded maple dowel rod.  For a few dollars per lineal foot, I thought it would be worth putting in the cart. When it arrived, I set out to build a double screw.

I grabbed two pieces of cherry I had laying around and drilled holes for the screws. First I drilled a pilot hole where the screws would go. This gave me my alignment between the two jaws. Then the outside jaw was drilled with a ¾” hole so it would free float on the screw. The inside jaw was then drilled about ¾ of the way through with a 1” forstner bit. Before breaking through, I switched to the ¾”bit to exit out the back just big enough for the screw.



Now that I’ve got a gaping hole where I need threads, what’s next? 

I drilled some ¼” holes around the inside perimeter of the hole.  (Wait. More Holes?) These holes will get filled with epoxy putty and when the epoxy cures these “teeth” help keep everything in place. Once the hole was pretty well full of epoxy, I used my (liberally paste waxed!) threaded rod to turn my way through. Once it was through, I made sure to mash a bunch of epoxy back down in there to surround the threads. Over the next fifteen minutes or so I would turn the screw back and forth a few times just to make sure the threads were established well. As long as the screw is waxed, the epoxy won’t stick to it.





The next day I turned a couple simple handles, bore out an oversized hole in the middle, and used epoxy putty to permanently attach the screw into them. (Don’t wax that end of the screw! ) I toothed the jaws of the vise for better grip and the next day I gave it a go. It works wonderfully. For small work, the ¾” screws are fine and because the threads are epoxy they are super strong.



This may all sound convoluted. I know if I were reading this, I would be saying, “Why don’t you just get a tap and die set?” The answer is: this was a quick and fun experiment and it’s a way to use materials laying around the shop to make something that works just as well (hopefully... this is an experiment, you know). I will be getting a tap and die in the near future but this was fun in the meantime. The second answer is that I am curious to see the holding power of epoxy internal threads as I imagine this being useful information for my conservation work.


Friday, July 18, 2014

Writing, Writing, Writing


Besides the studio work, I’ve been busy writing and editing an article I’ve submitted for publication. Trying to boil down Fisher’s furniture production into 3,000 +/- words was hard, especially since this is my first go at a polished manuscript on the topic. With some revision help from a few colleagues, I think it came together. Perhaps one of these days you will see it... I’ll keep you informed.

I’m pretty much set to go for the lecture/tour on the 26th. That one is titled “The Fashioning Hand of Jonathan Fisher: An Inside Look at the Parson’s Furniture”. It will take place Saturday the 26th 1:00pm at the Fisher House in Blue Hill. I will give a brief introductory talk about how furniture making fit into Fisher’s life. The real meat and potatoes of this event though is the guided tour through the house. I will be taking the group through and pulling out drawers, etc.  I’ll be highlighting a few noteworthy features and discussing attribution issues.

I am also working through the powerpoint for my lecture in August at the Wilson Museum in Castine, ME. This one is on preindustrial Maine furniture makers.  It’s on August 13th at 1:00pm. More info here: http://www.wilsonmuseum.org/calendar_details.html#Aug_13

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Lie-Nielsen Open House 2014



I spent much of yesterday at Lie-Nielsen's Open House. It was such a wonderful time. Woodworking is great but woodworkers are even better. These are all real down to earth great people. Thanks for hosting the event, Tom!