Thursday, 28 May 2009

A few recent planes


Two English Boxwood filled XSNo.4’s.



A Rosewood filled XSNo.4.




Here is a shot of the inside of the front bun.



And a close up of the front of the bun. There is some pretty amazing grain and color going on in this one - and its big brother below.



Here is a Rosewood filled A5. This plane has a 50 degree bed angle and a 2-1/4" wide blade.


The front bun on this plane is stunning - here is an inside view.

There are two more planes close behind these two - ebony and steel - one of which is an exciting variation - stay tuned.

4 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Really nice, Konrad. Will you be at Westonbirt this year so that we can play with your lovely planes?

Cheers ;-)

Paul Chapman

29 May 2009 08:01  
Blogger Jameel said...

I have to comment. Those two boxwood planes are just gorgeous. If there's any tool that would motivate someone to do refined work, it would have to be one of these little fellows.

29 May 2009 21:22  
Blogger Konrad said...

Thanks Paul. I am not sure if Westonbirt is in the cards or not - we have a bit of a scheduling issue that we are trying to sort out.

Cheers,
Konrad

30 May 2009 18:45  
Blogger Konrad said...

Thanks Jameel. I really appreciate your very kind comments - especially from someone who’s work I admire so much.

Best wishes,
Konrad

30 May 2009 18:46  

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Friday, 15 May 2009

Shoulda never gone!

To Victoria that is!

What an amazing place. A friend of mine referred to it as “God’s waiting room” and I don’t think that is too far off. The trouble is we are already scheming about how to get back again.

My time at Lee Valley was great - the evening seminar went very well with lots of great questions and time for visiting. Hopefully there will be a few people that are dreaming of making their own planes.

Saturday was just as much fun with one particular moment that will stay with me for quite a while. Several of the people from the evening seminar stopped in on Saturday to continue with conversations, or to catch one of the demonstrations I was doing. At one point there were three of us standing around talking and we were discussing chip breakers, bed angles and other cutting geometry. It went something like this;

Konrad - “Oh, there is this guy online that has done a pile of work on this - Brent Beach... you should really look into it”.

Guy standing there (with an odd smile) - “Brent Beach... that’s me!”

Konrad - “What.....??????!!!!??! For real?”

It was pretty funny, and I have to say, it took me about 6 minutes of shaking my head to come around. It was a really, really crazy moment.

Jill and I went to visit with Chico and his charming wife Terri on Sunday night and were treated to a stunning gastronomical adventure. Man, can those two cook! Dinner lasted several hours which is a good thing because there is no way I would have been able to eat that much otherwise. It was a delicious meal and visit with two delightful friends - thanks to you both. And of course Chico and I wandered off a few times to the shop to look at tools and to admire some of his prized pieces of wood - he has an amazing collection.

We went to Butchart Gardens for mothers day and were not disappointed. If you are ever in Victoria - you have to check this place out! I must admit I am not a huge flower guy - but this was so much more than flowers. The combination of large scale planning and architecture was stunning and the whole thing covered in flowers, trees and colour. The most unexpected place was walking through a somewhat dark forested hallway through some large evergreen trees and then the hall suddenly ends to open up to “the sunken garden”. It really did take your breath away.

Thanks too to all the fine folks at Lee Valley for showing us around, including us in their activities and helping us out.



We returned home Tuesday night and I was back at it on Wednesday. Part of my excitement was to finish a plane I have been looking forward to for some time. This is another smoother variation... African Blackwood infill, 50 degree bed angle, no adjuster and no cap iron. If the cap iron free No.4’s are any indication - this plane is going to be a joy to use!

And speaking of variations - I have another one just around the corner....

We were a little worried about the timing of our trip out west because we did not want to miss the apple tree blooming next door.



This is the view from my shop balcony... I could not back up far enough to capture it all. We did not miss a thing... and this is a great reminder of Butchart Gardens... just on a one tree scale.

When we were gone, Riley had a field trip to Medieval Times in Toronto, and unfortunately - we forgot to give him a bit of money to buy himself a souvenir. He was quite upset about it because most of the kids bought a wooden sword. Well... we took care of this injustice today after school! His buddy Tyko came with him for Swordfest 2009. I had some scrapish hard maple kicking around and I figured it would make for a fairly sturdy sword material. Unfortunately - I did not take into account working hard maple is not the same as Home Depot pine... but I am thrilled to report that both boys started and completed their swords in one afterschool adventure.



They both did a fantastic job and the above photo says it all for me - Riley has developed some very fine skills and has a natural comfort with handtools.



This was the first time Tyko has done anything like this - and he caught on extremely quickly. I can see a future spokeshave making class already!

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

First he mastered the dovetail saws, now the spokeshave - is there no end to Riley's skills?

Cheers ;-)

Paul Chapman

27 May 2009 02:16  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hey Paul, apparently not. Tonight we made the cedar shield - spokeshave time again... and he even did the endgrain. Successfully. I am starting to worry about a hostile takeover :)

Cheers,
Konrad

28 May 2009 20:58  

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Monday, 4 May 2009

Old school flooring, door stops & floor ghosts


We have been picking away at the livingroom and made some good progress this weekend. The oak strip flooring is now out - and to my shock and amazement - I realized this flooring was nailed by hand... with real nails and a nail set.



And there were a lot of them!

Every time Jill & I were cursing all the nails, I kept reminding myself “it is faster to take them out than it would have been to install them” (repeat as necessary).



There is a pocket door into the room, and as we were sweeping up I noticed the high tech door stop. A scrap of wood stuck into a hole in the edge of the door. It was a fairly snug fit, but I managed to wiggle it free.



From the tool marks it looked like a pretty quick job - likely a small hatchet. I looked into the wall cavity and sure enough - it stopped against a 2x4. What a beautiful reminder that you don’t need to overthink everything.



Once all the nails were out, we lifted the tar paper to reveal the original room patterns and ghosting. I was quite delighted to see this, because it confirmed what I had suspected - the two rooms were divided by pocket doors. The room is 12' wide, and the two partial walls are 36" long - just enough to contain a 34" pocket door and close the gap.

The original pine floor has been grained to look like quartersawn oak. I am sure the spirits of the house will be happy once we put a real quartersawn oak floor in.



Here is a quick shot of our backyard as seen from the third floor. We are putting in a veggie garden along the fence to the left. We were sad to see our big tree go - but we are excited about growing some of our own food.

5 Comments:

Blogger tomausmichigan said...

Konrad

When my father-in-law started his carpentry apprenticeship in 1946, most of the floor layers were Swedish and they all had nail-pockets sewn in the bottoms of their trousers, so they could nail off a floor without straightening up. Those were men!

7 May 2009 20:39  
Blogger David said...

Good day Konrad, I would like to know how I can contact you, I will be in Vancouver Monday and Tuesday of this comming week, And I will be driving back to Whitehorse and was thinking of stoping by to have a look at your work!! My enail is as follow: aunorddunordwoodwork@gmail.com
But only if it's possible!
Thank you.
David

24 May 2009 13:49  
Blogger tomausmichigan said...

Konrad

Have you given any thought to putting the sliding doors back? Its more work, some inconvenience in arranging furniture and less of the 'open' feeling that people seem to want, but, on the plus side, lots of charm, some good corners for the Christmas tree, and you have the ability to close off the room for heating in a power outage, if you put in a new fireplace or stove. Old-fashioned can be good.

Tom

25 May 2009 07:31  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi Tom,

We are going to add “shoulders” back to the room to visually divide it in half, but still allow us to extend a dining room table the full length of the room for those occasions that call for it. We are on the same page my friend - the plan is to be able to close the room off and heat it in case of an outage - there will be enough room for all 4 of us to line up on the floor. Who knows - we may have a few sleep overs just for fun!

cheers,
Konrad

25 May 2009 18:22  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi David,

Sadly - I am back home in Ontario now.

Next time?

Cheers,
Konrad

25 May 2009 18:25  

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Saturday, 2 May 2009

For anyone in the GVA (Greater Victoria Area)...

... I will be at the new Lee Valley store on Friday May 8th and Saturday May 9th.

Friday evening will be a slideshow showing the process of building an infill plane from start to finish. There are over 200 slides - all the gory detail is shown. It is a pretty low key presentation and participation and questions are welcome and encouraged. If you have ever wanted to build an infill from scratch - this might help to fill in some of the blanks.



Saturday will be an in-store demo with an opportunity to see and try a few planes, ask questions and to hang out. There are 4 scheduled demonstrations - two on piening the shell of a plane and two on shaping the handle for a plane.

I hope to see a few of you there.

16 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Konrad,
Have you considered to put toguether a CD with all the process?

3 May 2009 15:33  
Blogger Adrian Baird Ba Than said...

Any chance you can do your slideshow in Edinburgh?
We have a spare room you can crash in & a jack russell to lick you awake in the morning...

3 May 2009 15:49  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi there,

I have concidered a DVD - still wondering what the right mix of content is.

Cheers,
Konrad

3 May 2009 16:20  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi Adrian,

I would love to visit Edniburgh again! The Jack russell might be an issue though...

Cheers,
Konrad

3 May 2009 16:22  
Blogger tomausmichigan said...

Konrad

A DVD by all means! But Victoria sounds even more fun.


Tom

3 May 2009 17:15  
Blogger David said...

Konrad, Not as far as Edinburgh, there is Whitehorese just north of Vancouver... And a chocolat lab insted of a jack...

I would love to be in Victoria to hang out and put my hands on one of your planes... just having a chance to hold it!!
Have a good time in Victoria!
David

3 May 2009 22:50  
Blogger Regis said...

Konrad,
Putting this presentation in a CD would be very much appreciated. Like Bill Carter's CD, this would be an invaluable source of information. The only suggestion is that you keep your slides on a Powerpoint format instead of a movie like Mr. Carter did.

4 May 2009 08:45  
Anonymous Pete in Victoria said...

Conrad, I'm hoping to swing by on Saturday to say hello to you in person. Although I will likely never purchase one of your wonderful planes, I really enjoy your craftsmanship and this blog, in particular the "family & friends" events that you often post about.

4 May 2009 19:05  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi David,

Whitehorse... I have always dreamed of heading to the real “North” someday. I bet the fishing is pretty amazing... something I really miss doing.

Cheers,
Konrad

4 May 2009 20:13  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi Regis,

The format of an instructional DVD will be extremely important. I have a copy of Bill‘s and really enjoyed it... but it might be different for someone without planemaking experience. If it happens - I will certainly post about it here.

Cheers,
Konrad

4 May 2009 20:16  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hey Pete,

That is great - please stop in and introduce yourself.

See you soon,
Konrad

4 May 2009 20:17  
Blogger Aled said...

Konrad

The CD/DVD idea sounds great.

Will you be visiting the UK this year? and if so, could/would you do something similar here. I'd be more than a little interested.

Cheers

Aled.

P.S.

Would it help if I pestered Mike Hancock?

5 May 2009 15:19  
Anonymous Pete in Victoria said...

Well, I had the opportunity to meet Konrad last week and to try out several of his planes. In person, he is great to talk to and very generous with his knowledge. One word for his planes - incroyable! Unfortunately, he has now spoiled me for lesser quality planes. It was a pleasure both to speak with him, as well as to try out his fabulous infills. If you get the opportunity, I recommend both highly.

13 May 2009 20:56  
Blogger Randall said...

Any chance that you'll be doing one of these at a GTA store? I'd be really keen to see some of your work locally.

14 May 2009 20:31  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi Pete,

Thank-you for the very kind comments. It was a pleasure to meet you in Victoria - thanks for stopping by.

Best wishes,
Konrad

14 May 2009 22:30  
Blogger Konrad said...

Hi Randall,

I did one of these presentations a few years ago at the opening of the downtown T.O. store. But if you want - I am only 1 hour from Toronto...

Cheers,
Konrad

14 May 2009 22:32  

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