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Friday, July 24, 2009

Blacksmithery...Why the Hell not?

My friend Beth, who is a wood worker, asked me if I could make a specific wood turning tool for her. See she needed a tool for turning out wooden bowls, cups, etc. After showing me a picture of what she needed, I agreed to think about it.

Having never really attempted this before, I was a little apprehensive about the whole process. See, Blacksmithery, is the process of forging iron or steel into objects. This is done by using tools to hammer, bend or cut the metal while extremely hot. This seemed to be a daunting task, but what the hell, I'll give it a shot.

First, I needed a proper hammer, to figure out my heat and to dust off the old anvil. Then I began my learning experience. After a couple test runs, and a lot of hammering... this is what I came up with. Check it out. You might just say it "turned" out well. Ha ha, sorry for the bad pun... I couldn't resist.

Thanks for taking a look. For more info on Blacksmithery, check out www.anvilfire.com

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Theft and Necessity

At this point, the work is starting to roll in and become a bit more steady. This is a nice feeling. So, one morning I walk out to my truck to go pick up supplies... and then a not so nice feeling comes over me. I can't find my truck. Did I forget where I parked it? I mean, that is a possibility. I walk to the other side of my building... still no truck. Dammit! Walk back over to where I originally thought it was parked and then I see what happened...

Just like many times before, riding my bike through the rough neighborhood in which I live in good ol' Philadelphia. You have to watch out for the all too often broken bottle or... piles of broken window glass from a car that used to be there. My Truck, has been STOLEN! Ahhhhhhhhh!!!

Apparently the night before a bunch of cars on my street were vandalized and stolen. My truck being one of them. So I called the cops and filled out the report. Nothing else I could do. The officer that took my report said I would probably get it back, just not in the same condition. I.E. totally screwed up.

So I waited a few days, decided to start looking for it on my own, with no luck. After about a week I decided to move on and start looking for another. As soon as I made peace with It being gone...I got a phone call. They found my truck! Turns out whoever stole it, decided to return it a half block away from my building. Weird huh?

When I picked it up, I was surprised that it wasn't in that bad of shape. They broke the driver side window and stabbed my center console with a screwdriver about 50 times when they couldn't get the CD player out. Jerks. But that was about it. Oh they also stole my old school B&M hot rod shift knob and the original(it was in the glove box). Turns out that finding a shift knob for a Toyota pickup in a junkyard in Philly is impossible.

So after cleaning up all the glass, replacing the window and piecing together my stabbed and broken console... I was still short a shift knob. Time to fabricate. In homage to my old shift knob, I decided to do something classic and made out of steel. So here it is:

It's my new handmade custom hollow steel Black Die shift knob. Looks cool and I think it makes my truck faster too!