Well I finally made it on time today, even though it meant we had to hurriedly eat at A&W tonight :-) Although I wasn’t as early as I had planned as when I got to the College I started driving up their steep (and as it turns out very very slippery drive way) where someone was letting off a passenger about halfway up (I thought this was kind of odd, why not just let them off at the top where the buildings are) so I stopped because I wasn’t sure if there was enough room to get by their vehicle. Well that was enough to get both of us stuck about halfway up as it was too slippery to begin moving again! I backed down (a fun exercise knowing that you have very little traction whilst you are backing onto a through way from a parking lot!) and then let the other vehicle back down before I tried with some momentum to go up a second time…well that didn’t work so I got to practice backing onto a through way a second time this evening! I figured discretion is the better part of valour and skuttled away from there to find another way into the parking lot. I still made it in early though so I’m happy!
Today our task was to plane a block of wood squarely to a particular set of dimensions…sounds easy doesn’t it. Well it actually went pretty well, except I got confounded when I used my tri-square to see if my final face was square to each edge and flat. It was pretty flat but when I sighted from one side the far side was low ( a gap appeared between the square and the face opposite my reference edge) so I measured from the ‘low side’ and had the same problem, the opposite side was low!!! At first I thought my edges were not square to my reference face so I carefully measured again each side…they were square to the reference face! I am not a great math whiz but I know that if you have two 90s at the bottom and two 90s at the top it adds up to 360 which means it should be square! So I was almost at the point where I’d normally chuck it in the burn box and start again when Ryan came up and I explained my dilemma to him. I was sure he’d quickly point out where I was making a mistake ( It was actually pretty interesting watching him check for square…I learned a lot about the process just by watching him and have already used some of the methods he was using…but I digress). He checked each face, each edge and then flipped it around and checked again and was seeing the same confounding thing I was. He then took the tri-square up to a framing square and compared the two… It seems that the square I was using was a wee bit out of square, and had a bit too much slop in it so when I held it against my edges I put sufficient pressure on it to wobble it out of square just a bit, enough to make me see the light under the square and figure that I had ruined my planing job. Once we determined it was the square I cooled down a bit and am actually quite happy with how the evening went. I did a chance to talk with Ryan after class and asked him if he knew about LumberJocks and Sketchup; he’d heard of both so that was kind of interesting. I suppose if he is reading these blogs I hope I haven’t offended him in my blogging here LOL!
Ryan also introduced our project where we bring together the different elements he’s been teaching. We will be making a nail tray, which is essentially an open box with a central handle and two dividers creating 6 compartments (for you guessed it ..) nails! He spent a bit of time explaining how to lay out a project and the importance of having a drawing and the advantage of drawing the project out yourself, to help you better understand how a piece is put together…essentially building it once on paper before you make sawdust. I am really enjoying the classroom atmosphere and his teaching style.
Ryan announced at the end of class that the College will be offering levels 2 and 3 in February and March respectively…I hope the budget will allow for me to attend, I’ll have to check with Jenn and see how we are sitting for the next two months!
-- "Checking for square? what madness is this! The cabinet is square because I will it to be so!" Jeremy Greiner LJ Topic#20953 2011 Feb 2