|Project by cathyb||posted 08-13-2009 01:39 AM||2906 views||4 times favorited||31 comments|
This is my mailbox. His name is “Let’s Dance” I carved him from Cuban mahogany. The finish is Awl-Grip, a linear polyurethane used to finish boats. It is toxic, but really durable. With all the water around Hawaii, the island might as well be a ship!
It took two months to carve the horse and almost a month to finish it (inside and out). For support, I used two 1 1/2” galvanized pipes, each was attached to his belly with a metal flange. For security, I drilled holes through the lower part of the pipe so I could add rebar to further anchor it to the cement. I also added stainless steel bolts that came out of the cement and through three hooves. The footing is three feet deep. I had to ask the mail carrier to position his truck as close to the curb as possible to determine the exact positioning. Once he went into the footing, we covered it with tarp for several days while the cement cured. Everyone in the neighborhood wanted to know what was under the tarp. I removed the tarp one evening. The next morning, I came out and saw that people had placed leis around his neck! It was so sweet.
I won a contest with the Smithsonian Postal Museum for the best rural mailbox. There’s a picture of my mailbox in that Museum. You know, it was just something that I thought would be fun. The response was amazing. Once the Smithsonian sent a news clip to the papers, I was on the front page. Suddenly, people are driving past my house to see the horse. I never expect that kind of reaction! A couple of weeks ago, a gentleman that I see when walking my dog, told me that he had a stroke several years earlier. He said that his objective every day was to try to walk to the horse. When he got there, he would pat the horse on his neck and then try to walk back home.
So I would encourage everyone to take the skill you have and do something from your heart. That love will be magnified many times over….....
-- cathyb, Hawaii, www.cathyswoodworking.com