After what seemed like an eternity that I have been away from the scroll saw, I was finally able to get back at it and do some cutting yesterday. You would think that being a designer, I would spend several days a week at the saw. But reality isn’t quite like that, as there are so many aspects to running the business that takes up time (not to mention – the drawing part!) that it is only occasionally that I get to do so. Actual cutting is only a small piece of the puzzle – and one of my favorite pieces.
I have decided that these patterns will be sold as a set of three. I think that the related plaques can be nice as stand-alone projects, but look outstanding in a group. I also try to give my customers the most value for their money when purchasing my patterns, and I think that it will be a good idea to include three similar, yet different subject views.
I have several similar sets such as this on my mind and I would love to make them available as quickly as I can. I just have to buckle under and really get to work.
Yesterday I got all three of my frames/backers cut. I absolutely LOVE how they look:
I used 1/2” thick maple for these pieces – which is one of my favorites! I love the really hard and tight grain of the maple, as it holds up beautifully to the delicate scroll work:
The pictures today are at the point where they are sanded. As you probably noticed on yesterdays’ pictures, the router bit that I had used was dull (I grabbed the wrong one from my supply!) and it burned the edges a bit. It took a little bit of extra work, but I was able to sand out the burn marks using my orbital sander. I used 320 grit paper so I wouldn’t wind up reshaping the routed edges, and it took a bit longer, but the results was great.
Today I am going to cut the overlay pieces, which will only take a short time. Then the real fun begins as I am going to finish these up in (of course) a couple of different ways. I have so many visions of how I can do these and I want to try to show at least a couple of them.
This is the best part of my job! (Oh! I say that about EVERYTHING, don’t I?)
I also wanted to mention today that Stumpy Nubs posted a video yesterday in which Mustache Mike talked about choosing different scroll saw blades. (You can see it here: http://lumberjocks.com/StumpyNubs/blog/37095 ) I thought that it was a good approach to give an overview of this VAST subject. Because of the scroll saw’s versatility, the blade selection can be a bit confusing for people. There are so many types and sizes that it can be very easy to be overwhelmed. But I liked that Mike said how most scrollers tend to settle into about 5-6 blade sizes as their favorites. I say this all the time and find it to be true. If you visit my site, you can see that Keith and I do a pretty good variety of different types of projects. However, we tend to use only about 4 sizes of blades:
#2/0 reverse tooth #2 reverse tooth #3 Mach speed reverse tooth #5 reverse tooth or #5 PGT reverse tooth
We ALWAYS use Olson blades and highly recommend them. (And no – I don’t get paid to endorse them!) I find that in the smaller sized blades such as this, they can’t be beat for performance and accuracy. Many of the other brands work well in the larger sizes, but neither Keith nor myself can get the control from those blades as we do from the Olsons. We have tried with open minds to use other brands and have always come back to our Olsons. I get mine from the Wooden Teddy Bear . I don’t get paid to endorse them either, although they do carry my patterns. But they are a great company and honest and have wonderful prices on Olson blades and fast and friendly service and I do recommend them to those of you who are looking for them.
Some people say they have trouble controlling the smaller blades. I often wonder if it is because they are using other brands that we have tried where yes – the small blades were difficult to control. For my designs that I am highlighting here, I used 1/2” maple and #2 reverse tooth scroll saw blades. Any larger blades would not allow me to get the fine details that I get with these blades:
The Olson blades make clean, sharp cuts and last a decent amount of time. They are reasonably priced, have pinpoint control and leave the edges beautifully smooth. What more can one ask for?
Today’s agenda includes oiling and finishing these pieces, as well as the overlay. I hope by tomorrow I will have the finished plaques to share with you all. I am rather proud of them. :)
It is a beautifully sunny day and the temperatures are perfect – cool but not too much so. I hope you all have a wonderful day and have fun doing something creative. I know I am looking forward to it.
-- Contributing Editor, Creative Woodworks and Crafts, Sheila Landry Designs http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com "Knowledge is Power"