Monday, September 22, 2014


Ok... so... the cement work that I said was going down two weeks ago... well it's happening later this week... this time for sure. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls with the help of weather and these so called humans, didn't get the cement work done as planned, but it is coming.

I actually did get the demo of the wall started, then I discovered that the folks that put the HVAC in decided the top of the door frame was an effective way to support the HVAC line, so I had to stop and get a hanger for that... weather and drama ensued and it's going to happen this week.

Two other pieces of sad news... the weather issues included an early freeze that took out the tomato and pepper plants. (Luckily I already have plenty of cayennes drying :) .

As an additional part of the fun I had a run in with a beehive today while trying to cut the lawn... five stings, no anaphylaxis... Vengeance will be mine! (actually everything is in place for vengeance I'm just waiting for first thing in the morning where low light and low temp will have the bees at their least active)

{um Patrick... you do posts with pictures, where are the pictures} Tired of looking at the wall... The above is all the fame the bees get, but yes there are pictures, and a shop experiment of the week!

Back in the good old days you could walk along the beach and find beach glass, pieces of bottles (and better yet glass fishing floats) that had been broken and worn by the sand. Unfortunately as time has moved on  less glass is being used and more people are picking up trash on beaches, so there is less beach glass to find (oh, and I don't live anywhere near a beach!) So, last week I set out to create "beach" glass with my tumbler.

This is some of the first batch... The process works and I'm working on improving it.

Now if you are interested (crazy?) enough to do this you'll need some tools. I've already mentioned the tumbler (see previous posts for info on tumblers and silicon carbide grit) and you'll want some course grit (I use 60/90 split grit for this).

You'll want some other tools too...

Safety gear is a must! And no I'm not kidding with the face shield and goggles. Shrapnel constantly drives scientists and engineers nuts because it just doesn't follow the same "laws" of physics as the rest of us! And we will be making shrapnel. In fact meet our shrapnel makers!

The five gallon bucket contains as much shrapnel as possible but some will get out the top. And yes that is a good old "daddy class persuader" my eight pound sledge hammer (note if your man hood (or woman hood I don't discriminate!) is threatened you could use the 16 pounder, but I want to work a little more precise and detailed than that ( and sledge hammer in the same sentence...???))

Now collect some glass bottles to put in your bucket.

Remember the total glass we need for one load will fit in a quart container (for a 3lb tumbler), but you might want to break more bottles to get some variety in color and shape... Now release some frustration with that hammer! While you're doing that try to make some interesting shaped pieces (sorry we don't have a definitive size answer yet... that depends on your tumbler and what you want to make...)

 There we go, some nice broken glass... now wash that shrapnel out of your hair... and off your cloths... mop the floor... now we can load some in the tumbler barrel. For the first batch I filled 2/3 -3/4 full and used a standard charge of grit. I checked it after one day and ran it for another two.

I'm reasonably pleased with the outcome... but why not experiment more (since I have more glass and all...)

Doing a little research and thinking I decided to try to thicken the slurry, so for batch two I ran three tablespoons of grit and six tablespoons of sugar for two days...

Not really pleased... the grinding wasn't as good (I think one day on the first run did better), so I tossed it in again with more grit and I'm running it till I change the other barrel I'm running, on Saturday...

Some of batch one already has projects waiting and I'm thinking about other ways to play with this: varying time and grit as well as dragging my diamond saws in the mix to control the shape of the pieces that are going in.u
What will I do with it? Well, sculpture and jewelry with brass, bronze, copper (regular and enameled), stainless steel and aluminum (BA and anodized) wire (possible some chain mail in the mix). If I find some stuff that's really worthy I have some silver laying around...

In other news... we are going to pre forgive Lisa for not posting next week (come on, we can forgive her being compelled to give a 50 minute conference presentation at 8:00 AM is punishment enough!). So, I'll take next week and make her talk about her trip when she gets back...

Until next time remember... attack at dawn, that way if things go bad you haven't wasted the whole day!

Update: 9/23/14 Nailed the buggers! In a predawn strike I dumped a whole can of spray on them... No damage to our forces, battle damage assessment on the enemy to be carried out later today (Note: for any NSA/KGB/what ever other forces of paranoia read this I'm talking about stinging insects in my back yard not people! GEEZ! get over yourselves!)

No comments: