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25 April 2014

How to inlay wood

I've been wondering whether I've got what it takes to do some fancy wood inlay. Perhaps I can spice up my banjo build with a few choice embellishments? I've inlaid fret-dots on previous builds, but nothing more complicated than this. Today, I'm going to give you an update on a little experiment I've been undertaking...


Here's a panel from my new comic. It's a work in progress. I've drafted four chapters and I'm working on the last one now. The good news is that it's finally got a name; I'm calling it "The Black Pirate" in honour of my Mexicali Rose. The bad news is that the App I'm using to storyboard has stopped working! Damn! I'll give the makers a chance to fix it, but I may have to find another way of getting to the end of this.

I show you this panel for a reason. See the hand-print. This is the design I decided to turn into an inlay. My thinking is that a handprint is the simplest, most basic symbol that anyone can put on anything. I mean, people have been making hand-prints since time immemorial. I resolved to try and inlay a handprint based upon this picture.

21 April 2014

Fist of Fury

I mentioned that I'd bought a table saw the other day but then had been horribly disappointed when it turned up broken. What a mess! The good news is that a replacement was sent and delivery number two has been all good. Let me tell you a little bit about the saw...


I bought an Evolution Fury 5. It's huge, dangerous, and I love it!

Here's the official blurb:

"The flag ship power tool of any home workshop, the FURY5 provides tremendous cutting versatility; cross cut, mitre cut, bevel cut, straight cut, large or small applications. Plus, this is no ordinary table saw, this is an Evolution table saw, so the versatile performance does not stop there; astonishingly, the FURY5 will easily cut Steel, Aluminium, Wood (wood with nails) and Plastics, using just one blade. Featuring a quick-clamp rip fence that is solid and sturdy in every position for essential cutting security, precise height and angle adjustment and an anti-bounce device, which minimises movement in material being cut."

20 April 2014

Ein, Zwei, Die!

It doesn't seem like 5 minutes ago that I was posting chapter 3 in my comic story. Well, what do you know... I'm sharing chapter 4 with you now! This is the penultimate chapter in the book and I'm experimenting with all sorts of new things. I have a pretty good idea of how this tale with end, but I'll keep this to myself for now. If this is your first time stumbling across this story, then I'd urge you to go right back to the start... it might make more sense that way ;-)


12 April 2014

More Dreaming about Building a Banjo

I've been spending more time wondering whether I've got what it takes to make a banjo. For the main part this has meant hours on the internet and lots of little scribbles on scraps of paper as I try to gather my thoughts. Let me try and explain some of what's been going through my head...


Fiction and reality are beginning to overlap. I wonder if this picture will make its way into my new comic? We'll just have to wait and see! 

6 April 2014

The Wild Rover

I'm pleased to announce that it's time for another installment of my comic saga. Hooray!

You might remember that I took a little departure with chapter 1 when I went all Samurai on you. Chapter 2 left us with quite a few loose ends. Chapter 3 returns us to familiar ground. Fasten your seatbelts my friends... this is going to get messy...

Let me introduce you to the Wild Rover...


Dreaming of Building a Banjo

It should come as no surprise that I've been scheming up a project to build a banjo. I think we can squarely blame Rob Stenson for this; His wonderful playing on the Gold Mountain EP is still a firm favourite on my ipod playlist.


Here's an early sketch I did to help me to familiarise myself with the parts of a banjo. My thinking has moved on a bit since this was done, but I'll call out a couple of things that were troubling me at the time:

See the pot - the drum bit. How on earth would I make that? Here, I'm thinking of slotting the neck through it.

See that knobbly 5th tuner on the neck. I know it's kind of the defacto banjo look, but I don't like it; it would interfere with my thumb when I'm playing. Could I do things differently so that I wouldn't have to put it there?