It’s here!

The CNC arrived this week, and am I ever glad I had it shipped.  It was very heavy, very awkward to lift, and the drive alone would have taken 8 hours each way.  After unpacking there was a bit of damage as it hadn’t been crated so a few little issues, most likely due to us loading it off the truck.  Luckily two switches were easily reattached and a new drag train is on order for minimal cost.  Honestly I didn’t see the machine in person so maybe these were issues before, who knows.IMG_1634

After a day of set up, I was pretty surprised how fast it was up and running.  The drive computer has Cut 2D on it, so I’ve been using that for now, although I plan to get Vectric Pro when funds allow.  I now need to build a table for it to get it up off the floor.  I’ll make something with casters on it so I can move it around if need be since it’s currently blocking the loading door of my shop.  The door isn’t used that much but it may in the future so having the ability to move a 330+ lb. machine would be nice.IMG_1635

Lots of future plans now as I begin to learn all the potential of this machine.

Some musings on quality…

Fischer Price

I was in my parents basement this morning when I came across the above Fisher Price Toy.  It’s a Printing kit, judging by some of the paper I found inside the box, I got this when I was 4 years old, making this toy over 30 years old.  I have always loved crafty things like this and I grabbed it thinking my five year old would love it as well.  As I left I was thinking how I’d need to find a new ink pad likely, and hopefully my daughter would be patient while I figured out if any of it still worked.

 

To my surprise, the well used toy was complete, and everything still worked.  The original ink pad still had ink and the refill bottle was still half full (there was even a form to mail away for extra refills).  We had an awesome afternoon playing with it, but I couldn’t help but be blown away that this 30+ year old toy still worked perfectly, and would likely work for another 30 years.  This sort of quality is rare these days, and it’s something I’ve been thinking about with my products.

 

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My bird houses for instance, while they look fragile, they are very durable and weather proof.  I hung up a pair of them on my back shed for an entire year before I decided to start selling the design.  After a year I was satisfied that they were high enough quality.  Now going on 3 years, the pair still hangs on the shed, and with no maintenance, they are a bit more grey than before, but still keeps the elements off my feathered friends.

 

I often get questions about care for my various chopping boards.  I always tell people to wipe them with a damp/soapy cloth, reapply mineral oil if they look dry, the usual things for cutting boards.  This is certainly playing it safe, and they will never come to any harm with this regimen, but is it really necessary?  That’s what I plan to find out.  I’m making a couple of mini boards, one maple with colour block and a second plain walnut.  I’ll prepare them just as I do all my other boards, but these two are going to take a trip in the dishwasher, in fact 10 trips to be precise.  Have I gone mad? Maybe, but if these boards can survive 10 trips through the dishwasher, then they can survive just about anything. Stay tuned…

Fun Meet up

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Mike from BrokenStick.ca stopped by my shop the other day.  We commiserated about the lack of available sticks for our projects.  I’ve had to turn down far too many orders for hockey stick cutting boards due to lack of wood sticks.  We soon also discovered we went to the same school years ago, small world!

 

Mike was kind enough to give me a couple of his hockey stick bottle openers.  I used a similar design last holiday season for bottle openers but used scrap wood from other projects instead of hockey sticks.  They were a great seller but a bit mind numbing to produce after a while…

Honestly I make other stuff besides cutting boards…

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So I do make other things besides cutting boards, just seems like that’s what gets posted most often.  The bottom two boards were Anniversary/Christmas presents for my parents and in-laws.  They were both well received, and unfortunately are rarely used “because they’re just too nice”.  The top board was meant to be the same as the bottom two, but since the glue up wasn’t as flat as it could have been, I had a few exciting passes through the planer (read “projectile cutting board”).  Anyways, the rectangular board got smaller and smaller, until it became a square board.  Worked out in the end.

All boards are made from maple and walnut, food safe glue, and some colourful acrylic accent paint.  Finished with food-safe mineral oil.  The small one was put on Etsy and sold a few weeks ago!