Short version: I got a free hammer and desperately need a life!
Long version: Thanks to violent storm I got the day off. It turns
out that you can't do much computer programming when the power is out.
So after the boss showed up and dismissed everyone I went to a nearby
foundry. They pour aluminum, brass and bronze. I have a few a patterns
that need to be cast. One is the pattern makers plane pattern from
MJD's 1996 catalog (item AA-8), another is a small anvil pattern I
bought at an antique mall (marked "wooden anvil"), and the last item is
a small carving I made. I'm making a cradle for the git I have on order
(arriving around January 15th). The carved piece will be the parking
brake required by osha (saftey regulatory agency Jeff). See the cradle
in Home Furniture issue 11 (substitute the wooden parking brake for a
bronze one though!)
This was my first visit to a foundry. I had a similar experience
on my visit to the St. James Tool company. The proprietor dropped
whatever he had been doing and spent about an hour and half showing
me around and talking shop. While on the tour I was shown a bunch
of non sparking hammers and given one as a souvenir. The pattern
shop was another highlight for me. I was disapointed that there
weren't any Emmerts in sight but that was all the room was lacking.
I was shown Wes' bench (fellow galoot Wes Grout frequents this
foundry and has work space when he needs it- the room goes unused
In the foundry proper, I saw patterns being rammed up as well as
molten aluminum being poured. A stack of smoldering castings were
stacked nearby. Sights I won't soon forget.
Alan (the proprietor) answered all of my foundry related questions.
He helped me figure out how the Stanley patternmakers made one of the
planes I brought along. I'd like to cast copies of this particular
plane but was stumped on how to make the pattern. (It turns out
that sometimes the parting plane has steps in it!).
All in all a very good and informative day. I can't wait to go