Using locally produced timber was taken to the extreme one day last week, when what was probably the closest tree to the workshop was felled. It was a Sycamore that had self seeded some 100 years ago along the main drive opposite to the entrance of the Craft Village.
Needless to say, we watched it’s demise, even video’d the act, and, surprise surprise, obtained the best part of the trunk for Ukulele parts!
From time to time we get asked about exotic timbers. The most popular timber for making Ukuleles is a wood called Koa. It is one of the Acacia family and is native to the Hawaiian Islands (among other places) where the Uke was invented. The reason it was used was quite simple. It was local and available.
Of course, today, Hawaiian Koa is still available in small quantities, but at a high price. Think in terms of a set of boards for a soprano starting around the £60 mark and going up from there!
However, ‘local and available’ were the criteria for using this timber in the first place, and here in the Garden of England, Continue reading Exotic woods→
The ‘tidy up’ I mentioned in the last post turned out to be a three day job! That is mainly due to a complete re-arrange of the workshop. A bit more space was needed and there was none. None that was usable that is. Moving from the smaller unit a few months ago, things had been put where they fitted without too much thought about the way we would be working and the place had become somewhat cluttered.
The thing that triggered this effort was the purchase of a new Planer – Thicknesser. It is something that is a basic requirement in any form of woodworking shop, but something that funds had precluded until now. Bench models are available, capable of handling widths of 6″ and 8″, but with the need to dimension timber for Continue reading A Change of Luck?→
Although I’m not advocating that anyone should make unnecessary journeys, the Craft Village is still accessible with care. Today was spent having a mass tidy, along with a bit of snow shoveling. Isn’t it weird that cleaning up seems to increase the amount of mayhem, at least to start with. I’m sure with another day, all will sort itself out and room to swing a cat will once more emerge!
As the Craft Village was more like the Marie Celeste today (the busiest shopping day of the year??) it was hardly surprising that the wildlife took advantage.
For example, this Sparrowhawk took advantage of the quiet surroundings to bag himself one of the Fan-tailed Doves that frequent the Dutch Barn that serves as a car park for the Crafters. It was interesting to note that the trees in the immediate vicinity were well populated with Crows and Magpies, waiting for any leftovers.
Whatever you are feasting on this Christmas, enjoy it and have a good day. We’ll be back in the workshop on Boxing day.
It is fortunate that the weather was fair for the Quexmas Event, staged in the Powell-Cotton Museum on Sunday 27th November. That is because the queues of people stretched well into the car park for a good couple of hours after the event opened. Of course, the weather had an effect on how many people ventured out, but we’ll ignore that for the moment.
The Reverend (and sometimes not so reverend) Davey Slater dropped in today for a chat and promptly picked up some of the ukuleles we have prepared for this weekend’s Quexmas Event up in the Big House. Here’s a quick soundbite.
With the Quexmas Christmas Craft Fair is just 5 days away, preparations are going well, with a decent score of five Ukuleles up for display and demonstration. Three of these instruments are made entirely from timbers grown on the Quex Estate and we can point out the exact location that they grew from the entrance to the museum. We will also have a range of other Continue reading Quexmas is coming→
Bigger kit, whole trees to convert, and planning on building guitars as well as Ukuleles, the time has come to say goodbye to our little unit in the Craft Village! But fear not, we haven’t gone far. In fact the move was completed in a little over twenty-four hours with no more transport requirements than a Continue reading Moving On….→
Quex Instruments maker, purveyor of local timber artifacts