Saturday, 20 March 2010

Simon collects his Watchmate AIS

The logo for Vesper Marine,makers of the Watchmate AIS system and available from CKD Boats cc

Simon called on us yesterday to collect his Watchmate AIS,plus an antenna splitter and GPS.We first had contact with him from Switzerland,with oursleves being in South Africa and the Watchmate in New Zealand,so its quite an international thing,with TNT handling the delivery and with their very good tracking system,we always had an idea where the order was and when we could expect it.
Left click the pictures to see more details.

Hi Roy

Many thanks for update - I have been following tracking & thought you
should get it tomorrow. I will be quite tied up tomorrow & possibly
Tues with business comitments but we can discuss when best to collect.
There is no rush from my side.

What I have appreciated is the excellent service that you & Jeff have
given right from my initial enquiry! Well done

best regards


Friday, 19 March 2010

Toylander bonnet panel

We are expanding the Toylander kit we can offer as we build it,starting with the finger joints,removal of wood cleats and some parts of the floor pan,radius corners to the front wings and now the engine bay bonnet.

Superform Bending Plywood,two layer of 3mm,with Resolution 816 epoxy coated on both sides works well,even on the very tight radius at the back of this Toylander Engine Bonnet.

Thursday, 18 March 2010

Toylander engine bay bonnet lid

Now that we have sorted out the front wing jigs and made some top corners from them,its time to make some bonnets for our own Toylander build,also our kit buyers,as we see both as being a little too complicated to make a jig just for one order,so all of our kits will include the wings corners and a bonnet.

As an extra,we will supply loose as well to those who only buy plans and do the rest of the cut out work themselves.The first bonnet will be made tommorrow,please contact me for the cost to a bonnet and wing corners.

A buck or jig made in a traditional manner,whats not traditional is the two layers of 3mm thick Superform bending plys that will be moulded over the buck.

A Mulholland block plane from Belfast

I mentioned these older type hand tools have secrets to tell,well today I noticed a stamped three didget marking on the underside of the hardwood wedge that holds the plane blade in place,checking the planes body I find the same numbers,so each plane was made to fit its own wedge,this was not mass production,this is a one off and craftsmanship.

Classic British craftsmanship at its very best,note the wedge of steel that has beeen let into the lower face of this Mulholland block plane,this was required to make space for the milling on the other side of the lower face where the blade sits.I have now re sharpened and have been using on the bench,its a fine plane!

I first saw this special plane on the internet,I bought it without hesitation,its from a maker I have never heard of Mulholland of Belfast,which is Northern Ireland.I have yet to date it but its from another age,an age when tool makers had massive pride in what they made,there are many manufacturing secrets too.

One is how the Lignum Vitea hardwood wedge is secured,there is a cross bar but what stops it from twisting? with only one grub screw on each side of the main body,it must twist but checking each side I see they have the screw positions in different places,so the plate will not twist.Another is how do the manage to grind so close to the inside of the blade throut? close inspection on the bottom face of the plane shows a flat metal wedge has been fitted there,with the wedge missing it will have been possible to mill inside.

The blade is warrented cast steel,and stamped part 245,while the main body is stamped at the front Mulholland,at the throut in two round castings the number 61 on the left and ann st on the right,with Belfast stamped between them,under the position the blade sits is a stamping 292 with the number 3 to its right,was that a workers code?.So many numbers which must all have meant some part or its production process,with the low blade angle and very narrow blade throut,this plane will give a superb fine cut.
Left click on any picture to view full size and see more details.

Thank you to Peter Habicht for the words that follow:

Peter Habicht was born in England. With a Master's degree in welding metallurgy, he has worked in the nuclear power industry, primarily in New England, and now has his own business as a consultant on materials corrosion. Starting in 1969, his wife, Annette, has built a business specializing in English antiques, including a few tools. It was natural for Peter to expand that line, and he has become a leading authority on British tools.

England followed by Scotland were the principal manufacturers of woodworking tools in Britain. There may have been a few planemakers in Wales in the late 19th century, such as Hawkins and Webb in Newport, and Munday in Holyhead. Likewise Keller and Mulholland in Belfast, Lewis in the Isle of Man, and John Hubert in Jersey each made tools around the turn of the last century.
-What makes British woodworking tools different? They certainly are well made but aesthetics definitely sets them apart. British tools were often made of exotic woods (such as ebony, rosewood, padouk, and mahogany) and trimmed with brass fittings, or even of just a nice piece of beech or ash trimmed with brass. In the 1800s the British cabinetmaker's chest would be full of great-looking tools: maybe an Ultimatum or brass-framed brace, an ebony and brass mortise gauge, brass-backed saws, perhaps a Scot-tish level with its "fancy" brass top plate, and brass or gunmetal planes of all types and sizes stuffed with rose-wood, ebony, mahogany, or some other fine woods. Even the chest itself would be beautifully veneered on the inside just as though it were a fine piece of furnitu

Marples Ridgway Tennon saw

Bought new by myself in Gordons Tools,Long Street,Cape Town about 25 years ago you can see this saw has done good service.I wanted the brass backed saw over a plain metal backed as the extra weight of the brass adds to the power of the cut,it looks nicer too.These saws were an expensive item back then,I can find very little mention on Google of Marples Ridgway now.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

Toylander front wings closure

Good progress on developing more of our Toylander kit,we supply a pair of pre laminated front wing corners with each kit,you just have to fit and glue them in palce.
The jig and two layers of Superform bending plys worked really well,these are loose in this picture,they have been glued and screwed in place now,the screws will be removed later.

A nice job is hand fitting these plywood corners.

A pre fit to test what needs to be planed off,there are small 12mm corner blocks (included) under each end of the laminated corners.

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

A fine collection of hand saws

Some of my own hand saw collection,Spear and Jackson (number 25),Ashton,both brands made in Sheffeild,there are some Disstons too from Canada,the nice block plane was made in Belfast,Ireland.I have more Disston panel saws plus a brass backed tennon or back saw by Marples Ridgway,a very nice saw for fine works like tennons and dove tails.
Left click the picture to view full size.

A seldom seen Stanley wood bottom plane

Stanley Bailey No.21 Wood Bottom Smooth Plane
c.1869 ~ Type 2 ~ EXTREMELY RARE & EXC
The No.21 is one of the three rarest in the Stanley Wood Bottom series (+ No.25 & No.37) and also the smallest. The Type 2 has the Banjo Spring lever cap and the Eagle Tm stamped on the front of the wood bottom.

I have a number of older wood tools but I have never seen a hand plane like this one.

Toylander front wing corners

When Rob and Jim were here yesterday,I told them their kit will include the two top front wing corners,as for me once a jig has been made its quiet easy to laminate to shape using two layers of Superform Bending ply in 3mm thick.Jigs are now made and I can make some more sets for the other Toylander kit customers.This pair will be mounted on our own Toylander tommorrow.

Rob collects his Toylander plans

Rob,standing next to our own Toylander, arrived yesterday with Jim his dad to collect his Toylander plans,we have to supply him with a full engineering kit also.Rob tells me he wants to do a twin motor installation,which Real Life Toys insist is the best installation route.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Didi mini cruise rudders,stage six?

We are now into the final stages prior to applying etch primers,the biaxial glass cloth has been trimmed and disc sanded (use a face mask) which is not the nicest of jobs but it has to be done,we will next sand and use a filler prior to painting.