Bob Wilkerson's blog

Ghost Dance Gates


Well the only thing worse than a "honey do" list is when she adds the things in the "you could make that for me honey" column. The customer I can't say no to, my wife, has just commanded several sets of gates for our new home in New Mexico. So far there are 4 sets, but that's only because I walked out of the room and ran for my studio as soon as she got to 4. The basic design involves attaching a series of individual metal stars, a quarter crescent moon and steel crows to the wood that makes up the face of the gates. 3 of the gates are actually double gates including two 8 foot driveway gates. Since I'm going to have to do this, I thought I should ask some people that actually know what their doing. Some of my initial questions:

Making Bells

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My wife is driving me nuts about making a large scale bell or wind chime. I've seen some great work that apparently used recycled propane or gas cylinders/tanks. Does anyone have any advise on the process or even finding the cylinders?

Sparkless Blades

Can anyone give me their experience and recommedation on sparkless blades for chop saws. I'm a bit frustrated with both the quality of cuts and "mess" from the standard blades. Thanks!!

glass and wood inserts into forged steel railings or sculpture

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I've noticed in several posts that a number of you have included glass, plastics and other materials into metal railings and sculpture. How have you fixed the materials in place? I'm particularly interested in outdoors pieces and how different "mounting" techniques have stood up over time.

metal inlay

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I've been asked to inlay the handle of a knife with silver. I'm planning on using silver wire, but really have no idea how to go about this other than some descriptions i've read on the web. Anyone have any guidance on inlaying into wood that is not a flat surface?

belt grinder

I'm considering a belt grinder. Any suggestions on whether to buy or build? Anyone know of a good set of plans if I decide to build?

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