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A busy December

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December was a very busy month for me.  I completed and installed the hardware for the "treasure chest" engine cover for the pirate ship.  That necessitated a trip to the boatyard in Fajardo, Puerto Rico, and a half-day's time.   As I feared might happen, the dimensions I was given for the engine cover were not accurate.  Fortunately, they were wrong in a way that I could cope with, since I had taken over sufficient tools to make just such a modification.  I had to shorten a pair of the straps, but the joints could be concealed where they pass under the other straps, so no harm done other than wasting a bit of time.  Treasure chest completeTreasure chest completeI also had to do some fakery on the woodwork itself, as the box was made of plywood with the grain running the wrong way, and it looked like a plywood box.  I was prepared for this eventuality and used a hook scraper I'd made and carried along for the purpose, and carved some shadow lines in the plywood to simulate plank joints.  I darkened these with a bit of dark stain, used a rattle can of black paint to add some shadows and "age" to the thing, and it looked considerably better.

3-Day 3-Week 3-Cities Blacksmith Workshops in Peru

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I recently finished my second blacksmithing seminar in Peru and wanted to share with you a video and photo album showing footage from the various workshops in Huancayo, Lima, and Piura. The video is also an educational video for beginning blacksmiths. It explains the processes I used to make the Nazca Lines Book Ends.

Fun project in bronze

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Recently I've been working on a rather fun project involving forging and fabricating silicon bronze.  The client has a ship that is being re-fitted to look like a pirate ship, and this project involves making the hardware to decorate the engine cover so it looks like a pirate's "treasure chest."


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Nice commission


Not that it has anything to do with artwork, but I did get and complete a nice little commission to do 39 pairs of shutterdogs for a historical restoration project last week. Reproducing an existing design that was done a couple hundred years ago. The client loved the work and I made a decent hourly rate for my work and learned some good things in the process. A good deal all around.

Metal Arts Exhibition

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For metal artists interested in a national juried exhibition, please visit the Ellen Noel Art Museum website at The deadline is May 7, 2007. Categories for submissions include welding, fabrication, casting, smithing and small metals.

Fluted volute scroll forging

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Railing Design - Corner detailWe’ve got an L-shape railing underway where the corner will include an element facing diagonally outwards, kind of like a ship’s figurehead and here are some pics showing the start of that element.

ArtMetal - Bramblebush


Forging Workroom

Chris Ray - editor