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Sunday, June 2, 2013

Cut the Wood, Not the Widget...

Did you ever try to carve barley twist legs with a cat's help?  It doesn't work too well.

This morning I started the table for the dressing room.

I am taking a few liberties with this box.  Alex Cooke died around 1615.  That puts him working as an actor right around 1600.

Barley twist legs were popular a little later, but who's to say that there weren't a few around before they became really popular?

The first photo is of all of the pieces.  If you want to try making one, enlarge the photo.  This particular one, I am making 2" by 4". The legs are two and a half inches long, cut from 1/4" walnut stock. 
The top and side skirts are from 1/16" walnut stock.  They are 1/2" deep and  1" and 3".  I made them an inch smaller than the top, so that there would be a nice overhang.

Now for the fun part.  I started a half inch from the top of the leg and marked it every quarter inch from there to the bottom on all four sides.  Then I drew a diagonal in each quarter inch square on all four sides.

Next, I took my Exacto knife with a new #11 blade and made a V all down the diagonals.  At this point they don't have to be perfect.  The corners will be rounded, so just as long as they are reasonably matched they will be fine.  The last 1/4" at the bottom will be the ball foot, with a small flat area between the barley twist and the foot.

Now simply carve away anything that doesn't look like a barley twist leg.... Just watch out for the Widget...

Every time I would hold the leg up to see where I was going with it.  Widget decided that it was a great place to scratch his nose and chin...

A word of advice....Lock the cat out of the room before you start.

Mine is fascinated with whatever project I am working on.  I think that he was a miniaturist in a former life....

Anyway, I will keep you posted on the progress, or lack thereof.  It all depends on how long it takes for Widget to lose interest...

See you tomorrow.


Phyllisa said...

Hi Casey. The boxes are coming along.
Those are interesting twisted legs
for the desk. I would not have
thought it could be done so small.
It is nice to see the Elizabethean
lady in the spotlight again.

2minimom said...

Love the twisty legs!! Can't figure out your new math though, He died 1615 and acted around 1500? Thanks for the carving guide!

Caseymini said...

2minimom, it's old math.... Nobody is certain of the dates. I am assuming that, since "they" credit him with being the one that introduced a lot of the lead female roles in Shakespeare's plays, I am guessing that he was active around the turn of that century. I need to do some more digging.

Caseymini said...

That should have read 1600. I am about to change it.LOL. Thanks for catching it!

Elizabeth S said...

Hi Casey! I think that your wood working skills are enormous and I applaud you for training your cat to help you with the carving! When you paused, he pawed! A joint effort on what will be really good barley twist legs! You aren't afraid to tackle anything.

Off topic: In your header you have Tessie seated before a little sewing chest. Any idea who the maker is? I have an identical one and I am trying to find its source.


Giac said...

Hello Casey,
That looks awsome. I look forward to seeing it complete. He might be in the way, but that is one cute cat!
Big hug,