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David G

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Everything posted by David G

  1. David G

    Braided cord for bone carvings

    Plenty online, Linhasita is a popular brand. Waxed polyester both flat and round is used. David
  2. Lovely detail Billy, what is the story behind these.
  3. David G

    Classes, Schools, Teachers

    TP do you have a back ground in general lapidary or is this all new? Gemstone carving is just an extension of the techniques used to create a cabochon. You are just working with many more curved and flat faces on the the one piece. David
  4. David G

    Fish Head Netsuke

    Very neat, yummy.
  5. David G

    Sorry To Say

    Russ, Volumes are low on this site these days, something that all forums are experiencing as facebook groups take over. I have stayed with this site because of the quality of many of the carvers here because you can get feedback you will not get anywhere else. Good luck with your travels, David
  6. David G

    New To Carving Small Rocks

    Cute point carver. Good luck with the carving.
  7. David G

    Cutting Obsidian Chipping Problem

    Dan, obsidian is very prone to chipping. A band new saw blade that is thin and runs 100% true is your best bet. It will also tend to chip on the rough grinding wheels as well. I use a band saw with a new blade and start on the fine grinding wheels, takes longer but reduces chipping. The other trick when grinding the outline shape is to put a tiny bevel on all the edges, this will grind/sand off as you progress but helps to stop chipping. Also make sure there is plenty of water to lubricate everything. David
  8. David G

    World Jade Symposium Finished Piece

    I really like this Lachlan it is unique and beautifully crafted. I really like the way is has multiple ways of being presented and all look 'right' that is very clever. Are you sending it off to the exhibition? David
  9. David G

    Wyoming Jade- "griffin"

    Very nice James, welcome.
  10. David G

    My Month In Jade

    Very nice work Tom, jade can be a bugger to polish, a lots of commercial NZ carvers leave it at satin finish on 600 or 1200 carbide. The old trick before diamond become popular was to dry sand with worn 600 to get a nice polish. The advice Lachlan gave is very good and I would agree with all he said. Every piece of jade is different so it may be worth experimenting on a off cut before polishing your entry. I take it 1200 carbide, then to 3000 carbide by hand then to diamond on small leather wheels, if that orange peels I go back to 1200 and then had polish with 14k, 50k and 100k diamond on leather, takes a long time but gets round the orange peel. Then again some jade just wants to orange peel. david
  11. David G

    Intro From Nebraska

    Welcome David, look forward to seeing some of your work, quite a few hard stone carvers here. David
  12. Nice work Stefan, a nice blend of motifs too. David
  13. I was inspired to post this by Ed's wonderful post on his wooden box project. After completing this jade neck knife last year I decided to be a bit more adventurous and tackle an all jade dagger. Last years neck knife: I searched the web for ideas and saw some nice daggers, I settled on the proportions of a beat up old Gerber Guardian dagger that I found when cleaning out the draws of an employee who left the office rather rapidly one day. This is the knife and my initial sketches. I then refined and dimensioned the shape into something I could use to make a template for cutting out the various elements of the knife. There are four components to this knife, the blade, the handle and the front and rear bolsters to be made using 3 different coloured jades. Note the pattern on the knife handle, it was my intention to carve this pattern into the handle. My vision was to use all Tamworth nephrite and local Tamworth timber for a presentation box and to call the knife 'gabba yarrul' which means 'mountain stone' in the language of the Gamilaroi (or Kamilaroi) people who are the traditional guardians of the area where the nephrite is found. This is the slab of nephrite used for the blade, it comes from Michael B's friend John. The blade was cut out on my band saw then preformed to the outline shape on the grinding wheels, this is nice jade with no tendency to fracture, yippee. I then rough ground a small bevel, I found this hard to keep straight so I quickly swapped to hand grinding the bevels with thick carbide sticks. This makes for a slow and very well controlled grinding action. This is the blade during shaping, just about finished the 100 grit shaping, then onto 220 and 400 carbide sticks. I took the edge of the blade down to around 0.3-0.5mm thick and sanded to a prepolish of 3000 carbide. I won't polish further until it is ready to be assembled as it may get scratched while fitting the other elements. The biggest problem I had was with the plunge lines (where the blade bevel ends near the front bolster. I had tried a few things to make the plunge lines and had stuffed one up a bit so I had to even everything up. It now looks ok, if I do another one this is an area I will pay a lot more attention to. Here is the completed blade in its pre-polish state. Next step is to cut out the handle. I wanted to used a light coloured whitish nephrite and went through my stash. I found a green/white block that looked ok and slabbed it into a block about 80mm x 25mm x 15mm. To see how this stuff worked I cut a couple of test cabs, well they were a complete disaster, they chipped, under cut, were very soft and the polish was poor. So I had to scap the white jade idea and raid the rest of my stash. I came up with 2 other options, one was a green to white opaque nephrite, the other was a dark dusky green that I found a year ago on a visit to MickB's which I was intending to use for the bolsters. In the end I decided to go with the dark nephrite I self collected (bottom block in the photo). I was still unsure whether the carved handle in my original drawing would work so I grabbed the original white handle block and ground it to the shape of my handle, it was soft and quick to cut and I got a soft polish on it using dry 1200 carbide belt and some fabulustre on a buff. It is quite attractive. I then used this handle as a prototype for the carving of the handle pattern, well the block chipped as expected (thats why it is not being used), I have ground and rough sanded the pattern. I don't like the pattern and won't use it, it is too hard to see the pattern and it looks like sh***. The pattern may look better if better cut and fully polished but I just don't think it is worth it, so the final handle will go uncarved. Maybe a sandwich of different toned slabs would work in the future for this style of pattern? Now that I am using a dark material for my handle, I needed a light/white material for the bolsters. I sourced some 'mint ice' jadeite from Guatamala to use for the bolsters. The crew at Mayan Mountain, they were very helpful. This will take it away from an all Tamworth knife, but it will still be all 'jade'. I cut out the front and back bolster. Then drilled a few divets on the back bolster and the back of the handle to give the glue something to grab onto, I considered putting a small ball bearing in the holes but was concerned it could rust and destroy the piece. I then started shaping the handle working on the top and bottom curve, I am continually redrawing the centreline onto all the pieces, this is essential to keep it all centred, I also use callipers and a carpenters square to ensure everything lines up. I have also started shaping the front bolster, I used the band saw to start the cuts, then the Dremel with tiny blades, then squaring it all up by hand. Again keeping the centre line in place. I am also making a few asymmetric beads out of the jadeite as test pieces to learn how the material works and polishes. Nest step is to drill out the bolster and the handle to take the knife tang, then onto carving the front bolster, simple.... More to come. David
  14. David G

    New Jade Pieces

    Very nice Lachlan.
  15. David G

    Jade Dagger Project

    I made a wooden box for it as well, a bit rough, may make a better one in nicer timber, now I have done one I know what to do better next time. David
  16. David G

    A One Afternoon Job

    Nice, what town is it, looks awesome. David
  17. David G

    Jade Dagger Project

    I am sure yours will be amazing Danny, give it a go it is a fun project. I like doing the blades the best, there is a precision to them that is very pleasing.. David
  18. David G

    Jade Dagger Project

    Well I have finally finished. I really struggled with the inlay and that is the weakest part, I ended up cutting the cross then enlarging the hole in the handle to take it, the cross was not 100% square and I sometimes used the wrong side to determine what material needed removing on the handle so I ended up with some over cuts. I struggled with the small scale as the width of the cross is only 2-3mm and my smallest ball bur is 1mm and smallest wheel 5mm so it was a struggle to work at that scale, I also has to use my loupe continuously while carving. I also did not take enough care with getting the air bubbles out of the glue when gluing the cross in, which I discovered when hand polishing as the diamond powder filed all the tiny air bubbles and looked awful, I had to go back to the belts and polish the handle on that (at least I learned my lesson). I enlarged the holes for the pins to hold the blade on on the back as they were out of alignment, I stuffed one of the holes up and had to make an oval plug for it, it looks OK and the fit is nice and snug so the glue does not show. There was lots and lots of micro sanding adjustments to get rid of scratches etc. The last step before assembly was to sharpen the blade, it wont cut much other then fruit but I would not like to be stabbed with it. Once I had polished everything up it was time to put it all together, I took great care and used minimal epoxy so it came out really well and there are no glue lines visible to the eye. The back side.. I see from my first post this project took just on 6 months. I am currently making a wooden presentation box to store it in. David
  19. David G

    My First Sami Styled Knife

    Looks nice and neat Stefan, I like the short blade too. David
  20. Danny is on the money, you can buy belts or disks up to 50,000 and cut them up and mount them on whatever you want. I made up some 600, 3,000 and 14,000 diamond strips from belts and mounted them with contact cement to paddle pop sticks for hand sanding carvings. I have also mounted them on small mandrels for use in a rotary tool hand piece. I usually use carbide up to 3,000 then diamond, but a piece of jadeite is orange peeling badly with any carbide at all, so I am having to use diamond straight through. David
  21. David G

    Jadecarving Schooll

    Good luck with developing the carving school Dante, sounds like a great location and you have excellent knowledge of Mayan styles and techniques. David
  22. David G

    Fruit Fly On Shrivelled Plum Necklace.

    Love it, nicely executed too.
  23. David G

    Some New Stuff

    Very nice I particularly like the feather and the first knife. David
  24. David G

    Is Making A Bead Carving?

    Very nice Danny always like looking at your beads. If the definition of carving is exerting a high level of craftsmanship, than a carving it is. David