More Earrings

I’ve been commissioned to make another couple of pairs of the hexagonal English earrings. Here are some photos from this afternoon’s work drilling and cutting.

I’m still drilling manually using the Taig mill. I used a 1.2mm bit for the button holes, a 0.9mm bit for most of the piercings, and a 0.7mm bit for the tiniest piercings. All re-sharpened PCB drilling solid carbide bits, and for a change I didn’t break any!

earring_making_1

Lots of silver swarf. Unfortunately it’s not very practical to collect it, though I do keep the scrap from the piercings. One day I may have enough to melt down and cast them into something useful!earring_making_2

The saw blade has to be unclamped and threaded into each piercing in turn. The teeth are too fine to easily see so you have to figure out which way to put it in the frame by running your finger along it. The wing nut is used to set the tension.earring_making_3

In this picture you can see my new bench peg clamped to the crossbar of a builder’s trestle stand. I like to work standing up with the saw table quite high so that I can get my eyes close to the template without needing to bend over, which would hurt my back after a while.earring_making_4

After a lot of frustration with paper templates that inevitably came unstuck or became illegible, I think I’ve finally found a template material that works reasonably well for very fine metal piercing: inkjet-printable matte white self-adhesive vinyl film. It’s not cheap but then you don’t need much of it for a pair of earrings, and if it enables me to produce a better end product with fewer headaches then it was well worth it!earring_making_5

Thanks to Juliet for the photos of me working. šŸ™‚

 

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Happy New Year!

My new year’s resolution for 2015: build at least one complete playable concertina from scratch.

Note: I didn’t mention the adjectivesĀ good orĀ saleable, although it would be nice if I achieved those too. This may not seem very ambitious, however tied up in this taskĀ is:

  • Finish my part in the house renovation that I’m currently involved with and move back to Burnley.
  • Set up a usable workshop space in the garden shed and part of a leaky garage that is currently full of junk (I’d also like to be able to store my car in it).
  • Make and sell things to raise funds to buy more concertina-making tools and materials.
  • Design and make a lot of specialist tools and jigs.
  • Design the concertina.
  • Teach myself many new skills.
  • Make lots of mistakes and learn from them.
  • Blog about the entire process.
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