A peek at what we make
Some of you already know that my daughter has put in a special request. For those that don’t know, it’s a purple version of the biplane that I make.
With yellow wings.
Most normal people would be happy with finding nice pieces of Purpleheart and Yellowheart for such a project. Since I sometimes find myself to be a bit lacking in the “normal” department, I followed this request by asking her “Oohh, with a pretty butterfly on it too, maybe?” This was kind of a silly question, because when you ask the little girl who has butterfly sheets, a butterfly nightlight, and a butterfly piece of wall art if she wants a butterfly on her airplane, you can pretty much count on a resounding “YES!”, which was exactly what I got.
So I’ve been researching inlays. I did one on the Bell-Tel truck that I made for my wife’s grandfather, but I wasn’t entirely happy with the process itself. That one had been done with some hand tools, carving, chiseling and gouging my way to what turned out to be a really nice piece.
But we’re talking about a butterfly here, not a bell inside of a circle. The bar had been raised, and it was time to consider what steps I would take to meet the challenge. Of course, calling it a “challenge” isn’t quite right since I was the only one to blame for finding myself in this predicament, but I digress.
After much scratching of the head, I remembered some clips from my favorite show, Wood Works (which I recently found out only recorded for 3 seasons, sniffle) where the host David Marks explained the “double bevel” method of marquetry. Basically, you take the main piece and the piece you want to fit into the main piece, fasten them together and use a scroll saw with the table slanted at a slight angle. The result is 1 piece that nestles right into place on the main piece.
OK, that’s an over simplification, but I don’t want to bore you.
Next week my wife is on vacation, so I will probably be spending a lot of time in the workshop practicing this on my scroll saw. My daughter’s birthday is January 15th, and I really want to have this ready for her. It was going to be a Christmas gift, but that didn’t quite work out as planned.
So if you’re wondering where I am next week, chances are I’m practicing the double bevel 🙂