must have

16 December, 2008 at 1:04 am (not so ancient devices) (, , , )

Science Museum/Science & Society Picture

Science Museum/Science & Society Picture

This is the best tea-maker I have ever seen and, dangerous or not, I wish this was a photo from my kitchen!  Here is the blurb from the Science Museum, where I will have to visit it until someday I make my own:

The original design of this machine was built by Albert E Richardson, a clockmaker from Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire. The patentee of the machine and maker of this example, Frank Clarke, a Birmingham gunsmith, purchased the original machine and all rights to it from Richardson for an undisclosed sum. It was heated by methylated spirits which would be lit by the automatic striking of a match. This action was initiated by the sounding of the alarm clock, which rang again when the tea was ready. A wooden base holds the alarm clock, kettle tilter and methylated spirit stove. Although ingenious, the heavy reliance on the match being lit at the correct time made the machine potentially dangerous. Made by the Automatic Water Boiler Co.

Quick, get the teapot:

Science Museum/Science & Society Picture Library

Science Museum/Science & Society Picture Library


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flotsam and jetsam

27 November, 2008 at 11:06 pm (art, blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , , , , , , , )


These are some of the bits that consumed my day.


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25 November, 2008 at 10:56 pm (art, blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , , , , )


This is the beginning of a little shrine I started this evening after I got tired of making bug legs (below).  The figure was a gift  from the always generous kats in the belfry, who just opened her etsy shop.


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14 November, 2008 at 11:27 pm (art, blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , , , )


Happy chaos.  A wider view of my workspace would show more of the same.  Only pieces that are in the first stages of creation are ever visible since after that first bit the construction goes faster and faster until they are finished, then they leave immediately before I can reconsider.  There are usually many bits laying around that are 1 – 5% finished, as their numbers increase they get combined.  Not methodical work, but fun.

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10 November, 2008 at 2:33 am (art, blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , , )


These were some of the things sitting on my worktable tonight while the power was out and neighbours were visiting.


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5 November, 2008 at 12:31 am (art, blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , )


I think I’m going to have to do a hundred sketches of the various layers before I’m happy with this beetle.


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4 November, 2008 at 5:48 am (art, blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , )


The original of this is about an inch tall, it is part of the assemblage that I was making wings for yesterday.

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3 November, 2008 at 6:55 pm (blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , , , , )

Some of these are for an assemblage I am working on.  A steampunk beetle will join them, so today I am experimenting with various wing types – linen over wood, parchment over rebar wire (thank you, Mr. Lo Bue!), gauze with bamboo splinters.  Connections are tricky, and prone to being unwieldy.

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16 October, 2008 at 11:05 pm (art, work) (, , , )

I’m fond of the steampunk genre because, as a tinkering-type person, being able to see guts, seeing what leads where and what turns which bit, keeps my attention.  When the workings are visible I find myself automatically trying to figure out if I could make them do something else, or if I could make something else perform the same task.

Also, as a visual person, I love that antique innards are often etched, decorated with trim, and might include a graceful signature.  That someone wanted to spend time on aesthetics after perfecting the function makes it even more wonderful.

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11 October, 2008 at 7:07 am (art, blue-eyed crow, work) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

The retreat is over and I’m here to testify that luggage filled with tools is heavy.  Very heavy.  But the steel bench vise did come in handy!  The retreat was fantastic, being with other artists is energizing, but I have a hard time creating around other people, so I didn’t have to worry about carefully packing up a lot of delicate finished pieces for the trip back.  Just heavy tools.  Did I mention the bench vise includes an anvil?

The box in the photo is a simple one, I love the face.  I’m trying to find more of these vintage white tins, they are by far my favourites.

In my eternal search for tools I have not been able to find anyone locally who carries a riveting hammer that is steel and has a round head, so I’m off to order one on-line because my next projects involve a lot of riveting.

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