Friday, July 28, 2017

Twisting Wizard

    Sometimes there are aspects of work that seem particularly satisfying. The twisting hills and valleys of The Bamboo Churchwarden are such an aspect. I had originally created the Bamboo Churchwarden for myself out of a piece of briar which had some odd discoloring that made me suspect it's density. I figured it would be a good chance to try out using bamboo for my stems. I discovered that I enjoyed the bamboo stem but that I should have left a nodal for the bit of the stem. But even more did I enjoy the feel of the bowl in my hand. The complexity of twist and softly rising hills and valleys make it one of the most pleasant pipes I've ever held. So I returned to the style for the twisting wizard and once again I find it to be delightful.


Friday, March 25, 2016

A Forge and A Pan Rack

This post is not about a pipe but instead about a Forge and a Pan Rack. Our new house came with a Pan rack and shelf unit but I did not like it primarily for two reasons. The first reason was that it protruded into the passageway leading to the stairs, garage, and backyard. The second reason was that the rack was hung directly over the trash can and if the hooks were in the wrong place, as they frequently were, I would end up tearing a strip of my scalp off while attempting to open the trash can. Needless to say I was not fond of said pan rack. 

Of course I went to the internet searching for a pan rack that would suit my needs and I couldn't find anything that was quite what I wanted or for a price I was welling to pay. So in the true Feltes fashion I began to consider what it would take to make a pan rack. 

This project took a little Oak for the sides. I used quarter inch steel square rod for the hooks, although I think I should have used just 3/16" square rod instead. Then for the hanging rods I used 1 1/4" by 1/8" thick steel strapping 4' long. 

I built a Tin Can Forge and using only tools I already had hanging around I shaped the metal pieces. I played around with twists and curves to make the hooks and the end designs of the hanging rods. This is my first time playing with metal manipulation in a forge and all in all it was an enjoyable experience. 

Friday, March 11, 2016

Twisted Spring Tobacco Pipe

This new tobacco pipe took two ideas. First there is the ridge that runs along the bottom length of the pipe. Second is the bit, for which I used a standard square tapered bit, but I lined it up like a diamond taper and then twisted it to line up. Also the black and blue dye came out beautifully. The way that the ridge comes out on the top of the bowl made me think of flower bowls and spring. This was a really fun pipe to make.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Ringer Tobacco Pipe

The Ringer Tobacco Pipe was one of the most difficult and exciting pipes I have every made. I have never seen another pipe anything like this. This is perfect for the smoker who has to fiddle with things as he smokes because the ring is completely detached from the bowl just like a chain link.  The bowl and the ring were carved integrally from a single block. The original idea for this pipe came from my sister and her husband Rosalie and David when they gave me the book Woodcarving Magic. As I was reading through the book I knew I had to bring those ideas into my pipe making. The bowl is colored with a red dye and the ring with a black dye. Enjoy.

Blowfish Wizard

The Blowfish Wizard is a sturdy freehand pipe with a quarter bent double ball freehand stem. The  use of the orange and blue dyes leaves the bowl with just a slight greenish tint in the darker grains while leaving the forefront color an almost natural brown. It sits pleasantly in the hand. Many a pleasant evening can be spent over a chessboard with the earthy tones of tobacco smoke pouring from this pipe as one enjoys the company of a good friend. 

Friday, December 4, 2015

Gandalf's Branch

It is a pleasure to present Gandalf's Branch. This freestyle (wizard) pipe features a beautiful bamboo churchwarden stem with a brass tenon and a pipe bowl in the the same family as The Trunk and the Branch. I realize in previous posts I have made digs at certain churchwarden pipes being considered for travels but of course for Gandalf I must eat my own words. Of course Gandalf must be able to safely store such a pipe as this at any time. Why else would his hat be so tall?

Thursday, January 9, 2014

The Square Wizard

Here is The Square Wizard. This a small bowl wizard freehand tobacco pipe that plays around with squares. The stem is a bamboo piece and the the tenon is reinforced with brass. The stem is not quite as long as my other churchwarden pipes but is sufficiently longer than a standard pipe stem.

I have been smoking british blend tobacco out of the "Bamboo Churchwarden" myself for several months now, testing out the the strength and quality of the bamboo as a stem material and have found it holds up well and is an enjoyable texture in the mouth.