Friday, 5 March 2010

I thought the big freeze was over

Well there you go. Happy in the knowledge that the cold weather was disappearing fast I thought that was the big freeze over.
....Well its not....
I am suffering from a frozen right shoulder.  I had one over 10 years ago on my left shoulder and my memories of the pain were not an exaggeration.
....Not happy....
Still Painkillers are taking the edge off it, the doctor said they would sign me off for a few weeks, Obviously not understanding the term self-employed.
I will be back at it by Monday
(better not say which one)

Tuesday, 2 March 2010

Please vote for me

I Have been entered for THE 2010 craft&design SELECTED AWARDS. if I am successful hopefully this will bring wider exposure to me and my work as an Artist Blacksmith.
The competition works by people voting online for there chosen maker, the person with the most votes in various categories wins.
If you can find the time to vote I would really appreciate it. I have put the link to vote for me below. the link opens up with the vote button at the bottom of the page about me, then follow the instructions given. once again many thanks

The Public Vote is open until 30th APRIL 2010


Thank you for your support

Scaling up a drawing

I Just tried a new technique for getting a drawing to full size for scaling up the various sections. All my work is drawn on cad so I linked up the computer to my projector in the workshop and moved the screen (steel Plate) on the overhead crane until the sizes on the drawing where equal to full size then I drew round it once onto the steel sheet for a pattern and once again onto paper to then cut out as templates. Easy peasy except when you turned round and got blinded

Thursday, 25 February 2010


Every year Dumfries and Galloway hold an selected open studio event “Spring fling” you are required to put a piece of work into Gracefield gallery for a taster exhibition, I never enjoy this much as it takes me away from my commissions schedule, so this year I thought I should make a bit of extra effort and create something new.

“Mr mussel” my 30 ton hydraulic press, that broke in the cold weather is now back up and running again so I was keen to put it through its paces and do some big section forging and punching.

The design is about an interaction between the strong and solid steel and the fragile glass, I wanted to trap the glass without gripping it. All the steel sections are 40mm solid with holes punched through them to show the plasticity of the steel when hot.

Saturday, 20 February 2010

Is it spring in the workshop (I dont think so)

I’ve started forging the small flowers for the Lilly of the valley gate.
It’s a long time since I’ve forged tube and I’m really enjoying the experience, they are a very delicate and difficult shape to handle when hot, especially when your bashing them into shape.

I am not using any jigs or dies, just the power hammer and hand hammer on the anvil

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Lilly of the valley gate

Just now I am working on the first of a set of four gates, we age going to do one a year with each one based on one of the 4 seasons (not the pop group) this is the first and represents summer.
Based on Lilly of the valley, that grows close to the site were the gate is going to be. I’ve been forging the design in my head for a month or two trying to sort out the construction methods, I’ve done a few sample bits and am keen to get going on the flower bells, they present a bit of a challenge and the first few will be great fun though whether I still feel the same having done them all, well we will see.

Monday, 8 February 2010

Today I finished the railings with a final coat of enamel and cutting back the lead to get a tidy fit. Tomorrow I can really get going on my next job, a gate to a castle in Penrith, they hold potfest in the park there so it’s a great place to put some work