2021 challenges!

I’ve never liked the concept of resolutions. They are easy to fail and give up on.

What are some maker challenges you have for yourself in 2021?

For me?
Get at least three more skeins farther on my knitting
Make five leather peices I’m happy with.
Learn to weld
Get the prototype of my wifi holiday lights working
Make… the leather bound tome. <-this one scares me

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Leather bound tome is definitely on my list. I’ve been slowly learning bookbinding over the years and would like to finally put what I know to the test.

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To have the Makeict,laser and cnc machines relearned and mastered. So I don’t have to bug or beg all the time.
Book Binding
Leather sewing
Make a sword.

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Make a sword!

I would 100% take a class that used the woodshop and metal shop to make a opinel style pocket knife out of old saw blades the space discards.

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I hope by the end of the year I will have at least gotten to the polishing stage on my authentically made Katana

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Why do I feel like I need to setup a knife making class now? …only problem is we don’t have a forge to properly heat treat the blades.

@rustin.atkeisson couldn’t we just borrow a kiln from pottery to HT the blades?

It’s an option, but we would still have to quickly quench the blades to lock in the heat treat.

I… hadn’t thought about that.

we used to open kilns all the time when I blew glass. You have to heat up color so it doesn’t shatter when you touch it with the molten glass. So we would have a kiln where the lid had a counterweight that we could easily open. Also saw a dude blow a foot, put the foot in the kiln, blow a midsection, put it in the kiln blow a top, then assemble the whole thing hot.

I tried it but was still pretty novice so I gave up and used bondo.

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@rustin.atkeisson unless you use air hardening steel such as D-2 or A-2, then all I think you need is something like a fan…

I haven’t played too much with tempering, but it might be worth testing out if @pwhutchi is up for letting us put a couple knife blanks in the kilns. Or, we might have to play with that small oven sitting in the jewelry lab that might get up to 1500F.

From what I’ve seen people bring in to MakeICT in the past, I’m doubtful many people would bring in a tool steel like D-2 or A-2, but air quenching is something else I would have to look into.

I’ll put a bug in Lee Crawford’s ear too from the Haysville blacksmithing group and see if he has some ideas.

…also, I have no problem with other people taking the reins and teaching classes like this.


Or screwdrivers!

I actually got a small propane forge for Christmas because of my wonderful wife @DeidreS so I can use it for heat treat. What I don’t have is a proper oil setup

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@rustin.atkeisson if we have the power to run it I have a kiln we can use. I am trying to donate it to the jeweler lab so we can do glass work, but I don’t see why we can’t also use it for metal tempering…just have to be careful.

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What kind of power does your kiln need? 110v or 220v?

The way the power was run in both the cold and hot shops was based off of current equipment or donations that we knew about, so there aren’t really any spare 220v outlets currently in the cold shop / jewelry area, but there are 4 gang 110v 20a outlets in several spots along the wall. I think there is one 220v 30a outlet along the south wall, but that is designated for the Logan lathe.

The hot shop has more 220v options, including I think a 50amp setup to run the oven for powder coating.

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@rustin.atkeisson it’s a 220V, which is why I can’t use it at home…apartment complex and all…

For knives, we have the small kiln (oven) that we use to melt small batches of metal for casting jewelry.


Speaking of kilns and clay… during my orientation, the lead said that because that clay had been out since Douglas, that it would probably be need to be thrown away. While that clay may not useful for ceramic work, it can still be useful in the metal shop for forge welding together small pieces of scrap metal. Just wanted to put that out there as a potential recycling technique

There are two donated kilns in the garage. At some point in the next few months we’ll be determining which one we want to keep and rebuild to be the second kiln for the ceramics studio, which will leave one that could be re-purposed for other uses.

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