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grindopedia

toolcollage3-1

Building a "Take Apart" Cedar Pedestal

CampB-Pedestals-001

Take apart cedar pedestals are a response to several needs:

  1. Can be outside in the rain and standing in a wet grassy field for a day or two.
  2. Able to take a small amount of abuse and not need to be repainted after every time they are handled.
  3. Takes up minimal storage space - especially if you are an artist with a hatchback or mini van and want to show 4-6 pieces of sculpture, or a non-profit that wants to display 40-60 items.
  4. Easy to assemble and take apart and does not require a lot of skill or tools.

This design has proven itself starting in 2011 and over the course of a one day workshop in October 2013, 8 members build over 17 pedestals. This article tells you about how to build your own. 

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Working Wet

Pat's WorkspaceThe Wet Carving Box
and
How to Carve in Small Places

For over a decade, I’ve worked year round in my basement wet carving stone.  I have constructed a small work place to eliminate the dust, contain the water, and work in the comfort of a controlled environment. This presentation is an introduction to what I have done to arrange my space, photos of work spaces by others, and the wet tools that I use. If available, I use wet tools that are designed for wet use. Skill saws, and die grinders have yet to be made with water feeds. On all of my tools I use controlled application of water to the abrasive blades and wheels to both control dust and prolong the life of the abrasive tool.

Pat Barton August 2013
For a printable PDF version [CLICK HERE]
Update: Water Recirculating System PDF
Silica Dust PDF

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grindopedia

toolcollage3-1
It all started with a post requesting rational power tool information in one place, then a name "grindopedia", and then substantial follow-up from a vibrant community with a good spirit. From "grindopedia" you can find out about:  Blades and Diamonds, Glazed Diamonds, Grinders, Polishing, Air Hammers, Sanding Mandrels, Safety Check List, Breathing Protection...

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Grinders

7inch ancient  heavy grinderPart of this material I used in the 20 hour granite course I taught at Pratt. Most of the info is from Tom Urban's workshop at Camp Brotherhod, some from a workshop by Don Ramey that Hank Nelson organized at my place years ago. If you find anything useful, please add it to the article - Kirk

Grinders

4-5 inch dry-cut diamond blades designed to run at about 10K RPM, which is speed of right angle grinders.  For sufficient power, look for high 6 amp range or greater.  Hitachi and DeWalt models hold up well. For variable speed, recommend Metabo or Makita.  Avoid Bosch or Milwaukee.  Larger blades (7-8 inches) run about 5K RPM, which is speed of 7-inch grinders or worm drive circular saws. Worm drive saws can be set up to run wet, keep blades cooler.

Grinder maintenance:  Blow out grinders 2x daily.  Blow outside, inside, and then blow out while running.

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Grinder Blades and Diamonds

Some thoughts on diamond blades

If you only get one.....

which one will do you the most good?

For the sake of clarity, let's just talk about what you could get that would be most useful with any small electric grinder, rated for 4 1/2" or 5" blades, single speed, for a mix of hard and soft stones.   

I will try to offer my reasons for choosing one of the many kinds of diamond blades available, based on what different chores it can do, how versatile it is, and how affordable it is.  These are my opinions only, and I welcome being corrected by other carvers with more experience and knowledge.  I hope this exercise is useful to you.

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Polishing

Part of this material I used in the 20 hour granite course I taught at Pratt. Most of the info is from Tom Urban's workshop at Camp Brotherhod, some from a workshop by Don Ramey that Hank Nelson organized at my place years ago. If you find anything useful, please add it to the article - Kirk

Preparation:

Polishing a surface will show up every dip and bump, so if you’re seeking a long, flowing curve or a flat area, locate highs and lows with fingers, mark, and remove with coarse diamond cup wheel before beginning polishing steps.  Sequence begins with fine diamond cup wheel (or 36-60 grit silicon carbide).  Move cup wheel rapidly in small circles so that you don’t burn stone.  Next step is 80 grit silicon carbide cup; again moving it rapidly. 

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Another use of Grinding Wheels - Hand Shaping

This morning I followed up to what I saw Lee Gass doing. He was "sanding" with a piece of a bench grinder wheel. I have a few spares so I smashed one with a sledge hammer and ended up with a whole bunch of useful hand-sanders. Curves, angles. Plus I shaped them further on my angle grinder clamped to my table. They worked better with water.... HAPPY  NEW  YEAR. -- Dirk

On 19-Dec-09, at 2:29 PM, verena schwippert wrote: ..yes Dirk, but only under the sanding of particular type of stone you are working on. What is it ?  Its different for every kind of stone.
...yup it is. -- V

image of shapers and stoneSilicon Carbide Shapers  - Right on, V!  Actually, those small pieces of silicon carbide work well for hardnesses from soft marble to hard granite. With each of those materials, hard rubbing with a piece conforming well to the surface produces

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Cup Wheel Grinding

Part of this material I used in the 20 hour granite course I taught at Pratt. Most of the info is from Tom Urban's workshop at Camp Brotherhod, some from a workshop by Don Ramey that Hank Nelson organized at my place years ago. If you find anything useful, please add it to the article - Kirk

cupwheel30Grit

Diamond cup wheels:  extra-coarse, coarse, medium and fine.  Usually use coarse for shaping, jump to fine for beginning polishing.  Extra-coarse available from Gran Quartz.  For basins, wheels with curved edges available or use continuous instead of turbo to avoid digging in.  Must use guard on grinder with diamond cup wheels.

wet air grinder.jpg

Silicon Carbide cup wheels:  used for masonry (avoid aluminum oxide ones for metal).  Grits range from 16 on up.  16-24 grit used for shaping, 80-120 grit in polishing process.  Can bevel edge with dressing tool to shape for interior grinding (basins) or undulating surfaces.  Will wear to match radius of surface.  Use at lower speed  (2-3000 RM) because larger mass creates more torque.

Glazed Diamond Segments

Image Courtesy Situp.com

When using a diamond core drills, drilling stone,  I found out that often the rate of drilling would slow, even when applying more pressure. The problem would continue to get worse, especially when drilling dense stone such as basalt.

The sintered diamond tips had become glazed. 

Although oriented to "concrete" this link (which just well could be called "hard stone vrs soft stone sintered diamond blades") provides an article with images that show what's happening so you can tell what the problem is. 

How to "fix" the mismatch between stone hardness and sintered matrix can be found at this link (Image linked from the situp.com.au site)

The take away from 'glazed diamonds' is that "dressing a diamond tool" is something you may need to do, and that you may need a different "dressing stone" for each of your blades/cores/cupwheels. 

(Some manufactures claim their tools do not need dressing, because of propietary techniques, maybe the NWSSA veterans can shed light on this topic)