Thursday, July 27, 2017

Bronze Mini 5 Flutes

Hi Everyone,

Happy Thursday! It's a cool one here in the northeast, and in fact it's been a bit chilly and almost fall like this week. Crazy summer so far...

Well, I'm picking away at stuff this week but not too much to report. I will be taking a few days off next week so things won't really be picking up until mid August it looks like. However, lots of tools are in progress and so much is on the way.

Today I have a great big batch of red bronze Mini 5 Flute beads done. They have a warm red patina started on them and a crisp finish. These new Minis have quickly become my new favorite bead size and I'm really enjoying them on my camera bag zippers and pocket tools. Plain titanium Minis will be coming very soon too!

The red bronze Mini 5 Flutes will run $30 as usual and it's a fairly big batch so a limit of 4 per customer on them please...link to purchase is below. Thank you so much for stopping by today and I hope your weekend ahead is a great one.


Sold out for today, thank so much!



Friday, July 21, 2017

Stamped Zirconium Keytons

Hi Everyone,

Happy Friday! I know much of the nation is sizzling today with the high temps but I hope all is well and you're gearing up for a relaxing weekend ahead.

Well I've been rather quiet lately, but I have certainly not been idle. I've been grinding my brains out and trying to move projects along. The belts have been turning madly and the tumblers have been running almost continuously for the past two weeks. And I have taken a few hours to fix up and clean my dusty and slightly disorganized shop, critically important work that has been long overdue. I'm planning on upgrading some of my lighting soon as well. All these changes are going to make it a lot more efficient and a healthier place to work.

I still haven't gotten the steel pins ground for the zirconium KingPins, but they are one of the next tasks in line. The Wroidy steel Wrunts are still languishing as well...however, steel Superbugs are well along towards finishing and just need a little more grinding before they are ready for heat treat. The titanium R37 Ruler tools are definitely happening and have just been cut, really looking forward to these... Krinkle titanium SAE Wrunts have also just been cut. I am waiting for some special stainless steel Wrunts to be cut next as well as a new steel Wroid thickness tool.

Beads are moving along nicely. I will be tying up and packaging titanium Mini 5 Flutes and then the bronze Mini 5 Flutes over the next few days. I also have anodized titanium Bermuda Beads with grinds completed and nearly ready to go. I also got the next spin coins prepped out further and they are waiting for stamps and other treatments.

Today I finally have the Zirconium K4 Keytons done! These have been sitting around for several months and it took a huge effort this week to get them through the many many steps to completion. Lots of grinding, tumbling, stamping, more tumbling, individual heat coloring and finally applying an oil finish. Ridiculously complicated and time consuming...It does feel good to get them finished at last and they look awesome.

These have a wide variety of grinds and stamps. They will run $95 plus shipping and it's a one per customer sale even though the batch is large, so that many folks will have a chance at them.

Thanks as always for stopping in today and I hope you all are staying cool this week!

Sold out for now, thank you so much folks!




 


Thursday, July 06, 2017

Antique Brass Mini 5 Flutes

Hi Everyone,

Hope you all had a great holiday weekend. It was a difficult one here with a variety of annoying petty health issues and one major family crisis which is still ongoing. Fingers crossed on that last part...

Well, not much has been getting done lately here, but I continue to limp along, picking away at things every day. Wrunts are still on the bench awaiting their finish grinds, Zr Kingpins still await their ground pins which are residing cozily next to the Wrunts. A bright spot is the steel Superbug17s which I did a bunch of prep work on yesterday. My goal is to get these three projects finished by the end of the month, and in the case of Wrunts and Superbugs, out to heat treat at least.

In other news, I continue to explore the R37 ruler series and it's looking like that project may go forward finally, but I'm still finalizing details and costs. I do have a final drawing though and I'm very pleased, so if all works out as I hope that will be a great project for the fall.

Today I finally have the first wave of "SlimFlutes", all new Mini 5 Flute beads, ready to go. Old timers may remember the original 5 flute beads which were quite small and had very shallow fluting. While I love the current 5 Flute design, they are fairly large beads and I was missing the older version, especially on zipper pulls. So this spring I worked up a revised design and dialed in the proportions to produce what I am now regarding as my own personal favorite fluted bead design.

The new Mini 5 Flutes are made of brass, bronze and titanium for now. I am waiting for the mill to produce more 1/2" Zr stock this summer and so hopefully can add those to the lineup at some point as well. There are no variations on these, all just straight up 5 flute beads. First up are the brass Minis and these have a cool antique finish on them.

Antique Brass Mini 5 Flutes will run $30 each and shipping is the usual $5-7 depending on how many you want. The batch is good sized so it's a limit of three per customer. Thanks for stopping by and I hope your summer is shaping up to be a great one!


Brass ones are gone, thanks folks! :)

 

Copper Multi Grip, Original Mini 5 Flute in teflon, new Mini 5 Flute and current Mega 5 Flute for size comparison:

   

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Red Bronze 5 Flutes

Hi Everyone,

Hope you all are having a great summer so far. It's already shaping up to be a stellar one here, although it does look like it's going to continue to be a wet one. At least there is no chance of drought anymore.

Well, things are moving along positively in every way here at Atwood Studios. I am halfway through grinding the steel Wrunts so those will be heading to heat treat very soon. Still dragging my heels on other grinding but maybe I'll push the Zr Keytons into the on deck position...also I just got done flaming all the Zr KingPins over the weekend, so now I have to grind all the pins and put them together. Soon on those, and I guess now that I think about it, they will have to be up before the Zr Keytons...Do you see how this goes? This is how projects keep getting pushed back endlessly. :D

I have a couple of other small projects done as well so I'm going to try to string a few sales together in the coming days. I finally got around to cutting and tying enough cord to get the bead projects rolling along. A big thank you to Brian Colby for helping me tie an enormous pile of knots this weekend! The new Mini 5 Flutes and some cute little ti Bermuda Beads with accent grinds will be coming soon as a result.

Today I have the Red Bronze 5 Flute Mega beads done. These are the regular size 5 Flutes. They are made of my usual 655 silicon bronze which develops a gorgeous color after several long slow tumbles in various media. An instant patina which will continue to deepen and evolve over time as they are handled and develop wear on the high points.

The Red Bronze 5 Flutes are $30 plus shipping and I'll put a 3 per customer limit on them. More beads are coming up over the next few days as well so please stay tuned. In meantime, hope you're staying cool and dry this week!

Bronze ones are gone, thank you so much!



Saturday, June 17, 2017

Red Bronze KingPins

Hi Everyone,

Happy Father's Day weekend to you! After a week of beautiful weather we are getting some mixed skies and on and off rain again for the foreseeable future. At least it's finally warming up.

The Fidget Spinners were a big hit and thanks so much again for the huge and enthusiastic response. I am looking into possibly making more but I'm still not sure. I will keep you posted if it works out...In the meantime many other things are in the works and I am rapidly finishing projects up.

Today I have a small batch of Red Bronze KingPin tools ready. You'll notice that the heads have a very familiar 5 flute shape, but in a slimmer diameter (1/2") and longer length than the 5/8" diameter 5 flute Mega beads. The heads are tapered and drilled on one end to accept an 1/8" diameter pin and the exposed pin length is generous at just over 2 inches long. OAL of the tool is about 3 inches or so with the sheath. The pins are slip fit into the pin heads using green 680 Loctite so they are permanently set in place unless you were to heat it up with a torch.
 
The 5 Flute design works great for these tools as it provides well defined grip surfaces, and unlike other pin tools, these are totally anti roll so you can set it down and it absolutely will stay put. There is nothing more annoying than setting a small tool down for a moment and having it roll off the work surface.

The pins themselves are made of hardened steel which I have hand ground to a sharp point. Don't ask me what grade of steel it is as these are standard extra long dowel pins and the makers do not specify exact material, but they are definitely high carbon steel. Keep them wiped down and clean as they will probably rust. A few swipes with a worn green scotchbrite pad once in a while will make them as good as new though if rust spots do show up. And they are easily resharpened on a belt sander or grinding stone.

The KingPins come with a simple slip sheath of vinyl tubing. Once in the sheath they are perfectly safe to carry in a pocket or anywhere else. Keep the pin in the sheath at all times when you are not using it though as these are quite sharp and it would be very easy to puncture yourself. By all means, use common sense while using these and please, KEEP AWAY FROM CHILDREN!

I have been carrying mine for a few weeks and showing it around to see people's reaction. You can always tell which folks lack imagination when you see the uncertain look and blank expression followed by "What would you use that for?" Haha....a much better question would be "What wouldn't you use it for?"

I use mine all the time for mixing and applying two part epoxy. The pin performs perfectly and it is so easy to wipe clean. I have used it to mix a small jar of model paint for some touchups I needed to do. The pins excel at cord and knot work of course. Use them for all sorts of poking, prying and scraping tasks as well as cleaning duty to get into tight corners. They are great for helping to remove small bits of stuck on masking tape. I was using one just yesterday to pry a nasty old o-ring out of a groove. Leather people, woodworkers and craftsmen of all stripes will find endless and obvious uses for these tools. And, if you happen to have a balloon popping fetish, boy are you in luck! :)

I'll also be making more of these this summer in Zr, Titanium and Copper. Maybe a better fixture holder will allow for decorative hand stamps but for now these are ONLY available with the standard Atwood name stamp.

The bronze KingPins will run $60 plus shipping and it's one per customer with this small first batch. Don't worry if you miss today as I have a ton more of these on the way in other metals. As always, thanks for stopping in and have a great weekend.


Sold out for today, thank you so much folks! :)



















       

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Titanium Fiddle Spinners!

Hi Everyone,

Well, what a crazy couple of weeks it has been. I've been scrambling to get various projects started, keep others going and get still other projects done. And in the meantime we have gone from freezing cold and rainy to blazing sun and temps in the 90's. It's already a year to remember and we're only half way through.

So I posted a little project update last week on the Toolbook group. I'm making great progress on all of these items including KingPins and the new skinny 5 flute beads. I'm also right in the middle of yet another variation on the Spin Coins and I think you guys will love what is coming down the pike...

Today I have some really cool little Fiddle Spinner toys for you. You would have to be living on Mars not to have seen all the spinner toys out there as it seems every kid in America now has at least one. So naturally I had to try my hand at them and see if I could come up with a design that ties in with my product line. And I wanted to see if I could improve on the fiddle factor a bit with something that has absolutely no utility functions whatsoever, just purely a play toy.

One thing I have noticed is that many of the current designs have propeller type arms coming off of them. While that design scheme certainly puts the weight out towards the edge and promotes centripetal force, it often tends to make the toy difficult to spin with one hand, as your drive finger will sometimes slip in between the blades instead of making contact with the blade end. So I set out to fix that contact issue...other designs I have seen are just a boring plain round shape and I couldn't see the play factor in them. 

The Atwood Fiddle Toy has a familiar hex shape with my signature edge scallop design. The weight is distributed towards the outside edge so even with a relatively thin material there is still plenty of weight to keep the spin going. The Hexi style edges provide a very satisfying and secure landing spot for your drive finger so you can spin or flick these very easily with just one hand if desired.

I opted for titanium of course, and went with some 5/32 material (.160) so they will work with the standard spin core length. These toys have a wide variety of finishes....it's a small batch however so I have mixed them up rather than break it down into small groups. All of them are cool I think. Almost all are anodized but I kept out a half dozen plain ones in case someone really can't stand color. No stamps or extra grinds whatsoever on this batch.

The center holes are reamed for Scott McCoskery's 3/8 spin cores. You will have to purchase a spin core separately from Scott and the link for them is here. I know he is busy making more so if you don't already have one perhaps an email to Scott will get you one...here's a handy tip by the way...take a standard hole punch and pop out some discs of self stick grip tape or skateboard tape. It really helps with those slippery spin cores!

Now, the center holes on these are tight, MUCH tighter than the previous offerings I have put out this year. You will have to gently tap the spin cores in and I recommend a plastic tip mallet for this. You could also use a regular hammer if you put a piece of wood or a thick cloth over the core before tapping. Place the fiddle toy over a pair of side by side wood blocks (or something non marring so as not to mess up the anodizing) so that you can tap the core through and get it lined up evenly on both sides. Go slow and make sure the core is lined up straight as you go! Keep checking for straightness as you GENTLY tap it in as sometimes these type of things can go crooked on you. If it goes crooked knock it out with a stick and start over! Definitely no Loctite or glue is required on these and they will certainly not be falling out once seated in place.

The Atwood Fiddle Toys will run $60 plus shipping. As I said, it is a fairly small batch so one per customer on them please. I am not sure if I will be able to make more of these as there were some odd production issues and my waterjet guy was quite unhappy. So this may be it on them. There will be one other micro sized batch of 3 dozen pieces coming in stainless steel when I get around to them, but other than those I probably will be moving on to my many other projects after these are gone...

So there you have it. Thanks for coming by today and I hope everyone is doing great and staying cool this week!

Sold out, thanks again everyone!










  

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Stamped Minis

Hi Everyone,

Wow, I was not expecting quite the tremendous response to the raw bar minis yesterday. I ran out well before I was able to respond to the nearly 100 emails I received. So I am sorry I was not able to hook everyone up who wanted one.

You know, I never know how many to make on any given project. Sometimes I have made a large batch of tools and I end up with dozens left over. I still have a dozen or two of the titanium Mini P15 Prybabies for instance, also a couple of steel Mini P15s, and this is almost two years after they were released!

So this year I am making smaller batches on some of these tools. And that means some tools may be harder to score...don't know of any other solution and I am not about to set up lists or anything like that (I tried that years ago) because that will make me totally crazy and I will have to give this all up and retire. Haha, yeah right, ok maybe not retire, but lists are waaaay too inefficient for one guy to handle...And so, here we are. :) Anyhow,  I do my best and I am IMMENSELY grateful for you patience and continued support!

So, today I have another small batch of the Mini Prybabies done. This is the end of them btw...these are surface ground so they are slightly thinner than the raw bar ones from yesterday. They are all stamped! They also have a similar light bead blast finish so I recommend oiling them if you wish to prevent rust from forming on the CPM 3v tool steel.

No lefties remain....sorry about that. I hooked every one up yesterday as best as I could.

Stamped Mini P17s will run $75 plus shipping and it is of course a one per customer limit on them. Hopefully a few folks who couldn't catch the two minute sale yesterday and can score one of these...



Sold out, thank you everyone!