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!


Monday, May 22, 2017

P17 Mini Prybabies

Hi Folks,

Happy rainy Monday. It's a cool one here, dark and dreary again. We're having quite a crazy spring so far...mostly cold and wet.

I've been fairly quiet again lately, but it's not because I've been languishing in a comfy hot tub down in some fancy vacation resort listening to Jimmy Buffet. No, instead I've been slaving away in front of a dusty belt grinder and fighting with cantankerous finishing equipment. Hmm, hot tub vs. belt grinder...maybe I need to rethink this gig! Just kidding.

All is well on the project front. I am about to start finishing up a bunch of stuff so hopefully I can get some sales rolling finally. I have some super cool pin tool pokers coming up shortly, The KingPin series. Those will be in bronze, Zr and titanium with hand ground hardened steel pins, pics coming shortly. Also coming is a dedicated, non tool, fidget spinner toy that will accept Scott's 3/8 spinner cores. The steel Wrunts are on deck for grinding so I will be starting on those probably next week. And there are some more 5 Flutes coming too. New drawings are completed for a steel Ghost reissue for late summer/early fall time frame and I hope to have a sample to evaluate soon.

Today I finally have the first wave of CPM 3v Mini Prybabies completed. Officially this is the P17 Mini Prybaby. They are short, only 2.6" long, but quite robust at 3/16" thick. The finish was a long struggle but I finally gave up trying all last week to get them evenly shiny and instead went for a light glass bead blast finish. They look sleek and clean but you will want to oil these when you get them if you want to prevent surface rust from forming. CPM 3v is a wonderful tough material but it is definitely not stainless and even less so when it retains the "raw bar" mill scale as these do. 

These little tools have a great old school vibe to them, with stepped edge grips. I used to call this type of edge look a "deckle edge" after an old 1960's special baseball card series that I had as a kid. Recent research on that name though revealed that a deckle edge is actually that torn paper look that you sometimes see on certain hard bound literary works, so it's not a uniform or geometric shape. I decided to borrow instead a term from the automotive world and I'm calling this effect a StepSide edge.

These P17 StepSide Prybabies feature a V notch pry tip, simple cap lifter, rear pry/screwdriver tip, O2 wrench lanyard opening and a central pivot point opening which is reamed to accept Scott's cool 3/8 spinner cores. When I first designed this tool back in the fall I wasn't focused on spinner tools, so I didn't bother trying to make the central opening exactly centered on the tool as far as weight distribution is concerned. However, the slight imbalance turns out to be an asset, because it allows you to work the tool one handed and get it spinning. It's all quite fun.

The P17 Prybabies with light raw finish will run $70 plus shipping. It is regrettably a rather small batch so one per customer please. The surface ground ones will follow shortly in a day or two so if you miss out today there is another small batch coming. Thanks as always for stopping by today and for your great patience!
  
Wow, gone in a flash, thanks so much everyone!   









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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Zirconium Five Flutes!

Hi Everyone,

Hope you're all having a great spring so far. It's been rather cold and rainy here these past weeks but it's supposed to finally start warming up for us in a few days. I can't wait!

Well, there is so much going on that it is hard to know quite where to begin. Same old story, the days come and go, I get tons and tons and tons of stuff done but nothing quite gets finished. At least the projects keep rolling along and eventually they will all come to a happy completion. I hope. :)

For tools, the new Mini Prybabies in steel are at heat treat right now. They should be back and ready to go in about two weeks or less...Thick steel Wrunts are next in line and I will be grinding those very soon, followed by Superbugs and metric Crawdaddies. Also, I have K4 Keytons in zirconium coming later this spring or early summer.

For beads I have more 5 Flute style ones in the works, both stainless and red bronze coming up. And I have a nifty new bead related tool design that is now finalized and turning as we speak. Oh so nifty, you will not believe this little jewel!

For spin toys I have a new fidget toy coming up, and those were just cut last week so I'll be working on them very soon. I have more Spin Coins/GameKoins coming as well and I just need a day of shop time to get the next wave of those in motion. Never enough hours it seems...

Today I have the first wave of 5 Flute beads done, these are zirconium! The original batch of Zr 5 Flutes was very small indeed, about 4 dozen is all I made. Many many people have asked for them so I made another batch, not huge by any means, but enough to get some more out there and give more people a chance to get some.

These have a buttery smooth finish and feel great in the hand. The burnished and individually hand flamed surface finish makes them look almost like black glass or ceramic in the right light. I am putting them on a variety of cord colors and they look great on everything.

The Zirconium 5 Flute Beads will run $55 plus shipping and it is going to be a two per customer limit on them so that everyone has a chance at them. (Newbies: The link to purchase is right above the pictures and if you don't see the link there that means they are sold out and you missed the sale.)

 Thanks so much for dropping by today folks, and I hope your week is not too hectic!

Sold out, thank you!










Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Antique Brass GameKoins

Hi Folks,

Hope you're all having a great spring so far. We're having some warmer days here lately, lots of showers this week and the leaves are just about to pop on the trees and bushes. I'll probably be mowing the lawn for the first time this season by the end of next week.

I've been busy the past few days with steel Mini Prybabies. Another day of grinding should have them ready to go into the tumblers and then off to heat treat. I also started prepping thick steel Wrunts and those will be on deck for grinding next, followed by the steel SuperBug17 tools. So it looks like the steel train will start rolling again very soon, bringing us a nice load of tools for the middle of May and into June.

In other news, I am about to make another short run of 5 flute beads so you can expect a few more stainless, more red bronze and possibly some more Zr ones too. And while we are on the subject of lathe turning, I am experimenting with a few other brand new ideas so we'll see where they lead. Sometimes experiments pan out and sometimes not, but it sure is fun to play around with new ideas and see where they go.

Today I have more GameKoins for you. These are made of brass with an antique finish, so they are very similar in appearance to the bronze ones, just a little yellower in color. The two metals are actually easy to tell apart because the brass makes a higher pitched "ping" sound when the edge hits the table, rather than the duller "thunk" sound of the bronze. Otherwise, they feature the same wide ranging variety of stamps and leathers. I haven't timed any spin tests with the brass but I imagine they are about the same as the bronze. 

The Brass GameKoins will run $85 plus shipping and, as before, it's not a huge batch so it will be one per customer on them. Thanks for dropping by today and have a great week!


Brass ones are gone for now. Thank you everyone!











Thursday, April 13, 2017

Game Time!

Hi Everyone,

Spring is in full swing here finally. What a treat to be able to go outside in a T shirt, and the flowers are starting to come up around the yard. Always my favorite time of year.

Well today I have something very special to bring you. This whole spin coin project began earlier this winter, with something totally unrelated. I was not thinking about any sort of spinning tops. I had gone out on Ebay looking for small advertising trays from the early 1900's and discovered that there is a category called Tip Trays. Because everyone backed in those days smoked, I believe they originated as giveaway trays so that people had a place to "tip their ashes" and at the same time they would see a reminder of the company and it's products. Typically the subject matter is beer brewing, shipping lines, home appliances, farm implements and the like. Some of these trays are very colorful and feature fabulous graphics or pretty ladies.

Well, I was buying a few of these for a display in my office and I noticed one that had a car race game printed around the rim. The ad was for Jenney Gasoline, the colors and graphics were awesome and most importantly, it was a spinning game! As soon as I saw it I started thinking about the GripCoin project and I began thinking, wouldn't it be cool if? A lot of my projects start that way: wouldn't it be cool if? LOL...

So, I found some more over the winter months and promptly acquired them. Most of them have horse race themes:



Now, the exact rules of Tip Tray spinner games can only be guessed at, but I imagine it went something like this: Each player picked their horse or car and then they would spin the tray. Whatever rim ends up touching the table when it stops turning is the "winner" and would then have to pay the bar tab. Or perhaps you could settle a bet with it, or maybe that person is the one who has pulled the short straw. Whatever the rules, those are a good place to start and perhaps you can make up your own as circumstance dictate.

There are two type of these Game Koins. Type 1 is a simple three stamp version where each stamp is different and each player picks their stamp. Type 2 is a 1,2,3 game where I have used either one, two or three stamps in each section. There are more of the 1,2,3s than the other version for this first wave. At any rate, the rules would be the same for either type of coin, so it would either be pick your stamp or pick a number 1,2,3.


This first wave of GameKoins are made of silicon bronze, alloy 655. I have given these a rich patina so they have a wonderful aged look. I also have brass GameKoins underway as well as some other bronze versions, so more red metals will be coming.

As you can see from the pics, I have also brought something else new to the table, leather inlays! For years I have been collecting scrap leather and intending to use it someday for an inlay project, but I kept envisioning it for a tool body such as a Prybaby. My tools always tend to be too small however so it just never happened. The GameKoin project suddenly offered the perfect opportunity to use it though and I'm so happy to finally be able to do it. The leather inlays used here are almost all embossed cow leather and the variety is nothing short of spectacular. They are so cool that I'm having trouble parting with them, haha...    

The Bronze GameKoins will run $85 plus shipping. The higher value and limited number of them makes me a little worried about international shipping which means Priority Mail International so that there is tracking...I will send these at random (sorry, no stamp choices) but as you can see the variety is crazy and every single one of them is unique.   

The batch is good sized but I want to make sure as many people as possible get a chance at them so it will be one per customer. I will have a lot more brass ones coming up so there will be plenty of chances to score these and other versions as we go forward this spring. Thanks for stopping by today and hope your week is a warm and sunny one.

Bronze ones are gone for today but more will be coming soon. Thank you so much!






The last time we'll ever see them all together!


     

Saturday, April 08, 2017

Titanium K4 Keytons

Hi Everyone,

Happy Weekend! It's shaping up to be a good one already, especially once the April showers have passed. We still have a tiny snowbank or two in the driveway left behind from the plow but otherwise we seem to finally be having some spring.

I've been working like mad all week, mostly on Spin Coins, and I will have some really cool and different bronze ones in a couple of days. In other projects, a new fidget spinner is underway which will accept the 3/8 spinner cores and I expect to have them done in a couple of weeks. I haven't done a thing this week to advance steel projects but I will be getting back to them very soon.

In the meantime, I did finish some of the new titanium K4 Keytons this week. This variation on the previous K3 design features a similar footprint, but I have replaced the thumb grip area with a different style and the lanyard opening is now a 12 point 7/16" wrench. The material is my favorite textured titanium with a hefty .200" thickness. A great looking and substantial tool that carries well on a keychain.

The grinds on this batch vary quite a bit but nothing too crazy. Still they add some fun visual interest. The colors vary widely as well and all in all I have tried to make these as different as I can. As usual, I will send you whatever I send you at random, but rest assured they are all very nice. Some plain non anodized ones are in reserve and I will try to do a second sale with plain ones if the stock holds up.

Titanium K4 Keytons will $70 plus shipping. It's a rather modest sized batch so I'll make it one per customer on them please. As always, I thank you so much for stopping by today and have a wonderful weekend ahead.

Anodized ones are all gone for today, thank you so much everyone!



Saturday, April 01, 2017

Stainless Steel Signal Coins

Happy Weekend Everyone!

We're still battling winter up here in the northeast. My driveway is a disgusting mess of ice and sleet but it won't be hanging around for long as 50F temps move in this week. Spring will not be denied for long.

Projects continue to barrel along at a terrific pace. I am developing a new spinner/fiddle item and that project is well underway for the middle or latter part of April. The upcoming K4 Keytons are actually close to ready, just need to do some more anodizing on them, but they will be next up. And there is a wide assortment of other things all happening at once. I need to get back to working on the next steel tools but unfortunately there is still just one of me, so progress at the grinder has been slow this past week.

In the meantime, my favorite new toys are rapidly evolving and some very cool stuff is on the way... starting today! And Spin Coins are no April Fool's joke I can assure you. Dang these things are so much fun, I literally cannot put them away. :)

The first Spin Coin offering is the Disko Signal Coin. These are the first of my SpinTool series which will include spinning coins, spin coin game pieces called RaceCoins, also ArtKoins and some new and different fiddle tools and fidget toys. Lots of busy fingers ahead for everyone I think!

These first batch of Disko Signal Coins are made of 303 stainless steel. Measuring in at 1.5 inches in diameter, same as a silver dollar, they are a full 1/4 inch thick, plus a little more added on for the foot. The deep rifle knurling makes for a positive grip and the coins spin smoothly, riding on a beautiful black 1/8 inch ball bearing made of silicon nitride.

The low center of gravity combined with the heavy 36grams/1.25oz weight provides a satisfying spin and the hollowed out bottom pushes the weight to the outside, further contributing to the stable gyroscopic effect. Any initial wobble will usually right itself quickly as it settles in, turning for a very long time. I have so far measured an amazing 8+ minutes on tempered glass in the best of my many spin tests. Not too shabby at all.

I have given these coins multiple steps of tumbling, etc and have arrived at what I feel is the optimal finish for resisting scratches. In addition, each Spin Coin comes with a small velvet pouch to help keep it safe from scratches in your pocket. I recommend these as perfect candidates for coin pocket carry.  

The mirrored center is mesmerizing as the reflected light causes it to wink and throb with every tiny wobble and bump. You will not be able to put these down for long, absolutely addictive... Of course, although tiny, they can also be used for closeup inspections of your face and as a signal mirror as part of a survival kit.

The Disko Signal Coins will run $70 plus shipping and I will offer first class mail for international orders again to help keep costs down for our friends around the world. The batch is limited in number and these are probably the only mirror coins that I will make for a while as I move to other variations, so I will make it a one per customer limit on them please. Thanks again for stopping in and hope your weekend is going great.

Sold out, thank you so much everyone!






    

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Steel Mini Triangles!

Hi Everyone,

Man oh man, the calendar says spring but the thermometer begs to differ. It is very cold here today with a blustery bitter wind. I think this is one arm wrestling contest that sunny spring is bound to win sooner or later though and will send nasty old man winter packing.

Well, I apologize for the endless delays in getting to this sale, but I had urgent business to attend to, and the last two days were time extremely well spent. You will be happy to know that the upcoming Spin Coin project is well underway and parts are turning as I type. Endless tweaks have been made to the design and I am finally satisfied with the current version. Teaser pics coming very soon, and I should have the first completed pieces available by early next week. It's going to be a fun project and one that I am certainly looking forward to as well.

Forgot to mention...I am changing international shipping to first class. The cost for Priority Mail has gotten so ridiculous that it's just not worth it for lesser priced items. For certain sales in the future I may use Priority but it seems like first class is quite adequate for most stuff. We'll see how it works out. 

Coins are not the only thing spinning around here. I finally completed the 3v Steel Mini Triangles. These poor things have been sitting around on the bench completely neglected since they were cut about a year ago, and now I'm very glad that I procrastinated for so long. One of the Toolbook guys (thank you Maurice) suggested I drill these out to accept Scott McCoskery's nifty little spin buttons. The timing worked out perfectly and I was able to drill and ream them out before they went off to heat treat. The resulting tool are extremely fun indeed and I have been playing with them for several days now. Spinning is totally addictive as I am now finding!

OK, so the 3v steel Mini Triangles are already drilled to accept Scott 's 3/8" buttons. They are cool little tools on their own and make great pulls for a zipper, or can be worn on bead chain, etc. I will supply a small black clip for them. I have done a variety of grinds on these and I think they look very cool indeed.

The Triangles came back from heat treat with fantastic dark tempering colors which I of course elected to preserve rather than tumble or bead blast away. You can deepen this Instant Patina further by applying oil such as WD-40 or any other type of oil finish.

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The Spinner buttons ARE NOT INCLUDED however. If you want a button for them you will have to purchase separately from Scott. It looks like he may be out of stock currently but he assures me that he is working like a madman to get more finished so they should be back in stock again shortly. The purchase link for the buttons is here:

Scott McCoskery's 3/8" Spinner Buttons 


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Alrighty then, back to Mini Triangles...the 3v Steel Mini Triangles will run $55 plus shipping. The batch is large so I will put a limit of two on them. As always, I thank you for stopping by and hope your week is warmer than ours!


These are now all sold out! Thanks again everyone. 






   

Monday, March 13, 2017

Stainless Steel 5 Flutes!

Hi Everyone,

Hope you all had a great weekend. It was a good one here although a bit on the chilly side with overnight lows in the single digits. And we are forecast to have a blizzard tomorrow with 12 inches or more of snow, so more ugly winter lies ahead...

Not much to report on the project front today...it was slow slow slow progress last week. We'll see how this week shapes up though.

Today I have the last wave of 5 flute beads done. These are made of 303 stainless steel with a long tumbled buttery smooth finish. This is the first time I've used stainless in a 5 flute bead and it's an attractive weighty material. Certainly a nice addition to the 5 flute lineup.

The Stainless 5 Flutes will run $30 plus shipping and the link to purchase is below. Thanks for stopping in today and have a great week.


Sold out for now, thank you so much!


Saturday, March 04, 2017

I'd Rather Be in Bermuda!

Hi Folks,

Wow, it's a bitter cold day here in New England. The thermometer only reads about 20 F but there is an icy wind that is making it very unpleasant to be outside for more than a few minutes. This cold snap will only be here for a couple days though and then thankfully it is supposed to be warming back up again next week.

Things have been moving along very nicely these past few days. The steel Mini Bermuda Triangles went out to heat treat so those will be done in about two weeks. And I made significant strides towards several new projects including something brand spanking new called the Disko...also I revived an older idea called the PieceMaker and those are well into production now. Details and teaser pics will be up on the Toolbook very soon. I have a feeling you all are going to be quite intrigued with the offerings as the year goes on.

Today I managed to get about half of the little Bermuda Beads done. These are plain finished and made of krinkle textured titanium. The rest of the batch will get anodizing over the next few days. The Bermuda Beads are the latest in my Tool Bead Series and I think they're pretty nifty. Tie them onto lanyards, clip them onto zippers, or string them onto bead chain and wear around the neck. Carry singly or stack them up with other beads, they offer versatility plus a cool new shape and can be used as a 1/4 inch thumb driver in a pinch.

The Bermuda Beads will run $30 each plus shipping and I'll make it a limit of 3 on this medium sized batch. The link to purchase is below. Have a great weekend everyone, and hope you are staying warm!

These are sold out for now, more coming soon. Thanks so much everyone! And just a note, paypal seems to be having notification issues today so might be slow to send out shipping emails. Thanks!






 

Friday, February 24, 2017

More Brass 5 Flutes

Hi Everyone,

Hope your week has been great and a big Happy Friday to you all! We're really having a treat here this week with temps near 60 degrees F which has got the snowbanks melting nicely. I'll be happy to see it off my roof so we don't end up with ice dams should it turn colder in the weeks ahead.

Much is going on this week. I have finalized some nifty new designs which I will reveal as soon as they actually are in production, but suffice to say that we are in for some really fun and VERY different stuff over this next month!

In other news, the 3v steel Mini Bermuda Triangles are bored out to accept Scott's cool spinner buttons. I will be grinding the finish bevels soon and finally getting them out to heat treat maybe next week. Also in the works are some titanium Bermuda Beads which I showed a teaser on the FB group recently and those are just about ready to go. More copper Multi Grips are finished and are coming soon too as well as stainless steel 5 Flutes.

Today I have the rest of the Brass 5 Flute beads done. Identical to the first batch a few weeks back, these have a lovely patina and are so very handy. I tie them onto zipper pulls on all my jackets and bags and of course most of my personal knives, tools and flashlights have various Lanslide beads tied on them.

The Brass 5 Flutes run $30 plus shipping and the link is below. Hope you all have a marvelous weekend and thank you for stopping by today!

Most of the brass are sold out, but more Lanslides coming next week! Thanks so much everyone. :)




Monday, February 20, 2017

LongShots!

Happy Monday Folks,

We're getting a nice reprieve from Old Man Winter here this week. It will be in the 40-50F range for most of the week which will result in much melting of snow I'm sure. That strengthening sun sure does feel nice and it always brightens my mood too.

I had a very productive weekend and managed to get some vital work done. I don't have much to report on the tool front, but I did get some bead batches moving along nicely. And I was able to finally finish up polishing all those LongShot cups...the company that does the passivation process for us is a plating house in Springfield and, as with most platers, they are notoriously hit or miss as far as sending jobs down there. The Wee Drops were in very nice shape when I got them back but these LongShots, different story. It looked like some low paid jerk simply dumped the whole batch in a tank and then stirred. There were many many rub marks and small scratches on them and it took me over a week of picking away to buff them back up so that they are once again presentable. I still have two or three dozen that need a bit more finish work but I finally threw in the towel as I have plenty ready for a sale today. It's infuriating when this sort of thing happens but not at all surprising. Years ago I would have been totally livid but these days I just sigh in resignation and get to work fixing everything...what can you do?

So today I have the beautiful LongShot cups done. These are turned from 303 stainless steel and they hold exactly 1 fluid ounce of liquid. I love the taller proportions of these cups and it's a shape that I have wanted to do since the beginning of the shot glass project several years ago. A "Shooter Cup". Fun stuff and definitely one of my favorites of the whole shot cup series.

The LongShots will run $70 plus shipping and it's a nice big batch. So it will be a limit of 4 per customer, same as the Wee Drops...as always, I thank you all for popping in today and I hope your week is shaping up to be a very productive one.


Sold out for today, thank you so much folks!


 

 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

12 Point Tools!

Hi Everyone,

Well, we've been busy digging out here in the northeast after two good sized storms in a row. I cleared a path around to the back door the other morning and there was easily 16 inches. My little Toro snow thrower was struggling as I pushed through inch by inch. Luckily the snow was fairly light and fluffy though, and it's warming up this week which will get rid of some of it.

I managed to get a lot done this past weekend. The LongShots are nearly finished buffing out, should have the batch finally ready to go in another day or two. I got through another round of beads and cord tying so there are more 5 flutes and other styles coming shortly. And I got most of the 12 Point tools finished up as well...

So today I'll start with those 12 Points. These are heavy duty pry bar/wrench tools and I have incorporated a brand new 12 point wrench design in them. Of course standard mechanic's wrenches have been using this type of design for decades but this is the first time I have made anything with that style opening. Now that I have the drawings worked out you can expect to see more 12 Point wrenches in upcoming projects, such as the next generation Keytons for instance.

The 12 Points are made of 3v steel. They had such a pleasing heft to them that I decided not to sacrifice any of the thickness to surface grinding...These beasts measure .215 inches thick, so just shy of 1/4". The length is a generous 3.5 inches so these are a great choice for all you guys with the big mitts! Indeed, they feel quite substantial in the hand, yet are still fairly compact for a larger pocket tool. The 12 Point wrench openings are 1/2", 7/16" and 3/8", the cap lifter is also a true wrench and measures 5/16". A broad pry tip finishes the tool.

The raw bar texture is quite light on both sides and you can expect to see plenty of character marks in the steel. I decided to give these an old fashioned bead blasted finish and the overall finished surface reminds me of smooth concrete. They have a slightly rough and ready, almost an industrial feel to them.

I elected to leave the matte surface dry so oily tools would not stain the product insert cards. However, I recommend you hit the tool right away with WD-40, light machine oil, household oil or even olive oil. If you carry and use this tool you should keep applying oil of some kind periodically and they will develop a deep patina rather quickly. I'd love to see some good user pictures a year or two from now. Many of the old Bug Out Bars that I made with 3v steel more than a decade ago look fantastic today now that they have had some proper aging. With some time and use you will make these tools uniquely your own and nothing is more satisfying in my book.

The 12 Points will run $70 each plus shipping. It's a fairly good sized batch so I'll make it a limit of two per customer on them, and as usual the purchase link is below. Hope you're staying warm and surviving tax season!

Sold out for today, thank you!