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over too soon (pic heavy)

Discussion in 'BushMoot - the big get together' started by Dave Budd, Aug 10, 2016.

  1. Dave Budd

    Dave Budd Gold Trader
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    Well, I got back yesterday and after a sleep am now compos enough to post up :)

    I got there a day or so earlier than normal and arrived on tuesday evening, just in time for the torrential rains to finish (apparently the first day or so had no let up). Set up my bedroom for the duration (a discrete distance from the naughty corner) and settled in. A gentle evening around the fire with the old crew at NC and meeting some very enthusiastic newbies, champing at the bit to get on with the moot activities. I was a little confused when I headed for my tent because somebody had pitched an identical tent about 3m from me and I didn't have the energy to 'surprise' anybody that late in the evening! Luckily I chose the right one and slept soundly

    My dad (Roy) had arrived on Monday and already settled in, in good hands it was like he was an old hand and ready to start letting folks try their hand at a bit of wood turning. On wednesday morning, I passed him on my way to breakfast (before 8am) with my adopted family and wished him luck; I didn't see him again until dusk at the naughty corner! :rolleyes: I bimbled about amusing myself and catching up, part of the reason for my early arrival - no rushing to get stuff out and start 'work'. Late morning, I set up the forging area and tent but had no intention of lighting up or getting any shinies out. That failed when folks asked to see various things and my regular Pump Monkey (Mia) was hanging about trying to coerce me into forging. In the end I got a case of knives out and showed Mia where the fire lighters were: if she wants me to forge something then she would have to light the forge!

    At that point, I discovered I had left my steel at home. Not great for a week of blacksmithing demos. Still, at least I had some spring steel that I had brought to sell, so at least I could forge some blades and things. Nope, I also left my quenching oil and box of tallow at home! Not to worry, I had a bundle of 6" nails and a small piece of old file in my tool box to see me through :) Once up to temperature, Mia and I got to work and I knocked out a bottle opener from a nail and a small firesteel from file. Keeping my pump monkey and small audience of chums happily entertained. Mia, myself and a couple of others had a few games of 'nails' before the party changed to fresh group and I decided it was more fun to play left handed (more challenging)

    The reason for my forgetfulness (beyond the usual for me) was that before I left home I had to take my little boy to the vets. He had a large doughnut sized lump come up on his side a month or so ago and after biopsies came back, it turned out to be cancerous. He was already annoyed with me for taking him to the vets (normally a happy place filled with pretty ladies and sweeties) and leaving him to be beaten up, so the look on his face when I left him there after he had watched me spending the morning packing my stock into boxes was not nice :( My housemate picked him up on wednesday and took him home to convalesce after having the lump plus 3 ribs removed and his diaphragm moved up an inch or so. A week on, I'm pleased to say that he is doing fine and apart from being uncomfortable and a little sore, he is his usual self and hassling me for walks every five minutes.

    Anyway, back to the moot. Some timings may be off, it all blends into one :)

    Thursday morning came and I tried the same gentle wanderings as intended the day before. Failed again. Mia arrived and I lit the fire, but it must've taken too long to get going because after finding a severed ear in the sand by my anvil, she wandered off and was not to be seen again. It turned out that she had found the pole (well, bungee lathe really) and was trying her hand at turning!

    [​IMG]moot20166 by buddknives, on Flickr

    I have no idea what happened the rest of the day, but I know I filled it with something! The next memory that I have definite date for is a picture stamped with friday's date. I think it was just gentle sharpening or chatting, but I'm pretty sure I used the lit forge for something. Either this day or friday, my old man went shopping and picked up some over priced steel from Wickes for me. I'm not sure what he expected me to make from 18mm box section or 40x3mm flat, but the thought was there! He had to go out again and swapped them for more useful dimensions. Cheers dad :) Night came and went, but I did have some new forge water on offer. This year I wasn't planning to make any, but after a bunch of emails requesting it for new friends to try, I had to make some. I didn't have much in the way of fruit to flavour it with, but did my best anyway. So this year it was less offensive than normal and made with sweetened brandy, quite a pleasant tipple. I made some special flasks for it too, one of which (filled with a unique collaborative blend) has been put into the raffle upon my leaving.

    [​IMG]moot20169 by buddknives, on Flickr


    Friday morning saw something new from me, a grinder. I was asked to bring it because a spyderco bushcraft knife needed more than I was wiling to do by hand last year (opening tins!!). As the owner was leaving in the afternoon, I had to get it done asap. I managed to persuade him to let me regrind it into proper knife, just as it was designed to be by Chris Claycombe. On the understanding that the grinder that I brought with me is not the one I normally use for blade grinding (it's not very powerful and tracking doesn't always stay true for plunges). I set up around the back of reception (where there is a plug socket in the kitchen) and set to work. Job done and a happy customer, actually coming out better than I expected. I also reground/sharpened some kitchen knives for the Big Boss. Pottery was being thrown on a wheel next to me as we were sharing the power supply. Just as I was about to pack up a scout leader came by with some VERY bad axes to sharpen. Shelly wanted to tun off the genny so that some filming could take place in peace, but there was still 1 person wanting to throw a pot. I had about 3 minutes. 1/4" had to be taken off one axe and not much less on the other (they were more like bow saws than axes). I think I spent less than a minute on each axe and was done before the potter! Much easier than a file.

    After lunch, I set up the forge proper and got some shinies out for folks to fondle. As my normal pump monkey had apparently decided that Mr Budd Senior had a new and more fun toy to play with, she had decamped to play with the pole lathe. Luckily there were a couple of energetic teenagers in the audience. The eldest Cook child, Emily, was having her first experience of blacksmithing (trying her hand at making a spiral necklace from a nail) and I was pumping the bellows for her. At this point I realised that Helena (the other energetic teenager) was stood there doing nothing and she would make a better monkey than me (women always make the best bellows operators in my experience). It was a very restful afternoon standing about chatting while the girls got on with some forging and bellowing. Both of them are welcome at the Man Creche forge any time! :35:

    During my demonstration of how to forge the necklace, I was able to snap this shot of Emily filling the role of Forge Feeder rather than pump monkey. Apparently she didn't want to be seen so dirty.
    [​IMG]moot20165 by buddknives, on Flickr

    I'm a sympathetic soul as always

    We were forging on into the evening (well, she was, I stood about chatting) to get finished and then some grub before the night time. Got distracted and chatting to folks and finally made it to bed as the sky changed colour. oops! A very pleasant and sober evening was had, but only 2 hours sleep before my set-piece blade making demo.

    (saturday comes)
    No problem, I can do that in my sleep (apparently!) and with help from new friends providing caffeinated chocolate and old friends providing entertainment all went well. You may recall that I forgot my quenchants? No problem, I just used a banana to harden the blade! I'm afraid I didn't get any pictures, but I'm sure somebody did. The blade hardened fine and came out as it should, though ideally I should've chosen a different blade shape to accommodate the banana. Not wanting my forge feeder to get hungry, I gave Emily the banana as a snack afterwards. Helping to keep her iron intake up with a few bits of scale in there :) My audience was smaller than normal and I can only assume that everybody was queuing up to try out the lathe instead. That's cool, my ego is big enough not to suffer sharing with the old man. Probably for the best, bigger audiences mean more chatting and questions, which always leads to very odd conversations and going off at tangents from me!

    I didn't get over to see the turnings, but plenty of folks were walking about with rounded bits of wood. Tim Neobard has already posted these pics, but here is one again courtesy of Tim.
    [​IMG]moot201611 by buddknives, on Flickr

    The afternoon came around and My pump monkey come feeder has now become my young padowan and is making a leaf. She is quite the perfectionist and finds it hard to accept asymmetry and non-straightness in her work (despite me educating her on those particular points), but we got there and after forming a lovely delicate leaf on the bar, it was decided that a spoon was to be born. Sadly, we had started too late in the day to finish and we finally had to stop because the sun was down and we couldn't actually see anymore! That's sticking power. We each had some grub and Emily fetched her camera. As a keen photographer she wanted to get some cool shots of the forge at night. Being as it doesn't get dark until quite late, I was as quiet as I could possible be whilst forging a small leaf by the light of the forge and my own in-buit sense of direction (forging in the dark is a skill that larping with the Dumnonii Chronicles has honed for me over the years). Hopefully I didn't wake any small children up, and my apologies if it was too late for you, I won't do it again!


    Sunday morning and I scheduled another grinding exhibition outside the ladies loos. I decided that since I had brought the thing and the spyderco regrind was so popular I would do a proper stock removal demo. The forged finished and already heat treated demo blade from the day before was ground and made shiny to appeal to the magpies. Next I reground another spydy, this time for Mesquite (he was impressed with the other one) and talked through how to do a full flat grind (or rather a very high sabre grind, so as to keep the BCUK and Spyderco logos). There was no painstaking measuring and marking of where the grind should be placed, just done by eye until it looked good, after all we all know how I feel about symmetry! I count this as a victory for proper knives against the ridiculous out of place use of the scandi grind. A little more axe and knife reworking work for a chap, then some awls for Tengu and I had had enough for one morning. I don't like grinding, though I don't think I let on at the time. Photo courtesy of Mad Dave.
    [​IMG]moot201610 by buddknives, on Flickr

    I had hoped to have a sit down in the quiet and have some lunch next to the forge. Nope, there were folks waiting to see things and I set out shinies. Emily joined the merry bunch and whilst I was busy setting up was charged with lighting the forge so that I could get on with things. I made a mini sword come letter opener and a trivet for Mesquite's dutch oven. At this point I demonstrated how to make an arrowhead before having a chap (sorry, forgot your name ) make his own, followed shortly by Charles/Paul following suit. They both did marvellous jobs and made articles that were recognisable as arrowheads and would certainly spoil your day! :bigok: Then I had some sharpening to do on a head or round knife that I had made before the moot. I handed over the forge to Emily to finish her spoon. It was too late in the day to finish it as a spoon, so she opted to turn it into a fetching pendent instead. As I had to get that knife sharp, I enlisted a slightly hairier than usual assistant to pump for her ;)
    [​IMG]moot20163 by buddknives, on Flickr

    Sunday evening and more shenanigans with the flask.


    Monday morning was Traders' Day for me too, so I carried a small box of goodies to the parachute and spoke with people who hadn't seen my wares before. Somehow despite being on site for several days, people can miss my large yellow tent (emanating constant noise) set inside the large wooden fort between reception, the meeting point and the naughty corner! Happens all the time, but I've no idea how :dunno:

    Once the knife fighting began in the middle of the stalls, I decamped to the safety of my forge. Time for the next lesson. Spoons, since it was in our minds before and Emily had learned one way to make similar shaped objects via the leaf. This was going to be a larger piece of material than previous work, as well as some more difficult hammerwork. It took all afternoon and we worked through (missing) the communal meal (her mum was able to grab some pasta and bread to keep her going along with some rolos that I found in my bag). At least 75% of the people I teach to make leaves and spoons via this method have trouble and many of them lose their ends entirely, girl done good and kept her spoon head on despite the distractions. A long handle with a small bowl, ideal for eating sundaes was the choice.

    Whilst the spoon was being made, I packed up my car and prepared to take the forge area down. Lots of young and enthusiastic helpers arrived just in time to help with the dismantling of the tent and loading of it into the car. Just as well as we finally got it in as dusk fell and amazingly nothing was lost in the darkness. Thanks for your help kids/teens and Paul/Charles :) I ended the evening at the naughty corner where I discovered a plot to kidnap me, it was the most middle class kidnapping in history involving espressos and chocolate brownies!

    One last breakfast with the Brady Bunch and packing up my accommodation. As with usual I was later leaving than I should've been, but I got away and made the journey home to unload and fetch the dog. To my delight I made it in one piece and Saxen had forgiven me, so I got lots of excited kisses and had to take him out for a walk straight away.


    As always a great Moot. It never seems like a year since last seeing people and yet it feels like much longer until the next one. Made some great new friends as well as being able to spend time with existing ones. Many thanks to everyone making me welcome and ensuring that I am fed or watered when too busy to do so myself. Special thanks to the Bolds for their morning hospitality and to Paul/Charles (either brother indiscriminately as I get your names mixed the whole time anyway!) for their assistance at the forge and finding more steel, also to my various pump monkeys (Paul/Charles, Charles/Paul, Mia, Emily, Jasper and Helena). Most of all I would like to congratulate Emily on being a first class student, forge assistant and fine company; she also kept the tone of the forge at a higher level than usual (almost family friendly infact). Shame I didn't get any pictures of the things that she produced, each one showing more control over the hammer and made under difficult conditions and with a constant audience! Five gold stars
    goodjob



    Now for the post-moot blues whilst preparing for the Wilderness Gathering, the next instalment of my summer of getting together with friends :)
     
    #1 Dave Budd, Aug 10, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2016
  2. bobnewboy

    bobnewboy Settler

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    No pics showing Dave :)
     
  3. Dave Budd

    Dave Budd Gold Trader
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    this seems to be a recurring problem when I use the simple method of loading pictures directly from my computer rather than going through the extra hassle of putting them into flikr and copying the image file to the forum. Most people can see it, but it seems to be a factor of your membership level?

    I'll do some reloading and general buggery that comes with technology!
     
    #3 Dave Budd, Aug 10, 2016
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2016
  4. Dave Budd

    Dave Budd Gold Trader
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    sod it. half an hour wasted swearing at flickr, the forum editing sequence and computers in general. sorry!
     
  5. kard133

    kard133 Full Member

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    Glad to hear Saxon is doing well Dave, are you going to the Wilderness Gathering this year?
     
  6. Dave Budd

    Dave Budd Gold Trader
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    Just sat down and tried to fix those darned photos (having slept properly!). Did it work?

    Kard, yep will be at the WG as usual. I should be next to the Endicottes stall :) That way I have an inexhaustible supply of pump monkeys and tea bringers
     
  7. chas brookes

    chas brookes Full Member

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    Hi Dave
    all looks good mate :)
     
  8. Big G

    Big G Full Member

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    Good comprehensive write up mate, great pics :)

    Thank's for sharing them.
     
  9. Klenchblaize

    Klenchblaize Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    Thanks for taking the time to post this. Great to hear what goes on and it saved me posting a request for just such an update.

    Cheers


    K
     
  10. Trotsky

    Trotsky Full Member

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    I'm glad to hear Saxen is doing well Dave, thanks for all the fascinating information and displays of forging. If you need any more of that caffeine chocolate Varusteleka should have it back in stock now I think.
     
  11. Cyclingrelf

    Mod

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    Great write-up Dave, thanks for making the effort.

    Sent from my SM-A300FU using Tapatalk
     
  12. Mesquite

    Mesquite Anyone for sailing?

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    Great write up Dave, really enjoyed that :)

    Here's some more pics of you at the grinder as well as my Spydie in progress. I'll get some pics of the finished blade as soon as. I have to say I loved the knife before you worked your magic on it but now it's an absolute delight to use and the fact you did it all by eye is a real testimony to your skills :You_Rock_

    I love this shot of you lovingly caressing the grinder ;)
    [​IMG]

    My knife being worked on
    [​IMG]

    First grind done
    [​IMG]

    Next side to be done
    [​IMG]
     

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