Saturday, October 15, 2016


Because I had nothing better to do, today I made us a new dish-drainer for cups and glasses, made of only the finest oak off-cuts, to replace the shitty crappy plastic one that didn't work that I bought to replace the old raggedy and busted plastic one that did work.

My dish-drainer is artisanal.

I was going to oil it to bring out the figure in the wood, but then I thought that might be a bit pretentious in such a workaday piece of equipment, so I didn't.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Thursday, October 6, 2016

'Twas in th' Nubbins o' '94....

Back in 1994, the University of Canterbury Science Fiction Club put on a convention called Ikon, with Terry Pratchett as the guest of honour.

Things did not go according to plan, and there were kerfuffles. Feelings were hurt.

However, I knew little of that except for the problems I had getting the poster for the convention printed, in the face of a crappy scanning bureau and a shitty, absent printer.

While I was looking through a box of old stuff, I came upon the large-format transparency I'd had made of the artwork, so I scanned it and here it is.

I got Terry's autograph on the little folder that the transparency is kept in.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

I sawed something nasty in the wood shed.....

We have several spots where we stack firewood to get us through the winter. This is one of those spots.

This season just passed, I arranged a cunning set of tarpaulin awnings over and around here to keep the wood dry, since the carport roof doesn't actually extend right to the fenceline. I was quite pleased with my ingenuity until the time came to actually use the wood at the bottom of the pile, when I discovered that my cunning awnings had cunningly funneled all of the rainwater off the carport right on to the firewood, and, as is the nature of water, made it very, very wet.

So, now I'm engaging in sterner measures, and building something more permanent and weatherproof.

It's a simple construction job, but it has had its share of frustrations. Not the least being that the cladding is some treated shiplap palings I bought from Bunnings a while ago for another job, and had been sitting in storage since then. There wasn't enough to do the lot, but I thought I could just pop down to Bunnings for a few more..... oh, the naivety! Oh, the innocence! No, Bunnings had decided since then that they weren't going to stock that particular product any more.

Fortunately, some pretty elementary table-saw and plane work turn some regular palings into shiplap palings to match what I'd started with, so it was only a minor setback. However, I must say (as I have said before, more than once), that my table saw is a piece of shit.

Now I just have to wait for it to dry (because of course the palings are sold sodden wet) and paint it, and then slap on the polycarbonate roof. Which will, no doubt, be an adventure in itself.

Three days later....

Well, our wood shelter is finished and ready to receive wood.

Or buses.

I was originally going to paint it white, but it turned out that of all the colours of leftover paint at the back of my workshop, white was the sole colour absent. So it's grey, which serendipitously is better, I think.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Earrings — With Hooks! For the Ears!

Shapeways can now print and cast interlinked metal objects, which means that I can now add integral hooks to my earrings.

These are my first try at it, and they're available at — just in rose gold and rose gold plate at present; I'm trying to find out why the other metals I've selected have been tagged as unprintable, in spite of the model complying with all their printing guidelines.

Thursday, September 15, 2016


The bedstead, oiled up like a Tongan flagbearer.
 With the arrival of visiting relatives becoming imminent, and the spare room still being basically a rubbish tip, I felt that it behoved me to get my arse into gear and sort out a spare bed.

I've had an old oak bed head and foot cluttering up my garage workshop for as long as we've lived here; that's coming up on thirty years now. It's not a masterpiece of construction, but it's adequate* and it means that I only have to build the base. I'd like to be able to make the stretchers out of oak as well, but that would cost a whole dump-truck full of money, so they'll be pine. They'll hardly ever be seen, anyway.

Mmmmmmm.... oaky!
So far I've just scraped off the old flakey varnish, given them a sand down, and slapped on a coat of linseed oil.

I've made and stained the stretchers, and I'll just assemble the whole thing with steel brackets rather than engaging in any more complex joinery. I want the base to be as high off the ground as I can manage with these components, so that we can store as much crap as possible under the bed. That means that, having long legs subject to racking stresses, it will benefit from the diagonal bracing of the brackets.

I have some old bed-boards from an old bed, but not enough I think. Still, making some more bed-boards is hardly a challenging woodworking task.

* Though it's a weird width that does not match any modern mattress width. The closest we can come is with our foam-rubber foldy-sofa-mattress-transformer thing, so that will probably end up doing the job.

Bonus driveway mushroom picture, because why not?

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Moebius Racing Strip

I think this is a pendant, though if I added a couple of loops for a pin it could be a brooch I suppose. I'm a bit reluctant to pollute the purity of the edges with those sorts of shenanigans though.

It's a Moebius strip with little teensy-tiny racing cars on it. I've made it available in rose-gold plate, polished bronze, and silver.

It's available for sale at

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Flower Cup Brooch

This is a brooch. A 3d-printed cast metal brooch.

It has no fastening pin of its own, but there are two loops on the back which allow it to be attached with a hat-pin or the like.

It's available at

Monday, August 15, 2016

Splash Whirlpool Pendant

This time I'm trying my hand at a pendant. It's not large, only 40mm or so in diameter.

The pendant is upside-down in this render, but being a symmetrical object that doesn't really matter too much.

The loop has a 4mm opening, so it's large enough to accommodate a leather thong or a reasonable sized chain.

It's available for sale at

Friday, August 12, 2016

Regarding jewellery...

I quite enjoy designing jewellery, and I get plenty of compliments about the pieces I've done so far, but nobody — or almost nobody — is willing to actually part with any money for them. I feel like I'm bashing my head against a brick wall.

What actually sells are my toy tanks and stuff. So I think I'll just concentrate on that.

Screw the arty-farty stuff, show me the benjamins!

Note: I don't actually know which note has Benjamin Franklin on it. Is it the fifty? Perhaps I should just have said "show me the Sir Apirana Ngatas!"

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

New Arrivals
A new lot of jewellery arrived on my doorstop today from Shapeways, after being held up and expensified by Customs.

There are some bracelets too, which I got printed cheaply in plastic to make sure that they'd fit before ordering them in much more expensive metal.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Bracelet 6

More bracelety goodness.

This one is available in silver, bronze, and rose-gold plate.

It's at

Sunday, July 31, 2016


I installed Prisma on my tablet, and it looks like a moderately fun toy until the novelty wears off. But just a toy. Not that toys aren't good — toys are great, but they're not tools.

Composition filter

Get Urban (I think)


I expect we'll be seeing some semi-automated comix coming out using some of these. The Heisenberg  and Get Urban filters look especially useful in that regard, though the more painterly filters will no doubt also be useful.

There are a decent range of filter available for it, but your level of control over the effects is very limited — you can pretty much only control the degree to which the filter distorts the source photo, by the look of it.

I wouldn't mind being able to play with it on my Windows PC, but there's a certain amount of faffing about that has to be done to enable that, and I'm not sure I can be bothered.

Saturday, July 30, 2016

Bracelet 5

This is the latest bracelet in my inventory.

The internal diameter is 62mm, but it can easily be resized upwards if need be.

It's available at in bronze, silver, rose-gold plate and polished grey steel.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Winter Weekend Quiz Doodles

Quiz Doodle #01

Quiz Doodle #02
We had a quiz. There were mathematical questions, about which I was pretty much all at sea except for knowing what a milliard is. So, while the rest of the team were pouring out knowledge, I was doodling. These are those doodles.

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Bracelet 4, now with extra skulls

Because skulls are excellent things, full of piraty goodness.

Internal diameter is 60mm. It's available in polished grey steel, silver, bronze, and rose-gold plate.

You can get it at

Bracelet 3

Here's another bracelet. Internal diameter is 60mm, band width is about 10mm.

It's available in silver, bronze, rose-gold plate, and grey steel at

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Bracelet 2

Here's another bracelet I designed, imaginatively called Bracelet 2.

The internal diameter is 60mm, and it's available in silver, bronze or rose-gold plate.

You can get it at

Mortice Gauge

I was given this beautiful old mortice gauge as a birthday present a couple of years ago. I've just given it a bit of a clean and polish.

I think its made from rosewood, well aged by the years until now it's almost as dark as ebony.

You won't find anything as nice as this at Bunnings.