Making a Tool… Oh Yeah!

This past year I was asked to create some Art Nouveau window screens. (check them out here)  There were about a dozen units to make, with about 10 curves each.

So I needed to make a special use tool!  Why, you ask? Because I am a metalworker and making tools is part of the game!  And everyone needs more tools.

Plus, remember those 10 curves per unit? While they were not identical, they had matching parts. I needed a tool that would let me create these curves with some uniformity.

Bending ½ inch solid steel square stock is not an impossible thing to do by hand, but making them match all the others would be almost impossible.

So here is where the tool comes in.

I needed to make something with a lot of leverage and a uniform bend. No problem.

But now I hade to make it more complicated. It needed to re-bend each piece in the opposite direction.

The metal is placed in the bender and held in place by pressure. I then pull the long handle and make the bend.

bend 1

bend 2

The bent section is inserted back into the unit with a different radius and a pull of the handle makes the smaller curve.

bend 3

Now they still needed to be tweaked to match each other, and cut to the correct length. But that is part of the game.

chart

The tool now sits in the corner of the studio… waiting.

You never know when I will need to make a bunch of 7 inch radius curves in a piece of ½ inch stock.

Let me know what you think of this design…

or just what color I should paint it.

You can reach me at steve@stephenzmetaldesigns.com

Or use the form below.

shirt front s

 

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1 Comment

  1. I both sew and cook. Having the correct tool is tantamount to producing a good result most of the fime. Sometimes the substitute tool is acceptable, usually not, but time and effort increase measurably. Glad you have your “tool” when you need it.


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