The Vintage Bench Saga continues…

You might remember I featured a piece of vintage yard furniture awhile back.

It has been on the farm of my Grandmother in law for about 60 years, and was in rough shape.

But it was really something special.

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I set about working on repairing it and getting it ready for another 60 years…in my yard. (no farm here unfortunately)

I looked it over and located the problem spots, rust through damage, and lost parts. Then I started the work of bring it back to life.

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The back’s connection to the seat was in rough shape because it was a place for water to collect and cause rust. I took a wire wheel and was able to make short work of the problem. 10,000 RPMs is a powerful thing! I then welded then gaps closed and wire wheeled it again.

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The handle on the left side arm rest had been worn through in a couple of spots. I can only guess how many butter beans you would have to shuck to get to the point where the metal is worn through… but that bench certainly had seen a lot of shucking, of all kinds of vegetables, in its day.

The thought that it had seen enough use to wear through the metal just makes me want to repair it even more.

I welded all the joints and attachments to make it stronger and then added metal feet to the bottom of the legs. I will attach pieces of treated wood to these feet so that the metal does not touch the ground and start the rusting process all over again.

I took it to my powder coater to get it sandblasted to remove all the old paint and rust. Then they baked on a finish in the color my wife selected.

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I think it will hold a special place in the back yard for a long time to come.

Overall, I think the piece turned out great.

 

Now I will have to put some thought into redoing the matching chair…trust me, it will take a lot more work than this one…

But then… that is the fun of it!!

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Being Led By An Eagle

As you know I love finding art for my ”The Art All Around Us” project.

While we were eating out in the city of New Bern, NC  we came out of the restaurant and walked past the historic skipjack “Ada Mae”.

And right there on the front of the boat (they probably call it a spear of strut or something like that) was a carving of an eagle heading into the wind.

I thought it was great looking even after 101 years on the rivers and sounds of Eastern North Carolina.

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Capt. Ralph Hodges absolutely had no idea this photo would be on the internet all these years after he had it carved. But I am glad he decided to have his work boat made a little nicer by adding that piece of nautical history to the bow.

If I could go back 101 years and thank the Captain for making an interesting piece of history. I would also tell his daughter the boat named after her would, for a hundred years, be putting smiles on the faces of people who appreciate beautiful things.

The Capt. could have skipped this carving and saved the expense. It was just a working boat anyway.

But no,

He decided to make it nice.

And for that I thank him.

 

I would love to see your finds of the “Art All Around Us”

Or hear your comments on the ones I find.

Email me at steve@stephenzmetaldesigns.com

Or just use the form below.

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Look Up… You’ll Be Amazed

In my quest for ”The Art All Around Us” I was looking up.

And I found more art.

The craftsmanship you can find if you look up around an old building is amazing.

Those old brick masons and plasterers, back then, must have had a lot of creative ideas. There is some beautiful design work on old buildings that means nothing to the structure… except to beautify their building.

They could have made it plain..

But no! They decided to make it nice!

Just because they thought it would be beautiful.

IMG_2013And for that I say thank you.

most people will never see this craftsmanship… but you now will.

I would love to see your finds of the “Art All Around Us”

Or hear your comments on the ones I find.

Email me at steve@stephenzmetaldesigns.com

Or just use the form below.

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Know Your Bridge? Just Check the Art!

In my never ending quest to celebrate find the art that others don’t notice, I had to go to Vermont. I would guess all the states label their bridges in some way, you know, for maintenance and that kind of thing…

They could have just painted a number on it or something…

but they chose art!

They inlaid a cutout of the state to make it unique.

Not fancy… not overt, just right!

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They could have done it in a boring way

But they chose art

And for that I say “way to go”

There is art all around us.  We just need to find it, and say thank you.

As always, I would love to hear your comments and see your “finds”.

You can use the form below;

Or email me at steve@stephenzmetaldesigns.com.

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NO! It’s Not Always Organized

I do a lot of mechanical things in my work. I design and present a lot of my work on the computer. People are often amazed by some of those technical aspects. (Most of the time it amazes me too)

But to be honest…sometimes I just wing it!!!

I am currently making a security gate for a home and they wanted to add a Panamanian style decoration as an accent. I drew it on the computer and presented it to them for approval.

All was well until I had to …as I say… make it go 3D.

Transferring the design to the steel so I could cut it was kind of complicated. The steel only comes in one shape, and I had a lot of small pieces to cut and fit into that space.

So after a few tries, I just decided to go “low tech” and I taped paper to the gate and drew it with spray paint.

LIFE SIZE.

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It may not look great right now. But I have a design I can work with in life size pieces.

And for this project, the low tech way is the best way.

I’ll post a photo when it is done, but for now, its paper and cardboard… enjoy!

 

If you have a low tech solution to a high tech problem I would love to hear about it. Use the box below to tell me about it, or even send me a photo to steve@stephenzmetaldesigns.com. I’d love to see it.

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Little Giant Power Hammer

I bought a Little Giant 25# power hammer a good while ago…

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I refused to bring it to the studio to start the rehab (it’s about 100 years old) because I knew I would get no other work done while I played with it. and I had a lot of work to do!

Well I finally had to get it out of a friend’s storage unit so it has made its way to the studio.

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It is small for a power hammer just a 25-pound ram. But it will do a lot hammering that will make my arm feel better. Step on the pedal and watch it do about 60 hits per min.   Or I can hold a 3 lb hammer in my hand and do about 10 hits per min… you see where the tradeoff is?

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Anyway, it will need some work and rework to get it running perfectly

but as you know

that is part of the fun.

These are  ome before photos of the hammer. It is about 5 feet tall and weighs about 900 pounds.

Yes, I will need to find out where it will be located in the studio, and get it put there real soon.

More photos to come as I get it rebuilt and working.

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Art Where You Find It… (I think it’s a light)

I found some more art “out there”…

where they didn’t have to put art…

But they did!

This time it is in Raleigh NC.

We had gone to see my niece dance with the NC Ballet and I was walking to get the car when I saw this….

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It is made of stainless, has oak leaves, and acorns on it for decoration…

I think it will be a light at the cross walk… but it does not work yet so I am not sure.

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They didn’t have to make it this nice… but they did….

And I think we need to celebrate “them” for it.

So if you are in Raleigh and are looking for art… here is some that is not in a gallery of museum.

 

Where are you finding art? It’s all around us, we just need to look for it.

Keep sending me your photos

 

Use the form below;

Or email me at steve@stephenzmetaldesigns.com

 

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