The Chart of Hand Tools

I rarely (I mean almost never) go out of my way to endorse a product of any kind but while considering the upcoming holidays I came across this link I saved a while back.  I think it would be perfect for the workshop and is a work of art in its own right.

I can imagine it over my new workspace or even hanging on the wall in the den to be pondered while dreaming of building something worthwhile.  It’s called the Chart of Hand Tools from the Pop Chart Lab, “printed using 100 lb archival recycled stock certified by The Forest Stewardship Council, this poster is pressed on an offset lithographic press in Flatlands, Brooklyn.”  Sounds good so far and I love how they are actually grouped in logical sets by basic function.  That satisfies the analyst in me.

HandTools

Click the image for a larger version or the link to get yours today (or to send me one!).

Here’s some information from Pop Chart Lab’s website:

With over 300 meticulously illustrated tools this chart celebrates the tinkerers and the doers: those who build, repair, and create. Breaking down all manner of hand tools by their basic function, this sprawling print covers the most basic, such as the humble yet mighty hammer, to the most highly specialized, such as the 24 types of files depicted here. A hand-crafted compendium of ingenious and essential devices, this chart is a complete cut-list of the tools that empower makers and artisans. —And the chart is printed with brass and aluminum metallic inks to give it a shop-ready sheen.

Size 24″ x 36″

Each print is signed and numbered by the artists, and comes packaged in a Pop Chart Lab Test Tube. 

At $37 U.S. it seems like a great addition to any Maker’s house.  I hope my own Santa Claus or Krampus drops one off at the shop this winter.  I better start being good for the Yule-tide season.

The Bicycle Machines of Guatamala

I wrote a little something about this a while back; see the post about the BicimáquinasMatt, from Makeshift sent me this link and asked me to share it.  Have a look.  It is pretty inspiring to see Makers of this caliber.

From their YouTube page:

“Power Hackers, a series made in collaboration with Autodesk, profiles unexpected makers and designers who are developing creative climate solutions.

This video profiles the inspiring work of Maya Pedal, a Guatemalan organization that produces “bicimaquinas,” or bicycle-powered machines. The income-generating devices range from blenders to milling machines. Along with clever engineering, director Mario Juarez has succeeded in fostering pride in the community’s work.

Makeshift is a field guide to hidden creativity. Subscribe to our YouTube channel to follow original series like Power Hackers.”

While you’re at it, have a look at their quarterly magazine at http://mkshft.org.

Maya Pedal, upcycling bicycles in Guatemala

An excellent project and a good cause.

From the Makers:

In 1997, in San Andrés Itzapa in Guatemala, Maya Pedal Association began recycling scraps of bicycles into Bicimáquinas.

Bicimáquinas are pedal-powered blenders, washing machines and threshing machines, eliminating the need for fuel and electricity. Pumps are also possible, and are capable of extracting 30 liters of water per minute from 30-meter deep wells (electronic pumps reach just to 12 meters).

The idea of these ingenious contraptions emerged from the desire to help the farming families of the San Andrés community. The issue that gave rise to Maya Pedal was the expense and shortage of electricity and fuel in the village.

Carlos and Cesar, creators of Maya Pedal, have achieved an extraordinary result: a worthy project that does not pollute and is extremely fascinating in its involvement of volunteers from around the world who are building a fantastic pedal revolution.

Campaign Desk

CampaignDesk

Here’s an interesting piece of “gone native” campaign furniture.  There was much bad about empire building (and still is) but the bringing together of foreign cultures often created new and interesting art and craft styles.

While on the topic, if campaign furniture is of an interest, or if you want to even know what it is, head over to Lost Arts Press and check out Chris Schwartz’s new book on the topic.

Here are just a few designs from the genre known as Campaign Furniture taken from Schwartz’s webpage.  Click the link below to go right to his book store.

cfbook

Handcrafts

Some craftsmanship seen at Winter Count 2014.  Moving a little closer to a hand-made life, one skill at a time.

Ceramics by Roger Dorr, Woodwork by Mick Robins.

Ceramics by Roger Dorr, Woodwork by Mick Robins.

Hand made pottery made by artisans who collect the raw clays, slips, and paints make for greatly loved cookware and cups.  Wood turned on a foot-powered lathe from cleared alder trees make for intimate dinnerware.

Pots

The wares of just one of the many great craftspeople associated with Backtracks and the Society of Primitive Technology.

Many cultures are represented at the gatherings but in the Southwest, the black-on-white ceramics dominate the fancy wares.

Packbasket

Packbasket

Packbaskets are found worldwide but only in small sectors of the western population.  This one is particularly beautiful.

Making a bowl by burning and scraping.

Making a bowl by burning and scraping.  Delicious ducks roasting in the background.

Even a simple bowl can be a satisfying accomplishment when it holds it’s first meal.

Fresh deer skins being turned into buckskin.

Fresh deer skins being turned into buckskin.

A lot of time and labor goes into dressing a fresh deer hide but the payoff is immense.  Buckskin clothing will last for many many years.

Perfectly tanned hides by "Digger".

Perfectly tanned hides by “Digger”.

Skilled artisans and craftsmen can make the best customers as they know and understand the care and effort that goes into a handcrafted project.

musicThe talent doesn’t end with the crafting of artifacts.  People who “Make” have skills that reach far beyond the world of modern consumption.  The primitive technology crowd brims over with artists and musicians of many types and genres.

More making, less taking.