Craft, Plans, & Projects

Here are some step by step overviews of things I make and the tools used to make them.  They may not be too wordy but should have enough information to get you making-building-creating.  My general interest is pre-industrial (a.k.a. primitive) technology.  In many ways, its about the process, not the product.

I think somewhere along the line while we were being trained to be professional consumers we forgot that we can do things for ourselves.  Now, we have nearly globalized the process, coercing others to spend their days/lives making junk we don’t need while we work at jobs we don’t care about to buy the things we don’t need.

Enough rant…






10 thoughts on “Craft, Plans, & Projects

  1. paleotool…i’m very intriqued by your thinkology. i to enjoy the primitive old ways tools & building. rant on, you are very correct in your thinking of the way society has sadly become. we have forgotten the ways that work & have come to rely on technology too much in most areas. my question is this…in building your “vardo”, how did you do the roof design? your insight on it would be very much appreciated!!! thank you!!! keep on keeping on my friend!!! wolfen

    • The roof arc and height were worked out on graph paper based on what I felt I would need for comfort. I then scribed this arc into the end walls and cut slots for the purlins. These were then attached and two sheets of wood paneling were screwed to the purlins. This was all covered in heavyweight roof felt.

      It sat this way through several rain storms with no apparent leaking. For my first trip I covered this whole mess with a heavy duty waterproof canvas tarp. I intended to remove this after the steel roofing arrived but as it fit so flat and seemed to provide some good insulation I left it when it was covered with the steel roofing.

      Hope this helps…

  2. You have inspired me to make a vardo similar to yours,and I am wondering about the stove’s piping through the wall and ceiling—I plan to vent it out the back wall as you did.I’ll send you picture when it is finished.By the way I am going to use a Sardine stove from as it seems to be the right size. Dave R.

  3. IMHO, a pattern needs to be made for the wearer, using fabric (something thin and flexible) to gather on the foot and cut and try until you have a good fit. Transfer to leather plus a little extra,go for it. Someone made the first ones without a pattern!

  4. Jennie Here
    Though I am not a Dumb Head fan I like this shaving horse. One suggestion. It looks like you adjust head height by a pegging system. Instead just pivot the work surface and put a sliding triangular chock under it. You get immediate and universal adjustment. by sliding the chock back and forth on the bench.
    Jennei Alexander

    • Hey Jennie,
      I’m not normally a Dumb-head user either. That one was a custom horse for a friend. All my wedges these days are wedges that are the inverted “T”-shaped piece under the work table. It slides back and forth to wedge just like any other decent horse. The holes are to accommodate extremely hefty pieces. Here is an image of my regular current horse. The only addition I’ve made is that the cross-bar is covered in leather.

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