Here's another small project happening amidst all the "real work" that needs to get done during this quarantine. I want to keep this one but after inquiries rolling in, it may go into the shop (or another just like it). Be Safe!
If you are an Instagram user, I started posting there last year. My address was hacked from a Russian IP and I ended up starting all over. We'll see if I can make it work this time... https://www.instagram.com/paleotool/ I was a skeptic at first because I don't use a phone as a primary platform to … Continue reading Follow on Instagram?
Learning a thing or two from the past...Part 1, 21st century Westerners are not the first to minimalize. There's a lot of recent talk about Minimalism as a social movement and this fits well with my personal philosophy and my interests in preindustrial technology and survival. Not long ago, minimalism was mostly associated with artists, … Continue reading Thoughts About Minimalism and Survival
About the early shoes...
"The first rule of Project Mayhem is that you do not ask questions..." this may be my new teaching mantra I am considering calling my custom footwear "Mayhem Shoes" (at least until Chuck Palahniuk's space monkey lawyers make me stop). I teach a couple classes about low-tech shoemaking a few times per year in the … Continue reading Mayhem Shoes for the Dystopian Survivor
It's coming together... Save Save
A rare self-portrait of the Maker responsible all this nonsense... I'll need to make a proper one; more in-focus and with a better mirror next time.
I know this is a little outside the normal material for this blog but there is very little that is normal about me anyway. I hope you can enjoy the message here. https://youtu.be/ja-n5qUNRi8
WELCOME BACK! I have been ignoring the blog for quite some time now but I have not been idle. Far from it. The vardo update project took on a life of it's own and it feels like a complete renewal of the living space. In the coming month I hope to make a video tour … Continue reading Re-tooling the PaleoTool
Sink, seating, and storage galore - I'm finally moving onto the luxuries that make this addition what it is meant to be; essentially moving some outdoor activities and living indoors with more amenities and easier foul-weather living. Beginning with a little sink re-purposed from an old copper mixing bowl set - This one was the … Continue reading Fitting Out and Fixing Problems, Vardo Remodel Part 9
Every home needs a door. It's a tricky bit that must fit well, open and close easily, provide some security, and hopefully, look good doing it. We found a mahogany, two-panel door at the Habitat Re-Store in Lubbock a couple months ago and since the price was right ($10), we bought it. It was … Continue reading Door and Frame, Vardo Remodel Part 8
The weekend was cold, I was tired (read lazy), and other things had to be attended to so this update is just baby steps in the big scheme. Although mine is a purely pragmatic build, I wanted an homage to the classic Dunton Reading wagon. Taking a plain profile and giving it simple compass curves … Continue reading Progress is slow but steady, Vardo Remodel Part 7
What follows is a somewhat terse step-by-step of the past couple weeks. I had about a week of stolen moments before the winter holidays to dive in and make as much progress as possible, knowing that winter could bring just about any kind of weather and a 60 degree variance in daily temperatures. My goal … Continue reading Fitting the exterior, Vardo Remodel Part 6
"We live in an age when unnecessary things are our only necessities." — Oscar Wilde I'm not one for New Year resolutions. However, it is a time of reflection and I'm glad for the progress I have made in decluttering my life and prioritizing what truly matters over the past few years. Maybe 2016 is … Continue reading Let Go of the Things that Do Not Matter
Chief of sanding, varnish, and stain department while we remodel and rejuvenate the vardo. This was tedious and difficult job that needed to be done. During this phase, we took the opportunity to fill holes, plug countersunk screws and rethink the interior furnishings all around. It will be a cozy little palace when we're finished.
All earthly structures begin with a foundation of some sort, even living wagons. In our case, the trailer frame is the earth, the ledge and subfloor serve as the foundation upon which, all is built. I proposed to attach the new section pretty much the same way and addition is connected to a house, by … Continue reading Tying it all together, Vardo Remodel Part 5
Taking the Biggest Step of All; Transferring the old vardo to the new trailer. Now that I was confident that the box was going to hold up under the stress of the transfer I was ready to slip the trailer under the body. It was a whole lot less dramatic than I was afraid it … Continue reading “Give me a long enough lever and a place to stand and I will move the Earth” Remodeling the Vardo, Part 4
Caution - suggested nudity, implied whiskey, and some old-fashioned Scottish engineering to liven up the day. Now that I have your attention: Saturday morning came and it was time to start stripping down to the bare essentials (hence the first part of the title, suggested by SB). After an evening of pulling everything out of … Continue reading Naked and Afraid! Remodel of the Little Green Vardo, Part 3
Preparing the trailer and laying the foundation for the Vardo. A couple of issues had to be addressed before any real construction could begin. Unfortunately, a day job and early sunsets dictate my work hours so I only have a short time each night to get something done throughout the week. Here's the summary: The … Continue reading Remodel of the Little Green Vardo, Part 2
It just seems right. The timing, the monetary investment, the effort. After adding up the mileage from the log book I keep with the Vardo, I see we have clocked over 21,000 miles since she was first put to the road in February of 2010. I have, no doubt, missed some small side trips and … Continue reading Remodel and Rebirth of the Little Green Vardo
"When idle, be not solitary. When solitary, be not idle," Samuel Johnson (1709 – 1784)
At least in my limited experience with the wide world.
If you know me at all you know that I am interested in pack baskets. Because of this, they catch my eye when I'm browsing historic images. I could find no information whatsoever about this one. I suspect maybe Tibet in the early 20th century? Pack baskets have been underrated in the west. I'm glad … Continue reading A Nice Pack Basket
"Here is the test of wisdom, Wisdom is not finally tested in schools, Wisdom cannot be pass’d from one having it to another not having it, Wisdom is of the soul, is not susceptible of proof, is its own proof, Applies to all stages and objects and qualities and is content, Is the certainty of … Continue reading Grow in the Open Air
I recently got around to repairing my partner's atlatl for an upcoming throw at the Landmark. It's been in use for seven years now and suffered some dings as well as losing it's wooden hook. The handle is oak and the original cocobolo hook has been replaced with antler which will hopefully last a lifetime. … Continue reading Spear Throwing Time
To my beautiful daughter.
Are you aware, gentle reader, that the bicycle is closely associated with women's liberation, the suffragettes, and other forms of late 19th century promiscuity and other offensive behaviors among the fair sex? Or that a truly rideable modern velocipede machine post-dates practical flying machines? Warning - a little tasteful nudity ahead. Bicycling was the final … Continue reading Have a Look at the Racy “Waverley Belle” Velocipede
As if I didn't have enough irons in the fire... I decided to make (and learn) a new instrument this summer; a three-string cigar box guitar. It took a few weekends to get it right; figure out the design, apply a finish, and re-work a few details in the setup before I was pleased with … Continue reading Distracted and Sidetracked More Than Usual
As an undaunted woodworker I have made most of my musical instruments over the years. I could never justify purchasing a high-end, high-quality instrument but I could make a reasonable proxy. My interest has been rekindled in the last couple years, making my third banjo for myself and reviving one of the mountain dulcimers as … Continue reading Home Grown Music