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March 2021 Meeting Report


FWWA Meeting held 8th March.

HOORAY! We have managed to get 2021 under way at last.

This was at the Melville Woodturners Hall in Kardinya with a presentation of Knife making from the Manning Men’s Shed.

Knife Making

Picture showing the knives made by the speaker in their display boxes

Allan Waugh introduced David Vicary and Dale Sniffen, both members of the Manning Men’s shed who had brought a collection of their knives and leather work to show us. David spoke about how he had become interested in the magic that is the Damascus process for producing steel and details of a recent course he had completed in knife making.

Whilst we are all familiar with the hardness of steel and how that affects its ability to hold an edge, I do not think we consider the layers of metal needed or the physical effort required by the steel maker to achieve that result.

More knives made by the presenter

He talked about the gas and electric forges they had acquired at the Men’s shed and how the different quenching techniques they used changed the properties of the steel you produced in the end.

Together with some impressive videos and pictures, we were taken back through the history of steel making, to how they make their knives today.


Leather Working

Picture of the tools used by Dale in his leatherworking

Dale then took over the floor to describe his journey into how he had become interested in leather making and all things associated with this ancient craft.

We saw different examples of the knife pouches he had made and discussed what he had learnt about the types of leather needed and how to choose the best material for the task required, including what animal or where on the hide it came from.

He showed us all the tools that were needed to work and shape the leather into everything from handles, pouches, straps, or belts, including the waxed thread and needles required for stitching it all together.

I think everyone was amazed at the effort involved but even more in the beauty and quality of the work they produced.

Other items

Following our tea and coffee break Len Starkey showed us the honour board for our life members that he had finished during the shutdown.

A picture of the glue brush kit that Kevin was talking about

Once again Kevin showed us more tools that we did not know we needed. This evening it was how much easier gluing could be if you used a dedicated silicone tray and brushes. No more washing out brushes just peel the glue off when its dry. Learn more about these glue brushes.

Veneered box made by Ian Houghton

Ian Houghton showed us his curved box with its sliding lids, made by forming 7 layers of jarrah veneer around a profile. Something different in shape and beautifully finished.

Peter Bell talked about how he had found “golf grip tape” which is a different type of double-sided tape, but you are able to reduce the “Stickiness” if needed so that there is less risk if damaging your veneers etc.

Melville Wood Turners

Morris Buzzacott Reserve
51 Williamson Rd
Kardinya WA 6163