Wednesday, May 4, 2011

An Invention to Save my Aching Wrist...and $700. Dollars

What is that Magical Contraption?

So if you didn't know, I'm a workin fool. I love my work....and work in General.  Well last night I kind of hit a wall.  I've been having really bad pains in my right wrist.... And finally last night it was too painful to work.  OMG, what am I going to do. 
Well the wrist that hurts the most by far is my right one.... Luckily ," I do my work with my Left Hand...."

Too funny.....
I was at a loss to figure out what the problem with my wrist was...I haven't injured it....but every day it just seems to get worse and worse..... and NOT WORKING is not an option....unless we want to starve and be Homeless.... So I meditated for a second....  Then as usual after a period of meditation came the realization that I WAS A MORON.
Sure, I hold my carving tool in my left hand...but I hold the piece I'm carving..... in my Right.   Like a Vice.   I do very intricate detailed work, and have to hold the piece like it's in a vice, constantly turning and manipulating it, to carve it..... For hours upon Hours.

No, that's not some Strange Crab Claw,it's my hand Gripping and Manipulating a small piece of Ivory

Make a Note....
The human hand is not a vice.
When used as a Vice, and constantly rotating small pieces in the fingers for hours at a time.
The freakin hand is gonna start having problems.
And mine had problems so bad I had to quit workin for the night..... and I'm so far behind right now.

So I had to figure out my options.

Option 1.   Work in Pain until I couldn't work any more...then starve and be homeless
Option 2.  Hire some poor folk in other undeveloped parts of the world to do my work for me. ( Like so many others are doing these days.... Well that wasn't an option either...... My work is really about Giving Energy..... energy that is passing through me, not someone else.  So scratch that idea.
Option 3.  There must be a tool developed for just such a purpose as holding tightly, yet being able to easily rotate and change positions in like 360 degrees.  I seemed to remember seeing something like that in a catalog.  So I Googled.
YAY, there is such a tool, it's called a "Engravers Block" and I looked it up... Great.  
We're pretty poor right now, land tax bill came this month and everything has to go towards that....
But how expensive could it be, and my working is Kind of a Priority.
Let's see.....
This one was only $500.00

you gotta be kidding me, for that simple little thing...
I'll look somewhere else.
Well all the good ones were around 700.00.... There were some around $400.
OH well, right now 50.00 would be streching it...
So I needed to Invent something....

Well, I had an old heavy hollow brass ball hanging on a contraption from my ceiling in my work room....It was a balance weight for my Dremel held it up in the air for me.  ( Thanks Brandon, I made it out of that antique Pattern Maker you gave me....)
Course now I gotta find another weight for that..I have one in mind.
So I really needed that ball.....
I cut it off and filled it with Bronze chunks for more weight.
I attached a piece of Sassafras wood to it that I can mount the piece I'm working on.
Then I made a Base for it out of Oak,
with a top of Lignan Vitae (Thanks Reid for That)...
Made a hole in the top for the ball to sit down in...and swivel smoothly.,
And the whole thing turns on the Car Bearing..

In the top there is a notch for the nipple on the back of the ball to come up through if I needed a really low angle.
Would have been way better if there was no Nipple.... But alas there was, so I modified.
Then I mounted it to a Myrtlewood Base with an old Wheel Bearing off my old Cavalier.
Now what I have has way more flexibility than the 700 dollar one,
holds it like a Rock,
but is sooo easy to move around.
And I can put it easily in any position, keep moving it a little at a time, with no strain on my Hand.
The Lignan Vitae "Seat" that it sits in is Hard and smooth.
I think it's the most dense wood in the word.
 With the Myrtle, the Oak and the Brass ball filled with Bronze...It weighs a ton....which is what you want.  Keeps it solid.

Attach the Piece with double sided Tape.

So now I'm back to work....painless.
Plus all the neck pain was from crouching over the piece, which is now up right in the perfect area to work on without wrecking my neck.

Life is so Good...


  1. Way Cool! Now sell them for an honest price and you have an added income on top of the great work you are already doing!

  2. Glad your clever invention worked.

  3. Ingenious, you are! (For some reason, I felt the need to say this in Yoda-speak). You amaze me Jeff!



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