February 2003


President's corner

Next meeting

Last meeting

This 'n That

BAWA contacts



Last Meeting

President Craig welcome us to the meeting and noted that the club is starting its third decade! He forgot the champagne at home (so he said.)

Harold Patterson did an engaging presentation on selecting, refurbishing and tuning used metal hand planes. Harold began by saying that good metal planes are not infrequently discarded at garage sales by people who don't know what they are selling. A discriminating buyer needs to look a plane over, especially the metal castings, to find one that can be restored into a usable tool. Cracks, excessive pitting and excessive warpage are important to avoid. Thinly casted or formed planes are also to be avoided. Harold then described cleaning a plane with mineral spirits, tooth brushes and steel wool after dismantling it. He also showed a homemade apparatus that uses electrolysis to de-rust a plane body and cautioned to remove all brass parts first to avoid their damage. The tuning up process begins with flattening the bottom using sandpaper on a sheet of glass. The receiving area is cleaned and flattened so the frog sits well. The tote is tightened and rebuilt if necessary and finally the blade and chip breaker are flattened and sharpened.

Harold left us with a nice handout including a bibliography to learn more. A copy is in the library. Thank you, Harold for a very complete presentation.


Treasurer: Gene Wagg reported that we have about $1,500 and about 15 members renewed that evening. He also announced that Arnie has donated $25 to the club. Thank you Arnold. This is not the first time he has done this.

Toy Workshop: Harold Patterson announced that of the three rocking horses made, one was donated to the First Presbyterian Church in Petaluma, the source of our "holy Oak." The other two went to the Samaritan House in San Mateo.

Programs: Jay Perrine gave us a brief review of what to expect in the coming month's meetings including presentations by Ilar of the College of the Redwoods, John Levine of Woodwork Magazine and Ron Hock, forger of plane irons.

President: Craig Mineweaser described a survey that he and Don Naples are preparing in which they will ask what the members would like to see the club do in the future.

Raffle/Door Prizes: Stan Booker showed two boards that were in the raffle. One was Canary wood, the other was Spanish Cedar. The Door Prize was a book-matched set of veneers.

Library: Mike Cooper wants suggestions as to what to buy for the library. The list of what is currently in the library can be found in this newsletter.


*It was announced that Mike Cooper our Librarian and Assistant Manager of the Dublin Woodcraft store is willing to give BAWA 3% of the receipts earned from purchases by BAWA members. Give your sales receipts to Gene Wagg and tell Woodcraft you're from BAWA when you make your purchase. This has to be done within six months of purchase.

*Not to be outdone, Arnie announced that he gives a 10% discount to BAWA members who take his classes. See the Classifieds for the list of his classes.

*Paul Reif talked about the upcoming summer classes at the College of the Redwoods and the seemingly impossible procedure of registering successfully. He promoted the idea of a "designated driver" being sent up with applications from any club members interested along with contributions to cover his expenses.

*Two auctions were announced, one at Big B Lumberteria in Alameda and another called the Albinos Auction coming up the week after the meeting.

*Tony Fanning has a Shopsmith for sale and asked if anybody was interested. No one was so he will try Ebay.

Guests and New Members

I apologize but I couldn't keep up with the introductions as to what these folks are interested in so I'll just list their names. Welcome to all. Obie Gilkerson, Eric Kuehne, Rudy Labrado, Dudley Braun and former member and visitor from England, Dave Martel.

Show and Tell

Linda Salter showed a segmented bowl of Sedua and Wenge she made using about 80 pieces rather simple compared to the ones she makes with over one thousand pieces!

Paul Reif showed us his "Krenov" shooting board including his own designed adjustment for shooting angles. The ramp was made from Lignum Vitae.

Arnie Champaigne showed a telephone stand he made for his girl friend in five days from the venerable "holy oak." It had flared legs and he talked about some of the design features that had to be considered in building it. The top had a Walnut frame with an Ebony strip and Fiddle Back Red Oak.

Jerry Robinson showed us a chair he had designed and built of poplar at a two-week course he had taken in Camden, Maine from Brian Boggs. They had to do scale drawings then full size drawings and then build a small model. He shipped the parts home and assembled it. He is asking for help and advice as to how to steam bend the one piece vertical back and leg since he plans to make six chairs from Cherry. Jerry can be reached at 415/387-6913 or jhrob@earthlink.net.

Mark Rand told us of his trip to the Sam Maloof home and museum in Southern California. He also had photos.

Carl Johnson showed a cradle he made, the third for yet another grandchild. Flipping it over, the cradle becomes the seat and the mattress a cushion. The material he used was of course, "holy oak." He explained about the compound miter and 6 degree angles which us rookies listened to in awe. He also displayed a mat from his wife with the words: MY WORLD/MY UNIVERSE/MY GARAGE. Happy wood working, Carl.

Main Presentation

The main presentation of the evening was given by Merryll Saylan, who was featured in the June 2002 issue of Woodwork Magazine. She described a remarkable career of becoming a woodworker while raising a house full of kids. With the use of slides she described her training in design school focusing on assignments in which she used wood to create the designs. She highlighted the influence of her brother (or was it husband?) in the construction business and construction materials. She also showed the remarkable influence of Asian cooking, barbells and a salt marsh next to her home in her work. Merryll made a good hearted jab at many woodworkers who rely too heavily on the beauty of the wood itself and showed some pieces that were heavily dyed to hide the grain and color and thereby emphasize the shape itself. She talked about the usefulness of bleaching wood white and then using dyes for various unusual effects.

Merryll currently teaches at the College of Arts and Crafts in Oakland and Henderson Ranch in Colorado.