Sunday, 20 December 2015

Last Tango for Venice...

Finally, the narrow boat model is finished, all bar an odd touch with a brush, here and there. Knocks and abrasions are unavoidable on such an awkward shape.
It's been screwed to its American Oak base with only just room to spare.

Off with the courier on Tuesday.

Anyway, here it is:-

And now?  Big clear up in the workshop.  The bit I like best, especially just before Christmas.

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Maybe I should finish the...

I have carted the McLaren M8F around from pillar to post for years.
I started it way back  at the Millenium's turn after measuring and photographing it at Scott Racing over a couple of days.
I then had to stop work on it because of our sojourns afloat and finally got it back recently from safe storage at my son's place.  I did a few bits and pieces, but now I have a bit of a pursuit gap, I thought I might just try to finish it.  Assuming I can work out what the sketches are that I did way back then. They're all there in an inch thick book!
Here's some of the work I did at the time:-
Zippo lighter for scale.
The aluminium work is all litho plate, with rivets done from behind with a slightly blunt scriber into dips in brass strip, held in the vice.
Front frame including pedal units.

Much more to come as I work my way through the mass of pipework and parts whose purpose now escapes me.  Unfortunately the car had long since gone to Holland and has since been sold again, I know not to whom.

Sunday, 6 December 2015

Have you you heard?...

Headphones always make my head itch, but it was worth it for a few hours of the most fabulous music today.  Weather iffy, couldn't think of any modelmaking to do, so I borrowed Chris's very basic headphones and while she watched the usual Sunday diet of Jamie Oliver and people with huge fortunes "Escaping to the Country", I went on youtube and listened to Gentle Giant, Leisure Society and Brand x.
I feel so much better now.

Time is never wasted when spent listening to really great music.  And the above 3 mentioned are great. In different ways.  And all three are probably rarely listened to now, as then.

Leisure Society are the modern band, that the wonderful Guy Garvey of Elbow brought to my attention on his late Sunday night radio show (as was).  The track Last of the Melting Snow struck me as possibly the best song written in the last 20 years.  Simple, beautifully written, played and sung.  I can never hear too much of it.  They have about 4 albums available, most of which is on youtube.

Gentle Giant were a prog rock band from the 70s. 3 brothers and some others playing everything from whimsical to heavy via madrigal, but always incredibly complex.  If you like a challenging listen, GG are for you. Never mind the "too-many-notes" pseudo complexity of Mozart or the mathematical challenge of Bach, GG will show you complexity of thought as much as musicality. Each plays a whole range of instruments with equal aplomb and inventiveness.  You think it reached a crescendo?  Think again.

Brand X will simply knock you into a cocked hat and clean out again.  The musicianship of the sometimes changing line-up never failed.  Phil Collins on several of the albums drums as well as any drummer you will ever have heard and SO much better than anything on Genesis or his solo albums.
Unbelievably complex and tight, he made all tracks with no overdubs. Percy Jones' bass playing on an instrument he made himself was always exemplary, especially his playing of jazz on a Fretless.
Morris Pert on keyboards is always creative, yet complimentary to all the other musicians.  John Goodsall's guitar can take you somewhere you didn't think possible.

I have always seen music as a frame in which I expect all corners to be filled, preferably squeezed.
The above will have you seeing the frame as bulging.

All you need is youtube.  I won't recommend single tracks because they're all equally good.  Just type in the bands and click on anything, but be prepared to spend longer than you expected.