Busy weekend

Jim turning yet another bowl!

Jim turning yet another bowl!

The Wympole Green Woodworkers were in on Saturday as Sunday was the Cambs County Show which is always exceedingly busy.

The WGW group

The WGW group

Gordon making his axe handle

Gordon making his axe handle

The usual motley crew were in but we had some newcomers, namely Gordon who spent the day finishing off his new axe handle. Jim lent him his Titan jaws with a modification to help spin the axe handle around as you spokeshave it -an excellent idea.

Paul learning the finer points of peening

Paul learning the finer points of peening

A well use carving block

A well used carving block

Paul spent the day learning how to peen his scythe blade (not an easy task to learn). To get an idea of what is required it’s best to get some 1-2mm mild steel plate; this deforms rather rapidly under the pressure of the peening hammer however it does show you what happens much more visibly and, once you master this, you can move on to some harder steel that has more carbon in it. After that you can peen a blade and know what should happen. Carbon steel scythe blades have about  .4% to .5% carbon in them which makes them harder wearing but are still reasonably malleable. My competition Hartstahl 110cm blade has more carbon (about .6%) which makes it harder and more difficult to peen but it does not need honing so often. Hartstahl means hard blade in Austrian.

My attempt at a fan bird, looks like it won't fly

My attempt at a fan bird… looks like it won’t fly

The carving blocks and bowl tables were in use and proved a real hit when axe trimming ash for the pole lathes. My visit was rather brief as I had a sheep shearing course on but, at the end of the day, I did come back to Cobbs Wood Farm and tried to make a fan bird… Alistair had made a few very good ones, but mine? Well a fire lighter more like!

Sheep shearing course

Sheep shearing course

Short back and sides Sir?

Short back and sides Sir?

The sheep shearing went well and the two ladies managed to trim a few sheep each. In fact the sheep were young rams from Home Farm. They also trimmed the feet, checked the teeth (as this can tell you how old the sheep are) and rolled the fleece up.

Here is some information from infovet:

Aging Sheep and Goats By Their Teeth


Introduction: Both sheep and goats have a total of 32 teeth. They do not have any upper incisors. The dental formula for sheep and goats is as follows:

0/4 incisors, 3/3 pre-molars, 3/3 molars. The first number in each formula represents how many sets of teeth are on the upper jaw; the second number indicates how many sets of teeth are on the lower jaw. For example, the 0/4 means that sheep/goats have no upper incisors, but have 4 sets of lower incisors (8 lower incisors in all). Most of the time the dental formula looks like this 2 (0/4 incisors, 3/3 pre-molars, 3/3 molars) = 32.

All baby sheep and goats are born with deciduous teeth (teeth that will fall out). Deciduous teeth are much smaller than permanent teeth. The deciduous teeth are replaced with permanent teeth as the animal ages. The following table outlines when the permanent teeth will appear or erupt:

Permanent Tooth Eruption in Sheep and Goats
Permanent tooth Age at Eruption
Incisor (I1) 1-1.5 years
Incisor (I2) 1.5-2 years
Incisor (I3) 2.5-3 years
Incisor (I4) 3.5-4 years
Premolars 1.5-2 years
Molar (M1) 3 months
Molar (M2) 9-12 months
Molar (M3) 1.5-2 years

 

This is a diagram of the incisors associated with the lower jaw. These incisors are the teeth that can easily be used to age an animal. In this diagram, all the incisors are permanent teeth.

Common Dentition of Sheep:

Dentition of a yearling sheep. Two incisors are permanent (black arrows).

 

Dentition of a 2 year old sheep. Four incisors are permanent (black arrows).

 

Dentition of a 4 year old sheep or “full mouth.” All incisors are permanent.

 

Dentition of a 6-8 year old sheep. Notice the wide spacing between the teeth.

 

Dentition of an extremely aged sheep (from 8-12 years of age), frequently referred to as a “broken mouth.” Notice how this ewe has severely worn or missing teeth, with receding gum lines.

So there you go, now you can all age sheep.

Sundays County show, rather dull to say the least

Sunday’s County Show (sky rather dull to say the least)

Darn! The weather broke on Sunday and  it was rather wet BUT at least it wasn’t lashing down which would have spoilt the day. As it was the show was very busy.

Our stand

Our stand

Stick furniture

Stick furniture

 

 

 

 

 

We provided some entertainment at the Wimpole NT stall- Tom was blacksmithing (once I had shown him how to make a ram’s head hook), Jim was turning a bowl (well quite a few) and Alistair was making fan birds again. I, on the other hand, spent my day riving some oak and making quartered oak planks to make a box.

Foxcote fencing

Foxcote fencing

Jack trying to hide from Mr Sugar

Jake trying to hide from Mr Sugar

Quite  a few stalls to wander about and gander at but I mostly concentrated on the woody stalls- there was some stick furniture and, of course, Tim Radford’s Wonderwoods willow weaving fence work.

Thatcher

Thatcher

Then there was a thatcher plying his trade  and next to him was the vintage tractor section.

Vintage tractor display

Vintage tractor display

The GTS stand

The GTS stand

Timber screw splitter

Timber screw splitter

Hydraulic post hole borer

Hydraulic post hole borer

Next to our stall was a local tree surgery firm (GTS); oh how I wish we had some of this equipment- a hydraulic log splitter and post hole borer, a very big Timberwolf wood chipper and a stump grinder (don’t need one of those though) plus loads of other gadgets. Still, we had a nice forge to keep us warm.

Tom blacksmithing

Tom blacksmithing

About Sadeik

You may ask why "Sadeik" well it means friend in arabic. Worked in Jordan a lot doing tree surgery you see. I have worked in forestry since I left school with a two years in Telecom. Went back to forestry and tree surgery as it may not have paid as much but was far more interesting and dangerous. Spent a lot of years mountaineering, caving and canoeing too. At 29 I went to Bangor University to study Forestry and soil science then did an MSc in Water engineering all very interesting. By a quirk of fate in 1995 ended up helping sort out the woodland and park at Wimpole, funny thing was then I only intended to stay six months or so, but 18 years later I'm still here learning all the time. That's the best bit, if I wasn't able to learn something new every year I would not have stayed and as you get older you realise that the grass is not so green in the next field after all. In fact my patch is getting greener while much of the rest is getting browner.
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