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Excerpt from
Issue #192 January 2007


A drawknife is unmatched for roughing out shapes quickly and accurately. In this example we use straight carbon W-1 tool steel. It may not be as tough as more exotic steels, but the ease with which it can be forged and heat treated offsets any small advantage that may be gained by using harder to work materials.

There's a drop rod with a ring that forms a handle to lift the ring and place it on the other side of the window on this curtian pull-back. The hook is bent to where it holds everything at an angle. It has enough 'throat' to accept both rings easily for the open position. All the rod handles are different and can be a lot of fun, design wise.

The coil spiral is a counterweight to hold down the roll arm on this toilet paper holder. The bracket and the roll arm have interlocking (forged) notches. To change the roll (or just play with it as you sit there), you lift the coil thingy, grab the roll and slide it off. It pivots vertically on a tenon. The roll arm is pipe with the ends forged shut and the proper tabs welded into place.

Itís hard to find stair rods other than the standard cast brass versions. This design adds a little non-traditional flair to the concept, and is relatively easy to make. The forged keepers are fullered and bent to form a channel for the rod. Loop and scroll finials are forged on the end of the rod, unlike the standard screw-on brass finials