Monday, June 2, 2014

Shopping and Other Natter

No particular big projects this weekend, but some shopping and working on this and that.

Saturday morning we went to the local Tandy/Leather Factory store for various things. They had leather on sale that we use for molding hard pouch fronts (and other things), and smaller/lighter pieces also on sale that I got for belt loops. Yes, I just got leather for and made a bunch of belt loops a month or so ago. And I've gone through most of them already.  Also  got a punch for rounding off corners, and a rubber pad for using under the Universal Mangler when cutting, in hopes it will be more quiet.

Saturday afternon we went to Ace Hardware for extension cords (for the new air conditioners for our bedroom), and found a folding utility table that followed Ron home, for use as a work table at events, and for whatever else we might need a work table for. 

Saturday afternoon Ron set up the new work table, and then tried cutting with the Universal Mangler on a piece of plywood with the new rubber pad on top of the plywood. Definitely quieter than the cutting board on top of the hollow plastic table. Ron didn't want to just experiment on scrap, so I laid out three large square hard pouch backs, with long flaps, to put leaves, and gears, and scales on.

Saturday afternoon/evening I reduced the leather that I got for belt loops to a pile of belt loops, some sporran dee holders, and a pile of scrap. I saved all the scrap, weighed everything, and determined that I used 85% of the leather/had 15% scrap. I've been SWAG-ing 10% wasteage. But, the pieces I cut the belt loops from were fairly small, so there would be a higher scrap ratio than cutting down sides, I think. I have two black sides coming (scheduled delivery tomorrow), at least one of which I can probably completely cut down in one sitting, so I may repeat the experiment with one of them - I've thought about doing it before, but we're not usually in a position to completely cut up a whole side at one go. 

Yesterday I worked on four of the six pouches we cut out last weekend. They're not ready to lace together yet, but we got significant work done on them.

Found, by recommendation, a new leather supplier on Saturday - Hide House ( I'd heard of them before, but hadn't followed up, or else they hadn't hit my radar. Saturday I signed up for wholesale pricing on the website, and they're definitely worth buying from at wholesale prices. They have what I suspect is the leather that I have in red and blue that I've been kind of hoarding, as well as a nice green. I'll probably order some green in the near future. 

The orders of tails and hardware that I placed yesterday were out for delivery when last I checked, and I expect my two sides and more hardware tomorrow. 

Hopefully we'll get more of the rehearsal schedule for "Titanic, the Musical" at tonight's rehearsal, so I can get a better idea of how many of them I'll be at (default schedule is 6:30-9:30 Monday-Thursday nights). 

Finally ordered/paid for the proof press this weekend, as well as a couple pieces of bookbinding equipment - I'd planned on getting a cradle for punching the sewing holes in signatures/booklets, but I also added on a finishing press. I don't actually expect to need the press to start out, but I decided to splurge on that, as the other intermediate equipment is less expensive, so picking up the other things will be easier than deciding to buy the press. Hopefully that makes sense. 

Ron's now up to three versions of sporrans with eyeglass cases on the flaps. 

The first one, you may recall, was made by me the Thursday before ACen, while waiting for the plumber.  Unfortunately, it had three problems. The first was bad gusset design, which wasn't too terrible. The second was that it was up on top of the pouch on the flap, which wasn't a great location. The third, and worst, was that I got it onto the flap completely crooked. It got Ron through ACen, but that was about it.

The second was made shortly after ACen, with a better overall design and location. 

Then Ron made a third one, which is pretty similar to #2, with minor upgrades. At this point he thinks he's got the design and construction figured out, and is debating if he wants to make some pouches with the added pocket for sale - it was intended to hold glasses, but it could hold any relatively long and narrow thing. 

Ron's also been working on new cost computation spreadsheets. He's using more auto-magic functions than I did (or quite know how to do). 

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