Monday, August 29, 2011


They really were a bit  more interesting. Admittedly the pentagonal cylinders and tori were more challenging to produce, although accurate cubes turned out to be more challenging than expected. The linear polygons were a good bit easier than the toroidal ones. For all but the rhombic rods, the solution that we favored was to begin with a fat dowel. We laid the blanks against a scrap of plank and made a reference line lengthwise, and then matched up  the polygons on the ends. Using the same plank, marks from one polygon to the other marked where the points (edges) touched the surface. Then it was just whittling down the humps between the lines and sanding them, trying to leave the lines to the last then erasing them.

 The methods worked out for the smaller polygons came in handy when I started thinking about packing. How circles relate to polygons fascinated me and they seemed like they'd be a thought provoking bunch of blocks. Fitting the polygonal rings tight enough so they didn't slide down unless pushed was a slow tuning challenge. Thank goodness for self adhesive sandpaper sanding disks. Using the home made wood files I made we managed to get a pretty fun set going. Who knows how far this would have progressed if I hadn't burned up the vacuum cleaner using it to capture the dust coming off the band-saw. Oh well, the neighbors downstairs were good sports about my hours of hand sawing and chiseling but no doubt they'd had about a dose of my block mania. Chloe and Madison were great at testing and didn't mind that I kept showing up with grocery sacks full of new and odd kinds of blocks, but Amy, Niko and Jason though very helpful with the hours of hand-sanding were also ready to round off the block fest.

 Lately I've had my hands full organizing the Blocklogic section of  The Flatware County General Store. The retro collection just mentioned already rate a couple of mugs, but the arithmetic blocks (the Buffalo Mao collection) are so far the biggest part of this section.
With eleven so far, Mineral Comix # 47 still has a few more surprises in store.
 "Dem Bones," are a pair of blocks that started out to be dice. The idea of dice that had human skulls for numbers though strange seemed kinda fun, till i got well into the first one. You probably haven't counted the spots on dice, there's twenty one (each). Well before I finished the first one I was way tired of trying to find new and interesting ways to draw human skulls.

The thing is one dice (di, dye, whatever) isn't quite right, eh? Still the prospect of another few hours on a block I was already tired of, well maybe one die wasn't so bad.

Then I started looking at animal skulls. Awesome, so there was no way to make twenty one of them fit on a block less than two inches square. These animal skulls rock. The first challenge was picking six that I could fit on block faces, and the next was burning them in. 
 The Blocklogic section is due to be well represented in The Flatware County General Store. So far there are only 15 mugs in the Blocklogic section, but we're just scratching the surface. The Olmec, Toasters And Squid, The Okinawa Aquarium, and the Hamlin/Kelly block all seem like candidates, but I'm leaning toward the cornbread next I think.