There isn't much on the bead table today. I do have this new Fretz hammer that I can't wait to use. It's the bigger one on the bottom. It's exactly what I was looking for and is perfect--except for one thing. The hammer head is a little loose. I'm going to call the company I got it from and see if there's something I can do or if I should trade it in.
I found out I needed this hammer when I was doing the foldforming. Remember this pod from a previous Bead Table Wednesday?
In order to make the curve along the folded edged and thus the pod shape the hammer blows have to move the metal. This requires a cross pein shaped hammer head. The little hammer on top was the closest I had, and I have used it quite a bit for texturing the edges of pendants. It does work for texturing folds, but it will not move the metal enough to form the pod shape. It's just too lightweight. I even tried using a lot of force and hit really hard. Mostly this hurt my wrist. I broke out the smaller Fretz hammer in the middle above. It is a raising hammer and has faces like a cross pein, but several times wider. It did move the metal. It tends to smooth the metal at the same time so I didn't get as much texture as I'd hoped for. I used this hammer to finish out the curve.
The new Fretz hammer is the Michael Good cross pein and it has a nice weight. I think it will move the metal without me using any great force. That's pretty much what I want. That's what tools are for--they allow us to do work without using a lot of force.
In addition to Kim St. Jean's excellent DVD on "Metal Fold Forming" I have been studying Charles Lewton-Brain's book "Foldforming." This is a fantastic book metal workers. Charles Lewton-Brain is credited with inventing an entirely new form of metal work when he developed foldforming. Next I want to study the info he has on his site.
I do still have the remaining items in my muffin tin that I didn't get finished for the challenge. I spent four days at my parents over 4th of July weekend after my Dad had a little health scare (he's okay.) And Friday I'm going to Houston for a weekend business meeting for some volunteer work I do. I probably won't be able to touch the bead table until next week.
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