Bone mounts

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Bone mounts

Post  Yuri on Mon Nov 29, 2010 10:36 pm

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I always disliked plastic fantastic for mounts, whatever name it comes under.
This is a step-by step of making a bone ferrule. The bone is deer, shankbone. The only thing not obvious from the pics is that you don't drill out the hole in the bone, but have to sort of grind it. Bone will explode if you try to introduce a twist drill into the existing cavity in the middle. You need to use a rotary rasp of the right diameter, in a drill press.
By the way, this one was not made for a specific pipe of any kind, I just did it to demonstrate how it's done. It was a scrap piece of drilled out wood.
Any questions, ask them here.
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Re: Bone mounts

Post  Yuri on Mon Nov 29, 2010 10:43 pm

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Another example. This one is cowbone, the process is the same, except that the inner diameter was done on the lathe, as I don't have anything that will grind a hole as large as this.
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Re: Bone mounts

Post  Bob Salter on Tue Nov 30, 2010 12:35 pm

Nice work. How do you treat the bone before you use it? I seem to recall boiling bone for ages before use and then I discovered that you cant drill it as you mentioned above. I believe I gave up at that point. I would certainly retry it after seeing your results. I work for a place that makes corian worktops for hospitals and dentists so Im stockpiling offcuts of that for sometime use for mounts. Other than that I like boxwood for mounts.

Bob
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Re: Bone mounts

Post  Yuri on Tue Nov 30, 2010 4:35 pm

Boiling is only needed just up to te point when it boils. Overdoing it will gradually boil the erm, not gelatine, but what gelatine comes from, don't remembre the name, out of the bone. So you will end up with just a block of calcium. I just boil it enough for the meat to be scraped off easily. It is also important to do it as soon as possible, so the marrow doesn't have time to soak into the bone. And cut off the two ends straightaway, preferrably not leaving any of the spongy bone stuff that only starts towards the ends.So ideally you have a clean tube, solid all the way (I mean the walls are solid), with just a bit of meat attached.
Drilling is difficult not because of the boiling, but because there is already an irregular-shaped bore there. The corners of a twist drill will grab the bone at two poins, and that is just too much for the bone.
Talking about wooden mounts, holly is a very good one. It's nearly as tough as boxwood, and is snow-white. Some varieties have no grain pattern, too. And it will stay white indefinitely, not darken with time.
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Re: Bone mounts

Post  Art on Sun Jan 02, 2011 1:44 am

Thanks for the images and techniques, Yuri. Is bone fairly resistant to breaking (as when the piece is dropped)? Is it less dent-prone than wood?
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Re: Bone mounts

Post  verdatum on Sun Jan 02, 2011 5:25 am

What is the best way to get bone anyhow? The only answer I've ever gotten is go to my local petshop and buy a doggy bone. I've only ever seen one or two websites selling real bone in small quantities.

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Re: Bone mounts

Post  Yuri on Sun Jan 02, 2011 3:58 pm

When it comes to breaking, bone is very much the same as ivory. Just don't boil the life out of it when cleaning it. I only just bring it to the boil before taking it off, and scraping it. Denting is not a problem at all.
Buying. My way it's the butchers department in the supermarket. In other places probably a friendly butcher. The rear thighbone is our friend here, that's the round tubular one. The younger the cow (calf) the smaller the inner diameter.
Deerbone. I get it from a freezing works nearby, that specialises in venison. In other parts of the world you have to find your own supplier, can't help you there.
One more thing. Just like with timber, you need to dry bone before use. It does change dimensions from when fresh. Can't say for how long, but a few weeks minimum is a good idea. A few months is a better idea.

About the pet bones. I read in another frum that these often have had intensive boiling and treatment with all sort of chemicals, so I'd say they are better avoided. Start from fresh, that way you know what it will be up to.
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Re: Bone mounts

Post  Yuri on Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:24 pm

There was a request for a more detailed explanation. Well, here goes.
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For smaller bore in bone I use the kind of rotary file like in the photo. It doesn't have to be cylindrical, I used ball-shaped ones, too. As long as you keep the bone straight, the rasp of any shape should leave a cylindrical bore. (the walls are actually quite smooth, though certainly not mirror-smooth.)
For larger diameter mounts I mount a section of a cow tibia on a faceplate on the lathe. The high-tech holding device is a few pieces of double-sided tape. The picture with the vice is where I really push the bone onto the piece of wood. (by the way, the wooden block is also held to the faceplate by strips of double-sided tape, it is really strong grip.) The last but one pic is the chisels I use. They all are made from old files. They also will have the side edges used as much as the front cutting edge, so prepare for them getting thinner and thinner as you use them. You will have to sharpen them continuously, and I mean continuously. That means a swipe or two on the bone, and regrind, another couple of swipes, and regrind. Don't try to push it using blunt chisels, as you might knock the bone off the block.
The last photo shows what it looks like, a bell, a headstock and a (unturned yet) mount on a section of a drone. The wood is actually almond, ebonised. No, not stained, chemically ebonised. I can do an explanation of that one if anyone interested.
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Re: Bone mounts

Post  Art on Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:51 pm

Yuri, you're a gem! Thanks for the very helpful photos.

What kind of double stick tape is that?

After you grind the files to use them as turning tools, do you heat treat them? Or do you grind them gently and slowly so you don't lose the inherent hardness of the original file?

Sure, it'd be great to hear about your ebonizing process. The wood looks great from a distance.

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Re: Bone mounts

Post  Yuri on Fri Dec 23, 2011 9:06 pm

The double sided tape is the ordinary stuff from any stationery shop. Scotch, I think.
The tools are just grinded. (ground?) I try not to overheat tem, but really, don't make much of a fuss about it all. Once, when after a lot of grinding, the chisel was obviously getting to a point where tempering was going away (close to the handle. The original files are very hard where the file part is, but quite soft toward the handle, to prevent breaking), well, I simply heated up the edge to cherry red, and stuck it into water. that is tempering, OK, except I have no idea about just what colour to heat the steel up, really. Well, it worked just fine, crude as it was. I used ordinary gas gun, whatever it's called.
The ebonising is like this. It works on some woods, not so well on others, and not at all on yet others. Tannin content is the key. Cherry, almond, plum, and other prunus species are very good. Oak, walnut, and probably chestnut are very good, too. There are a number of local , native hardwoods that are good, but since they are not exported, I'm not going into details.
There are two ways that I know of. One is to dissolve some steel, or preferrably rust in white vinegar. That's all. Paint the liquid onto the wood, it will turn black. The other involves nitric acid. Now this stuff is difficult to get these days, at least in a lot of places, due to terrorism concerns. It is not actually illegal as such, but not easy to obtain. It is the traditional substance, though. In itself it can be used to stain a lot of timbers (probably just about all, to some effect.) It was used in the past for staining boxwood, among others. To make those incredibly beautiful boxwood flutes of baroque times. To ebonise, I dissolve a bit of steel wool in a bit of the acid, (don't keep your head above the container while doing it, the fumes are atrocious), then smear the liquid onto the wood. The wood will become darker, but not black. (It can become quite colourful, with some woods. They use it in Sovakian folk carvings, on elder, and the areas stained with the acid turn a kind of cheerful orange.)Once the acid is sorta dry, but the wood is still damp, I stick it into a closed container of ammonia. Now, this should be concentrated ammonia solution, but lately there isn't any to be had in this country, so I use ammonium sulphate crystals, dissolved in water, and it generates quite heavy ammonia fumes. The stuff I get from a Chinese shop, they use it in cooking. (makes you think, just what for?)
In any case, try whatever you do on a piece of scrap wood of the same piece that you are going to use. The results can be unpredictable.
The other thing. Be very careful with acids. For one thing, never, that's never sniff it. You have been warned. If you are really curious, fan a bit of the fumes towards your nose, but nothing more than that. You can pass out completely from sniffing some chemicals, and it's no joke.
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