Monday, March 30, 2015

Gateway (81)

Post 81 in an ongoing series describing the design and construction of a kabukimon, a type of Japanese gate. This is a project for the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Post 1 in this series can be found here if you'd like to start at the beginning. Each post links to the next at the bottom of the page. Recent installments also to be found in the 'Blog archive' index to the right of the page.

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Last full day of construction.

Most of the day was occupied by work on the main posts. They needed finish planing for one thing:



The nose pieces also were fitted and the joint lines checked - this pic is after making adjustments:


Panning back so you can see the entire nose piece:


A look from the other side:


Both fit well, tenon to mortise, but required some adjustments to the mating surface on the post to get the fit I wanted. Here's the other one:


A closer look at one joint line:


You can see some pencil marks on the post face which indicate the mortise for the sheet copper termination.

And here a look at the other face and joint line:


This second main post, shown in  the pic above was ornery. It was the one of the two which had bowed during drying and I was only just able to eke out the finish dimensions. It has loads of knots on the pith side and the grain on the bark side, though free of knots, veers back and forth. It had cupped on two of the faces since it was S4S planed months back. Just uncooperative all around - it was a PITA to plane, but I got through somehow. Then I put waxy impregnator on it and it developed a slightly pinkish cast for some strange reason. The only stick of the lot which has done this. Something unusual about the fiber in that stick, that's for sure. I'm wondering if it will weather differently than the other sticks.

Finish planed the main posts and nosepieces today - that was in fact most of the day's excitement.

The kiosk, which was the starting point for construction on this project, was also the finishing point. I fitted some wedges to lock the scarf joints up, which in turn enabled an accurate end cut line to be marked. Then I trimmed the post ends, removed the wedges, and pulled the lower half off and disassembled that into its constituent parts:


The kiosk roof section will require no further work beyond cleaning up the groove on the backside of one of the posts for the wire chase:


The lowers will be fitted to the metal shoes, chamfered, finish planed, etc.

I went to the powder coaters this afternoon to pick up all the copper. Good news was that they had completed all the work. Bad news was that the roof section for the top of the kabuki had fallen down inside the oven and incurred some damage...and now had an uneven surface. That sucks, and there's not much I can do about it. I'll talk to the metal fabricator tomorrow to see if he might be able to smooth the wrinkles out, but it might be hard to do without damaging the paint. The powder coaters have offered to pay for a new piece of copper, however there just isn't any time to make that happen. At least the top of the roof cap is not viewable generally speaking, but still. I was very disappointed with that outcome.

Here are most of the other pieces back from powder coat:


Here we have the kasagi end caps (left), fastening strips for the nose pieces, the yatoi sen for the kiosk connections, and some door stile caps:


I thought I'd throw in a shot of the kannuki, or door drawbar, fitted with its bronze caps:


The kanji for kannuki is one of the easiest to remember in Japanese, very obviously derived from a pictograph, though that said it is not a character many Japanese people would likely know as it is specialized. Combine a pictograph for gate doors () with horizontal bar () and you have kannuki (). Tah-dah!! Easy, right?

Here's the kannuki from end to end - it is 60" long:


Tomorrow I pick up the 16' box truck from Penske and head to the shop. I have some assorted fabrication tasks to wrap up and then should be loading during the afternoon. Delivery the day after.

Thanks for visiting the Carpentry Way.