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Mike Dempsey

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About Mike Dempsey

  • Rank
    Senior Member, Raffle Sponsor 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015
  • Birthday 26/09/63

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  • Occupation
    furniture designer/maker, laser engraver
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  1. gin wheels

    I move logs all the time with a hand winch. This allows me to move it into a better for milling and all I do is attach it to another tree. The logs I am moving are anything up to 4' dia oak all at 8' length. I think my winch is rated for 4 tons and the cable is 11mm dia. There is no other way for me to move them as its not always possible to get my mates landrover and winch in. Mike
  2. bandsaw not working? whats wrong?

    One thing that bandsaws are prone to is fine dust clogging up the motor windings causing it to overheat and burn out the windings, even if dust extraction is used. I have just had to replace the motor on my Startrite 352 and it was chogged up with fine dust despite the fact that I use the biggest Camvac extractor with 3 motors. I used to strip the motor down every year and blow it out with a compressor air gun. This year has been so busy I forgopt and then had to pay the price.
  3. Stickers!

    You are basically looking for a whitish wood which isn't brittle as you don't want them breaking easily. I have milled up a couple of poplar into 20mm thick planks and ripped them into 25mm wide strips. I keep a variety of lengths handy depending on what width of plank I am drying in the kiln. I discard any with large knots in them as they deform in the kiln. I haven't had any sticker stain from them on sycamore or any other wood and I have used them several times.
  4. Steam bending wood....

    The important bit here is her self belief and can-do attitude will have soared and will stand her in good stead for the rest of her life. Tackling things which are easy doesn't broaden the horizons half as much as when she has knowledge and skills gaps to conquer. The coracle will be a testament to her achievement for a long time to come and she may wish to make improvements to it with a bit of encouragement. The hardest bit for you Daniel would have been standing back and letting her do it!
  5. Trees In My Neighbours garden

    Its also possible that the neighbour is scared to get a quote as they haven't got a lot of money to spend on this kind of job and doesn't like to admit it. A friendly word with them and the offer to pay for the work might work wonders. I would add a caveat into any deal is that they must be taken out and not trimmed as you will be back in the same situation in a few years time. Mike
  6. Robotic wood carving

    In any business in order to survive and make progress, you use the best tools and machinery available. If you don't then you stand a good chance of being undercut by your rivals and not making much money. I don't equate my work to tat and its not been called that to the best of my knowledge. I also don't sell to garden centres or other retail outlets who knock it out as cheap as possible. I regularly make wooden items to go along with bottles of malt which sell at £10k or more. It is well designed and well made, it has to be as the standards of my customers are very high. I regularly work with award winning design companies from around the UK and have been involved with projects that have won worldwide design awards. My biggest whisky company customer has been using me for about ten years now and I have carried out about 15 different projects for them. You don't get that by making tat. I am not knocking people who only use handtools btw. Most of the people using handtools are in a very small niche market with customers who are willing and able to pay top prices. There are also a lot of guys working away in garden sheds only using handtools as a deliberate choice, producing very high quality work for friends and family. If they tried to get their full time employment rate per hour for the amount of hours spent on the work, it would never sell!
  7. Robotic wood carving

    I am a designer/cabinet maker by trade and have been self employed now for 16 years. I still use some hand tools and also state of the art technology as in my laser and cnc router. Most of my work is in designing and making wooden boxes for the whisky industry. In order to be competitive within a global market I have to use the best tools and machinery available in order to speed up the process. Quite often I am making 300 to 400 of the same item and this also helps to take away the drudgery as well. This also includes spending 70 quid or so on an individual forstner bit which most woodworkers on here would be reluctant to spend. The vast majority of people using only hand tools are making items as a hobby or are in a very small niche, high end market which can stand high prices as the end customer understands that it is totally hand made. Would you be willing to pay £80k for a Ford Fiesta because it was hand made or are you happy to take advantage of new technology which reduces the price to about£10k or so. To criticize someone for wanting to earn a living is unfair and below the belt in my opinion. I haven't seen anywhere that Stefan has said he will use new technology to make wooden items and pass them off as handmade. The other aspect of using new technology is that is it a lot more than press a couple of buttons and out pops the finished item ten minutes later. The learning curve for designing software can be very steep and complicated. No matter how expensive the machine is, it you cant use the software you have just bought a large and expensive paperweight!
  8. Whats the weather like near you?

    Back at work in the spray booth. Just got 300 coasters to spray lacquer both sides. It was too hot during the day and the lacquer was drying too fast before it got a chance to flow properly. Hopefully home before midnight!
  9. useful bit of kit...

    Hate to have to pay the leccy bill for that saw after a couple of months work!
  10. Making the news today....

    What disappoints me most is the appallingly low standard of the various party's candidates. Lack of intelligence, downright loonies, corrupt, nepotism, lack of integrity, etc are just some of the descriptions I would give them. Its a sad day to think that these are the kind of people who will be dealing with major topics such as brexit, terrorism and the NHS.
  11. Making the news today....

    I 53 years old and have never missed a vote of any description since I was old enough. I can honestly say that I have never been so put off by the candidates/parties/ leaders available in all my days. Its definitely the worst selection in my memory. As I live in Scotland I also have the SNP as a possible choice and they are just as bad. I am normally a decisive kind of person and find it easy to make my mind up on issues that effect me, but not this time. This might be the first time that I write "they are all a bunch of ar**wholes on my ballot paper instead of ticking a box. The only party who would get my vote would be the one who would grow a pair of balls and put the country first instead of their mates. Cant see that happening any time soon!
  12. sycamore table

    About the only thing that has the least effect on changing the colour of white woods such as sycamore, ash and lime is water based lacquer. Even then your sycamore will not last long outside. It will get mildew/black dot after the first winter and then its downhill from there. Mike
  13. Spalted Beech stem.

    or in my experience, for free, and delivered as well
  14. Green Beech Splitting.

    The other aspect to this apart from the splitting is mould growth. Damp timber put into a warm atmosphere without much air movement will lead to mould growth which wont be very healthy with your daughter being in close proximity to it for several hours every day. Even more so if there is any spalting. Wipe it down with a borax solution regularly as this will help to minimise it but the chances are it will lead to a lot of unsitely mould marks/discolouration. Don't put any finish on it either as this will just trap any moisture and eventually lead to the wood starting to rot. Eventually it will dry out and stop moving. The best thing to do is wait and let it dry out or get it kiln dried if possible. Mike
  15. Cherry

    I'm Mike not Mick!


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