Back To Work

This week is Paul’s spring break.  He is working on his percussion auditions for Birch Creek summer camp during the day, and I’m making it home early enough for us to make good progress on the marimba.  Last weekend we cut the last of the bars (except for do-overs that we may still need to correct…).

We are now moving down the scale from C4.  We just completed E3, and have only 16 more bars to shape.  The harmonics remain perplexing.  We have moved to using a good microphone and professional software to analyze the tones.  The iPad app we were using for the higher notes is out of it’s league.  As Paul put it… “The wood is still in charge”.  True.  We are slowly getting more proficient at shaping, but the lower notes also take more work. The result, however, is mind-bogglingly beautiful.  The wood is so rich, so stunning, it will be difficult to watch Paul strike the keys forcefully with a hard mallet.  We cannot wait to drill the holes and do final 600 grit sanding, for then we can oil the bars with natural oil and resins, and stand in awe as the grain and deep color is finally revealed.  Oh, the patient waiting…

Some pictures from last weekend’s final key cutting:

Remember “The Cat in the Hat” and the pink dress?

Paul tries the smack method to no avail


Cutting up the final $100 of Paul’s wood. Total Padauk investment: ~ $300


Paul really enjoys cleaning up….. Or so he pretends…


Paul really does like this part


But we soon realize….

At this point, realize that our neighbors will be calling the police to report a crime scene.  The sheriff (we live in an unincorporated subdivision) will look at the river of red and a new CSI episode will be born…

One of the Pharaoh’s plagues… a river of Padauk saw dust?


A Spring thundershower should clean it all up?

Oh, and several kind people pointed out that we should never use gloves or long sleeves while working with the table saw or belt sander.  Thanks!  After seeing a few YouTube videos, we agree!  Thanks for being concerned for our safety and mentioning the dangers to us. We are now bare handed and bare armed….