In The Shed Issue 79, July/August 2018, we head to Wellington to document Shea Stackhouse making a small knife from Damascus steel, fondly known as a Puukka (that’s Finnish for small knife). While we are there we hang around to meet some knife fans who receive knife making advice from Shea at one of his regular knifemaking classes.
Spend a few minutes with Sean in his mobile carving shed
Anyone flying into New Plymouth airport may look twice at a hangar on the western end of the airfield with an unusual tail of a large aircraft poking out. Few would realise what’s within: ZK-PBY, a 1944 Catalina flying boat, the only airworthy one in New Zealand and a remarkable aircraft with a remarkable history.
Don’t try this at home. In the town of Niagara Falls, you are heading along a street. You suddenly overfly a car, then a bicycle travelling along a path near the water. In an instant you are over the lip of Niagara Falls. In a scary moment you find yourself looming over the precipice and then zooming away across the face of the thundering water.
How hard could it be for a couple of seasoned and more-or-less professional Kiwi do-it-yourselfers? When the kitset tin garden shed—3.45 metres long by 1.75 metres wide— arrived in a tidy package after being ordered online, it comprised pre-cut, mostly pre-drilled and numbered parts. All you needed for assembly was a drill and a screw-driver.
When we planned the renovation of our 1986 rental property one of our aims was to use products and materials that were both affordable and kind to the planet, as outlined in earlier articles in this series in The Shed magazine. We found it was possible to do both with little compromise.
Chris Vesper is an Australian tool maker who has enormous respect for his ancient craft. I met him at the Timber and Working with Wood Show in Sydney earlier this year. He makes some of the highest quality tools available anywhere in the world, working from a large shed on his parent’s property in semirural Victoria.
The goal of this Eco Design Advisor series of articles in eleven issues of The Shed magazine has been to show the stages of turning a cold, damp 1986 cottage into a warm dry one, using good eco design principles. We wanted to convert the cottage from a mouldy dump into a bright, healthy home that would need little maintenance for the next five years