Tuesday, May 4
On Monday I spent the morning producing the weekly radio program -- or trying to; there was a plumbing emergency at Mom’s house that required my attention so I didn’t get started on the radio program until about 11:00 and spent the early afternoon on that. Then I got a bid request on a 9 Drawer CD Cabinet so I needed to get on that quickly. By late afternoon I was ready to unwrap the glass we brought back from Knoxville over the weekend and mount it into the doors of Harold’s clock. I did most of the fitting on Tuesday. This is what $300 of custom formed, beveled glass looks like. This is ¼” thick , clear, annealed glass with a 1” wide bevel ground around all edges. I also got an oval for the top door, bringing the total cost to almost $400. This piece gave the glass shop a particularly difficult time. The short version of that story is that I ordered the glass from Allied Glass in Knoxville because they have done beveled glass for me before and did an excellent job, but those were rectangular pieces with straight edges. They sub-contracted this job out to a specialty shop in Atlanta – with which they had done business before. When I provided photos and specifications, the Atlanta shop said “sure, we’ve done work like that before.” And quoted a price. But that shop is owned by an overseas company, and that company decided, recently, to increase its profits by firing several of the Atlanta shop’s highest paid employees -- which, of course, would be their most experienced craftsmen. When the Atlanta shop got the templates, they could not figure out how to do what I needed done. They tried to get out of doing it at all, but Vicky at Allied Glass told them that they had already accepted the job, quoted a price and I HAD ALREADY BUILT THE CLOCK! Pony up and get it done! Thank you Vicky! And they did… sort of. They could not shape the glass as I had specified where the long skinny neck joins to the round part, so I’ll have to re-shape the door some to accommodate the glass. Also, the Atlanta shop sent word that producing this piece was SO difficult to do that if they ever have to do another, the price will be at least double. I do this reshaping by chiseling away the wood where the glass curves instead of making a corner. I’ll sand this and re-shellac the area. In order to prevent a stress point, when I sand it I will sand a bevel on this triangular part to match the bevel on the glass. I can not remove that triangular area because of the decorative cove routed on the other face – attempting to re-shape and re-route the entire area would probably not turn out well and would require extensive refinishing. More delay on a job that is already overdue. I test fit the glass several times to get it right, but was warned to be sure I properly support the glass along it’s full length when lifting it or the neck could snap off. So I use a backer panel to lay it on for carrying it around and make sure I have a good balanced hold on it any time I must lift it. With the chopping, sanding and finishing done I can clean all the finger prints off the glass, lay it in the rabbet one last time and install the glass retainers. Then wrap both doors in blankets so they are ready for transport back to Harold’s house to rejoin the rest of the clock. I did mount the clock works (with Ted’s help) into the case, so mounting these doors will complete the project. I’ll try to get a shot of the completed clock because I know there are a fair number of people who have been following this project with great interest.