Sunday, September 14, 2008

Vacation Project (Part II)

So where were we?

Baskets. Yes.

So we started weaving the basket.
Again, nitsy work.
You have to whittle down the end and get it secured in the groove with the ribs... lots of detailed, swear-inducing work (at least for my dad).

The first couple of rows are tense, trying to get them woven tightly, making sure the ribs stay in the groove, keeping the damn thing damp and working with a 36" piece of cane that tends to twist and break.

Starting to weave

Weaving went fairly quickly, he'd weave while I went swimming or for a bike ride, I'd weave while he read or took a nap. It was done before we knew it!

Almost done

We got it off the mold and attached the rim to keep its shape. And then...


The next morning my father picked up the dry basket and POP - the bottom fell out!

My theory is that the ribs got loose around the mold, so we were weaving the whole thing 1/4" larger, which was fine when the basket was wet and the wood was expanded (I'm really stifling the urge to make a shrinkage joke here - come on! WET WOOD GETS LARGER??? Who can resist!)

Anyway, when the wood dried, the rim, approximately 1/4" larger than the mold, pulled the ribs out of the groove.

My solution (after rending my clothes and gnashing my teeth) was to create a new bottom, about 1/4" LARGER and instead of a groove, split that thing in two, put it in place and glue it together.

I'll let you know how it turns out.

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