Archive for the ‘trivet’ Tag

Hot Stuff Needs An Air Gap   1 comment

I’m often asked if a Cheese Board can be used as a Trivet. Or a Cribbage Top. Or a Cutting Board. The answer, sadly, is no.

Not without risk of the heat from the dish melting the glue in the laminated piece, and, uh, deconstructing it. That would be a bad thing. A very bad thing.

So, I make Trivets.

Trivets are designed with air gaps so the heat can escape without tearing the laminated wood piece apart. That also makes them very light, unusual … and interesting to look at.

Or so I’ve been told. Some people like to hang these trivets on the wall. That works for me!

Ends. Odds. Other.   2 comments

One of my pet peeves is when a person enters my booth, looks at my work, and says, “this is a good way to use scrap.”

In a cooler moment, I can reflect on the word “scrap.” In a cooler moment, I can say without reservation,

I. Do. Not. Use. Scrap.

At. All.

It’s all in the definition. Some people call anything that’s not an 8′ board … scrap. To them, you use lumber to make a table or build a house … and when you cut a piece, what’s left is scrap. Every time.

Hogwash.

When I get hardwood to use, the first thing I do is cut it. Typically, I cut lumber (which is generally somewhere between 9′ and 16′ long, and 4″ to 10″ wide) into 6′ lengths, which are easier for me to process and store. When I’m ready to cut those 6′ lengths (or the shorter lengths I get when I cut a 10′ piece into 2 pieces), I cut them into pieces no longer than 24″. Those are easiest for me to work with in my small shop.

I collect pieces that are between 18 and 23″ long in one cabinet, and those “end cuts” or “off cuts” are eventually made into pieces like these surfboards, Lazy Susans, or trivets.

They are not scrap.

I save shorter pieces, too, down to 12″ in length. The smallest pieces go to Dr H, who turns them into pens that are gifted to people around the world. And anything shorter than 12″ and narrower than 3/4″ … well, that’s scrap, because it’s too small to use.

I don’t use scrap. I start with lumber, and I end up here:

Protecting Stuff Since 2017   2 comments

I need better signage.

I started making trivets to protect tables & counters – and food! – soon after I got my CNC. They continue to be a top seller … even though they confuse many people who don’t understand what this odd looking thing is when they pick it up in my booth.

Maybe I’ll have more time for that soon!

Trivets are 8-1/2″ square, with heat vents in a diagonal pattern across the top and bottom of the trivet. Each trivet is 3/4″ thick, and they nearly always feature a fun color pattern of hardwoods. I do occasionally make trivets with just one species of wood, though I’ve found most people prefer the colorful versions.

Meanwhile, I am now making coasters with cork inserts to protect tables & desks from hot & cold drinks – and condensation.

Everyone knows what a coaster is, thank goodness!

These have always been colorful. I’m yet to try a single species of wood for a coaster. Hmmmm. Maybe next time.

The Trivet Explosion   1 comment

I had no clue that Trivets would prove to be this popular.

They have become the source of the #1 question I get at craft fairs: “What’s a trivet?” Or, the #2 question, “What is this?”

Trivets.

They’re made from the same hardwood as my other pieces, but these have wide slots cut in them to help dissipate the heat from hot dishes. Use these on a well-appointed table to protect the table top’s finish.

Or, use them as a conversation piece. They certainly are working that way for me!

All are 8-1/2″square, and about 3/4″ thick.

Spring Fling Is Real   Leave a comment

Every year, we do a Spring Fling … a series of events in March/April/May/June. This year, we’ve got 10 events scheduled in 11 weeks.

It’s just a fling. Really. 7 of these events are our traditional duets, but 4 of them are solo events for me. I’m even doing a long holiday bachelor weekend in a double booth in Bishop, to celebrate Mule Days.

So, since we’re going a-vendoring in locales as exotic as Clovis, Montrose and Palos Verdes, I need to get to the shop. A bunch of special orders have been finished, thankfully, and a fair number of boards made it out of the shop simultaneously.

Thank goodness.

Here’s the first batch; please enjoy!

Nothing Trivial About Trivets   2 comments

When I introduce a new product, I usually make one or two. Prototypes, if you will, just to prove that I can make them, and then to see if anyone cares.

Trivets were such a thing. I started with just a few, and most were made from a single species. As those sold, I another batch, but most of them, again, were made from a single species.

Each time, I made just 2 that were made with wood combinations, and those sold first both times.

This time, I went crazy with wood combinations.  I even made some chaos trivets, with no symmetrical pattern.

It appears that people like my trivets. They are unusual, and since I know that people like it when I combine different woods, I got just a bit, uh, inspired this time.

These trivets are 8-1/2″ square, and about 3/4″ thick. They’re treated with mineral oil to help protect the wood, and they are ready to protect your table and your counter from the hot stuff you are cooking.

 

Trivets Are Fun!   Leave a comment

The good news is that I made another batch of trivets, and I needed them at last weekend’s event. I have a few left, and I’m sure I will need them this week, too!

The bad news is that I blew up one blank due to a loose hold down. I’m still learning how to use my CNC.

However, I do know something about creating pretty trivets … and once again, the tri-color trivets were the first to sell at last weekend’s event. I believe I need to learn that combining different woods is the most important thing I do in the shop … according to my customers.

Maybe I’ll learn that someday. Meanwhile, I have 2 new product introductions this week – BIG introductions, I think – and they both feature single species. Hmmmm.

No one said I was a fast learner.

More to come as I burn the candle at both ends this week. I have 5 days of events to cover, and there are 64 new pieces in the garage woodshop needing to be completed. Sanity is in short supply, I believe … bear with me!

And bears are coming back! 3 of those are in the shop, and they will be finished this week. Unfortunately, those 11 chess boards … are still waiting. Like I said, no one said I was a fast learner.

Trivet 17 – 05. Black Walnut, Padauk and Hard Maple. 8.5″ x 8.5″ x .75″.

Trivet 17 – 06. Jatoba. 8.5″ x 8.5″ x .75″.

Trivet 17 – 07. Cherry. 8.5″ x 8.5″ x .75″.

New: Trivets   3 comments

It’s not an uncommon question when I am at an event: “Can I use this board as a trivet?”

The quick answer is you could, but you probably would not want to. Wood can scorch, and a solid board has no way to dissipate heat. I fear putting really hot stuff on a cheese board or cutting board will eventually cause the glue to fail. The board will crack.

Then I saw the work of my pal Betsy, who makes and sells boards in the Houston area. She makes trivets similar to these using templates that she’s developed … but I thought there should be an easier way.

I pushed the button.

After spending some time in my CNC design software (I use Aspire), I finalized this design. I glued up 4 different wood designs … and I now have trivets!

These are just in time for this weekend’s big event, the California Avocado Festival. If you’re out and about this weekend and find yourself in Carpinteria, please come see us. If you can tear yourself away from staring at the World’s Largest Vat Of Guacamole, you’ll find us in the handmade section, of course.

Trivet 17 – 04. Cherry. 8-1/2″ x 8-1/2″ x 3/4″.

Trivet 17 – 01. White Oak. 8-1/2″ x 8-1/2″ x 3/4″.

Trivet 17 – 02. Hard Maple & Black Walnut. 8-1/2″ x 8-1/2″ x 3/4″.

Trivet 17 – 03. Hard Maple. 9″ x 9″ x 3/4″.

%d bloggers like this: