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The Nautilus Wheel Takes Shape

April 11, 2015

nautilus1I really enjoy this point in a build where I can look at my original sketch and see how it has come to life.  There are still many things to do but it has a good and elegant feel.  The big wheels are finished with many coats of varnish with iridescent powders added to build up the look and feel  of shell.  You can still see the grain of the wood though, which I believe will make Ilse happy.  This is the first wheel I’ve built without the usual hub in the middle of the big wheel.  Instead I carved a wooden shell shape.  In the center of this, after the wheels are trued up and secured, will go wooden plugs with mother of pearl vintage buttons on top.  It should add some real elegance to the look.  I will likely add more mother of pearl in other places as well.  The handle area and the lower frame are designed to echo the feel of nautilus shells that have been sliced into  sections to expose the wonderful inner shapes.


The treadles will be made out of figured eastern ample, which is light colored as well as beautiful.  The treadles will have opalized shells inlaid into the toe end of each treadle.  They look a lot like the carved shell I made in place of the hub but of course are a lot smaller.  The front foot of this wheel is carved to look  like an actual nautilus shell.  One difficult design problem was to fit the spiral curves into this wheel.  There is a huge difference between spirals and circles I found out!  One other feature with this wheel is that it is not permanently glued together as my others have been.  It will need to travel to Germany and it is better and cheaper to send it in several crates to be assembled when it arrives.  So, that’s it from this end.  Hope you all enjoy this beautiful weekend!







From → Gary's Thoughts

  1. Sally boussios permalink

    So lovely. Simple and elegant!

  2. Helen permalink

    Incredible artistry.

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