Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Preparation and Maintenance

NLAS Membership Cards
I've been doing a lot of prep work for upcoming workshops and demonstrations this week.  I have an all-day school visit coming up on Friday where I'll be demonstrating flintknapping and talking about archaeology with the students in the morning and then working with them in the afternoon to make ground stone tools.  Saturday is International Archaeology Day at The Rooms, and coming up in November I'll be leading a pair of week-long workshops in northern Nunavut.  All of those fun days require an equal or greater number of boring preparation days to make sure that they run smoothly.

Obsidian for a knapping workshop
I've been doing stuff like preparing PowerPoint presentations, writing e-mails, printing promotional materials, packing and shipping cargo and checking my inventory of supplies and reference materials to have on hand at each event.  Probably the most exciting thing to happen was finding a bit of mold growing on the Tuktut Nogait bow.  I've had it packed away for a few months and when I went to check on it today, I noticed a very light dusting of mold on the sinew.  I caught it in time to prevent serious damage, but I still unwound the cable and treated it with a 30% isopropyl rubbing alcohol solution to kill the mold.

The fuzzy green dots are mold growing on the braided sinew lashings on the Tuktut Nogait bow.  I need to stop that growth immediately.

The bow disassembled
 for cleaning
Now that the bow is apart, I'll take the opportunity to make a couple modifications.  When I first built the bow, I used braided sinew to lash the baleen braces in place at the elbows in the bow limbs.  Sealskin rawhide is another option for that lashing.  I didn't have sealskin rawhide when I intially assembled the bow, but I have it now, so I think I'll use that as the lashing for those baleen braces and to wrap around the sinew bundle.  I'm curious if it will make any difference to the performance of the bow.  At the very least, it should reduce the total length of braided sinew needed for the bow by several metres.  

Photo Credits: Tim Rast

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts with Thumbnails