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Pass the pliers dear, I feel a codpiece coming on - Tactical Ninja

Jul. 24th, 2013

09:45 am - Pass the pliers dear, I feel a codpiece coming on

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First, hello and welcome to all the new people who've landed here from punkymcmunky's friending frenzy (which is here if you're interested). It seems that I suddenly have a lot of people on my flist who keep chickens. There should be a club or something. I used to keep chickens, free range ones. I don't recommend free ranging if you like vegetable gardening, being able to find your eggs easily, or not standing in chicken shit every time you step outside in your socks. Sensible people have a coop and keep their chickens fenced in, away from anything they like and want to keep. Yep. No, I am not sensible people.

Second, last night I sent off my blog to Bioware. The reply was "Awesome!" It's now being sent to the editors for edity stuff - grammar and spelling apparently. I harbour an inordinate fear that they'll turn my writing into American spelling and I'll have to be a wanker about it. But I'll cross that bridge when I come to it. Meanwhile, OMG I'm gonna be on the Bioware site EEEEEEEeeeeeee!!!!!! *bouncebounce*


Last night it came in the form of long strips of very thin leather cord. See?



Back in Ye Olden Tymes, I used to watch my Mum do leatherwork. She was a crafty type, as those who remember her will know. I got to benefit from her craftiness as a kid, because she'd let me have a go at whatever she was doing. We were poor, and Mum used to subsidise our household by making and selling .. well, anything really. For a while it was leather bags, belts, wallets, moccasins, and anything else she could come up with to make from leather. She'd sell them at craft fairs and in the Cook St Flea Market in Auckland.

So anyway, I got a good grounding in leatherwork, and how to prepare leather for making stuff. And I remembered that one of the first things you do is bevel the edges - that is, cut the corners off so that they aren't all sharp, instead with that rounded feel. Go on, have a feel of your belt - the edges will have been bevelled. There's a special tool for the job:



As a kid I found it really hard to get a good even bevel, but these days I'm bigger, stronger and more patient, and my groans of satisfaction as strip after strip of long, thin, even bevelledy-edge-bit came off caused Dr Wheel to look at me funny for some reason... O.o

So now all my edges are bevelled. Do you want something bevelling? I'll do it. Because it's SO.SATISFYING.OMG.

Next step in the leather processing process: Cut as many of the bits as possible to length and shape, so that when I dye them I don't waste any on bits that won't be coloured. This means I have to finish making the armour shapes in order to fit the straps that hold it together. I am limited in what I can do in the evenings based on how disturbing it is to the other folks in the house:

- leather dyeing is stinky
- armour making is noisy because the heat gun sounds like a hair dryer
- carving expanding foam makes a noise that sets some folks' teeth on edge.

Luckily, there's edge bevelling and cutting and shaping and sewing and and AND! Making scale mail! Yes, I caved and decided to make the tabard properly with proper scales. So that'll be my adventure for probably far too much time once the parts arrive, but yes. I can now sit around quietly and non-smellily, and make fricking scale mail. And by the time I'm finished I'll be good at it, and may end up making a codpiece for Dr Wheel out of the leftovers. In fact, come to think of it, with all these newfound skills he could have a codpiece for every day of the week!

*ahem*


This morning as I walked up the stairs to work, I found a fist-sized chunk of concrete sitting in the stairwell. On investigation, it seems to have fallen from the stairs and there's a crack in them as well. Cue some flurrying about and calls to the building owner, and now the engineers are coming back to check the building again. We are all still here because the first report said there was only cosmetic damage. Hopefully this will turn out to be more of the same. We're still getting moderate earthquakes fairly regularly, but I'm not feeling them at all. Huh.

Comments:

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From:pombagira
Date:July 24th, 2013 12:39 am (UTC)
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EEE yay biowear.. not that i know much about them but yay my friend having an article on their webstie magazine blog . *bounces* *excite*
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 01:37 am (UTC)
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They make a bunch of really popular games including Mass Effect, Dragon Age, Knights of the Old Republic, and (back in the day) Baldur's Gate.

And on my shelf of 30 games, there are 11 in which you can play a female protagonist. 8 of those are made by Bioware. In short, they rock.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 08:42 pm (UTC)
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PS I asked them to credit you for that photo, so you'll be on there too! ;-)
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From:pombagira
Date:July 24th, 2013 08:49 pm (UTC)
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well gosh.. *bounces yay bounces*
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From:girlguitarist
Date:July 24th, 2013 01:51 am (UTC)
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Bioware, yay! Will it be one blog post you wrote or are you submitting a regular one? What did you write about? So neat!
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 01:53 am (UTC)
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It's just the one, they asked me to do a fan blog about one of the replica staffs I made and I'm all OMGSQUEE about it. ;-)

There will definitely be linkage (and probably in all caps with big arrows pointing to it) when it goes up. Hee!
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From:polychromatic22
Date:July 24th, 2013 05:21 am (UTC)
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When I was young, growing up over the San Andreas Fault, there was a spate of earthquakes like that after a fairly large one. It felt like it went on for months and months and months, but seeing as how I was 8 or so, and that year was tremendously horrifying for me on many levels, it's hard for me to pinpoint how accurate that memory is.

It's pretty much the one big plus about moving to US Georgia from the San Francisco Bay Area. There's only been one earthquake here since I moved, and it was only a 5 something, so a fairly small one at that.

Ugh. You know. Looking back, that year was just the worst clusterfuck ever in my life.

IN ANY CASE.

The leather stuff looks interesting as heck. I'm quite interested in watching how you go along.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 06:09 am (UTC)
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Heh, don't worry, there'll be loads of photos. If I don't put it on the internet, it didn't really happen!

And your recollection could well be right - I know the aftershocks went on for at least 8 months after the big one in Christchurch.
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From:meathiel
Date:July 24th, 2013 07:10 am (UTC)
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A chunk of concrete? Oops ... Hope the building is declared safe!

Though I have to say - here at work we found pieces of concrete quite often in the basement because of the heavy machinery in the first floor ... quite scary actually.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 08:41 pm (UTC)
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Apparently it was, since we're still here. Our building at home got the all clear this morning, too. *phew*

Yeah, I'd be worried about chunks of concrete falling off the building into the basement too - sounds like the heavy machinery might end up there too!
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From:laughingmagpie
Date:July 24th, 2013 03:12 pm (UTC)
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Oh cool! When I saw the Bioware blog on your list of things to do earlier I thought you just meant the LJ community, but it's the real blog! Cool!

Most of Bioware is Canadian (and French Canadian) trying to pass as American so who know which spellings they will be their favourites ;-)
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 08:40 pm (UTC)
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I AM SO EXCITED

Is Canadian spelling the same as ours? I'm sorry, I should know that but I don't.
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From:laughingmagpie
Date:July 24th, 2013 10:25 pm (UTC)
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On the continuum between British and American use, Canada is closer to the States and NZ to Britain. But, Canadians use: honour, theatres and travelling for instance. And they would forgive or even not notice the appearance of "realise" even though most would write "realize" of their own accord.

Of course, since every one of those unAmerican spellings has triggered a little red squiggly line under it on my computer screen :), lots of Canadians have been tending towards US usage.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 10:30 pm (UTC)
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So, probably similar to Australia then - they seem to use the 'z' spelling more these days as well.

Also, I just got the edited version back for final checking, and they didn't mess with the spelling at all, so yay! ;-) Apparently it'll go up some time next week.
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From:laughingmagpie
Date:July 24th, 2013 10:54 pm (UTC)
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Yay!

Yeah, I think Australian use might be a tiny bit more British than here, but it's probably very similar.
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From:kehleyr
Date:July 24th, 2013 07:16 pm (UTC)
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I guess you've inherited the craftiness from your mom :-).
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 08:39 pm (UTC)
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It's true. Both my folks were makers, although they didn't call it that. They were always pottering about doing something. Mum was an artisan. I aspire to be that good.
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From:kehleyr
Date:July 24th, 2013 09:03 pm (UTC)
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Well from what I've seen of your creations you are doing quite well for yourself :-D...
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From:tatjna
Date:July 24th, 2013 09:05 pm (UTC)
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Thanks! ;-) I am pretty pleased with my progress. Mum was a pretty hard act to follow though, she used to win national competitions with her stuff. I am so glad she took the time to show me how to work out how to do things.

Also, the internet. The internet has instructions for EVERYTHING.
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From:fairwells
Date:July 25th, 2013 05:17 pm (UTC)

chickens, bioware, leather work, earthquakes

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Hi. I'm new to your journal. My uncle keeps chicken in a coop in his backyard. Congrats on Bioware :) Leather work seems interesting, but I'd probably need to be taught. I don't think I could do it on my own. I hope you don't get any big earthquakes.
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From:tatjna
Date:July 25th, 2013 08:22 pm (UTC)

Re: chickens, bioware, leather work, earthquakes

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Hi, nice to meet you! ;-) Yeah, I think having learned a little as a kid is helping a lot now, otherwise I can see it being very frustrating!
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From:fairwells
Date:July 25th, 2013 11:11 pm (UTC)

Re: chickens, bioware, leather work, earthquakes

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Yes, I wouldn't even know where to begin with leather work. But it looks like fun :)
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From:tatjna
Date:July 25th, 2013 11:14 pm (UTC)

Re: chickens, bioware, leather work, earthquakes

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It's definitely fun, although somewhat hard on the hands. One thing I hadn't expected is that the dryness of the raw leather sucks the moisture from your hands, and I think if I did it for more than a few days I'd start having cuticle problems.

Luckily, the next step after dyeing is oiling! ;-)
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From:fairwells
Date:July 25th, 2013 11:17 pm (UTC)

Re: chickens, bioware, leather work, earthquakes

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You're really creative. I'm really an amateur when it comes to my arts and crafts hobbies. You probably can sell your leather good for a good price on etsy.
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From:pundigrion
Date:July 28th, 2013 04:03 am (UTC)
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Heh, actually my approach is simply to fence the garden off from the chickens instead of the other way around. I get lovely gardens and the birds get lots of room! :-D
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