Tag: Bruce McConachie

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  • Building the Big Block Easels

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    The museum received many packing crates full of big printing blocks from Enquirer Printing in Cincinnati, Ohio. They can be up to 54" x 40" in size. The Enquirer Printing Company printed posters for circuses, carnivals and other customers. I saw a few big blocks leaning against the wall on a visit. It occurred to me these should be up on a display rack of some kind. I thought about easels used in meetings, where people can write on the paper and the whole room can see what they write. Maybe that would work.

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    So I asked Stephanie if she would like a sample easel to try out with some of the big blocks, and she said “Yes.” I have been welding steel angle iron for about three years and I know where to buy industrial size steel in all kinds of shapes. I bought some steel and welded a two shelf front frame. Then I tried leaning it back to see what...

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  • I Wanted to Build Something Else for the Museum

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    Last winter I built a bunch of display cases so the Hamilton Museum could show 
off more of their wood type collection. I looked at the Wish List a while ago and
 saw a need for strong tables for workshop areas. I figured maybe I could make 
some.

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I know wood working well enough to make some tables, but strong tables made
 out of wood would probably be quite heavy. So I thought I should try making a
 table out of steel to see what design would work to be strong and light weight.

    I joined a hackerspace in Chicago two years ago. It’s a place with lots of tools and 
benches where members can work on whatever kind of building project they like.
 It’s sort of like having your own shop but quite a bit bigger. The tools include
 every kind of power tool there is, from metal cutting bandsaws, lathes and 
welders to wood planers and table saws.

    I got a short introduction to arc welding...

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  • The Idea of Building 18 Display Cabinets

    How I found the museum

    I was looking at Wisconsin sites on the web and found one about interesting places to see around Manitowoc. I never heard of wood type and the history of that industry, so I looked at the Hamilton site and recorded the address. A year later I looked again and the museum was moving. They had work weekends where volunteers move and sort things. This would be a good way to learn what wood type is and why anyone would have such a museum.

    I drove up Friday and slept in the van in the parking lot. People showed up and I went in the museum. We got our work assignments to move cabinets from all over into the store area. I was having a lot of fun with pallet jacks and furniture dollies. We had lunch in Two Rivers at a street fest so I had a chance to look at the Hamilton factory.

    By Sunday when our job was finished, I knew Jim, the Director, Stephanie, Assistant Director and some volunteers. And I saw the entire museum space. They have an overhead crane in the...

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