Thursday, January 21, 2010

Texas Two Step

So the big news in Columbus these days is my buddy Nathan Roberts. Nate is a third generation fabricator from a long line of blacksmiths. His business is called Fiske Inc. Fiske manufactures the majority of the specialized trucks and trailers you see on the road transporting LP tanks. Boom trucks and saddle trailers that pick up the tanks and haul them away. He had been operating from the buildings that his grandfather started up his business in which are cool but small. It was time to make a change. He just purchased a manufacturing facility in Columbus that closed about a year ago. He will be adding employees and will have plenty of room for them in the 27,000 square feet. Congratulations Nathan!

Meanwhile back at the ranch we are continuing our Show Gig. I’m working on the steps which will consist of a pair of steps on each side. One will be a drop step and the other will be a step plate mounted on top of the shaft. I’m in the process of mocking up the upper step plate here which will be incorporated into a brace that bridges our shaft and cross brace connection.

Being it’s an odd shape this plate will be pretty easy to make up from three pieces of steel. I’ve cut and trimmed the pieces and as you can see they are welded together.

To make them look like one bigger piece of steel we grind off all the welds. It is being fastened with two stove bolts through the cross brace and two wood screws into the shaft. Those fasteners are counter sunk and then filled to conceal.

With the upper plates complete now we are going to begin work on the drop steps. I've bent the drop rods with a long sweeping bend and we will fasten our round step on the bottom of that rod. Here are my parts. The long stems still need to be cut to fit. They will run down the edge of each shaft and up to the under side of the upper step.

Now complete the steps have a traditional look and they are nice and solid. Notice there is a little ear on each side of the step itself which keeps your foot from slipping off. That is an antique feature and we like to copy that detail as it’s practical as well.

One of these days I’m going to start walking and running again. I fell off the wagon when I contracted the cold that wouldn’t leave. Maybe tomorrow. Then again sitting here eating chips and salsa isn’t a bad deal either. Tomorrow is Friday already? Holy crap.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I've had that rotton cold too, nasty bug. Thank you for showing the pictures of the gig. It is going to be a great ride.