Thursday, 20 November 2014

You've got one chance


With my heart in my mouth, I have today sent off this piece of valuable, irreplaceable, antique, Breccia marble column to be cut into exactly two pieces by a sawyer who has already destroyed about £500 worth of other marble by cutting it into four pieces instead of the two that I asked for.

The trouble is that my regular sawyer  - the best in the West - is too busy to do this little task, so I have sent it with an instruction sheet - including drawings, photos and step-by-step explanations which I believe a small child could understand, but I am still haunted by the previous mistake.

To a great extent, the previous wrong cutting was my own fault, because I had drawn a 90 degree cross in the middle of it to mark the absolute centre, which is a technique used daily by all masons, but because I didn't rub it out, the sawyer cut right through the middle of both lines, destroying the marble. The trouble is that many sawyers are not masons.

I have also made life as easy as I could for the sawyer by setting the column in a cosy cradle of polyurethane insulation board which can be cut straight through without the blade even knowing it is there, so the marble does not have to be chocked-up on the bed of the saw to stop it rolling off during cutting. I have placed cable-ties either side of the cut so as to lessen the chance of the column being shifted out of true by the sawyer pushing the diamond blade through too fast.

Another consequence of pushing the blade through too fast would be the breaking off of some of the different, harder or softer bits which make up the conglomerate which is Breccia, but I have asked him that - if this should happen - he should save the little bits for me to glue back in later, but since they would probably fall into a deep slurry of liquid mud stone-dust, the chance of him spotting them flying off at high speed are almost zero.

What could possibly go wrong?

27 comments:

  1. Would you like me to make a list?

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  2. Question is - what do you want to do with the, hopefully, resulting 2 pieces? If there are 2-and-a-bit pieces, or 2-and-two-bit pieces, or, heaven forbid, 4 pieces...?

    All depends on the final purpose of the item(s?) to be... :)

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    1. Well funnily enough, I do actually know what I am supposed to be doing with the two bits, but I thought I would not overburden either you or the sawyer about it.

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  3. I think you need to stand over him. Maybe operate the machine as well.

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    1. If it didn't mean about 3 days out of my life which I couldn't bill for, then I would.

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  4. The crucial word to use here is 'entrust'. You must ring him up and tell him that you are entrusting him with your marble. I find it works a wonder whenever I want anyone to do anything correctly and carefully.

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  5. What a beautiful piece of stone. I agree with Mise, except I would accompany the stone and deliver the bonding word face to face. Then hang about the parking lot until the job was done. You might even ask to run your hands through the slurry when the job is done.

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  6. Did you see the Secrets of the Castle on Tuesday evening building a 13th century castle from scratch. The mediaeval stone masons certainly knew their stuff. So labour intensive - but I expect not a lot has changed - the tools all looked familiar and one false move and hours of work would be ruined.

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    1. I heard about it from some fellow stone people, but I've not yet seen it.

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  7. I await the outcome with some trepidation.

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    1. I wonder if there is such a thing as a trepidation meter? If so, I think I might top your reading.

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  8. I agree with all the others -- what a beautiful piece of marble. I do hope you will let us know what happens...

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    1. I am hoping it will be a boring outcome...

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  9. I've never seen a piece of marble like that. Truly beautiful.

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    1. You probably have, but maybe not realised.

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    2. Ever been to a Medici church, for instance?

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  10. That is a strange looking piece of marble. It looks like 'Zungenwurst' (tongue sausage).

    But I am really nervous now and hope that this thing goes well.

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    1. There is one type of marble which looks just like Spam, and is just as horrible.

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  11. I think I'd travel with it....

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    1. No, much better to wave goodbye to one bit, then welcome home - hopefully - two bits.

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  12. I can see why you're holding your breath. It is a beautiful section of marble. Hope everything goes well.

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  13. It's just beautiful.....like stone chunks in aspic. Hmm; not my best analogy. I'll look forward to the reading on Pat's trepidation meter.

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