Friday, 24 January 2014


First of all, I'd like to say Thank you to everyone who has visited Wielding White Willow, read the articles and supported it. I've appreciated all the emails, messages and tweets relating to the content on here.

Since the creation of White Willow Cricket, it's become difficult to maintain one voice through the two separate blogs and as a result both have suffered. So I've taken the decision to move the Wielding White Willow blog to its new home - HERE!

The new blog will continue in the style of this one, opinions and all. I've found it difficult to write and be diplomatic at the same time for the new blog and as a result the articles end up in the limbo land of a "draft" status. No one wins and I feel bad that I haven't posted something.

The new feed url is...

See you on the other side...

Monday, 7 October 2013

Are we making progress?

There's always something going on behind the scenes or silence as the case has been for the past 3 weeks. Most of which has been at this very computer attempting to make website progress, which has been frustrating. In the workshop, after 6 months of experimentation, prototypes, drawings and general cogitation over the spokeshave/travisher idea. I can safely say it won't work.

In finding a solution to one problem you discover you've created another. The smaller the body, the larger the percentage that the blade represents of the overall weight, this combined with the narrow sole has led to problems in the pull stroke. The weight is so high that there's little encouraging the blade to take a cut. Scaling an idea down always produces problems, and the mouth clearance has been a consistent pain in the rump.

Changes had to be made and I made a thicker version with a wider sole and a low front. This solved the pull stroke problem but then negated the possibility of using it in the skewed manner so many woodworkers favour. Knowing there were other problems, I didn't even bother shaping the handles this time around.

As can be seen above, the sole has been shaped front to back and side to side but with little perceivable benefit. The only change left to try is a front panel with threaded bolts holding the blade in place. The one positive from this is that my faith in the potential of an all hand tool approach is proving well placed.

I've had a few people enquire about buying one of these and I will be selling them at some point in the future but there's no set date. So you'll have to bear with me as I wander somewhat blind through this project.

Saturday, 21 September 2013

Matthew Hoggard retires

Matthew Hoggard has packed his kit bag for the final time and he now makes the sometimes uneasy transition into the world of the retired professional sportsman. Personally I'd like to put him forward for a position on the BBC Test Match Special team, it'll be like the Kenny Everett Show with Aggers and Boycott.

As a Leicestershire supporter, it was nice to see him join the Foxes at the tail end of his career and hopefully bestow some experience upon a rather inexperienced Leicestershire side. He's a character, and that's what cricket needs no matter what level you play at. Dave Hawksworth has written a wonderful article called "The Hoggy I knew" on The Cordon focusing on Matthew Hoggard, the cricketer with character.