François' Blog

Comme tous les deux ans, l'Observatoire de la Côte d'Azur organise la Nuit des Coupoles Ouvertes sur le plateau de Calern. Grosse affluence pour l'édition 2015, avec 3000 personnes.

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19 Jun 2015

Sky Map

astronomy

This is a view of the night sky, with planets (in red) at their current place computed from Jean Meeus' "Astronomical Algorithms"

You can zoom and scroll the globe, and click on stars to show their name.

Credits: d3 library: Mike Bostock / Jason Davies ("Rotate the World" example)

Ephemeris:

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16 Jun 2015

Telescopes

astronomy

After my renewed interest in astronomy last year I joined a club, (SPICA in Cagnes sur Mer), which gives access to the 40cm Newton Amateur Telescope of the Côte d'Azur observatory in Calern, above Grasse.

I also purchased, first a 6 inch Vixen Newton on GP2 mount, then a 30cm made by Pierre...

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After ten years using the Textpattern CMS, I decided to move my venerable website to another system. There is nothing wrong with Textpattern, in fact I still prefer it to Wordpress, but I got tired of the complicated backup system (mySQL database) and the lack of version control. Also, I still...

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L'éclairage public et privé ne cesse d'augmenter.

Il est nocif pour la faune (oiseaux nocturnes, insectes, chauve-souris) et aussi pour les humains (altérations du sommeil). Il entraîne une grande dépense d'énergie, donc une pollution en amont (CO2, déchets nucléaires) Il nous empêche...

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Nice weather and perfect snow through Fontanalbe (Vallée des Merveilles) - 1st February 2015.

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Finished this sewing box in elm.

) ) )

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Little rain, but nice electrical show yesterday, July 7.

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I just made another Krenov-style maple drawing table.

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Last week-end I took a walk to Vallaurette, high in the Vallée des Merveilles. No snow yet, streams were not even frozen yet. It won't last.

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24 Oct 2013

Butsudan

woodworking

A butsudan is a shrine used in Buddhist culture. This one is made with the same elm wood that I used for a coopered box. Difficult to work because it is so hard, but it has a wonderful color and grain.

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A friend allowed me to saw his pear tree. I made 5 nice boards, about 1.30m long and 6cm thick. The widest are 40cm wide, with a wonderful pink color. We will see how it ages. Next step is in about 3 or 4 years, when it is dry enough to make furniture. Watch this space!

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I just finished this box with coopered top. The wood is from elm that a local farmer cut down when they died from the elm disease 30 years ago. It is dry alright. Difficult to work though.

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Here is another desk in maple in the spirit of Jean-Michel Frank.

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I recently finished a writing / drafting desk in maple (from a James Krenov design) and an ash chair in the spirit of the Giò Ponti Superleggera. The seat is weaved by hand and takes a lot of time and material. More pictures on my professional website at www.atelier-desvallees.com

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Today I installed the 3 walnut pieces to the chapel in Antibes, southern France.

The altar The lectern The pedestal (I didn't carve the statue! anyway it is made of stucco, not wood)

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I just finished an altar, pedestal for statue, and lectern for a nearby chapel.

The wood is solid walnut, the design is modern, using a coopered technique.

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This sideboard was made for a customer who has already a marble top. I used wood from a walnut I cut 3 years ago:

Felling the tree - January 2008 Hoisting the logs for initial drying under a tarp After sawing in 80mm-thick boards - April 2008 Dry assembly - January 2011

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Here is the table after assembly.

And how it looks now, after 2 coats of Tung Oil and wax With the model I built to check the proportions

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My customers had this old table top in walnut. They aked me to design a new base for it. After a few drawings, we settled on an oval base. I made this 1/4 scale model:

After we were satisfied with the design, I went ahead with the curved apron in laminated walnut: Then I cut mortises and...

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