Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Secretariat's Racing Tack

I just got an email today from Lisa Bickford, showing her lovely Secretariat in the tack I made for him.  It's the Valor resin by Carol Williams, painted by the very talented Lisa Bickford of 3B Designs.  I just wanted to share with everyone the finished product.  Original photo by Lisa Bickford:

Now, I decided to have a little fun with GIMP (something like PhotoShop)'d be a great photo show entry if that was allowed!

 This is all I have for model horse-related stuff at the present.  My extended break will continue until I'm officially moved, but I will eventually pick up again.  If anyone is interested in a set of any kind, just let me know and I'll gladly take down your name and get back in touch with you when I'm unpacked.  You can email me at  Thanks! 

Sunday, May 27, 2012

1 month til my birthday!

Random drawings of mine...don't have anything model horse to post.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Oh yeah, one other thing...

I've been thinking about making little artsy earrings and/or pins for dog lovers.  I just made this over the's an Affenpinscher.  They look like little monkies, or exactly like Ewoks for you Star Wars fans.  What do you think?  These are silly looking little dogs  :)  I figured I'd try to make something for almost every breed...I don't know.  Just random craftings.

Hello world!

It's been 3 months since my last post.  Just wanted say that I'm still out there.  This impending move has me totally stressed out.  My folks are making zero progress on packing or getting rid of their things.  And I feel like I'm making extremely slow progress on my house.  My goal is to just have things livable before the move, but I keep getting myself deeper into projects.  

Now, I've ripped up the upstairs bathroom floor.  I originally only intended to take up the tile, but when I took up the tile there was another layer of tile!  That 2nd layer was a bunch of small 1x1, 1x2, and 2x2 inch tiles...each individually laid.  I thought I could just pick them off, but they were on there so well and it was taking too long I just had to break up the floor.  After doing that, I found they were installed on a super thick layer of plaster and lathe.  Lathe is really hard to get up, by the way, when you're using just a crowbar and a mini sledge hammer.  Oh boy!  Now I come to find that the subfloor around the bathtub and toilet drain are kind of rotten.  I found out when my foot went right through the floor.  Ouch!  I'm doing this the right way though....rather than just put a new floor down over a bad thing, we need to fix the subfloor and build up.  The build-up process shouldn't be too hard, I just need my dad to help me.  I'll get some pix in here of the bathroom when it's done.

My basement is a mess too.  I decided to turn the old dungeon bathroom into a laundry room, and what was the laundry room into a bathroom.  It just makes more sense that way.  The space where the washer/dryer used to be was as big as the master bedroom, and the original bathroom was exactly the same size as the one upstairs (small).  That particular room has all sorts of pipes and whatever in the ceiling, which means you can't really drywall it off.  I figured why not have the washer/dryer there, and we can have a nice big bathroom with a finished ceiling in the other space.  Just makes more sense anyway.  The contractor ended up jackhammering my foundation and he finally got the pipes laid just the other day.  I'm not wild about this guy...took him over a month to jackhammer the floor and just put in the piping.  Oh well, it is what it is.  That bathroom doesn't need to be done before we move, but the laundry room needs to be functional.

With my life happenings, tackmaking is on hold for awhile.  I do at least have some model horse updates though.  I can't wait for things to be back to normal, then I can make my tack and hopefully get to a show or two before the end of the year.  Anyway, I paid for this horse a year and a half ago, and she just arrived the other day.  I don't think I'm going to pay for any resin pre-sale's again, as I kind of started to think I was getting jerked around.  But, the artist came through and now I finally have my pretty western mare Sheba's Jewel.  Can't wait to try my hand at a western saddle!

Also, I had Sue Kern customize a Breyer for me to fit my LB saddle better.  Couldn't be happier with the turnout!  Can you figure out what model this used to be?  Sue is a very talented customizer...I wish I had her skills :)
Sorry for the photo quality.  This is my new iPad2 that I got free from work.  I actually am not really a fan of the iPad.  I think my cell phone takes better pix.  Oh well, if my iPad wasn't free I would be disappointed that I spent all my money on it.  Have a great day to any and all who are out there.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Draft Harness Toggle

By George, I think I've done it!   After cutting away more than 1/4" of the initial round wire, I think this looks way better.  This is the toggle with chrome finish.  Very excited about it!  The one downside, it doesn't swing like I had wanted.  Oh well, it's a stationary horse anyway but it would have been nice to have it functional.  What do you think?

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Draft Harness Updates

I've been doing a little work on the draft harness swinging toggle lately.  I've been experimenting with different ways to create a good toggle, and I think I at least have started down the right path.  I made one today that is ok....I'm not going to scrap it completely, but I'm not 100% loving it.  I finally got the little teeny drafter on top just how I want, so that's the main thing so far.  Everything doesn't completely swing like I had wanted, but at least the little center ornament dangles and swings a bit.  The outer circle is just too big...I'll try to work with it a bit to see if I can't improve that.  Otherwise, I think the elements are there and if I can get it looking better, then I'll show it painted.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

1st Day of the New Year

Do you have any New Year's resolutions?  I have some goals for the year, but I wouldn't necessarily say "resolution".  I have a list of 20 things that I want to accomplish in the next 5 or so years (not a bucket list I hope!), and I did get a couple things knocked off the list earlier this year.  It's more of things to better myself and help find some new passions in life, rather than just tasks to complete before I die.  For example, I wanted to learn to play guitar -- check.  While I was at it, I decided to add ukulele to the repertoire.  I'm much better at guitar, but I can certainly play some uke songs too.  And I also wanted to get my dog titled through AKC.  We have a couple titles now, and I've had so much fun with it that I decided to go all the way through obedience.  I hope to be able to compete for a Utility Dog title at the Boston Terrier Nationals, Chicago 2013.  That's a pretty tall order actually, as that's the highest level of competition for my dog's breed and we have a lot of ground to cover if I plan on making that goal.  Anyway, that's just a couple examples, and as I knock things off the list it seems other non-planned opportunities arise.  I'm bored with my life and need to find some excitement!
I guess December was pretty uneventful for tack making.  I did work on making a racing saddle so I could take progress photos for the magazine article.  The saddle looked pretty good actually, but it wasn't something I was planning to finish so I decided just to chuck it.  Oh well!  I'm tired of making racing tack right now anyway.

I started up working on my Lg. Traditional draft harness some more, and I think it'll be phenomenal when I'm done!  I haven't seen any Lg. Traditional harnesses on Equus Maximus before since you have to create some of the major the hardware by hand, so this might be something special.  I had initially started at the front with the bridle and such, but kind of hit a wall when I needed a large enough bit and the hames.  So, I'm picking up work from the back.  Here's photos of what I'm doing so far:
(Above) This is my first uptug out of 6 that need to be made.  It's called a boxed loop uptug.  I have patent leather backing & detailing on the uptug.  For being so small, it took a couple hours to make since I had to battle the paint a bit.  Now I know how long I have to wait for it to dry before I touch it!
 (Above) The start of the swinging toggle.  This will be a mini-sized drafter that sits upon the top of the peaked collar and/or on the top of the back pad.  This one is super small, but I think I actually need to go smaller.  The lump of clay at the base is only to hold him up.  I have to wait for his body sections to dry before adding legs & such.  I'm thinking this will wind up being a redo.  I have another idea brewing should the clay not work out.  I see the Susan Bensema-Young harness sets photographed on her site (, but I can't quite tell what she does for the toggle.  Her tack is stellar, but I'm trying to create something even more detailed!  I don't want to buy another artist's how-to book, so I'm content to figure this out myself.
(Above) Here we have the crupper which I probably made 3+ years ago...fully stuffed and has a wire core.  It's ok, but I'll probably redo it.  I don't have working buckles there at the top which I think I would prefer to have.  These can be tricky to make properly, so I'll have to see how it looks once more things come together.
(Above) This is the collar I started a couple years ago.  It just got its black color today and already looks much better!  It's stuffed, has a wire core, and is hand-stitched at the seams.  I'm debating on whether or not to put a flannel panel (haha!) on the bottom where it would sit on his neck.  Most collars have some kind of fabric underside I believe.  I've never actually touched a real draft harness in person, so this is all based on photos that I find on the web.
(Above) This is the collar latch that closes the top of the collar once you have it around the horse's neck.  I made every bit of this, and it works too!  Unfortunately it's a detail that won't be seen since it'll sit under the peaked collar.  Why am I doing it then?  I don't know, I guess for the sake of realism.  The leather straps on both sides are just junk leather to hold everything together until I can incorporate it officially.
(Above) Lastly, we have the side check chain that goes through the tear drop and attaches to a swivel ring that really swivels around.  I think that's pretty cool!  I'm not wild about the look of the tear drop though.  I think that'll be a redo. 

So, now you can see why I'm taking so long on this set.  I want to have as much detail as I can fit, and since it's in a larger scale, I can throw in working parts.  The trick is getting them to actually work :)  Anyway, I think I'm going to take another break and go watch a movie.  I'm happy to report that it's Jan 1st, and we still don't have snow on the ground!  I wish the whole winter would be snow free!