July 24, 2014

Beavertail Light Jamestown RI

 Beavertail Light (click for complete history) located on the southern tip of Connanicut Island is the third oldest light in the US built in 1749. The original wooden tower designed by Architect Peter Harrison burned, was rebuilt and later destroyed by retreating British troops. In this view you can see the 45 ft granite light tower built in 1856 with the smaller fog signal building on the left and the keeper's quarters on the right.

The fog signal building has been re-purposed as an aquarium with RI DEM naturalist tours offered during the summer months. The restored keeper's quarters are a museum of the history of the light station run by the Beavertail Lighthouse Museum Association. The grounds are open to the public including the restored base of the original wooden tower which stands just to the south of the current buildings on the exposed rocky ledge.
The US Coast Guard maintains the light and fog signal as an aid to navigation. The distinctive architecture is a group of simple square or rectangular white painted masonry structures with recessed openings and red shingle roofs. The tower is made from interlocking granite blocks with a black metal lantern. The light is a 7 sec. period single white counterclockwise rotating beacon. The original 3rd order fresnel lens is on display in the museum.

photographs copyright 2014 George Hutchinson

July 20, 2014

Lift Lock Peterborough ON

Downstream view of the historic 19.8 m vertical rise lift-lock located in Peterborough ON. Built in 1904 this is the world's highest hydraulic lift lock, one of only 7 built worldwide.

The left side lock basin is in the down position even with the surface of the water. You can see the supporting trusses on either side adjacent to the un-reinforced concrete piers. On the right you can see the elevated lock basin with the steel containment bulkhead on the downstream end. The trusses are centered on a vertical steel ram that supports each basin.

The two rams are controlled by a valve that transfers water from one ram to the other allowing simultaneous descent of the basin on the right with elevation of the basin on the left. Tons of water and boat are precisely balanced on each side (boat displacement = weight of water displaced) allowing the entire structure to ride easily in the vertical guides even if there is a boat in only one of the two basins.

The lock operates twice daily at 10:30 am and 1:00 pm and occasionally at 3:00 pm
2 hour sightseeing cruises are available Victoria Day through Labour Day. (May through September)

photograph copyright 2014 George Hutchinson

July 19, 2014

St. Joseph MI North Pier outer and inner lighthouses

Benton Harbor Michigan also known as the St. Joseph North Pier Lighthouse outer cast iron and inner steel lights located on the north jetty. The outer light has part of the lantern catwalk missing possibly from storm damage. According to a local resident Lake Michigan froze over during the winter of 2013/4 resulting in much less wave action along these structures than when the lake remains open.

The lights are connected by an elevated iron framework that used to have an elevated catwalk deck and guardrails. This walkway allowed lighthouse tenders to get to the light structures without risking a traverse of the icy surface of the jetty itself. Both lights are operational and listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2005.

2009 winter photo

photograph copyright 2014 George Hutchinson

June 20, 2014

three part rope bracelets in club colors 3345

 Here's a project recently completed for a sailing club that wanted some nautical souvenirs in the club colors.

The design is a narrower two strand version of the classic three part rope bracelet.

Custom hand-dyed cotton cord was used to create the club colors of blue and gold.


Custom sizing is available from extra-small for the  younger crew to large and extra large for the fore-deck monkeys and skippers.
 Intense marine blue on one side...
Warm golden yellow on the other.

Read more about how hand dyed color is made.








design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop

June 18, 2014

custom color cord for special projects

 In addition to the natural white cotton cord which is popular there are many color combinations that produce attractive rope bracelets. Here's a collection of colors that were used to make a set of customized one-of-a-color bracelets.

On the left aquamarine & white; light green & teal; scarlet & purple; light taupe & rust; orange & brown.

The cotton cord is dyed in small batches using the RIT color system. The process is described in more detail here.

Custom colors are available for your projects including finished pieces or bulk cord orders.

I recommend these links that have instructions for making turks head knot bracelets.
Here's a range of greens and blue-greens, another popular color family.

Custom colors require a few days to create. Some of these colors are stocked but only in limited quantities. If you are interested in a custom color please leave a comment or send an Etsy convo with your question.


design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop

June 7, 2014

bright blue and green rope bracelet 3332

Amping up the blue with this aquamarine and pairing with a real green takes this popular combination to a new level. Readers of this blog have seen variations of these colors in more subtle blends of teal and lighter less saturated blues paired with softer greens.

This one is brighter, I think it's the aquamarine… a liquid RIT dye color not available in the dry packets.
 Classic 17 part double diamond weave design made out of 3 mm cord.

See this and other blended color rope bracelets here.
8 1/4" (210) inside circumference






design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop

June 6, 2014

simple handmade rope choker necklace with button 3294

 A simple three part handmade rope necklace with a button and loop toggle made from cotton yarn on a small rope machine.

Size: 16" inside circumference

Three pairs of cotton yarn were used to make a three ply cord.
 Detail shows how the three pairs of cotton yarn were placed through the eyes of the custom made button. The rope machine creates the reverse twist in the body of the cord. The cord was slightly over twisted to enable the yarn loops to release from the machine and relax to the underside of the button.

The loop is bound with a waxed cotton thread coach whipping.
Various rope lengths can be made up to about 12 ft on this tabletop machine. Length of the necklace is determined by placement of the loop.





design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop

June 2, 2014

rope bracelets for Nikole 3338

A special order for Nikole, blue and red rope bracelets in extra small and small sizes for children and teens. All made from hand dyed cotton cord.

Need a boatload of bracelets? Special orders are available.

see the color selections here


design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop

May 29, 2014

it's a family affair - matching rope bracelets for everyone

The only thing more fun than a day at the beach is having matching rope bracelets made for the crew. Here's a set custom made for a family headed out on vacation. Everyone wanted fog grey except for the youngest who requested a bright purple.

See the full lineup of available colors and make your special request here

Custom orders take a few days to produce and ship so order early! See you at the beach!
design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop

May 21, 2014

four more places at the lake

 Four more bright yellow turks head knots deployed in four locations (different from the first three)

Know this place? leave a comment. If you correctly guess the location I'll send you a replica bracelet in your choice of size.

You must be specific about details!
 This location is a repeat.

Two years ago another knot was placed in this location and is still there although a bit soiled from exposure. There is a tree decorated with knitting in the vicinity as well. Almost an art fair!

Know this place? Comment your guess below.
 This one is on the middle rail of a beach stairway. Which beach? Which stairway?

update 4/25/14 gone missing! during a walkabout noticed this one was no longer in place. :(
In the distance two large turtles are hauled out on the rocks. This bright piece of rope work is easier to see, you can walk right up to it.

Where is it? (missing!) as of 4/25/14 this one was also observed to be gone.




See the first three places on the lake here.

design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop

May 13, 2014

bone bangle h

 bone bangle h




                      available here
 7 1/2" 183 mm circumference
2 5/8" 67 mm N-S
2 1/8" 53 mm E-W
1/4" 7 mm thick
series a
series b
series c
series d
series e
series f
series g

design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop

May 10, 2014

three places on the lake

three part knots placed on handrails around Lake Harriet in south Minneapolis May 10, 2014

Materials: 3/16" synthetic yellow cord
Design: 11 x 3 x 3

If you find one of these leave a comment describing the location. If you can correctly guess the location I'll send you a replica in your choice of size.

Get a grip on this handrail, but where?

This guard rail protects pedestrians from car traffic, where is it?
An overlook with a view. Both function and beauty are served as this is a storm sewer outlet cleverly concealed below the platform.




four more places at the lake here





design and photographs © copyright 2014 WhatKnotShop