The Shed 111, October/November 2023

Headwinds in the foundry
The end of an era for Austins of Timaru
Our cover feature this issue is the story of a family firm that has provided a good living for at least two generations, building up an impressive skills base while manufacturing essential farm machinery for more than 90 years. The Austin family has run a foundry in Timaru for 93 years. Ken Austin, grandson of the founder, says the business has faced increasing headwinds since the Covid-19 pandemic, so he has tested the winds of change and decided to close down. The Shed visits to celebrate their technical foundry skills, the likes of which we may never see again in NZ.
Make a roll cage
Welding chrome molybdenum
If you are about to go car racing then you must have a roll cage fitted to your vehicle and it is possible for you to make this yourself.
Welding pipe and welding chrome molybdenum (chrome moly) are two essentials in making a roll cage in a race car. Frank Wigg at Race FX in West Auckland (known now as Wigg Motorsport) likes working with chrome molybdenum and says it is not that hard to weld.
An experienced welder in the motorsport world, Frank estimates he has made more than 100 roll cages.
Make a crossbow – part 2
Crossbows – still very old, very cool, and very lethal
Our crossbow build is starting to hit its straps this issue with the butt, the prod and more really starting to take real shape. It's getting to that stage where maybe we need to bring in an expert to make sure we get things made just right with the correct material etc, and we are so glad we did.
ATV mower project – creative mechanical engineering
‘The farmer’s way’ – 21st century style
For Alex van Dijk, owning and living on a lifestyle block is an incredible privilege. Alex and his wife, Anke, relish this lifestyle since they were married, and they wouldn’t want it to be any different. Living on the outskirts of Auckland, they are close enough to the city to enjoy its events, restaurants, and beaches, yet far enough to enjoy the peace and connection of our rural community. 
Unlike many lifestyle-block owners, I have, to date, refused to buy a ride-on lawn-mower, despite our very large lawns. This is because I have always valued the exercise gained from pushing a manual mower rather than sitting on a ride-on. As for the paddocks, Anke’s amazing stock management has meant it is only in the late spring and early summer months that they occasionally need the help of a paddock mower to keep the grass under control.
Max’s shed – part 1
Max and his dad are building a shed
Max is 28 years old and has a business making planter boxes and his business is thriving. So much so that now he needs his own workshop/shed to put all the boxes together so he can keep up with demand. This is part one of the journey to build a backyard shed for Max.
Software test
Alibre 101 – part 8
This is the final instalment on learning how to use this design software, Alibre Atom 3D, so with all the foundation skills mastered, it's time to let your imagination run wild!
Off the grid
Five ways for sheddies to address the future
In the previous edition of The Shed, the editor lamented in his editorial that our lack of activity from one and all to attack climate change was giving him sleepless nights. Murray Grimwood our Off The Grid columnist heard the call and suggests some actions our readers can undertake to commence doing their bit to help our climate predicament.
The Shed shrink
There’s a new rumble in Christchurch
It's always a good day when you come across a good bugger and Mason Simpson is one of those. Mason undertook a fundraising mission driving a Tuk Tuk from Auckland to Christchurch to raise money for charity. His 1200km 12-day solo roadie fundraiser raised $12,000 in donations. The trip gave him the opportunity to visit rest homes, skateparks, shopping malls, and, in particular, schools. He says he felt humbled by others’ stories of struggles and hardship.
Building a router table for a plunge router
Good tools are not cheap, so it can be important that they are versatile
The always enterprising Coen Smit is a consummate sheddie and strives to create great shed projects and versatile tools to help him achieve the best results for those projects.
In this issue of The Shed, he describes how to make a mounting table for your router to make it even more versatile and useful.
Electronics – Ghent Maker Faire – part 2
Inspiring passion through education and hands-on experience
In this second part of the Ghent Maker Faire, Enrico Miglino introduces another series of stands. These represent the real soul of the event and some notable groups that have elevated the ‘art of making’ to a fascinating professional pastime.
Hybrid hydraulic lifter 
Brain wins over brawn when it comes to tackling heavy-duty lifting
Bryce Clifford is a busy sheddie, so busy in fact that he has not found the time to write a workshop article for the magazine for, well, ages.
Time to address that absence and here Bryce admits he’s not getting any younger and shares with us how he made a hybrid lifter to help him avoid serious injury when moving and lifting heavy machinery in his workshop.
Book review
Kiwis on Harleys By George Lockyer
Our reviewer Chris Hegan is something of a Harley Davidson fan and was excited to be reviewing this Kiwi book on Harleys. Whilst he adores Harleys, he has some reservations about this new book.
Steampunk armoury
One man’s passion provides a treasure trove for collectors
Warren Phillips is an interesting sheddie for sure. He was working as a camera technician when he started selling antique cameras, used magazines, and framed car advertisements at Christchurch’s large Riccarton Market. Warren’s source of car ads was magazines of the ’60s and ’70s, such as Playboy and The Saturday Evening Post, in which US automakers would regularly take full-page ads to announce new models. One day he brought along a Steampunk gun he made for a bit of fun and well, things have really taken off for him in his new venture.
Working with clay
A career built on passion, hard work, and an abundance of ingenuity
Sheddies come in all shapes and sizes and passions aplenty. Meet Trevor Wright, he likes pottering about in his shed. As a lad in Auckland, Trevor spent time visiting NZ Dutch artist Theo Schoon, who was a friend of his uncle. 
After a visit to West Auckland’s Crown Lynn to get some clay, Theo literally dragged a couple of apple boxes filled with the clay, wrapped in canvas, to his home. When Trevor and his uncle visited the next day, Theo showed Trevor what you could do with it. He rolled up a ball of clay and, giving it to Trevor, said, “Here, have a play.” That was Trevor’s introduction to the stuff.
Back O The Shed – Spring has sprung
A new  season – a time to welcome new friends, farewell an old one, and tackle deferred tasks
Who doesn’t love Spring and The Shed magazine founder Jude Woodhouse sure does. His rural life is full of projects, shed building and farm animals. In his column this issue Jude shares his Spring tales but laments the loss of a good mate of his and of this magazine.
Steaming on the Weka Pass Railway
… perhaps for the last time
The Weka Pass Railway runs between the North Canterbury villages of Waipara and Waikari. 

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