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montea6b

Checkering Diamonds, The "golden Ratio", And Powdered Charcoal

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As each coat of finish on the Swede's stock cures, (It's looking good, I'll post photos when it's done) I've been contemplating the checkering pattern I'll use. I have sketched out several point patterns, as well as some more rounded fluer di leis patterns, yet I'm still undecided.

 

I've also tried to come up with a geometrically proportioned angle for the diamonds to that I can make a template for the master lines. On my last project I just winged it, choosing angles that looked "right", but I am striving for better consistency this time. Using graph paper I haven't been able to get anything that looks just right. They are either too square, or too sharply angled.

 

Over morning coffee this weekend I was sitting on the couch, absent-mindedly pulling the fabric on my plaid PJ pants diagonally into diamond shapes, contemplating the resulting ratios of long to short sides, and wondering if I should measure and capture it when I got it just right, when suddenly it hit me... The "Golden Ratio"!!!

 

If you're not sure what I'm talking about just do a Google search on this term. It would take far too long to explain here, and I couldn't begin to do it justice.

 

Anyhow, I looked it up myself on Google and I think this is the answer. I haven't drawn it out yet, but visually the proportions look just right for making checkering diamonds aesthetically pleasing. There's a reason why Da Vinci was such an artistic genius.

 

By the way, I wouldn't recommend trying to pulverize charcoal to tint the pore filling slurry a darker color. It just seemed ineffective. It all settled to the bottom of the finish and I don't think it did much good. Perhaps a finer carbon dust like graphite powder or bone-black would be better. Something that would actually remain suspended in the solution. Interesting experiment anyhow, and the stock certainly looks no worse for the effort.

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Most checkering has proportions for the diamonds ranging from 2 1/2 to 1 up to 3 to 1, length to width ratio. Anything much outside those limits looks a bit strange.

 

Clemson

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Mauser98, I hadn't though of it in terms of forearm length, but it makes sense. I had heard of the rule of thumb of making the end at the midpoint of the barrel, which is what I have used on my two projects. This looks pretty good, but if a barrel band sling swivel is used then it really looks odd. I think for a sleeker euro-style sporter the barrel band should go at the midpoint of the barrel, with the forend tip ending well before that. I'll bet the "golden section" would be a perfect tool for determining this point. Here's a good link:

 

Golden ratio

 

Clemson, I happen to think that 2:1 or greater looks too elongated. It's just a matter of perference I guess. What I was considering was to make a diamond template that fits within the box labeled "golden rectangle" in the link above. This would make it just a little less than 2:1, but I think that looks most pleasing to the eye. IMHO...

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