Introduction: Eagle Feather Pendant
This little pendant was a super easy build, ...made all the easier since I was able to find all the parts in the scrap bin! If you have a small belt/disc sander, a fine hand saw and some sandpaper, you can make this too.
What really makes this design work are the materials, ..Zebrawood for the body of the feather, Wenge for the tip and Maple for the Quill. The skulls are at your discretion. ; )
Step 1: To Start
These were the offcuts I had to use.
I had other wood types that were of the same dimension, ...but as you can see the Zebrawood and Wenge make for a great Eagle feather. The Maple dowel short will become the quill part of the feather.
Step 2: Gluing the Halves
To true up each edge to be glued, I took each piece to the disc sander and flatenned the longest edge, after that, everything matched up great for glue up!
Step 3: Shaping the Feather/Quill Making
The first thing I do after glueing the edges together and letting them dry is to sand each side. Now these are small parts, so be carefull in how you execute this part. Glueing a piece of sandpaper to a scrap piece of plywood and running the piece over it is about the safest, if not the slowest too.
Next I draw an oblong on the center of the blank. At this point you are not concerned about details, just the rough shape. Since these pieces were so small I just shaped them with the disc sander, ...way too small for a bandsaw, ...maybe a scroll saw, ...maybe.
With the basic feather shape out lined, use your fine hand saw to make small V cuts into the edge of the feather, a couple of randomly placed cuts on each side.
Using a fine light touch with the edge of a running belt sander you can shape the profile of the feather better now, pulling away from where the feather has its V cuts for a more natural look.
Hit both sides of the feather with fine sandpaper and files to soften the V cuts and edges.
I removed about 2/3rds of the thickness of a 1/4" dowel for about 1". On the belt sander, taper the ends of the quill on the two outside edges. Square up the inside edge well so that it butts up to the base of the feather perfectly.
Add glue and lightly clamp untill dry.
Step 4: Shaping the Quill
Once it was dry I clamped it in place so I could cut the extra off, leaving about 5/8" extending past the base of the feather.
Sand the tip of the quill at about 10 degrees, just so it feels more natural.
Soften any sharp edges, and taper in the edges of the V cut that flare out as they are prone to catching on material, etc.
Carefully drill a 1/8" pilot hole through the end of the quill for the necklace to run through.
Use a file or sharp chisel to put a final shape on the quill to give it detail. I slivered down the quill at the bottom point so it felt more natural and reflected the light better.
At this point I applied many coats of Salad Bowl Oil to it, with several hours in between.
I used simple hemp cord and little chrome skull beads on mine, seems to balance the design just fine, but feel free to experiment.