This is the first post in a while as i haven't had time to do anything lately, but since I have a very short "holiday" I thought I could at least get started on some blocks. I was inspired by a few posts on the Wooden Boat forum and decided to have a go.
I found a particularly good looking and heavy piece of native Rimu, which is perhaps not ideal, but is quite a hard wood, so with some washers around the pin ends, I think it should hold up OK. My sheave is a shop bought delrin sheave and the pin is the shank off an old bronze bolt. I will use Japanese 5 yen coins for the washers at the pin ends because firstly I have a huge pile of them, and secondly in Japanese 5 yen, is said "go-en" which also means "valued relationship" or "valued connection". The coins are a copper and zinc alloy and they corrode to a nice copper green colour.
The first step was to cut the Rimu 4x2 down to the width of the block. I wasn't too fussy about the cut as it would be all rounded off later.
After cutting a rectangular block out, I drilled out the gap for the sheave, leaving enough space at either end for the rope to pass through. It was looking pretty ugly at this time, but after a bit of sanding and rounding off it looked quite good.
The next stage was to carve the bedding holes for the coin washers and file up the pin to fit the holes already in the coins. Another good thing about the 5 yen coin is that it already has holes in it so you don;t have to feel guilty about drilling holes in money. The rope strop will cover the pin and most of the coin anyway, but even so...
This is as far as I got today. I still need to cut the rope grooves longer and make up the rope strop for the block. I'll also soak the whole block in linseed oil before putting it together. I'll lightly peen the pin over at the ends just in case as well.