“THE HUMAN HAND IS INCAPABLE OF MAKING AN EXACT COPY”
At the Iron Chinchilla, we pride ourselves in delivering a handmade, one of a kind product that becomes an instant conversation piece. Using little more than a bench vise and varying lengths of pipe we affectionately call “cheater bars”, we cold bend and shape each piece at the work table. With more than 20 years of welding experience, you can be sure that each piece we create will stand the test of time!
Design development always starts with a conversation. Dimensions of the intended space are an important factor of consideration since most designs in my catalog can be altered to fit a specific space. From there it is decided whether a sketch is needed to begin bringing the idea to life. . I have also had a lot of success with a sketch supplied by the client – I have had the opportunity to bring some wonderful ideas to life from some very creative individuals!
All of the designs I have created for the Iron Chinchilla are fabricated in virtually the same way they were when I started out in my garage. You will find no heavy machinery or forges, as each design is carefully constructed using a “cold bend” method, where the iron is slowly worked through a large vice, using little more than arm strength and a series of “cheater bars”. Creating in this free-form fashion ensures that each piece is unique…even within several renderings of the same design. From there, the construction of the project relies greatly on the welds. Great pride is taken in both the look and the strength of each weld no matter how small. Using the electrode in much the same way a potter uses clay, I layer several welds when connecting the pieces and forming the structure. A grinder is then used to achieve a seamless transition from one curve to the next. Once the construction is completed, the entire project is brushed down with a cup brush attached to a grinder removing much of the scale and slag from the welds and giving the design a more uniformed appearance. Finally, a sanding disk is used to achieve the burnished look that has become a Chinchilla trademark.
When you order a custom design from the Iron Chinchilla, you can follow the entire process from your home with updates I post to the Web Blog and my FaceBook page allowing you the opportunity to comment and possibly correct any issues before the item is shipped. Once the design is complete, your approval via several high-resolution images is requested before shipment and final payment.
Most clients prefer the look of the iron in its raw form of contrasting silver and grey to any other color under the rainbow. Protecting that look has proved to be a challenge, but I have found a couple of options that work very well including a clear epoxy enamel applied in several coats to preserve the iron and prevent rust. And for a bit more pizzazz, I have been working with a powder coat operation applying a Clear finish with Copper, Red and Black tints.
Shipping is another area in which I take a great amount of pride. Each piece is “double boxed” with as much attention to detail as the design itself. Items small enough to ship via UPS will be shipped in a shrink-wrapped and taped box to prevent anything from penetrating the box and marring the finish. Larger shipments are individually boxed, securely strapped to a pallet and shrink wrapped – then sent as a freight shipment. All tracking information is provided once the shipment leaves my dock and the shipping company will call to set up a time for delivery. For more information please view our Shipping Information page.